Monday, August 27, 2012

28th August 2012

I thought I would restart my blog seriously today. It is a beautifull balmy unusually warm winters day here on Animal Farm at Wingham. Must that time of year as there is lots of mating activity going on with the wildlife. Birds in particular.
We are heading in to Taree this afternoon to pick up our new Landcruiser 200 from Taree Motorama. Had bit of a stuff around with the new car purchase, had one ordered from Wide Bay Motors in Maryborough, deposit paid etc. After they eventually worked their figures out they were only willing to offer us $64000 for our old Cruiser. We were not happy with this, cancelled the deal, and after Taree offered us $75000 went with them. The new car is an Altitude SE, slightly upmarket model from the last one. Also gone for a colour called White Crystal Pearl this time. The grey was a hard colour to keep clean.
The plan is to head up to Queensland tomorrow or Thursday. As with our last Cruiser it is recommended that you do 800 ks before towing a large van. Bit of running in I guess.
With Lees birthday on the 1st September ( Saturday ) and Fathers Day on Sunday we can kill a couple of birds with the one stone. As Ria and Courtney are expecting their baby on 15th December we are looking forward to seeing them as well. We will call in and spend a couple of nights catching up with Rachael and Leah and our grandson Ethan at Caboolture on the way back next week. Hopefully Ren will be on days off from Moranbah and we can see him as well.
Anyway that's about all for now, about to head in to ARB to have all the towing electrics removed from the old car.
In the next few weeks I will try to catch up with what's been happening to us in the last 12 months , since my last blog entry. It has certainly been an eventfull year in more ways than one.
Karen is going to post a photo a day on our blog which I'm sure will be more interesting than my rantings.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

We're back

Well it's almost 12 months since our last blog post so in the next couple of days I'm going to get serious about it again :)

Monday, September 19, 2011


The Paddle Steamer Melbourne leaving the wharf at Mildura. This is opposite the Buronga Caravan Park. Quite enjoyable to sit outside the van watching the River boats passing. By this point the weather was mild enough to be able to sit outside during the day. You can have a fire at this park but oddly only if you are in a group of at least 2 caravans, campers etc. The fire drum and wood are supplied at the park office. Great park with very clean ammenities, nice green lawns, even piped music in the toilets. The Cruiser had its first bath for a while at the free wash area in the park.
The highlight of our stay in Mildura would have been the Sunday Farmers Market that is held every 2nd Sunday on the riverbank. I bought some of the best salami I'd ever tasted and Karen stocked up on veges and fruit. It would without a doubt be the best farmers market we'd been to on our travels.
Whilst in Mildura it is only a short 30k drive to Wentworth, a small but very historic port on the Murray River. Actually its importance lay in the fact that the town is on the confluence of the Murray and the Darling Rivers. Worth visiting in Wentworth is the old Wentworth Jail built in 1879 and pretty much as built. Great little shop attached that sells collectables.

We also went for a drive up to the Perry Sandhills, a geological oddity approx 10 ks out of Wentworth.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

OK, I know I've been really slack :( :(

Ok, we were at Dunolly for 2 weeks, it is a fantastic spot, great people in the park.
Nice clean and tidy for $138 per week. Unfortunately we didn't find any gold, but
we enjoyed looking. Thanks to Lindsay for lending us his old detector, and I
believe we now have the record for the most bullets found in one day. (18)
On the 14th July we headed from Dunolly north west back up to the Murray River.
Had lunch at a really nice rest area just outside of Swan Hill, and headed on to
Robinvale on the Murray. Stayed at the Caravan park on the river, surprisingly
called the Robinvale Riverside Caravan Park, a Family Parks.
Nice park that you can back up to the rivers edge and even have a fire.
Being as close as it was to Mildura, approx 90 ks, we decided to only stop for 1
night and move on to Mildura on 15th July.

We had not decided on a park until driving over the bridge into Mildura. Karen
looked over to one side and saw a Caravan Park on the NSW side of the river.
There was a roundabout after the bridge so we did a u turn went back from Vic
into NSW to the Buronga Riverside Caravan Park. We booked in for a week.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Echuca to Maryborough Victoria. Sunday 3rd July 2011

Left Echuca on Thursday 30th June and traveled to Dunolly, between Bendigo and Maryborough Victoria.
We were going to head to Mildura originally but on coming down to Maryborough on Tuesday and having a look around, decided to head down here instead.
We are at the Dunolly Caravan Park in Dunolly 20 ks north of Maryborough, what a great spot, friendly people, great social camp kitchen. Lake in the centre and lots of trees. $25 per night. Seventh night free.
A lot of the people in the park are gold prospectors, some come here regularly and a few live here permanently.
Dunolly is an amazing little town, notwithstanding the fact that more gold nuggets have been found here than anywhere else in Australia. And it is where the largest gold nugget in the world was  found. The 'Welcome Stranger ' nugget was found here and weighed over 2,200 ozs . Worth at current value approx $3,300,000. You can understand why so many people are still prospecting around here.
We have spent the last couple of days looking around the district. Some amazing little towns absolutely full of Historic buildings. Some are almost like ghost towns.
Spent Sunday dismantling my tow hitch and painting it. We have been having an issue with getting the van off the hitch due to the angle the ball was presenting itself. Will be reassembling  it tomorrow.
After talking to people around the fire at night and seeing the gold being found by them in the area we bit the bullet today and hired a metal detector today. (Monday).
2 elderly brothers who come here for 1 weeks holiday every year showed me 44 grams of gold they found over the last week. I asked the guy at the Gold supplies place here how much it would be worth. He said he would pay $1650 for it. Actually not a lot of gold.
We went out this afternoon and found absolutely no gold, but did find some nails a bit of tin and a bent 22 cal bullet. Heading out again tomorrow. I had to purchase a Miners Right to be able to prospect in State forests in Victoria. The forests down here are a maze of tracks. 2 and 3 ounce nuggets are still being found weekly and gold is $1500 an ounce. You can see the attraction.
Anyway we are booked in here until Thursday and we have the metal detector tomorrow.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday 26th June at Echuca on the Murray

For a start last night would have been the coldest night we've spent in the van. Of course we were free camping and the temp went through the floor. At 2 am it was 6 degrees in the van and 0 outside. BRRRRRRRRRR.
Talked to a couple of young guys camped next to use last night. They just had swags under a tarp, crazy, but they had a big fire going most of the night. They caught a huge carp last night.
Went to the farmers market at Yarawonga this morning and bought some Murray River Cod fillets, had them for tea tonight and they were yum. Nice markets but a bit expensive.
2 hour drive to Echuca and booked into the Echuca Top Tourist Park on the Murray River.
While disconnecting the van from car the bolt that attaches the jockey wheel to caravan stripped and the van literally fell on the the front. Missed Karens foot by about an inch, luckily. If the van had landed on her foot it would have crushed it. Had to jack the van up off the ground and put blocks under the front. Have to get the jockey wheel fixed tomorrow.
Nice caravan park, u can hear and see the paddle steamers on the river.
It looks like a very Historic town, lots of old buildings etc.
We are taking a trip on a paddle steamer tomorrow and then probably head up to Swan Hill on Tuesday.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

At yarrawonga

At Yarrawonga on the banks of the Mighty Murray River. Camped at Kyffins Reserve. Interesting view, sunrise tomorrow should be good. They have a farmers Market here tomorrow, will stock up. We are finally heading west:). This is a great spot definitely suitable for bigger vans. The first free camp we stopped at , green bank, was not, I'm doing this post on my iPhone so hope it works out ok. On to Echuca tomorrow.