TUESDAY 11 APRIL DELORAINE
Today we went driving. It was a pleasant, fine day.
Headed out on the Osmaston road. On a bend, not far out of Deloraine, saw a sign carved into an old stone gate pillar – Retreat. Bit of a Eureka moment that solved a big puzzle for me. It seemed obvious that grandfather had, in fact, been born here, on this property. Later research showed that Retreat was a big, original estate of the district that was broken up into smaller parcels worked by tenant farmers. There would have been quite a number of people occupying the property as tenants or farm workers.
We went via Cluan and Cressy, to Poatina, at the foot of the Western Tiers – the range that marks the edge of the Central Plateau. Poatina is the site of a big, mostly underground, hydro power station. It is driven by water from the Great Lake, which is brought down the long, steep drop by penstocks.
There was not actually a great deal to see there. Our main reason for coming here was to check out the road that climbs (or descends) between Poatina and the Great Lake.
It was certainly a long, steep climb, on a sealed road. I am very pleased that we had not been tempted to go that way – either up or down – with the van on the back! On the climb up, there were some excellent views across the farming country of the northern plains.
Once up the top, we decided to keep going and drive right around the Great Lake for a last taste of the high country.
It was an enjoyable and scenic drive, around through Miena. We came down again around the flank of Quamby Bluff and through Golden Valley – another family-associated place.
We drove 200kms today.
Tea was pasta with the tuna, caper, olive sauce I make.
This park had certainly been a pretty place to stay – although it was a pity about the train noise!