Nate Dappen and I spent the last night of our whirlwind tour of Western Australia at a place called Yeagarup Dunes. The dunes are located in D’Entrecasteaux National Park, a park on the wild, windswept coast of extreme southwestern Australia. But these are dunes with a difference – they’re not on the coast at all. They’re landlocked.
The Yeagarup Dunes are visible from space as a pristine white patch amidst dense green forest, the largest landlocked dune system in the southern hemisphere (Colorado’s Great Sand Dunes, for comparison, are slightly larger). Imagine a 10-mile-wide sea of sand, moving through the eucalyptus forest of D’Entrecasteaux National Park at a brisk 4-6 meters per year, driven inland by the perpetual winds blowing from the southern ocean. The forest is literally swallowed up by the dunes as they progress inexorably northward.
We spent less than 24 hours at the dunes before we had to return to the Perth airport, but I’m grateful for the time I had; it was one of the most unique, beautiful, and downright surreal places I’ve ever seen. Click here or on the banner below to see a gallery of photographs that Nate and I took during our brief stay.