For the past week the geology of the Kimberley has provided a stunning backdrop for all of our activities and so it was quite fitting that the rocks were central to our final day of exploration. This morning started as we left the National Geographic Orion on a Zodiac cruise around the rugged coastline of Yampi Sound. The colorful sandstones and siltstones thrust up from the water, crowned with a thin veneer of hardy vegetation. In places we could clearly see evidence of the immense pressures and temperatures that tortured these rocks millions of years ago, when they were deeper within the earth’s crust. Now exposed on the surface, the layers swooped and crested like petrified waves, giving the landscape a dynamic appearance.
In the afternoon, we took advantage of a sill of rocks to provide us with a safe, crocodile-free swimming hole at the head of the intriguingly named Crocodile Creek. At high tide, these reptiles have access to a spring-fed pool but as the tide ebbs, the pool is cut off from the rest of the creek by a rocky wall. Darrin and Jimmy staked out the pool for three hours prior to our arrival, just to make sure no crocodile was lingering there. With the all-clear given, we finally had a chance to go for a swim in the chilly, refreshing water that pours down a waterfall and fills this natural sink.
With the hotel staff on hand to provide suitably festive beverages, it was a wonderful finale to our Kimberley adventure.