Saturday, 8 June 2013

Westward Ho (Through Queensland)

Thursday 6th June

We left Ben’s at about 10.30 am. He came home from work to see us off which was rather sweet.

We drove out through Charters Towers and arrived at (288) Campaspe River Rest Area around 2.00 pm. I think they are taking a bit of a liberty using the term River. It is not even a creek. I went looking and could only see a bit of sand in the distance. It was really windy and very overcast looking. We set up and put out Indie’s awning only to find that the runners off one of the top struts had been broken off. Undeterred, we put the awning out and tied it up with a bit of rope.

Then we sat back and watched everyone roll in. There were only about half a dozen folk here when we arrived and within an hour it had trebled!!!
We had lovely neighbours, Phillip and Helen and invited them over for sundowners. They have been on the road for six years and he just picks up work where he can. They are on their way to MacKay to work on the sugar for six months.

Then we got a rude caravan owner who put his generator out behind Indie and so we copped all the smoke from it and the noise.

As we were complaining bitterly, Phil told us about the time a similar thing happened to them and when he went over to question the bloke, he said (without batting an eyelid) ‘ I only put it near you because I didn’t want the noise to disturb my friends’.

It was still blowing a gale at dinner time so Ronnie got out our trusty new wind shield. It worked a treat!!!!!
Friday 7th June
When we were leaving we were talking to Phil and Helen and she was telling us about how unreliable their seasonal work can be. For instance, when they were working the almonds in Mildura, because of the drought, they were sending the husks out to the farmers to use as fodder to feed their cows. Then she tried telling me that that is where almond milk comes from lol. I might be a city slicker but I’m not that much of a city slicker!!
So we headed off towards Julia Creek.  
We saw this huge train carrying Sulphuric Acid. And it looked like all the cars were joined together with pipes. Apparently they use acid in processing in the mines.

The country is flat and so dreadfully dry. There is so little water about.

There were cattle grazing on the sides of the highway and the weather is quite warm.

  We drove through Hughenden and Richmond and arrived at (304) Julia Creek at about 2.30 pm. Last time we were here, we stayed in the caravan park because it was so hot and we wanted the air conditioner. This time we don’t need it!

It is a lovely spot. Free but you must be fully self-contained. It does have taps with good drinking water. It is a huge area but it was still quite crowded and as we pulled in this old guy with shorts and a navy blue singlet was staring at us. I thought to myself “Here we go, it’s the parking Nazi”. It turned out to be Allan who we met at Virgin Rock. He has been here a couple of days and took us down to meet his neighbours. They were quite friendly and gave us some fried rabbit that they had cooked for their lunch. Later they all went off to the pub and we were chatting to our immediate neighbours.

They had thrown in a few crab pots and had caught some Red Claw, a fresh water crayfish. The colours in them are quite beautiful and of course, they have their shell on the outside but the red section of their claw is very soft.


After we had been gasbagging for a while we settled down to some serious sun downing.
 There was Jules and Larry (the hunter of Red Claw) from Maryborough

and George and Betty from Russel Island.

We were chatting away when a group of people, who we thought were back packers arrived and set up right on the water’s edge. Truly, if they were any closer they would have been in the water.
Then suddenly from out of another motor home came all this really serious camera gear and reflectors and the works.

Well, I wasn’t going to die wondering so I marched up to the fellow holding the reflector (his name is Marcus) and asked what they were up to.


Turns out it is our Tax Dollar at work and they were making stuff for Tourism Queensland for bill boards and the like.

So if ever you see these people fishing and drinking wine on bill boards, remember, you saw it here first!!!!!

Saturday 8th June
We left our Julia Creek camp site and drove into town, bought real coffee and mini cob loaves with bacon, cheese, corn and spring onions for breakfast and headed off.
We stopped briefly at Cloncurry and replenished the wine cellar and headed to Mount Isa.
After all the flatness of the country yesterday, you suddenly realise you are getting close when you see all the rocky outcrops.
The weather report has the temperature at 28 degrees. Just right for Winter!
We arrived at around 12.30 pm and are staying at Mount Isa Caravan Park again, $35.00 per night.
We rang our friend Liz who came straight round and we had a great old time catching up on all the hot goss.


We spent the whole afternoon together and then went across the road to the pub for dinner. Ron and I bypassed all the exotic sounding meals and opted for the Roast Pork. Neither of us could remember the last time we had a roast!!! Liz chose the seafood basket and Ron and I shared a half dozen Oysters Mornay because we missed out in Bowen.

After dinner we bought more wine, remembering the difficulties of purchasing the stuff in the Territory (where we shall probably be tomorrow).  
We are fairly confident that the cellar is sufficiently stocked!

1 comment:

  1. Just to help, you had a roast in February at Castle Watt.

    That crab-thingy looks like it would have been yummy, if you like that kind of thing!!

    So, you could be even more famous than you are now by being placed 5m high on a billboard. I will keep watch!