A walk under the ocean
World War II wreckage and the biggest tides in the southern hemisphere
One of the things I was amazed about when I first arrived in Broome and the surrounding Kimberley coast is the difference in the tides. It’s absolutely amazing. You can wake up in the morning and the beach would be covered in rocks with the ocean such a long way away you’re not sure whether to put your flip flops on or some hiking boots. A few hours later and the water is so high you wonder if you’ve suddenly been transported to a completely different beach.
Last weekend was a full moon which means the tides become pretty huge. I’ve just been trying to research why this is and it’s pretty complicated to the point where I became a bit crossed eyed. Essentially the tides are bigger when the sun, earth and moon are aligned. This happens during the new and full moons. The moon and suns gravity pulls the earth in one direction and the rotation of the earth pulls it in another direction causing the water on the earth to bulge on opposite sides of the earth therefore causing the water to move around which we call ‘tides’. (Please free to correct me if this is total rubbish).
Many people believe that we become a little bit mad during the full moon and this is where the term ‘lunacy’ comes from taken from the word Lunar! You can’t say you don’t learn anything on this page hey?:)
In 1942 Broome came under attack by the Japanese during World War II and 16 seaplanes were sunk off the coast of Town Beach. Many people died in that 20 minute attack most being Dutch refugees on their way to the southern states.
The wreckage is more than 1km from the shore and the full moon is one of the only times you can view it when tide is way out.
A group of us got up at 5am and walked off into the sunrise to see the wreckage. It was just incredible walking out there. The first photo shows what Town Beach usually looks like and in then second photo you can see the beach all the way in the background. Last weekend we had to walk for about 40 minutes before we met the ocean again.
The whole experience from the wreckage to the sunrise to the amazing tidal change was amazing. We even saw a turtle…but luckily no crocs!:)
One more day in Broome and then I’m on my way to the centre of Australia on my favourite mode of transport….rail! The Ghan railway experience here I come.