Winton – Blackall
A rainstorm during the night had turned the grounds into a quagmire, making it tricky getting to and from the amenities block.
Couldn’t make toast for breakfast without a camp kitchen so made cheese and Vegemite sandwiches instead. Made lunch as well.
10.20 Left and drove 12 km on the Landsborough Highway to the right-hand turnoff for the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum. Saw a flock of brolgas on the way. Did two tours there: the Collection Room which is unique in that it is open to the public rather than being under lock and key in the backroom of a museum; and the Laboratory, commonly known as ‘The shed’, where volunteers painstakingly clean the dinosaur bones using pneumatic scribes that look and sound like dentist drills. It’s an experience not to be missed! Fee $30 each concession. Ate lunch there before leaving.
11.10 Left there.
15.10 Fuelled up at Longreach BP: 68.02 L @ $1.399 per litre – $95.16. Odometer reading 61388 km.
Thought we should take the lasagne out for dinner tonight, only to realise we’d left it in the freezer at home! Had to settle for pea and ham soup.
13.25 Left Longreach.
13.45 Drove through Illfracombe which had a display of old farm machinery along the side of the highway.
16.15 Passed an entrance to Tara Station.
16.30 Went through Barcaldine.
There was a detour 25 km out of Blackall which made us slow down to 60 kph.
17.45 Checked into Blackall Caravan Park – $27 – Our Pete Murray CD was drowned out by their live entertainer belting out Neil Diamond. We had arrived during Happy Hour. Happier than usual this evening due to two lots of rain having fallen in 24 hours after a four-year drought! Made for a pretty muddy campsite. Three-course roast dinner was available at the camp kitchen, but we set up camp and went there when they’d finished and heated up our soup. The young couple managing the park joined us and offered us free Anzac biscuits and to start a fire in the pit for us which we gratefully accepted. It gave me the chance to download some photos and work on this blog.
We also reflected on the day’s drive:
A lot of roadkill today; saw two flocks of green budgerigars in flight and a huge flock of ibis on the ground; buffeted by roadtrains from Longreach to Barcaldine but OK once we turned south for Blackall; a lot of kangaroos crossing the road.
What I loved about this park was that they provided bath mats for use in the showers: you use them then pop them in the basket for washing. So considerate – if all parks did this I wouldn’t have to cart one with me all the time.
The amenities block was clean with warm artesian water.
The camp kitchen provided a jug, toaster and microwave.
Free WiFi is provided throughout the park.