Hot article Lake Argyle

To Infinity (Pool) and Beyond

One of the highlights from my three week tour of the Kimberley was hanging out at Lake Argyle, but before we could relax in the mountain-top infinity pool, we had the arduous task of a 7am champagne speed boat ride to the start of the Dam 2 Dam Dinghy Dash (oh woah is me!).

The Dam 2 Dam is an annual race from the Lake Argyle dam wall, along 55km of the upper Ord River, to the finish line at the Kununurra Division Dam. I was expecting rubber dinghies with oars, but the Australian version is a small tin boat with an outboard motor.  Two men (or women) per boat, prizes for “best dressed crew” (I saw clowns, pink tutus and what looked like Chewbacca with a bowler hat) and delicately named vessels (such as Titan Uranus) it’s a cracking event run by the community.

I reckon our early morning speed boat jaunt would’ve gotten quite raucous later on because we were travelling with pretty much all the wives and girlfriends of the competitors and the champagne corks were flying. Unfortunately (probably fortunately), ours was a one-way ticket. We disembarked at the start line and whilst the rest of the party travelled back down the river, we were picked up by Gary from Lake Argyle Resort where we were staying that night.

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Hot article Bungle Bungle Range (2)

Kimberley Aerial Highway

Morning folks, today we set off on the Kimberley Aerial Highway. A series of airstrips landing you in some of the Kimberley’s most iconic landscapes and unique accommodations, from Cape Leveque and the Bungle Bungle Ranges of Purnululu National Park, to Home Valley Station and El Questro Wilderness Park.

Kkkxxzzqqq….Good morning ground control, this is the Slingair Heliworks GA8 airvan requesting permission for take-off. I have Co-Pilot Keam on board and he’s been instructed NOT to touch ANY dials or buttons, nor is he allowed to “have a go” on the “steering wheel” over….kkzzzzxxx

Kkxxzzqq.…Roger Roger Heliworks, request granted. Where will you be flying today Roger Roger? Over.…kkzzxxxx

Kkkxxzzqq….We’ll be flying at an average altitude of 3,000ft and approximately 200km/h as we pass over the Western part of the Bungles. We’ll be able to see the vast Tanami Desert on the horizon, where the wind blows in to give the Bungle Bungle Range their distinctive beehive shape through erosion of their relatively soft sandstone. The eroded stumps of 350 million-year-old mountains, it is utterly unlike any other place on Earth.

We’ll then be passing over the massive tectonic shift of the Osmand Ranges and the Argyle diamond mine, the world’s largest producer of natural coloured diamonds, over.…kkkxxqqzzxx

Qqkkzzzzxx….Sounds like quite a trip Roger Roger, will you be passing the Ord top river dam as well? Roger Roger, over….kkxxqqqzz

Qqqxzzzzz….We’ll have a sneaky peek ground control. Built between 1969-72 the detonation to create enough rubble for the dam was Australia’s largest non-nuclear explosion at the time, and Lake Argyle is now classed as an inland sea it’s so vast. If you took one metre of water off the top of the lake, it would supply Perth with all its water needs for five years. Incredible. Over….kkxxqzzzz

Kkkkqxxzz….Wow Roger Roger, impressive stuff! You have a safe trip now, Roger Roger over….kkkqqzxxx

Kkkxxzqzz….Thanks ground control, but if I’ve told you once I’ve told you a million times, my name’s Stephen….kkkqqxxzzz

Tips and Tricks

Getting to the Kimberley Aerial Highway

  • The main departure points for the Kimberley Aerial Highway  are Broome and Kununurra. Departures are also available from Drysdale River Station, Wyndham, Warmun, Halls Creek, Mitchell Plateau, Bell Gorge and Derby.
  • Fixed wing, float plane and helicopter tours are available with a variety of Air Tour operators from Broome and Kununurra.

Hot article The Homestead at El Questro

The Homestead at El Questro

Imagine if your best mates were millionaires and they invited you round their house for a couple of days. They’ve got a big open plan living room with grand log fire, a cellar full of fine wine and an amazing bar area with spectacular panoramic views of one of the world’s last great frontiers.

There’s a live-in Gourmet Chef (Big Al) and you can pop into the kitchen anytime to say hi (or help prepare canpapes before cocktails or make some bread in the morning).

There’s a couple of staff who aren’t really staff, more like friends just hanging out. But they’ll be so kind as to meet you at the front door with a glass of champagne or hot scented towel, and serve you dinner as you fine dine out on the lawn under the stars.   Other friends pop by and they’ll gladly take you on a private tour of Zebedee Thermal Springs or a cruise along the Chamberlain Gorge. Fancy some time alone? (there’s a maximum of only 18 guests) Well you can relax in the library or on your own private cliff top balcony.

Aaaaahh The Homestead, I’m going to miss you.

Tips and Tricks

Getting to El Questro

  • Daily flights from Perth to Kununurra via Broome then short vehicle transfer onto El Questro. Small aircraft flights from Kununurra to El Questro available with Slingair.

Where I Stayed

My Expert Local Guides

Events to Keep an Eye Out For

My Insider Tips

  • Get in the kitchen with Homestead Chef Alan Groom and learn how to make awesome canapés and the morning’s fresh bread.
  • Homestead guests get exclusive use of the tranquil Zebedee Springs.