Tom Road to Boarding House
19th June 2017
The Hike - So...having thought I had lost my photos from this hike forever due to a broken hard drive, I one day remembered possibly transferring files to my rarely used PC before going to Europe. I wasn't sure if this was for the purpose of backing up my photos or was to try and get more space on another hard drive before my trip. In the end I had a look in a few folders and didn't find anything before checking one final place and bam, there they were. After getting a very outrageous estimate for recovering the files from my broken hard drive I was a heartbroken man, so to discover that I had actually backed them up and then forgotten I had like a numpty was a joyous occasion. I immediately transferred them to a new hard drive just in case and now had a touch under 2000 photos to go through and four days worth of blog posts to write.
One issue I also have now is to remember what happened in enough detail given this trip occurred over two months ago. So here we go. As mentioned in my last post, I did not get a fantastic night's sleep due to not having my sleeping system sorted and thus being a little chilly. Breakfast wasn't exactly a pick me up with muesli and powdered milk but that's the camp life I chose so forced it down and got on with the job of packing up everything ready for what would be my second longest day, distance wise, of the trip. Ahead of me was 24km of lovely Bibbulmun Track to enjoy with a few interesting features along the way to keep me interested. As Chantal and I were about to leave camp, me onward to Boarding House and Chantal returning to Donnelly River, we ran into the Adventurous Women’s tour group again as they came into camp. They must have been dropped off on Toms Road and were keen to see what the accommodation was like for those of us that were doing it unassisted. I said goodbye to Chantal and left the ladies to marvel at the wonderful location of the Tom Road campsite.
The start of the day consisted of lovely single track paths through the Karri forest complete with mossy logs, thickets of undergrowth dripping with Karri bark and the occasional set of stairs carved next to a fallen tree. This is exactly what I came here for so was loving just meandering along at a gentle pace. The single path terminates when you reach Panda Rd (love the name) and you follow this for a short while, crossing over Donnelly River once more (still not a lot of flowing water) at another set of twin bridges. I'm not normally a fan of 4x4 tracks but the roads in the Karri forests are different as they allow you to fully experience the scale of the trees and provide some great photo opportunities. You are pointed back into the thickness of the forest soon enough and this will be your home for the next hour or so before you come across any kind of road. Winding along with Donnelly River but not actually sighting it due to the density of the forest, this was one of those sections that was quite pretty but also a good place to get into a rhythm.