Day one (or was it day point-five?) was a crazy busy morning, a quick stop in to the mister’s EOFY party (no one parties like a bunch of accountants on a June 30 high…), and we were on the road at two, Queensland bound. Out through Moree and on to Mungindi, and we landed in St George around 6.30, just after dark. Our caravan park was a bit out of town, but easily found, and by 7.15 we were as set up as we needed to be for a one night stay, and dinner was served (well, a dinner of sorts. Chicken wraps and a yoghurt for desert did the trick!)
An early start saw us packed up and on the road by 8, and we pulled into Mitchell in time for morning tea. We found a little garden cafe in the back of a shop and ordered ourselves a yummy morning tea, and following a quick play and look at the windmill, we were back on the road and headed for Charleville.
Arrived and set-up, we headed out to the tourist information centre to load up on brochures and ideas. Unfortunately we were too late too book into Monday’s observatory tours, and Tuesday’s were already booked out except the 9.00pm session which we decided was a bit late, so this morning (Tuesday), we decided to head back for an “astronomy by day” session. Monday night saw us at the Parks and Wildlfife Office for the Save the Bilby presentation and viewing. We got to see five little juvenile bilbies in their breeding enclosure – one seemed to take an especial liking to O and came right up to the fence to say hello. He was pretty chuffed, Little Fish was more freaked out than anything, which is unusual for our little animal lover! Bess rocked the 7.30 tour start by falling asleep on daddy’s lap five minutes into the presentation!
Once we were up and about, we got to pondering, and in the end decided to pack up and head to Longreach a day early to give us plenty of time to see the tours we wanted to – after looking at the websites, both the Qantas museum and the Stockman’s Hall of Fame recommend more time than we originally planned. Our decision was sealed when it was discovered our booking manager *cough*Mama Bug*cough* managed to stuff up the dates and get us booked into the Qantas tour at 9.30am on Wednesday. With five hours to cover between Charleville and Longreach, we packed the trailer, and with O’s astronomy session complete, we were on the road!
There were quite a few roadworks on the way, so lots of 80km zones. Lots of road trains. Lots of dead roos – way more than I expected. The road from home to the coast always seemed to have quite a few about, but after the last few days, it will seem quiet and empty! Lots were hopping around during the day, and I guess a road train at 110km (outside of roadworks) doesn’t have much chance of stopping for a “lowly” kangaroo. And the emus! Holy moly but there has been a lot of wild emus! Not so many now, but near St George there were stacks, though we did see a few today. What we did see a lot of today was open space and spinefex. The fences were choked with massive piles of the stuff (spinefex, that is, not open space!).
We got into Longreach around 5.30 and found our caravan park – basically a huge paddock of red dirt and caravans! We decided since we were here for three nights to splurge on an ensuite site to save to constant dash to the amenities, especially with small people who like to leave things to the last minute. And yeah, totally worth the extra $10 a night. It was pure bliss to have a nice long warm shower in a proper shower, no breeze under the door, no shower curtain clinging to my legs, and most excitingly – thong-free!! (for my lovely American friends, I’m talking the Havianas-for-your-feet type of thongs, not Victorias-Secret-for-your-bum type of thongs).
Three days in and we are having a blast! Lots of posts to catch up on too – I want to share some thoughts on the caravan parks we’ve stayed at, some of the activities we’ve done, and some more info about our trailer and storage.