At the beginning of the month, Perth and it’s surrounding areas copped a battering with thunderstorms. Records were smashed, within 24 hours we received the average rainfall for the whole month of March! With so much water around, we decided to take advantage of the situation and explore the Avon River. We also wanted to do a test run of our new Bushman Fridge and Companion 200W Solar Blanket before we embark on our Aussie Road Trip.
Driving down Toodyay Road near Gidgegannup we were reminded of the devastating bushfire that started in Wooroloo and burnt through more the 11,000 hectares. Sadly we saw remains of houses that had burnt to the ground. I can not imagine what it would be like to lose everything. I am amazed at how quickly the bush comes back with blackened trees sprouting new green growth. I hope that the people affected by the fire can bounce back as quickly as these trees.
Further down the road, the creeks were flowing and full of water. As we drive down Lovers Lane there is water across the road. I like to think we are getting in some practice for when we hit the big river crossings in the Kimberly. After driving through the water it was not long before we reached Cobblers Pool.
Camping at Cobblers Pool
When we pulled into Cobblers Pool, we were the only ones around and had the choice of any where to set up camp. We found a nice spot right near the river bank. There is nothing better than looking out the door of your camper and having a view of the water and raw bush.
Cobblers Pool does not have designated campsites and there are no facilities, I would suggest bringing your own toilet tent. It goes without saying, please take out what you bring in. Beware of potential falling branches when picking a spot. No fires are permitted here.
The Avon River was shallow and the water was flowing. If we hadn’t received so much rain a few weeks ago, I think the river might have been pretty dry for this time of year. The kids loved climbing over the rocks near the rapids and we floated on tyre tubes down the river kicking back with a cold beer!
The clear night sky was perfect for stargazing. JJ and Master B spent ages waiting for shooting stars and spotting satellites orbiting the earth.
There are a couple of downsides to Cobblers Pool, there were lots of ants that bite! Just be careful where you set up camp as you don’t want to be right near a nest. The other issue is the train line that runs right past the campground. The first night I woke up to every whistle blowing and the sound of the train coming down the track, a small price to pay for a beautiful place. Mind you by the second night I was so tired from our adventures, I didn’t hear a thing!
Companion 200W Solar Blanket
One of the great things about Western Australia is there is always an abundance of sunshine. In April we will be hitting the road full time and we want to make sure we are set up for off grid camping. We want to be as self-sufficient as possible when travelling, especially for stations and the Kimberly’s.
We used this weekend as a trial run to see how our Companion 200W Solar Blanket worked in combination with our new DC-DC charger. Between our hard mounted solar panel and the Companion blanket, we saw 20amps on the DC-DC charger at times of full sun. This was a substantial improvement over the hard mounted panel alone. This meant our battery would be fully charged and maintained quicker.
I love that it folds up to a convenient carry case and has a pocket to hold the electrical cables, it makes packing away a breeze. The blanket has adjustable legs to assist in absorbing the maximum sunlight. We found the legs a little awkward when setting up or adjusting the orientation of the blanket, but they did the job.
We are looking forward to enjoying more cold beers by using clean, quiet energy.
**We received the Companion 200W Solar Charger for the purpose of this review. All the opinions of the product in this review are my own**