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

Archive for July, 2021

Day 42 Charters Towers

It was a day for pottering -laundry, shopping, smoko, shopping, finding interesting buildings, icecream, cocktails (bottle of cider), visit Tower Hill then dinner (chicken salad).

I was trying to find a lighweight blouse and some replacement plastic sandals but struck out but the fashions didn’t suit me. Titleys seems to have been like Polites in Adelaide, the name appears on buildings and shops everywhere here. I also checked out an antiques and collectables market and walked past The Old Miner’s Hut which had all kinds of rusted bits and pieces outside.

There are very impressive buildings around town, it’s obvious it was very prosperous during the Gold Mining era and people are still fossicking around the area hoping to find a big nugget. Our neighbours were out today with a metal detector and very excited to have found two old metal buttons and an unfired bullet casing.

There is a walk up to Tower Hill – no impressive old stone tower, it’s littered with communication towers – but we decided to drive up instead. There are old mines, World War 2 bunkers and old gold processing plants. Maybe tomorrow we’ll check out the walk.

Although not all sites are nicely shaded the Caravan Park owners have put a lot of effort into making the grounds attractive. Apostle Birds, Rainbow Lorikeets and different types of doves are about every day.

I almost forgot about the exciting time we had at the Dog Park! When we arrived there were about eight big dogs in there for some kind of training session. I wasn’t sure about taking Fergus in there until the trainer asked us to come in and after a while I felt confident enough to let him off. He had a wonderful time racing around the park with the big dogs after him but unable to catch him, it was fun for all of them. When he needed a breather he ran under someone’s legs. At one stage he told Alfred, a Blue Heeler, to get lost and he did. The trainer seemed impressed.

The Prado Pilot is excelling himself utilising the skills he learnt when training for his Mt Isa Certificate in Navigation, even recognising when Madam GPS is trying to lead him astray!

Day 41 Fletcher Creek to Charters Towers

Late yesterday a couple of vehicles pulled in and I couldn’t believe it when one parked about 10 m from the door to the Ladies toilet block. It was quite unnerving hearing every word of their exuberant talk and walking out the amenities door almost into their kitchen. It wasn’t long before the loud music was on, sounds of cans being opened and general hilarity. I wondered how it would all pan out as there were maybe ten caravans parked in the general area and we’d already heard someone protesting that they’d only had the “genny” on to use the Air Conditioner so we knew someone wasn’t afraid to challenge any excess noise. We were quite a bit away from there in our own little niche.

It was dark but still early when suddenly all was quiet. This morning “the gang” were packed up and off at first light.

Looking out from our campsite there was a layer of mist blanketing the low vegetation.

I’ve never been in a place before where Praying Mantis stayed overnight in an Amenities Block.

It didn’t take long for us to drive to Charters Towers where the Prado Pilot hoped to get a replacement battery for the replacement battery in his remote key fob. At 9:00 I phoned a Caravan Park and managed to get the last site available and even better was that we could have it for three nights. By 12:00 we were all set up, I went to sleep with the AC on because I had a migraine and Alex went off to shop. Fergus joined me up on the bed!!!!

Day 40 – Einasleigh to Fletcher Creek

We had a second walk along the gorge in the late afternoon yesterday in the hope of spotting some crocs but we were out of luck. We did had to admire the tenacious thistles that seem able to grow in the most inhospitable places and the flowers are lovely.

There were a few low “bridge” crossings today on the Gregory Development Road and a steady stream of dips, floodways and grids. Most creeks were dry. We’ve covered roughly 7000 kms and seen Cattle Stations with names like Charlotte Downs, Glenbrae Downs etc so it gave us a laugh today to see one called, Upsan Downs and also Mt Fullstop.

At one stage we saw two snakes on the road, one slithered off before I could take a photo and when I reached the spot they’d been, expecting to find the second one dead, I saw it was actually a piece of metal and rubber from a vehicle. I think it must have looked alluring to the real black snake.

At The Oasis we stopped for a break but it was shorter than we intended because Fergus either had to stay in the car or be taken across the road. The NO DOGS signs seemed excessive especially when there was a rough garden area away from the eating areas, I think they could use some PR advice. The business was for sale and we were the only people there as trucks etc whizzed past so I think it should be a busy roadhouse.

The Blue Water Springs Roadhouse sounded very inviting but the sign out the front certainly wasn’t.

“If you don’t want to check in with the QR code, don’t come in!” There were more signs inside in a similar vein, not a friendly place but I did manage to get a book by Diane Keaton from the buy or swap table.

We stopped again at Greenvale where the RFDS Dental Truck was parked and had to follow the sign to The Sausage Tree. It’s a native of Mozambique and the only others in Australia are one in the Townsville Botanical Gardens and the other in Adelaide Botanical Gardens.

Coming out of Greenvale we saw what seemed to be a Cotton-field which tied in with the little bits of fluffy white stuff we’d seen along the side of the road.

Tonight we are at the Fletcher Creek Camp Ground, a free camp run by the Charters Towers Council. There are a couple of places that look like traumatised war veterans have made home. There is plenty of space for everyone but across the creek the campers are lined up one behind the other.

At Einasleigh Caravan Park the toilet rolls were locked into position by dome nuts that the manager tightened with a shifter so the rolls couldn’t be stolen. It seems ludicrous that people have such expensive rigs yet they steal rolls of toilet paper, here at Fletcher Creek they’ve gone a step further in preventing this happening.