Current Trip

  • THURSDAY 12 May 2022

    Today we shifted from inside to outside. Not a large distance was covered and we did not leave the park.

    The words of the song “always look on the bright side of life” sprung to mind.

    The Rose garden is flooded so morning tea in a great little garden is not going to happen. Lorraine will have to put up with the barking frogs for another night.

    The entrance to this quaint caravan park that only holds 12 vans.

    The amenities are kept very clean. Park has a meeting place.

    There has been plenty of rain. Drainage is not normally a problem due to the lack of rain. Yesterday was however different.

    Some of the attractions around this town come from a bygone era. The shearers strike is one example of how this area was shaped.

    The tree of knowledge is now enclosed to protect it.

    This tree was where the shearers met and the strike played an integral part in the formation of the Australian Labor Party

    An example of the type of windmills used is also in the main street.

    This can operate in wind speeds of 3KPH with a wheel diameter of 27 feet. Manufactured in Rockhampton in 1917.

    They also have a recreational park that is used for water skiing and kayaking. Water comes from a bore.

    Unique shape that allows for laps and not seeing the other person.

    The line across show where tracks went before construction.

  • Tuesday 9 May 2022

    Today we shifted to Barcaldine. Not a large distance was covered and we left the park a little later. Could not get into the park until after 11:00 am

    Whlist in Blackall we went to their show and saw the usual type of displays. Birds and flowers, plus the cooking drawing displays. The kids had small animal farm and the pets on parade. One child brought his pet yabby, which was reluctant to be taken for a walk around a small area.

    They also had a dog auction. The animals were allowed to display the skills on sheep and cattle. the cattle got bore at one stage and jumped/hurdled the fences. Dogs went for prices between $1500 and $16 000

    We also went to the wool scour, which has been restored after being used until 1978. It commenced operation in 1908. It was unique in so much as the sheep were shorn on one side of the complex and the wool stored on the other side. Returned to the other side of the complex to be washed and cleaned. Interesting process seeing I lived within 2 km of a processing plant in Adam Street, Hindmarsh operated by GH Michell and Sons.

    The Blackall wool scour was originally powered by atersian water from a bore on the property,

    The water was used in the boilers that were imported and burnt the local timber that was cut by axe.

    The entire plant was driven by steam that drove belts which operated the different machines.

    Some processes were still manual, like the wool press. Apparently two men operated it.

    After storage, the bales were brought back and cleaned.

    Two machines were eventually used. A local machine was made and ran in parallel. After being dried it was blown into a loft and then baled again using the following machine. The bottom part of the machine was rammed upwards.

    The town of Blackall does not have water heaters as the artesian water supplies the local residents at say 59 degrees C. The water smells of sulphur but is ok to drink once cooled. The original bore was down the road from the caravan park and still operates. Locals put their sprinklers on, prior to having a hot shower. The bores are capped but cannot be completely turned off, it would cause pressure problems with the pipes.

    Original drilling machine is on display.

    Machine was driven by steam boiler.

    The saying “this side of the black stump” apparently came from Blackall after the Queensland government used to site surveying equipment on a stump.

    Interesting way to welcome people.

  • Wednesday 4 May 2022

    Well today we shifted from Charleville to Blackall.

    Our stay in Charleville was quite enjoyable.

    Our trip to Charleville was interrupted by a stop in Wyandra which was a railway siding prior to the railway ceasing. Now it is open for morning tea from the post office which doubles as a camp ground and little store.

    As per normal it had to have a couple of dogs to play ball. Unfortunately they had not been trained to catch on the full toss. They were still able to catch on the first bounce.

    Amongst things that we did in Charleville besides walking the streets and testing the local Thai restaurant (best coconut rice ever) was a tour of a secret WW11 American air force base. It was built as a base for bombers to be repaired and troops to have R&R.

    The tour was a tag along which got off to a bad start. We had paid and gone to have some lunch. We returned for the start and I got out to say we had returned. I was talking to one of the tour guides when a complete stranger came over to me and suggested that I unlock my vehicle. I had been away from it for say 5 minutes and could not understand her request. She said that my wife was pretty unpleased to have been locked in and had gotten her attention by banging on the widow, We discovered later Lorraine could have gotten out if she had pulled the drivers door handle.

