The Big Lap - Northam, Clackline & York



Northern has awesome Silo Art Work.  This has become quite popular in Australia with quite a few located in southern WA.  We had already seen the awesome one in Pinjrup when we stayed at Dumbleyung, see pic below.

If you want to know where to see them, just Google WA Silo Art Trail.


We knew that we were in a relatively big town because they had Maccas, KFC, Dominos, Subway and Red Rooster.

Northam is on the Avon River.  The Avon River holds a unique raft race called the Avon Descent.  It's a 2 day epic race over 124k's down the river starting at Northam and ending in Bayswater Perth.  There are lots of obstacles along the way in which you have to endure the rapids and also pick up your raft and cross to a better spot to hit the tide.  It started in 1973 with 49 competitors and now there are around 35,000 people ranging from novices, families and world wide olympic competitors.

Northam, like most country towns now, has some great art work on the side of buildings.


We were nicely surprised at the Northam Caravan Park.  It is located just outside of town, easy to find and the setting couldn't have been better with lots of native trees and bushes and abundant birdlife.  
However, our happiness soon disappeared when we saw the state of the amenities.  They desperately require attention.  

We have been to many free facilities provided by RV friendly towns that are far superior.  These were full of rust, had major chips in the paintwork, looked like they hadn't been cleaned in over a week, loo wasn't working properly with a red paint written message on the wall saying to hold the flush button down until it flushes (which was about 20seconds).  

The last straw was when I went to wash my hands and it seemed that the liquid hand wash had about 20% soap and 80% water.  WTF?  lol.  



Being this close to a place called Clackline, we couldn't resist paying a visit to one of our favourite wineries.  This place has the best cheese board ever!  And the nicest hosts.



We had a decision to stay in York or Northam.  I wanted to pay a visit to the old Flower Mill Cafe in York as that place has a real nice fresh bread, cheese, olive and dip board.  In the end, we both decided that Northam would be more appropriate as it is closer to our destination in Perth.  

So, we took a day to visit York.  Just so happened that the Flower Mill wasn't open on a Tuesday, and not much else either.  But, oh well, we had a great day still the same.  We love the old heritage buildings in the main street of York.  The motor museum is still there.  And the beautiful decorated Town Hall is still a stand out.  We bought some local jams and chutney from a store in the main street.

 And discovered a Sock Factory.  Fancy that?  It was interesting to see the machinery in use.  They also sold beautiful authentic wollen wear including scarfs, ugg boots, jumpers etc.  

But the price!  Wow!
Does anyone have $375 to buy a jumper?  Mmmmm, certainly not us.


Behind the shops is the free RV Camping area.  Looked real nice.  In between there was a hanging sway bridge over the river.  Kids are well looked after with a swings and park area with a nice walking path.

We also saw the big Bilby pictured below. 

I plan to one day have a BIG things page.  Australia has a lot of BIG things.  We have the well known BIG pineapple, banana, prawn etc.  I am sure the Bilby won't get a mention, but I am going to put it out there anyway 😛   

So I looked it up and found out that this straw construction was erected as part of the Wara Art work in York.  Aparently there are now 2 places in the world that Wara Art work is found.  Japan and the little town of York in WA.  Whilst Japan holds many Wara Art work festivals, York just started theirs in 2019.  

The lookout in York was nice.  This included an interesting Aboriginal Nyungar Dreamtime tale about the mountain and valley.
It goes like this...

 There was a strapping young lad from the hills that all of the ladies admired.  However he only had eyes for a lady in the valley and they eloped because the hill tribe and the valley tribe did not get along.  

Both tribes went into a bloody warfare and the valley tribe was loosing until they called on their wise man to use his magic powers.  

He turned all of the men from the hills tribe into black boys and to this day stand a stack of grass trees on the hillside slope.



As there was nothing open in and around York, we headed back to Northam for some grub at the pub.

We were finding that quite few small towns have obviously done it hard over the COVID lockdown thing and also lack of the backpackers that they rely on.

Back at Northam, same thing, pub closed.
So we headed down to this restaurant that we have been to before on one of our day trips from Toodyay.  Last time I remember having an awesome huge lamb shank dish that I hardly made a dent it, but it was ohhh soooo yuum.  

The Lume Bar & Grill was open for business so we did not hesitate.  Hubby ordered Indian again.  Hubby knew that it would be good and it was.  I ordered a steak sanga.  And we were not disappointed.  


Back to Perth to catch up with the family and do some business.

See you all in three weeks.

We have sorted out our little problems and are now ready to commence our Big Lap and finally heading north.

Stay tuned.






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