Couple to wed in their beloved Grampians

HALLS GAP - Well travelled couple, Rebecca van Roosmalen and Stuart Usherwood, have fallen so deeply in love with the Grampians, they have decided to make them the venue for exchanging their wedding vows.

Rebecca and Stuart will be married at Heatherlie Quarry on Saturday and will celebrate afterwards with a reception at the Grampians Eco YHA, which they have managed for the past 12 months.

Judging by their shared love for the environment and wildlife, it appears they could call Halls Gap home for quite some time.

"We decided to get married at Heatherlie Quarry as we love the history and the symbolism that the rocks from heatherlie went to build iconic buildings such as Parliament House that have stood the test of time - as our marriage will," Rebecca said.

While travelling was always on the agenda early in their relationship, Rebecca and Stuart are content to settle in Victoria and more importantly, the Grampians.

Stuart and Rebecca met at Karajini National Park in the Pilbara, Western Australia. Stuart was head chef at a tourist resort and Rebecca had moved up there to work and get away from the city.

Soon their relationship blossomed and after about a year, they decided to set out to see more of the country.

The couple headed east across the top of Western Australia and through the Northern Territory, working their way down.

They worked in small pubs, took barges from Horn Island to the various islands in the Torres Strait for day trips and were even lucky enough to be asked to join the islanders on a few of their hunting trips.

From the islands, they decided to head back to the Northern Territory, spent some time enjoying Darwin, then went south through Katherine and Newcastle waters.

Eventually, their travels took them to Alice Springs, east into Queensland's rainforests and they stayed in the state for several months, before travelling to Cape York where they worked at a tourist camp near Bamaga and took advantage of the fishing, boating, and crocodile spotting the area affords.

Working their way back down through New South Wales, the couple somehow found themselves in South Australia, where they visited Port Lincoln, Whyalla, Port Augusta, Streaky Bay, Ceduna and Coffin Bay. They even found time to visit and enjoy Coober Pedy.

From there, it was back to Western Australia, where after some sightseeing, Rebecca and Stuart ran a beach front resort near Perth for six months.This was where Stuart proposed, leaving the ring inside a treasure chest which he had made and put in a starfish pool for Rebecca to find and open.

After travelling the coast of Western Australia up to Broome, through Geraldton, Kalbarri, Canarvon and Exmouth and back south again through the centre, Stuary and Rebecca eventually landed in Halls Gap.

"We have been in Halls Gap for nearly a year now," Rebecca said.

"We decided we would like to live in Victoria, for many reasons including football and family. We had enjoyed working with backpackers in many of the remote jobs we had worked, and when we discovered that YHA was looking for managers in Halls Gap, and knowing we had the management experience, we decided to apply.

"The moment we glimpsed the Grampians after travelling through the lovely little towns of Moyston and Pomonal, we fell in love with the place."

Stuart and Rebecca spent a few days in Halls Gap and knew straight away that this was the town they would like to settle in.

"We were lucky enough to be offered the position and haven't looked back since," Rebecca said.

"I guess sometimes we miss travelling, and I know Stuart misses the deserts of Western Australia, where he spent alot of time on stations, but we know how lucky we are to live in such a beautiful place.

"We thoroughly enjoy being able to share the Grampians with visitors from all over the world.

"Not long after we arrived we found out we were expecting our first child. Isaiah Islwyn was born in December 2013 and we couldn't be happier. He's a beautiful baby boy and we are lucky to be able to raise him in such a friendly and safe town. We still enjoy pushing his stroller into town from the YHA with the range in the background and the kangaroos, deer, emu and echidna that also call Halls Gap home."

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