11/10/16 Oakabella Homestead is reputed to be one of WA’s most haunted places and is renowned also for its daily-fresh scones. Two excellent reasons to spend the night there! We camped near the wonderful old whitewashed stone farm buildings which date back to when the property was established in the 1850’s. Now unoccupied, many of the old buildings have been faithfully restored over the past decade to provide an authentic reflection of pioneering life in the 1800s and 1900s. Oakabella Homestead has been acknowledged by the State Register of Heritage Places as one of the earliest surviving farms of Northampton and quite rare as an intact group of buildings illustrating how people worked and lived in the early days of European settlement. We were told that all the furniture and effects were original to the property and each item seemed a have a story to it.
The interesting caretaker, a part-Irish and part-Canadian Indian woman, took us on a tour of the buildings, introducing the ghosts as we went through each of the many rooms of the rambling homestead and recounting many stories from the properties past, including the black cat bones interred in door frames for good luck. The intriguing tour ended with some very yummy freshly-made Wattle and Date scones and coffee. That night, the van shook and creaked, and I preferred to put it down to the strong wind rather than any ghostly influences. We had no uninvited guests during the night – none that I noticed anyway. While we took a casual approach to the whole ghost thing, when Di was checking her photos the next day, she came across this one that was taken where our guide had pointed out a ghost…spooky!
We headed off the next morning and, while travelling south through Geraldton, Di realised one of the pendants from her necklace was missing. A search of the van failed to turn it up. I reckoned one of those ghosts had nicked it during the night like some sort of spectral bowerbird! We’ll take ghosts more seriously next time.
We camped on a section of the Greenough River called Ellendale Pool, opposite a high sandstone cliff on a bend of the river. While we were looking around, a bird swooped in to land on the cliff face and, through the binoculars, we watched the Peregrine Falcon feeding three white fluffy chicks on a narrow ledge high up the rock face. Before light the next morning, the noisy chicks could be heard demanding a feed. It was a good spot for birds and we saw many as we wandered along the riverbank.
“When you see someone putting on his Big Boots, you can be pretty sure that an Adventure is going to happen.” – Winnie the Pooh