Museums, murals & mud!

Crossed another border into NSW (enemy territory….yes I mean State of Origin)….detoured a bit, away from those awful Highways!

In Lockhart I loved the shop fronts especially, the old style leadlight which they’ve kept in good shape. We once went to a Tractor Pull in Lockhart! That’s something to tell the world about!

I had read a bit about Coolamon, so another detour. Beautiful town! Wide, open streets with well kept gardens and shop fronts. We parked at top of town and spent the best part of the day visiting the private collection Coolamon Fire Museum (wow) and The Up-To-Date Store with the original working Lamson Cash Railway System and all original counters and storage (double wow). We hadn’t even walked the street yet – too busy chatting to the locals! So booked into the beautifully green and lush Coolamon Caravan Park. Highly recommend it for $20 per night, brilliant.

Another highlight of Coolamon was the Coolamon Cheese Factory and Little Rustic Pantry Cafe next to the Up-To-Date Store. LOVED IT! Only recently completed is the painted water tower at Narrandera which we did think was well done. The signs aren’t up yet but it’s well worth a trip up to take a look.

As the long weekend approached we ‘hid out’ in the small town of Barellan (55klms east of Griffith). The showgrounds offered power & water for $10 per night, plus Jeda has heaps of space to ‘be a dog’. Worked out great as only 3 others came in the whole weekend, probably due to the rain we had, thank goodness the ground is covered in sawdust (less mud). Barellan is known for the Working Clydesdales weekend each year (this year its 5 & 6 of October) and also for Yvonne Goolagong (& the Big Tennis Racquet).

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Border crossing, Coopers Crossing and Spanner Art

Across the border to Victoria pushed by an Arctic wind all the way! Rain or shine we decided we’d follow the Silo Trail. Must mention the town of Minyip where we stopped overnight.  No silo art but it was the setting for “The Flying Doctors” TV series. It was converted to “Coopers Crossing”. The garage is still there, now a cafe along with the petrol bowsers & sign. The buildings used as the Pub, The Majestic Hotel & Flying Doctors headquarters still there. Minyip has maintained some of the buildings very well, even though a lot are now closed.

Don’t know what’s in the water in Victoria, but there are a lot of very talented people! At Lascelles (yes there’s a painted silo there) The Drovers Hut is worth a visit (closed for maintenance when we were there 😦 ) For a small fee you get to see corrugated iron art to the extreme.  Also at Wycheproof, Yo-Yo’s Iron work collection is magnificent. Using all farm or machinery in general to create huge works of art.

We stopped at Boort for a few nights as we’d heard of The Spanner Man.  Just walking around the town you see some of his works. Lovely town, and on the weekend the Kerang Car Club were there so we (husband) got to drool over some classic cars! My fav was a Ford Customline as my folks had one in the 50’s they drove around Australia towing Dad’s home made caravan!!

We made a booking to view The Spanner Man’s art in the afternoon. John Piccoli’s Spanner Sculptures, 1314 Boort-Quambatook Rd, Barraport VIC (look him up on Google) is worth a visit definitely. He is in a wheelchair, but manages to do these huge sculptures with aid of a block & tackle. See my photo of his spanner collection. He did tell us how much he’s spent but beyond remembering! He doesn’t sell his artwork, he does them for pleasure. Donations from visitors helps with acquiring more. He has sculptures all around his property along with a menagerie of peacocks, pheasants, peahens and Macaws.

We also visited Simply Tomatoes, 479 Parkers Rd, Yando VIC to see their wool & tomato products. They offer free camping on their property too. Also a must see if in this area. The Lanyon’s are a lovely couple and their products are top class.

We did a quick zip through Victoria as it was just too cold, might come back when it’s a bit warmer!! Will set up a Silo page showing the ones we’ve visited.

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Sinkholes to Cottages to Wineries…all in SA!

Just thought I’d mention the Kingston-SE RV Park; as far as I know it may be the only RV park in SA with a ticket machine. For $10 you can camp for $10. Toilets are close, the town a short walk, the jetty straight out in front, dump point front of park & potable water nearby, no power.

Whilst we were held up in Naracoorte, we did a few day trips. We headed south through Coonawarra, Penola, Mt Gambier and Port MacDonnell. Just HAD to stop at Wynn’s Coonawarra Estate for a tasting and a sample to take home. Highly recommended!

The little town of Penola (on the hwy) has a Historic Precinct with the original cottages from the area open to view. A market garden in the back is available to locals to help work and use what they grow. Also, the park next door has some interesting ‘sculptures’ including a bearded Marilyn Monroe!

Only had enough time for a quick visit to The Blue Lake and The Umpherstone Sinkhole. Wrong time of day/year for good photos. Onwards to Port MacDonnell. We were hoping to visit Feast’s Private Classic Car Collection & Memorabilia, Lower North East Road, Port MacDonnell, but the owner was away that day, so only have pics through the gate.  Shame, cause B loves the Valiants (he had one ‘in the day’) Don’t let the blue sky in the photos fool you, it was deadly cold!!! And as we made it to Port MacDonnell the skies opened – so rain AND cold! 😦  So we drove around the seaside town and ate lunch in the car!

‘Doyaselfafava’ and visit these areas in the spring or summer!!!

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