Pender Bay on the Dampier Peninsula

We left Broome and headed up the 220km Cape Leveque road. Now that the caravan is fixed we were desperate to leave the caravan parks and their “fishbowl” feel and hit the dirt and “wilds” again. The first 88km is a sandy red pindan dirt road.  In a couple of years the entire road will be paved, which will probably change the tone of the place considerably.    Today it still has a remote feel and some stunning untouched areas, but this might start to change when commercial tourism ramps up.

lowering tires
Excited to be letting down the tyres again and hitting the red dirt!
cape leveque road
Most of the northern part of the peninsula is Aboriginal land.   Our base for the first 4 nights on the peninsula (the subject of this post) was at Pender Bay 
pindan red road
The gorgeous red pindan sandy soil of the Cape Leveque Rd. This road is a dream compared to the Gibb. Soft sand in places but very few rocks which is nice. It would be a huge mud bog if it rained. It is closed for months over the wet season.
road to pender bay
Once we turned off the main rd onto the track towards Pender Bay the road became narrow and we had to start watching out for low trees.
keddie at pender bay escape
Getting the caravan into our campsite at Pender Bay Escape right on the red cliffs overlooking the beach. It is owned by the Goojarr Goonyool Aboriginal Corporation.

There are only 11 spots here all overlooking the beach but spaced quite far apart. Ours was probably the best spot with nobody close by and only the view out to sea.

keddie on the cliff

our beach at Pender Bay escape
“Our” beach looking north at Pender Bay Escape. OK not really ours but there is sometimes nobody on the beach. When it is busy there are about 6 or 8 people.
pender bay escape cliff top camp
This is the busy time of day on the beach looking south.
view from our bed
Our view from bed
pender bay walk 1
The cliffs appear red because of the “rust” seeping down from the cap of iron rich rock on top of the sandstone layers.  However, where the sandstone no longer has a cap like on the pinnacles above (or where it has eroded to form a beach) it is white
pender bay view of camp
Even at neap tide, the water level drops about 5 meters at low tide exposing these rocky banks.
trying to spot whales
This area is a calving spot for humpback whales.   I saw some earlier when I went for a run, but when we returned with cameras, there were none to be seen. S
Lesser Frigatebird
Lesser Frigatebird
red tower
Interesting caves and formations along the cliffs

pender bay cavepender bay cave 2interesting rocks

cave bats
Where there is a cave, there has to be bats.


swim at pender bay

Maddy enjoying an evening dip

striated heron northern dark version
Although I thought this might be a new bird, it turned out to be a striated heron – the north western dark variant.   
pender bay sunset
Sun setting on the cliffs.
tawny nurse shark at pender bay
There was some good snorkeling at low tide.   This is a tawny nurse shark.
brown boobies on snorkel trip
Some brown boobies on a small rock some 100m out to sea were rather bemused by my presence
pender bay sunrise
Sunrise on our last day – taken out the window from my bed in the caravan!    It was sad to leave, but we had more places to see


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