As 'Grey Nomads' hubby and I are travelling Australia enjoying what this great land has to offer in scenery, lifestyle and people. I love to record our travels through photography so I thought I'd share this with others who are travelling as well as those who haven't yet ventured 'outback'. We are self contained in our custom built off road caravan and just love bush camping and heading to the outback.
Border Passes! This may be the new Norm. A pass to cross from state to state. 😦 Applied and received almost straight away. We crossed the border at Hebel, lined up with quite a few other travellers, showed our passes & answered some questions….then decided to stop behind the pub for the night! Policeman said he’d see us again in the morning!
Had a great night. The hospitality in this little pub and free parking out back is wonderful. The John Murray artwork on the walls and the slight lean on the bar add to the quirkiness. Cold night, a camp fire out front of pub and chats to travellers is just the best. The lineup went for miles the next morning! So we sat outside the pub with a cuppa and watched till the procession slowed down a bit.
Again we are going over roads we’ve travelled before, but it’s tough to find new paths. Especially since the areas have had rain and some roads were closed. Had a bit of a ‘mishap’ on some wet ground, but all worked out ok!
At Mitchell I met Kangaroo Jack. He sells coffee from his trailer on Saturday mornings to raise funds to help him rehab orphaned joeys from roadkill. His refuge Warrego Wildlife Refuge is in Mungallala, west of Mitchell.
In Blackall we visited The Black Stump again. It wasn’t exactly how I remember it from 2006. Have posted a 2006 & 2021 pic. Weird?!
Our latest trip was 200klms around the Lake Dunn Sculpture Trail from Aramac to Lake Dunn & back to Aramac. Will post all the photos later in my Portfolio, similar to Tin Horse Highway in WA.
“On the road again”…… Finally after nearly 2 years unable to travel due to C19, we escaped the southern winter.
Have posted some highlights of our trip in NSW below. Retracing roads we’ve travelled before, but still enjoying being away. The cold followed us most of the way, and some rain but that’s always needed everywhere.
It’s been a busy time on Da Block preparing the gardens for the onslaught of winter. The cold wind has blown in and it even snowed in a northern town!
We are actually ‘On The Road’ now but before we left we had a visit from some friends we met on the road in 2014. They are very game caravanning in SA in winter! So we made the most of what the Valley does so well….wine, roaring fires, wine & good food.
We managed to visit around 11 cellar doors but didn’t taste or purchase at them all, the majority now charge for tastings. A couple were ridiculous prices, and they didn’t take it off your purchase. Those that only charged $5-$10 and took it off your wine purchase we bought from and very much enjoyed. Of the Cellar Doors we visited my favourites were Mr Mick, Shut The Gate & Taylors Wines.
We also visited the Painted Silos in the district. Well worth a look and a patronage for the town, have a look around and a meal or snack. Our friends visited Bungaree Station and enjoyed the history and woolshed.
Future blogs will be highlights of our travels. Just heard a Qld Travel Declaration is required to enter Qld from another State…..good grief!:(
I’ve been busy on Da Block growing stuff! All new to me as haven’t had much time in the past to grow ‘food’ and big gardens.
Gave it a go with the easy stuff first….learnt NOT to plant lotsa seedlings as they GROW BIG! But enjoyed eating home grown tomatoes and making CWA relish!! Got a few different pumpkins coming up all over the place too! Anyway, happy with my first season of green thumb-ing!! 😛
Hubby and I took a whole 2 days orf to do the ‘tourist thang’ and go to Adelaide! Stopped in a van park in Semaphore (north of Adelaide) using the states $50 voucher to get South Australian’s back out travelling.
Two days was enough in a city for us! Liked Semaphore but especially liked Eggs Benedict on our morning of departure in a local cafe! A real treat! Missed our Bluey as first time away from Ma & Pa! Can’t wait to get back on the road again in the caravan and explore more of Australia! Travel photos will be more interesting than plant pics!! 🙂
With COVID19 being in our daily life visit’s to local wineries and cafes have taken a bit of a hit this year.
Even so, we managed to visit a couple of places that are worth a mention.
Eldredge Vineyards (www.eldredge.com.au) on Spring Gully Rd Scenic Drive is worth a stop for a lazy Sunday afternoon or weekday visit. You can make up your own cheese platter whilst sampling a wine paddle which is what we opted for.
