In November 2016 I joined a tour company on a nine day overland road trip from Perth WA to Port Lincoln SA. We travelled through the SW corner of WA across to Esperance, then up to Balladonia at the western end of the Nullarbor Plain, across to Ceduna and down through the Eyre Peninsular to Port Lincoln where the tour ended.
It was a wonderful experience. I had previously travelled across our vast continent a couple of times by train, but by road one can visit well known (and not so well known) locations such as Cape Le Grand National Park, Caiguna Blowholes, the old Eucla telegraph station, Bunda Cliffs, Murphys Haystacks (unusual rock formations) and Point Labatt where there is a breeding seal-lion colony, I think one of only two left on Australia’s mainland, amongst other interesting locations.
The Eyre Highway is now a very well-travelled road in good condition and road transport vehicles effortlessly (seemingly) cruise across Australia 24 hours a day. But the Eyre Highway hasn’t always been like this, in years past was a rough unsealed track than ran through inhospitable terrain and was unkind to both road transport and private motor vehicles.
On our way across the Nullarbor, we detoured at one location to see the old Eyre Highway and visit one of the original station homesteads. At the homestead there were some abandoned vehicles from the days when the homestead buildings were occupied. The last occupants left in the 1970s, but the cars remain out in the open and provide an insight into changes in station vehicle ownership in years past. The oldest vehicles that I could recognise appeared to be from the 1940s and the newest were from the late 1960s. The cars were from all the familiar manufacturers prominent in that era. There were Fords, Vanguards, Hillmans, Holdens, Morris, a few Austins, and others. There were some trucks too which I did not recognise. I found it an interesting insight into our Australian rural motoring past.