Up at 5:30am. The sun comes up early in this part of the world!
Onwards we press. Past the turn off to Derby and stop at Willare Roadhouse for fuel and liquid refreshment. We contemplate stopping here for the day, but its only 10:30. So we agree to push on to Broome, aiming at a rest area 60km further for an early lunch.
Temperature has now reached 36 degrees and there is lots of smoke in the air. The fires that were reported yesterday burning around Broome are obviously still active.
I somehow miss the agreed rest area and although the others stop, they pause only to wet their 'T' shrts before chasing me down the road. Eventually we meet at the Roebuck Roadhouse at the Broome turn off. Bushfires are all around and the air is thick with smoke. We are informed that they are thinking of closing the road again – just as they had yesterday. Not wanting to wait out the fire front at the Roadhouse, we speed on to Broome.
We seek refuge in an air-conditioned shopping centre near Broome airport for lunch before heading for the caravan park at Cable Beach. As we are checking in the locals tell us that it is the last day of the Shinju Matsuri festival (Festival of the Pearl) , and that there will be music, dancing dragons, food and fireworks on the beach tonight. Just for us!
Set up camp, have a swim, then head down to Cable Beach to join the festivities. We have reached the Indian Ocean!