    The Americans had provided the base and we provided the food.

    The main security was over the bomb sights used in the planes and stored in the following building. Looked like a garden shed and housed up to 30 devices at a time,

    This is the device.

    In the display building you can try your skill on an electronic version. I sunk the ship in one out of three tries.

    The Americans were not used to the freedom that existed in Australia and returned with a different attitude.

    We also went to the Cosmos Centre for a look through the telescopes at the stars.

    The weather was overcast and it was looking like the stars would not be possible. Fortunately there was a break in the clouds and so it was possible to gamble and go out and chance it. Very knowledgeable person was in charge of the three telescopes and kept the show moving so we all got to view stars.

    We also discovered that Qantas was started in Charleville but the first fee paying customers went out from Longreach.

    On 24 March 1927 the DH9C G-AUED was on a regular route between Charleville and Mount Isa with Tambo as its secondary destination. It intended landing on the clay-pan that serves as Tambo’s airstrip when it was seen to dive suddenly into the ground. Mystery surrounds why the crash occurred but it was determined the aeroplane had landed at a nearby station to undertake repairs. The three men on board were buried at the Tambo cemetery.

    Tambo is also popular for Teddy’s that can be ordered over the internet and are delivered in a carton.

  • Saturday 30 April 2022

    Here we are at Cunnamulla.

    We were headed to Cobar, when we got there the park was full. Filled up with fuel and decided to head for the Kidman Camp at Bourke, where we stayed for 3 nights. This was our third time in the park

    Whilst picking out a spot it started to rain and continued for the next 14 hours. The paddle steamer was not operating because there was to much water in the river.

    We went out for tea for my birthday, expecting to have Chinese, but a busload of tourists also came and had arranged for normal tea being the menu for the night.

    Left for Cunnamulla and nearly had a passenger.

    We also stopped at the Barringun Roadhouse for morning tea. They had at least 43 mm of rain in the last 48 hours so a reasonable amount of of water in the front of the building,

    In Cunnamulla we visited the weir where a water supply has come from since 1991 for surrounding landowners. Also used for recreational fishing. Notice the chair on the right hand side

    The Cunnamulla Fella is a tribute to the hard work of the youth of the area, 15 or 16 years old and working daylight hours seven days a week

    The railway station was at the end of the line that came from Charleville but originated from Brisbane in 1898. Built in the 1930’s it replaced another destroyed by fire. It closed in 1994,

    Not a silo being painted but a water tower.

  • Monday 25 April 2022

    Well it is Anzac Day as we sit in the Griffith Village Caravan Park.

    We left home on the 4 April at 5:40am.

    First stop was at the Newlands Bakery at Waikerie on the Sturt Highway. Could not break tradition. The breakfast was exceptional. We eventually got to Balranald which was our first end of day on the way to Wagga Wagga at around 2:20pm

    We did discover the batteries in a van normally last say 5 years. Ours had lasted 6.5 years and died at approximately 7:30pm. Pitch black in a free camp, so off to sleep we had to go.

    Went straight to Wagga Wagga the next day to purchase two new batteries. Then off to Yerong Creek for a few days. It was enjoyable watching the sheep in the paddock alongside the oval.

    Went into the Clay Target Association Grounds Wagga Wagga on the Sunday afternoon.

    I was assigned the task of being in charge of the cleaning team. Assigned myself the title of “Dunny Bunny” seeing that Easter was coming. A lot of hard work by all involved. Covid took out some of the entertainers and some of the those attending. Microphones at a previous festival were responsible for some of the performers getting it.

    The entrance to the site looked familiar after a few of the motor homes arrived.

    Our next door neighbours had a new puppy he was getting used to others, 11 weeks old.

    Some of the ladies had made items to donate to charity

    The Chief Crow is very very crafty. Prize for Breast Cancer raffle.

    Could not resist buying a new tee shirt that was in Thebarton Boys Technical High school colours.

    On our way to Griffith we stopped for lunch at an establishment that is run by Toby the chap that ran the coffee cart at Stone the Crows.

    Settled into the Caravan village in Griffith for a couple of days.

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