One Restaurant to look out for is Seed (seedclarevalley.com) in the Main Street of Clare. It is an impressive site (which is a contrast to the dismal CBA bank building it started as). A beautiful mural adorns the Burton St lane next to it. The Rooftop is open now and the Bistro & Deli will be open soon. I can’t say how good/bad it is as haven’t dined there as yet.
Speaking of murals another has popped up just off the Main North Road at the Post Office which brightens the street-scape even more.
On a recent town garage sale Saturday we stopped to grab lunch at The Booyoolee Brew, Port Street in Gladstone (76kms north of Clare) www.facebook.com/TheBooyooleeBrew/ Once a pub the new owners have turned the old building into a lovely cafe with seating out front and for winter a cosy dining room or covered area with open wood fires. Try the Baked Bean Muffins – Yummo!!
On a quick two day trip to The Big Smoke (around Adelaide) we stayed near Semaphore, west of Port Adelaide. In Semaphore main street we found two places worth a mention (but I’m sure there’s heaps more)
On leaving we shouted ourselves breakfast at Froot Cafe (www.facebook.com/frootcafesemaphore) The most delicious Eggs Benedict I’ve ever had and Pancakes and Bacon with Maple Syrup (we shared!) Quick friendly service and hot coffee! Note: always look where the locals are eating!!
Well, this year is the year we would all like to forget I’m sure!
But I am glad I spent it at home as we got so much done and it was a safe place to be. Watching the nightly news it started to feel surreal seeing what was happening all over the world with Covid-19.
But life goes on and we have to make the best of what we have and where we are. I’m enjoying my garden/s and growing veggies for the first time (and I’m not a big veggie fan)
This Christmas will be very quiet and at home due to Jeda just having a cruciate ligament operation on her knee and she will need months of recovery. It’s only been a day or so and she’s still not herself, we are getting ‘stink eye’ quite a lot! 🙂
Hoping anyone reading this has a safe and happy Christmas and New Year’s and let’s hope 2021 is a better year for everyone!
With the change of seasons it would be a brilliant time to ‘hit the road’ and travel beautiful South Australia! Well, you’d think that but we haven’t! Too busy on Da Block!
My travel blogs are much more fun to write than these Block blogs, but as it’s life atm ….. boring as bat poop for some – hang in there hopefully we will be ‘on the road’ again in the future!
I’ve spent time in my garden trying to grow vegies and flowers. I’m a gardening newbie so when things grow I’m amazed! When we lived in North Queensland it was hard NOT to grow anything, with the rainfall in abundance plants thrived.
Well, winter has hit with a vengeance! Normally we’d be sunning ourselves in a warm climate now, but not this year 😦
Making the most of time here though. Enjoyed watching the changing of the seasons around the district. The colours of the trees were beautiful and the crisp clean air in the mornings make up for the cold wet soggy days.
Due to restrictions not a lot of wandering the area or eating out, but I’ve put a couple of pics up of my one day out recently. Clare has a new mural in a side street near the Council Chambers, and it’s a beauty.
We’ve had a couple of frosts, which has killed off some of my plantings, but most usually recover. Hubby not so happy about winter; wakes up in the dark and gets home from work in the dark!
With restrictions easing up a bit now, I should be able to post more interesting blogs soon. Can’t wait to visit a few more wineries in the beautiful Clare Valley!
Well the ‘C’ virus has changed our lives dramatically; made us think twice about where we go outside our home, what we touch, who’s touched it before us, how will I stay safe? A lot of businesses are thinking outside the box finding ways to keep afloat. Will our lives be better for this?
I think so. Once we ALL understand the importance of #slowthespread and find alternate ways of communicating or earning a living, life will go on. Easter will be easy for us. We always tried to get off the road and ‘hibernate’ somewhere!
I have to give a local business a blatant plug! I placed my first order with The Corner Patch in Clare for fruit & veg. I was pleasantly happy with the selection and quality. The local pubs and most cafes/restaurants are ensuring they offer takeaways and the wineries are using a central Cellar Door in Clare as a distribution point for wine sales. All in all life is bubbling along….
As for Da Block, MacArthur the Ram has moved on to other pastures…literally!! Hopefully he has done his ‘job’ here with the ewes and baby lambies will be running around in the future!!