We awake to a different background than the night previously. Darkness and stars are replaced with blue skies, water and waves. The beach literally just across the road from the hostel, Esperance's coastline stretches on for miles. Following the road east out of Esperance, we reach Cape Le Grande National Park. For an area covered in outback terrain some pretty impressive contrast is apparent. Frenchman's Peak, a 262m steep rocky climb was the first task of the day! Walking boot prepared, I put George in my bag and we begin. A warning of its steepness at the bottom, we were pretty surprised to pass girls wearing thongs! The Australian definition of thongs that is! Definitely burning off the calories from breakfast and stopping a fair few times (pretending to be checking the view of course), the hard slog to the top was definitely worth it :-). I think George got it easy ;-). We see the outback laid out in front of us, the coast surrounding it and roads winding their way through it. The girls in thongs not quite making it to the top, fair play to them for giving it a try! I enjoy a timtam and think of a certain French friend whilst at the top of a Frenchman's peak and do some more yoga ;-). Sarah, a bit more adventurous, climbs on top of a rock! George just enjoys being carried everywhere :-).
Our morning exercise completed, we drive further into the park and reach Hellfire Bay. It is a pretty windy day but Sarah is determined she's swimming! Her enthusiasm makes me smile but it now takes quite a warm temperature to get me into the water… In the back of my head I have Ray's 37 degree rule and it is definitely not that warm! I try my feet in the water. Freezing, I dare Sarah to get in! Bless her she tries hard bouncing away but it is a bit cold and choppy and unfortunately not going to happen! We move onto Thistle Cove and find another beach, a whistling rock and some good chat :-). My favourite beach is the one we reach next – Lucky Bay. Beautiful turquoise and dark blue waters merge, surrounded by rocks with only four other people enjoying the beach :-). We enjoy a subway lunch then find two kangaroos just waiting around the corner for us! Not too shabby a stop for lunch at all!
Very much a coastal town, Esperance, of course, has a tourist ocean drive. Similar to Victoria's Great Ocean Road between Melbourne and Adelaide, this one is named the Great Ocean Drive. There are many beaches to find. Too many after so many days landscape sightseeing! It helps to have George and know I will be able to distinguish in years to come! He jumps out at Blue Haven and Twilight Beach (no vampires or werewolves were found…) and we let him see the south west coast being battered by the ocean! A pretty impressive coastline I have to say. We find another western Australian pink lake, though not quite as pink or as nice as the last one I saw and take George to Wiseman St. He is a very wise man you know ;-). Back in the hostel, I sit and chill in the lounge area where some hostel residents are watching Woody Allen's 'Midnight in Paris'. This movie always makes me think of the actual George :-). It being the last night of our road trip we decide to celebrate and take George for dinner. We enjoy a very tasty meal even if it does take a long time to arrive. Stopping in at the pub on the way back, I try a new kind of beer (the legacy of the drinking challenge lives on) and Sarah and I are left in shock with the brazenness of an Irishman talking about girls. The night ends with us formulating an outback bingo game of things to do on the drive back to Perth the next day :-).