WA legends stoked by country pride
Fun is served up on a platter in big cities. Between the daily events, movies, retail and whatever else city slickers find interesting you don’t really need to think to have a good time.
It is not like that out in the bush, and we’re better off for it. The lack of creature comforts means country people often end up thinking way outside the box in order to have fun. This can lead to the creation of some fantastic country town quirks.
From making excuses for injuries sustained after a big night to an odd habit of placing trolleys on top of rocks, the good people of regional WA are notoriously good at embracing the weird and wacky tales which take place in their towns.
Here are a few of the best.
Few legends invoke a sense of fear quite like the North West’s gully monster. With a habitat ranging from the gullies of Carnarvon right up to Kununurra, the reclusive creature is a known but as yet unsighted menace right across the top of our state.
The mystery monster preys on innocent residents walking home late at night after a few casual beverages at the local watering hole. Those who choose to take short cuts through the gullies instead of sticking to footpaths put themselves at great risk of gully monster encounters.
Many have woken up with unexplained cuts and bruises the next morning, but despite how regular attacks are, the creature is yet to be caught on camera. This leads some conspiracy theorists to believe it is a simple case of drunk people falling over and blaming it on fake beings.
A couch on Dock Rock, a shopping trolley on a cliff, road cones on anything and everything; inanimate objects turn up in weird places around Albany.
The orange witches hats synonymous with big nights out for young adults, and roadworks too we guess, have appeared on top of some of the tallest trees in town over the past few years.
They have also been documented on road signs, pontoons and pillars of Albany and surrounds.
The sightings appear to have died down after someone went a step too far and attached a trolley with a cone in it to a cliff face at the Gap, drawing ire from emergency services.
Was this a brief stint by a lone prankster, a group of mates or a bunch of copycats keeping the fun going? We’ll likely never know.
Deep in the forests near Donnybrook is a huge gathering of the most unexpected kind. Garden gnomes, thousands of them, have created an entire community at the corner of Ferguson and Wellington Mill roads.
Gnomesville is not the only place where the divisive garden ornaments have congregated over the years. A new population of gnomes appeared on the big roundabout in Mount Barker Recently and quickly began to flourish. Unfortunately, the powers that be stepped in and shipped them all off to detention centres.
Kojonup is the latest town to be hit by a wave of porcelain migrants, though in this Great Southern town’s case it is sheep, not gnomes, moving in.
Baynton Flood Man has been spotted by Pilbara News readers for several years now.
The shirtless hero has a habit of holding a beer in one hand while standing knee-deep in water waving motorists to safety on Karratha’s Baynton Road, which is prone to flooding. The man is a national treasure and we will not hear otherwise.
With the wet season just around the corner, expect the titular hero of Baynton to re-emerge from his slumber soon. Whether or not this is one man passionate in his crusade to guide drivers through floodwater, or several people keeping the legend alive, is yet to be determined.
Whether you believe there is something lurking in the bush or not, tales of strange creatures always capture the imagination.
For the South West it is big cats, the most famous of which being the Nannup Tiger. Not just confined the the small forest town of Nannup, this elusive beast has been sighted more than 50 times in nearby Busselton as well.
Thanks to rock art up north it is known the thylacine —Tasmanian tiger — once roamed WA, so could there still be a small population of the thought-to-be extinct apex predator left hiding in our forests?
Or is this a new panther-like species which has managed to elude science to date? Plenty of believers say yes.
Those who don’t buy into the unexplained wonders of the world would say it is probably just a large feral cat.
Baynton Flood Man is the hero Karratha deserves.