By Jenny and Geoff Tait from the recently promoted to four star Tocumwal Tourist Park
Augusta - Margaret River - Dunsborough
The thunderstorms rolled in on us at Fernhook Falls and down came the rain again.The next few days were somewhat spoiled by lots of rain and storms, in particular an especially savage night in Augusta when we barely slept a wink, fully expecting to be cast into the Blackwood River at any moment.
We have some leaks in the Cub Camper, which is disappointing, but nothing too major. It has withstood some pretty strong winds.
This part of the country is so refreshing and easy on the eye, with miles and miles of the majestic karri trees and green green green.
Augusta, Cape Leeuwin and Hamelin Bay are very scenic, but unfortunately the poor weather did not show them at their best.
The view from Turners Caravan Park Augusta
Turners Caravan Park at Augusta (a council-operated park) was neat and tidy and in a great location, close to town and right on the river. We watched dolphins feeding quite close to shore.
The town reminds me a bit of Lorne, in Victoria, in that it is primarily a holiday-home town with only a small permanent population. This, of course, limits the number of businesses (staffing the perennial problem) but not the prices they charge.
Using Augusta as our base, we explored the southern region of Margaret River (only 44km north). Not being hugely into wineries (I'm sure that must be a mortal sin to most of you!), we sought out the galleries and gastronomic delights that abound on every highway and biway in this area.
A 30km round trip through the incredible forests can include cheese tasting, olive oils, 15 wineries, timber galleries (chainsaw carving pic attached), art/pottery studios, craft shops, candy stores, chocolate shop, soap making, alpaca products, sauces and chutneys, gelati and ice cream - you name it.
Oops, I forgot about the breweries! But Geoff didn't...
We lucked upon a wonderful cafe in Margaret River, just off the main street, called Wild Thyme - this was the best meal we have had in a very long time, and only $14.50 for the main course.
Seek it out if you get the chance. Our next piece of luck was stumbling upon a winery, a bit out in the boondocks, called
Swallows Welcome. It is Margaret's smallest winery but a real gem.
Big swells roll in at Yallingup
Tim Negus, the winemaker, and Patricia, the artist, have built their home, studio and chapel from handmade mudbricks.
Tim educated us on his wine-making process, and Pat proudly showed us her watercolours (and a dead miniature possum she is using to illustrate a children's book).
She specialises in book illustrations, and her paintings of flora and fauna are so detailed that you would swear they were photographs.
The cosy chapel displays her originals, along with some amazing leadlight windows, designed and created by a local artisan.
The wine was OK but the property was fantastic. Just a bit up the road was the Witchcliffe Winery and Marron (a bit like yabbies only bigger) farm. Sadly, they were all out of marron, so we bought wine instead.
Another day saw us taking the entire day to travel to Dunsborough (a mere 45km) via more wonderful delights. If you have a couple of acres here, you can put a sign on the gate and sell anything, especially if it is organic.
Cape Leeuwin Waterwheel Augusta
White's Beach at Yallingup, near Dunsborough, was picture-perfect, with huge swells and at least 30 surfers trying to catch the waves at the same time.
How they don't run over each other I will never know!
The next few days we spent camped at our friend Robyn's place,set amongst a few acres of natural bush on the edge of Duns.
We checked out the expensive real estate (this is a Lorne gone steroidal) and drank lots of wine, talked lots of rubbish, and dodged the rain showers. Next stop Perth.
Cub Campers told GoSee today that fuel prices going through the roof can be balanced with lighter recreational vehicles.
Cub says the the deeper sides of the Spacevan allow for a larger fridge, cupboards and household bench height. Although spacious to live in it weighs only 715kg with a ball weight of 35kg making it ideal to tow behind small to medium cars.
Cub and Rover enjoy beach camping
Whereas most equivalent campers are 7ft (2.1m) wide the Spacevan is only 6'4 (1.93) wide allowing it to be towed safety without having to fix clip on mirrors.
The ultra-modern kitchen is made of stainless steel with a specially designed bench extension for that much needed working space.
A Sydney company Cub Campers specialise in spacious lightweight camping trailers (folding caravans) which Cub says can be towed with cars as small as the Toyota Echo.
Cub Campers have a low profile for low wind resistance and with a light ball weight making them capable of towing behind small cars.
Modern small cars and in particular the new diesels are fuel efficient yet are quite capable of towing lightweight trailers.
Cubs Managing Director Roger Fagen says that a typical camper with fridge stove and queen size bed and can be towed by cars as small as 1200cc.
Editor's Note: Vehicle manufacturer towing specifications should always be followed.
These campers are compact, low profile for touring yet in 30 seconds open to spacious living and sleeping area by just simply winding the handle.
So discovering this vast country towing with smaller cars is possible without breaking the bank with fuel costs.
A particular feature of Cub Campers is their low profile and aerodynamic design to minimise wind resistance particularly in crossing the Nullabor westwards.
Cub Campers is a family owned business based at Pendle Hill and has been manufacturing campers for 40 years.
Editor's Note: Also see -