The North West of Aus. In these remote, arid stretches of red dirt and raw rugged plains, it’s easy to immerse yourself in the land and disconnect from society and the habitual use of social media. In fact, in most places you don’t have a choice; and it's seriously rejuvenating.
One such spot is that well known for its harrowing left hander and coral reef breaks that have caused many painful drives over bumpy dirt roads into the main town - over two hours away. A face full of coral after a gnarly wipe out or a tiny, inconspicuous reef cut on your toe can often lead you down the same bumpy road- no kidding. We’ve seen guys whose feet have swollen until it’s too painful to walk, needing to be put on a drip whilst hoping for the best before the toxins slowly spread throughout their body- all from neglecting that slight cut with the betadine. Damn.
The start of July is the busiest time in the North- Gnaraloo 3 Mile Camp flowing with Margs and Yallingyup locals who make up about three quarters of this seasonal community. The rest are Perth hopefuls and as always a few wandering gypsies. Gnaraloo when the swell is big- like 10 to 12 foot big- is absolutely incredible to witness. There’ll be about four or five guys in the water and the rest of the camp just watch in complete awe from the carpark. On those days you really are glad that your shitting yourself from the comfort of your camp chair, with refreshments in hand, and not from that oncoming metre-thick lip that’s about to hit you on the head. When these swells reach the coast, WA surfers such as the Brown brothers and Luke Wyllie fly in specifically as not to miss an opportunity!
This July however, was a bit on the lighter side- and thank god really; it keeps everyone sane when they can get out for a surf. You can never truly rely on the swell/wind forecast- if you expect the expected you will be sourly disappointed. Even still, the weather word and weekly conditions always spread like wild fire around the camp. “Yep it will be light winds all day, no rush” An hour later at 10.47 am; breeze is in. Cheers Andy. It’s quite funny actually, you really just have to go with the flow and make the most of the good conditions whilst nature’s providing.
The smaller days are sometimes the ones where you have the best fun. The lineup changes from a friendly hustle to a tight little community where guys such as Antman are pushing their kids onto waves and you're chatting to that friend you met the other day who’s on the campsite just down the track; being able to meet new people and listen to their stories whilst sharing the sea stoke. That’s what it’s all about.
Apart from the surf, this part of the West Coast is renowned for its thriving marine ecosystem and desert terrain, amuck with now wild goats which were shipped onto the pastoral station in 1988. If you're not jumping off sand dunes and watching the moon set over the ocean, yes the moon, over the ocean (gawk); you're swimming with turtles in the coral lagoon and sipping sunset drinks around the campfire. Whatever bush tucker you prefer- the North West has it all.
Collage @jemmascott__ // Just me, the moon, and those great undulating dunes