This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.


Leave a comment

2010 Travels May 19

WEDNESDAY MAY 19     PETERBOROUGH TO GOL GOL     435kms

We gave our remaining fruit and vegie stocks to the caravan park lady, knowing that we would be reaching the fruit fly exclusion zone of the irrigated regions along the Murray River today.

It was a pleasant day, sunny, just warm enough.

We were travelling a familiar route, interesting enough though. I still could not make up my mind what I really thought of the long march of wind farm towers that dominated the ridge lines as we travelled along the western side of the low ranges. There seemed to be more of these every time we came this way. They do have an eerie kind of beauty.

Had a coffee break at the punt area at Morgan, just as we had a few weeks ago.

The Morgan punt

Refuelled and ate lunch at Renmark. Again, John wanted to continue on. So I phoned the caravan park at Gol Gol and booked us into an ensuite site – a touch of extra comfort for our last camp of the trip.

We traversed the rather monotonous stretch between Renmark and Mildura. Crossed the Murray into NSW and went on to Gol Gol, some nine or ten kms from Mildura.

Our site at Rivergardens Caravan Park at Gol Gol cost $27 a night. M had an ordinary site, some distance from us. Our site was on the small side, the access road in front of it was narrow, and it took some backing and forwarding to get us into it. We could not stay hitched up. It was not a particularly attractive site, just gravel.

The site to our left was a corner one. We had just about finished out setting up when a larger caravan than ours arrived by that site. The man stopped to look at it, then drove around the loop road past us, in order to approach his site from the back and drive through onto it. He was clearly in a foul mood which we could tell from his comments and expression, was not improved upon viewing his site. He drove far too fast around the loop road, charged onto his site – and clipped the security light post, taking off a van mudguard and scraping the van side down the post. It made a really loud noise. His lady, who was standing watching, didn’t say a thing. We tried to look as if we really were not paying any attention!

The man got out of his 4WD, began to unhitch, then – when he went around the other side – looked at the van damage and said “When did that happen?”. Maybe he was deaf as well as bad tempered. It really was quite a mess – but what a clown! We avoided any interaction with him, though I felt rather sorry for the lady.

With M, went for a walk along the road near the park, past a lot of very substantial homes that had frontage to the Murray River. As did our caravan park – but its river frontage, and views, were occupied by cabins, not van sites.

We did note in our walk, that there were some much nicer, grassed sites on the other side of the park – but they were not en-suite.

We had our happy hour by our van, with M, talking over highlights of our trip. It certainly had gone by really quickly.

Tea was chicken noodle soup, with added creamed corn, ham and egg.


Leave a comment

2010 Travels April 22

THURSDAY 22 APRIL     MILDURA TO PETERBOROUGH     425kms

Another hot day – got into the 30’s.

A routine drive again today. I worked out that this was the fourth time we had travelled west, via this route. And we’d come east across it, five times. That was nine. Probably, by the end of this trip it would be ten. No wonder it seemed less than interesting.

There was the usual inspection at the SA border quarantine point. We had passed through this too many times to be even slightly tempted to carry something we shouldn’t. The van fridge and some cupboards were checked, and the Chescold fridge in the back of Truck as well. My greatest fear was that, one time, the inspector would ask to check the storage area under the bed. Not because of any contraband hidden there, but because everything loose in the van traveled  on that bed: TV, electric frypan, books, empty fruit bowls, toiletries bags, radio, washing basket, and so on. The extra storage on top of the cupboards in a poptop was great when parked up, but everything that normally lived up there had to come off for travel. Clearing off the bed, to lift it up for inspection, would be a real pain.

Interstate again….for a while this year it looked like that would be an impossibility in 2010.

We stopped at a supermarket in Renmark to get some vegetables for tonight’s meal, and fruit for lunches.

There was another stop at Morgan, in the large parking area by the punt that took vehicles across the Murray River.

Vehicle punt across the Murray River at Morgan

We had morning smoko there and watched the punt travel back and forth across the river.

Smoko. Thermos and mugs on the Defender’s front “table”.

Obviously, we didn’t know it at this time, but the slope behind the vehicles, in the photo above, was where – a few years later – M would slip, sit down on her ankle and injure same. Despite the injury and pain, she managed to drive Bessie to Mildura, where she was found to have broken the ankle!

Although there had been fewer locusts since Mildura, we still needed to clean the windscreen again.

On the gradual uphill stretches to Burra, the engine temperature seemed to be a bit higher than usual. This might just have been an effect of all the replaced bits of the engine. It might not behave quite as it used to. We certainly hoped that was the explanation, anyway!

Lunch was had parked by the creek in Burra, watching the ducks on the water. It was a pleasant spot for a break, with its heritage buildings. As usual we said we must actually stay here for few days, sometime.

We pressed on, to Peterborough, arriving there mid-afternoon. Again, this was quite a long enough drive for John.

The Peterborough Caravan Park was a really pleasant little one. We paid $24 for our powered site, and had adjacent drive through sites, not intending to unhitch. Just passing through on the way to elsewhere.

Peterborough Caravan Park. Vehicle cleaning needed a supervisor!

After the minimal set up, we walked to the town centre. Had a bit of a wander around town. Posted a couple of birthday cards, timed to arrive at destinations early next week.

The Information Centre was shut – a pity, because a browse would have been interesting.

The way back to the caravan park was uphill, which made it all a rather hefty walk for John, but he managed.

Old-timer

Another clean of the vehicles was required. The insect carcasses made it look as if  someone had thrown eggs at them!

Some cloud had built up through the day, and it helped make for some interesting dusk photos.

