19-Apr-2003 -- I decided to make good use of the Easter long weekend, setting out from Mundaring (~30km east of Perth) around midday on Good Friday with a couple of fresh confluences in my sights. An uneventful afternoon's drive took me to Coolgardie, and I set out south down Queen Victoria Rock Rd just after sunset, wanting to get clear of civilisation.
After a beautiful night under the stars around 35km south of Coolgardie, I broke camp at dawn and drove the remaining 100-odd km south to the intersection of QVR Rd and the old Norseman-Hyden road (stopping briefly for breakfast and sightseeing at Queen Victoria Rock itself).
Despite dire warnings, I turned east along the apparently well-made track. The road was generally in good condition apart from numerous fallen trees blocking the way. However, each tree had a well established track around it, hinting that this route may be more frequently used than is stated by the sign.
Closest vehicular approach was about 20km in. This point is about 1.2 minutes north of the confluence proper. I wrote a quick note to leave in the car, both in case of emergency and to allay the concerns of hypothetical passing traffic and set out south.
The flora here grows in distinct bands, varying between moderately dense scrub and more open stands of small eucalypts, interspersed with occasional granite outcrops. I started out through open forest, but had to pass through several bands of much denser vegetation on my way to the confluence.
I noted many diggings, mainly rabbit, but a couple of destroyed white-ant mounds that were probably the work of an echidna. A wedge-tailed eagle circled overhead for a couple of minutes, but I was showing insufficient signs of becoming carrion and it departed to the west.
The confluence itself was in an area characterised by an unusually dense stand young eucalypts. I took eight photos to assemble a cylindrical panorama (red arrow indicates north). This being my first real confluence, a GPS photo was inevitable.
Returning to the road I was very glad of the GPS - I was carrying a magnetic compass for backup, but the lack of visible landmarks would have made compass navigation a very difficult task. Despite my generally good sense of direction I would have been lucky to get within a kilometre of the vehicle without the GPS.
Back at the vehicle I drank a couple of litres of water before setting off for 33°S 120°E.