Timber Creek- Jumping Borders
DATE- 21st of September
There’s no doubt about it- we’re heading due West, making a beeline for the West Australian border. All that lies between us and The Kimberley is the small town of Timber Creek, perfectly positioned on the Victoria River, and plenty of dead cows in various stages of decomposition Yech!
A truly tropical green oasis when compared to the surrounding dusty dirt roads. This roadside port-o-call with its two caravan parks, one supermarket and a rough little pub is a welcome relief after the long slog over from Katherine- perhaps the near 50 degrees C temps made it seem all the more sweeter. With Josh’s lips drooling at the prospect of an overnight sojourn with pool, we decided to stop and investigate the river for a day.
Obviously not reputed for its gourmet cuisine, the Timber Creek general store assembled for us some appropriately greasy local hamburgers, which we munched under the canopy of our 60’s caravan awning. (Yes it’s true- we’ve lashed out tonight and have treated ourselves to a spacious on-site-van, complete with hideously grotesque fabrics and furniture, loosely draped over a collection of seemingly scrap aluminium pieces riveted together. With the mosquitoes chomping at our toes, we retired into our moth-ridden, bug infested, ramshackle old squeaky van for a restless nights sleepYep that just about sets the scene perfectly!
The first rays of sunshine intruded through the swirly-musty curtains. Rise and shine. The river awaits, as did our early bird fishing guide Steve. We staggered down to the water’s edge and launched off into its murky depths.
Notorious for its gigantean crocodiles, the Vic River didn’t take long to bring forth the goods left, right and centre. An incredibly wide river, with such muddied water one would have expected a 40-pound Barramundi to swim over and say hello- but au contraire! Six hours on the water produced a measly mottled catfish and a poor little juvenile barra straight from its crib. It mistook our colourful lure for the teat of its baby bottle!
Our guide Steven scratched his head, perplexed. His brow crumpled in disbelief.
“On to Plan B”
Plan B proved to be another “visibly” perfect Barra headquarters that failed to raise even a wretched nibble. Where oh where have the Barra gone???????????
Barramundi actually change sex during their life, from male to female……..perhaps all the Vic River Barra were having mid-life-crisis?
Eleven sun-stroked hours later we abandoned Plan H and headed back to the ramp. A wonderful, if very fishless day was had by all. Josh lost it for a minute, but with the promise of an ice cream back at the “shack on wheels”, he quickly recovered. The river was quite lovely- wildlife is ubiquitous, crocodiles, sea-eagles, and cattle stations(oops must be getting sleepy).
The drive on from Timber Creek to the WA border was uneventful but for the magnificent Boab Trees, a species that occurs only in this part of Australia. The Aborigines say that it once was a proud and arrogant tree standing tall amongst other trees of the area. It became so full of its own self-importance that one of the gods decided to teach it a lesson and cast a spell which caused its offspring to grow upside down!
At long last, we reached the border and were pulled up and searched. No sir we do not have any fruit or honey with us, just some pistachio nuts, a spear, and some dried apricots. Only in Australia!