After happy hour, our dinner was potatoes cooked in foil in the electric frypan, bacon, eggs, tomatoes. M did her own catering, mostly, on such trips.

The night was warm.


Leave a comment

2007 Travels September 25

TUESDAY 25 SEPTEMBER     PORT AUGUSTA TO RENMARK   450kms

Back to the early starts in the morning…..

On the road again. We went the same way as we had on Sunday – east through the hills and winding roads of the Horrocks Pass to Wilmington, then through Orroroo, Peterborough, Burra. This was a familiar route for us, so it was just a matter of covering the distance.

The wind turbines that had sprouted in recent years, along the ridges through here, provided something extra to look at. I don’t think they enhance the scenery, though.

John decided not to stay at Morgan, where we had sometimes overnighted before, but to press on to Renmark. However, we did stop to eat our packed lunch at Morgan.

Refuelled in Renmark, before finding the caravan park. $1.29cpl.

At the Riverfront Caravan Park, we went on to a site that fronted on to the Murray River. After discount, paid $27.

The site was scenic – a pleasant change and the nicest we’d had since leaving Eighty Mile Beach. The Murray River was quite full.

After the basic set up for a one night stay, I walked into the town, for some exercise. John didn’t feel like the exertion, and stayed at the van.

We had not long been set up when we were visited by a hopeful – and friendly – pelican. He did not stay around long, after I told him there would be no handouts at our van.

The sunset reflections on the river were wonderful.


Leave a comment

2006 Travels December 10

SUNDAY 10 DECEMBER   PETERBOROUGH TO MILDURA   420kms

We slept in a bit later this morning.

Today was a much shorter day of driving. It was also much cooler, compared to what we’d been used to. We lost another 30 minutes of time when we crossed into Victoria today.

Refuelled at Morgan – $1.31cpl. It was wonderful to see the wide Murray River there – hadn’t seen a decent river for a while.

Now that we were – comparatively – close to home, John thought we could ease off the travel rate a bit, so we stopped for the night at Mildura. Took a powered site at the Desert City Caravan Park – $20.70, after discount. Had to unhitch the van. Having green grass around the van was a novelty!

Walked across to the big shopping centre across the road and spent some time wandering and browsing. Bought lunch – a bakery pull apart loaf. It was pleasant to have some of the day for just walking about and relaxing.

I had a long and lovely swim in the park’s pool. Bliss.

Resize of 12-11-2006 to m


Leave a comment

2004 Travels September 14

TUESDAY 14 SEPTEMBER  PORT AUGUSTA TO MILDURA   590kms

We refuelled on the way out of town, at the servos by the long causeway that the trucks use. $1.11 cpl. Then got fuel again at Parina, later in the day – $1.07 cpl.

It was yet another long, uncomfortable driving day. All covering routes we had done before and which were quite familiar.

Turned a little south of Port Augusta, and headed up through Horrocks Pass to Wilmington, then Orroroo, Peterborough, Burra, Morgan, Renmark, Mildura.

We stopped at Morgan to eat lunch. This little town beside the Murray River had a very good park area by the punt crossing of the river. We had to turn right to go into town to this park, but it was worth the little back track we had to do to get back on the way to Renmark. We had previously stayed at the caravan park that was across the road from the park.

In Mildura, went into the Desert City Caravan Park – Top Tourist. $18.90 for the night, after discount.

We unhitched Truck and went and bought pizzas for tea.

John decided that he still wants to go to Canberra to see his daughter and grandson. More long days in Truck! I was contemplating a slow few days travelling beside the Murray, as far as Echuca or Corowa, then home. Damn!

In occasional phone calls, he had mentioned that we might end the trip by visiting them. Now he phoned and confirmed our intentions.

Resize of 09-14-2004 to m


Leave a comment

2000 Travels December 11

MONDAY 11 DECEMBER   COFFIN BAY TO MORGAN   691kms.

We got up at 5.45am, and were away just before 7am, after a final feed of our magpie friends.

Today was a long, hot, day of driving.

The first stage was along the eastern coast of the Eyre Peninsula. Our schedule did not allow for stops to look at, or explore, the number of potentially interesting small settlements along that coast.

We reached Port Augusta in good time. Refuelled truck at $1.02cpl.

The forecast here was for 38 degrees by midday!

We continued on, up through the Horrocks Pass, where the long climb up did raise the temperature level on Truck, somewhat.

Then it was on through Wilmington, and the rather flat grain growing country of the mid-north. As the road bent around, there were occasional glimpses of the blue Flinders Ranges behind us.

We stopped for lunch near Orroroo, at the giant red gum tree, an impressive specimen thought to be hundreds of years old.

12-12-2000 tree.jpg

Very elderly red gum tree at Orroroo

Rather than stop at Peterborough or Burra, we decided to push on to Morgan, because that would break the back of the hot, arid country driving.

The last part, through the hottest part of the afternoon, was really hard going, but worth it because the dreariest part was over.

We got to Morgan at 4.15pm. It was still very hot.

At the Riverside Caravan Park, beside the mighty Murray River, we were able to stay hitched up. That cost $15.85.

I bought a few salad items from the park shop, to go with tea, but not much because I was not sure about fruit fly quarantine checks tomorrow.

With a salad, we had the chicken I’d cooked yesterday – very nice.

After tea, we walked along the river and through the historic area of this once busy riverboat port. Watched the vehicle ferry or punt, take the odd vehicle across the river.

The river level was surprisingly high.

With the sun gone, the walk was quite pleasant.

There was a huge, pink, anvil shaped cloud in the distance and, later, a huge full moon.

12-11-2000 to morgan