Denham on Shark Bay and the worst Naval Battle in Australia’s history.

shattered selfie
For the past 11 months each time a road train passed us, it loosened our towing mirrors from their draft. We then had to tighten them up again. Finally on the way into Shark Bay, a road train managed to blow them right off and into the road. I had to run and get it before the next car ran it over. It still works, thanks to some superglue and hopefully will get us back to Sydney. The moral of the story is….Buy the expensive mirrors everyone!!!!
denham sculpture
Denham sculpture on the foreshore
pearl galli gurci
A nice old pearling lugger parked in the Denham’s bay for bird toileting.

The walls of the Old Pearler restaurant in Denham are made entirely of shells!

 

 

dumbest sign ever
The dumbest west Australian risk sign we have seen on this trip. Talking about a “Nanny State”.

20 Km south of Denham is Eagle Bluff. The boardwalk offers beautiful views across Denham sound. These waters support the worlds largest meadows of sea grass and are home to an estimated population of 10,000 dugongs which is 10% of the world’s   remaining population of this lovely animal.

eagle bluff
The view from Eagle Bluff
eagle pose
Steve doing a bit of yoga on a post. Yes it is the eagle Pose at Eagle bluff! I was impressed, as I couldn’t stay up there when I tried it!
shark bay shark
From the walkway you could clearly see into the water here and there were plenty of sharks- Lemon and Nervous Sharks, stingrays etc.
eagle bluff panorama
Panorama from walkway at Eagle Bluff
eagle island
Eagle Island was mined for bird Guano back in the day. Now it is a refuge for them.

 

One of the interesting things about this trip for Steve and I is learning more of Australia’s history. We stopped at the Shark Bay Visitor Centre in the main town of Denham to see this historical display and excellent deep sea footage of the encounter between the Sydney II and the German ship HSK Kormoran. The 15min 3D film and exhibit tells the story of the World War II naval battle between these ships 200km off the coast of Shark Bay in 1941. This was the worst naval battle in Australia’s history with all 645 men on board the Sydney II lost. The Germans also lost men but most were able to get off their ship before it sank and made it to shore. It was these survivors that became POW’s that gave accounts of the battle and told the story of how both ships were lost.

 

Both Ships are now at the bottom of the sea 2.5 kilometers down and were found 67 years after the battle that put them there. In 2015 an expedition to the wreck sites used remotely-operated vehicles and took extraordinary images of the two ships on the seabed. They say a picture paints a thousand words and this exhibit shows in pictures the horrors of war. At the end of the film the footage was of soldiers boots abandoned on the deck as if they had run right out of them. Perhaps jumping overboard to avoid the entire ship on fire. Horrible war!!!!

fire on the water

hmas sydney II
The Sydney in Sydney harbour.

fire on ththe water info

torpedos
Torpedos and torpedo tubes open and ready to fire.
sydneys b turret
One of Sydney’s gun turrets.

kormoran linda gun

list of boats sunk or captured
This is a list written on the side of Kormoran of all previous boats that they had captured still legible 70+ years on.
sea life on sydney
Sea life takes over in the deep ocean.
sydney picture
Fire damage is visible on bot.h ships
shell hole
A shell hole blown in the side of the Sydney next to a port hole.

aftermath

 

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