Some places we've been and some places we're going.

Archive for May, 2018

Adel’s Grove – Thursday

During the night we started to think packing the quilt away had been a bit optimistic but we survived without having to get up and find something warmer than the cotton sheet and one blanket …. I had two! We made an early trip to the showers and on the way back glimpsed the neighbour’s “washing line”. Sensible campers made equipment dual purpose.

These lacy flimsies belong to a “lady of a certian age”!

Our trip today was a long one, including about 200 kms on dirt roads. It was hard going and we were glad to reach this wonderful camping ground.

We’re camped in a lovely area where everyone can pick their own camp site. We’re surrounded by big trees and just a short distance away is the river with a pontoon and car tubes for water fun. Tomorrow we’ll decide whether to hire a canoe or take a leisurely boat ride. I think I know how I’ll cast my vote!

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Mt Isa – Wednesday

Today was supposed to have been one of total relaxation but it didn’t happen. We had some shopping to do then washing of big items like quilt cover etc

. While we were “in town” we visited the Information Centre and they had some excellent displays. Mining is the reason Mt Isa was established and it continues to be the reason for its existence. From the Information Centre you can take an authentic mine tour kitted out in hard hat and fluoro togs. The tour is led by a miner. Copper, lead and zinc are the prizes. I didn’t fancy the tour, there’s too much environmental destruction for my liking. I know we all rely on the materials extracted but I don’t feel comfortable about it. Alex collected a few brochures then we went back to camp to do the washing.

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After the washing was done we went across the road and I bought a new camera.

I wanted to see Lake Moondarra which is an enormous artificial lake constructed on the Leichardt River in 1956. The lake supplies the mines and city with water. It’s only 19 kms out of Mt Isa but aesthetically it could be on a different planet. The name, “Moondarra” is an aboriginal word meaning “plenty of rain and thunder”, certainly the density of trees makes it clear they get plenty of rain. I had fun taking shots of birds with the new camera and also ants trailing up to an anthill. I believe the hills are actually termite mounds but it was black ants going into the hole in the side of it, maybe they were raiders.

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We’ve stocked up on supplies and are hoping to be at Adel’s Grove near Lawn Hill National Park for the next 3 nights. I’m not sure about phone access or internet so we might be out of contact for a while. Twice today I had to stop “The Fount of All Knowledge” going the wrong way down a dual carriageway. The first time he was pondering whether “The Fount of All Wisdom” would be a better name to have. I think it’s definitely time I removed him to a National Park. 🙂

Mt Isa – Tuesday

There were a few Miner birds hanging about this morning when we started making breakfast, I don’t know if they’re the pest variety but they seemed smaller than the ones we see around Adelaide.

“Don’t think much of this GF stuff do you?”

As we drove out of the caravan park we noticed another Burke & Wills information board. Although he’s touted as a great man I can’t help but feel there would have been a much happier outcome if he hadn’t been the leader of the ill fated expedition.

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Since we arrived Alex and I have been discussing what Boulia was like the last time we were here and recalling the display of the MinMin Lights. I remembered a little cottage with the figure of an old man sitting out the front in a chair. He had no recollection of the man at all and I’m sure he thought I was deluded about it but this morning he went into the new MinMin Centre and there was the old man! The new centre has great displays, so much more impressive than before.

The old man at the MinMin Centre

We travelled through interesting changes of vegetation and now that there are more grasses there are once again dead kangaroos and emus though not very many. Today a few times we saw eagles feeding on the roadkill.

Eagles taking off

155 kms out of Boulia we came to the little town of Dajarra, it used to be a railhead for the cattle industry. Some drovers brought cattle from WA to put them on the train at Dajarra but now cattle go direct from stations to market on multi-trailer road trains. We stopped for a drink and walked about the town, I’m so happy we did. The way-out little shop which had Post Office and Commonwealth Bank signs on it was a treasure. We didn’t go inside so I don’t really know if it was an agency at all.

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As we approached a line of trees marking a water course there was a stream of Corellas, thousands of them stretching as far as we could see in both directions. When some considered us too close the line broke, they wheeled around in a circle before rejoining the stream.

Corellas flying somewhere important

So many times I wanted to capture images flashing past but there is a limit and I had to be content with a few.

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It was a relief to be on bitumen for the drive today because we’ve had issues with the camper sway controller. It’s annoying because it was an after market feature we added for extra safety but the way it was behaving was anything but safe. We had to stay under 80 kph and even doing that we had a number of jerks. Travelling on the dirt roads had become very stressful. The first place we went in Mt Isa was RJM Auto Electrics and when we explained the issue the owner told us to drive the camper in and they’d look at it. Over an hour later were all smiling …. fingers crossed behind our backs though…… loose connections had been found and securely fixed. After tomorrow we intend going on some dirt roads to Lawn Hill and if there are any issues we’ll go back to the same people, we are very happy with the way they work. They have the solution if the problem reappears.

Tomorrow is buy a new camera day.