the Degree Confluence Project

Australia : Western Australia

90.0 km (55.9 miles) NNW of Cundeelee, WA, Australia
Approx. altitude: 358 m (1174 ft)
([?] maps: Google MapQuest OpenStreetMap ConfluenceNavigator)
Antipode: 30°N 57°W

Accuracy: 10 m (32 ft)
Quality: better pictures needed

Click on any of the images for the full-sized picture.

#2: Looking south #3: Confluence point looking north #4: Garmin GPS screen #5: Hot, tired and thirsty #6: The point #7: Landscape 2.5km west of the CP before the sun went down

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#1: Looking west from the confluence

(visited by Steve Leipold)

03-Jan-2004 -- This confluence point is situated in an isolated area 170km northeast of Kalgoorlie on the south western edge of the Great Victoria Desert. The nearest populated areas to the CP are the Pinjin pastoral homestead 27km southwest and Carosue Dam gold mine 65km away.

This trip was the most physically demanding I've done so far to a CP. I left Kalgoorlie at 3:00 in the afternoon on what was a stinking hot day of around 40°C and headed north east along the Yarri Road. 11km past the old townsite of Kanowna I turned right and proceeded along the Kurnalpi-Pinjin Road, which is not such a bad gravel road. I travelled along this road for about 135km until I arrived at the Pinjin pastoral homestead, from here I followed a rough track east towards Kirgella Rocks. Once there I took a track north which in hindsight was a mistake. I should have kept travelling east and used this track to cross Ponton Creek. Anyway the track I took was rough and heavily overgrown, I could only average a speed of 20kmh for the 16km I travelled along it till I arrived at Ponton Creek. I was hoping that this creek would be dry enough to cross, no such luck. Like most creeks in the Goldfields they only flow for a very short time after heavy rains from thunderstorms or cyclones. I got out of the vehicle and walked across it to check it out. It had a firm surface crust of about 5cm but underneath it was very soft deep mud and there was no way that the vehicle would be able to cross it.

It was now 6:15pm and I was 6.4km directly west of the CP, the sun was going to set in 40 minutes, I didn't have a torch and a large ominous thunderstorm was approaching from the north. This was a bit of a worry as I didn't want to get stranded in a bogged vehicle on my way home, but as I was so close to the CP there was no way I was not going to snag it.

I marked my vehicle's position on the GPS, filled up my water bottle, grabbed the star picket, pole, hammer and extra batteries for the GPS and started walking east to the CP. The vegetation out there consisted mainly of mallee scrubland with trees such as Salmon Gums, Ooldea Mallee and Water Bush with an understorey of spinfex grass spread intermittently across the mainly red sandy soil.

I arrived at the point at 7:40pm about 40 minutes after the sun had gone down, fortunately it had not started to rain yet but it was still very hot. There was no natural light so I had to use the flash for the required photos.

After a quick rest it was time for the long walk back to the vehicle, it was a faster pace back as I was not carrying as much gear. Walking through the darkness was not such a problem although the roos out there gave me a fright a couple of times when they bounded across my path out of nowhere. I eventually arrived back at the vehicle at about 9:20, very hot, tired and thirsty but satisfied that I had made it.

Fortunately the rain held off till I was back on the Yarri Road and I made it back home into Kalgoorlie a little before midnight, in time for one quick beer at Judd's Pub.

GPS : Garmin 12XL (precision 10 metres)

Map Name : SH5110 Kurnalpi 1:250 000

 All pictures
#1: Looking west from the confluence
#2: Looking south
#3: Confluence point looking north
#4: Garmin GPS screen
#5: Hot, tired and thirsty
#6: The point
#7: Landscape 2.5km west of the CP before the sun went down
ALL: All pictures on one page