07-Mar-2003 -- I have wanted to capture a confluence for 12 months, however it wasn't until recently that I had the time or equipment to do so. 30°S 115°E is the nearest unclaimed confluence to Perth, the capital city of Western Australia. One attempt has been made to capture this confluence and I can see why it was not successful.
I left home at approximately 10.30am on Friday March 7th 2003. (Home is in the Swan Valley approx. 20km NE of Perth city.) Driving non-stop I arrived at Green Head a small crayfishing town 6km west of the confluence at around 1.30pm. I wanted to be home before sunset so I knew I had to get moving to find this confluence.
Working from the information provided from the previous attempt, I found a powerline access track that ran parrallel to 30°S (about 1 minute north) and followed this for approximately 2km to a fork in the track. I turned and headed south for approximately 300m and came to the shore of a dry salt lake.
I parked the car here as I could see the track becoming overgrown ahead. At this point I was about 2km north-west of the confluence. I headed out south-east across the salt lake (probably the one photographed in the last visit). Initially, once I had crossed the lake, the vegetation was low (0.5m) and not too thick. After crossing a number of small hills (vegetated sand dunes) (See photo 30°S 115°E east view), the vegetation became much thicker and taller (2m+). It was extremely exhausting as the ambient temperature was pushing 40 degrees celcius. I considered turning back a number of times, but each time I reached the peak of the next hill I had a confidence boost. It took me nearly an hour to traverse the approximate 2km.
Approaching the confluence I had a fix on 30°S, however I ended up 1sec south and 1sec east, as the confluence was right in the middle of some very dense scrub. I think this is close enough to be classified as a primary visit?
Very exhausted, I climbed up the nearest hill (See 30°S 115°E east view), to survey my path and contemplate the trek back to the car. What I found was another expansive salt pan on the other side. I was also able to see the powerlines to the north, which I had followed in. I figured if I could make my way down the east side of the dune to the dry lake and walk north I should be able to get back to the access track and walk due west to the car. If this didn't work, I would have had to rest up for a while before I retraced my steps. I deviated from the access track a couple of times simply walking straight along the cleared line below the power lines. This cut a bit of time off the return as the access track tended to wind around the larger hills. Although the return trip was longer it only took me half the time.
Anyone wishing to visit this confluence - I would suggest you take the northern fork in the access track (2WD vehicles use caution) and follow the track until you reach approximately 115 00 13E, where you can get out and walk south south-west along the lake to the confluence.
Warning: you may be less than 10km from the coast but this is certainly unforgiving terrain. I took plenty of water and wore jeans and a suitable shirt, but I still got quite exhausted and cut up beating my way through the vegetation.