Queensland Outback Experience 2013

Page 4

DAY 18 - DARR RIVER BACK TO LLOYD JONES WEIR

Up nice and early again, showered, packed up and then headed off for Longreach and Barcaldine and Lloyd Jones Weir. Stopped at Barcaldine for some last minute groceries and Grandma couldn’t find her Visa card. Luck we had the phone number for the Information Centre at Winton where she last used it, and we rang them and sure enough she had left it there yesterday when she paid for some items. Thank heavens that it was still there and they are now going to post it to home for us.


We can still use my card and also don’t have to cancel them etc which would've been a real pain in the derriere.


Arrived at Lloyd Jones Weir around 10.30am and set up near one of the taps this time so we can hook up to the water to do the washing and not have to cart it by the bucketful all the time. Makes it a hell of a lot easier this way and we have set it up with double adapters so we are also not stopping anyone else from using the taps as well


We will stay here for a couple of days before moving on towards Emerald.


We decided that we will make a BIG trip tomorrow and go all the way to Emerald as there are not that many good stops along the way between here and there. Jericho is only about 40 something K's away and the toal trip to Emerald is only 300 k's so we will stay there for our next stop and then I can get my SIM card sorted as well.


Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog

Lloyd Jones Weir - Parked in a different location this time closer to the weir yet under the shade of the trees which is not the ideal spot but beggars can't be choosers
A pelican on the weir

DAY 18 - TROUBLE WITH MOBILE BROADBAND SIM CARD

After arriving at Lloyd Jones Weir and setting everything up I spent the next 3 hours trying to get onto the net and having no luck.

Turns out my mobile broadband SIM card is not working - plenty of credit etc but just wouldn't obtain a signal  - I worked this out when I could get signal with my prepaid mobile phone SIM card when I put it into the BP3 modem,  but as soon as I put the broadband one back up could not get a connection at all.

Finally in frustration I rang Telstra - what a drama !!!!! -  I asked for an Australian operator as I told them my problem is unique in that I am way out in the back blocks etc etc yet they couldn't/wouldn't transfer me across and tried valiantly to fix my problem.

They couldn't even tell me where the nearest Telstra shop is after telling the girl we are near Barcaldine asking me if I was anywhere near Patrick????????. 

I finally got them to give me a free 1Gb plus data pack for my phone and now have found out that there is a Telstra shop in Emerald so have to wait till we get to Emerald when I can get a new blank SIM card and get everything from the old one transferred over onto it.

What a pain in the derriere it has been but at least I have internet now and maybe able to update our travels here on our website and will post all the pics etc later on tomorrow.  So sorry for having no pics at present but hopefully I will be able to have them all up tomorrow sometime

So I decided to sit in the cool breeze for a while to settle down for a while.  Talk about frustrating especially when you talk to someone who has no idea where you are and expects you to be able to just duck down the street to the nearest Telstra Shop. 

Anyway I have internet albeit have to be a bit careful on how much I use at it is much dearer than the mobile broadband.


Hi Fiona.  Just a quick message to let you know that the Bloggin Blog is now Blogged and you can read it all at your leisure.  Enjoy  LOL

Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog

DAY 19 - LLOYD JONES WEIR FOR THE 2ND TIME

We have decided to just have a relaxing day and not do a great deal.


Ed had to take his Cruiser into town at 8am this morning to get a tyre replaced as the tread was parting with the casing. This happened after he had a contact with a roo on the way to the Dinosaur Stampede. No damage was done to his car but the tyre was causing the steering wheel to shake. He got the tyre changed over and was back by 9am.


We then cooked a nice stew in the camp oven which cooked slowly all day. There was that much left over that we put it into a container into the fridge and will have it for lunch or dinner tomorrow night.


We had a fair bit of cloud cover today and also a lot of wind, a couple of spots of raon but nothing to really worry us. The wind was the main nuisance all day and as a result we ended up inside early as we couldn’t sit outside too long.


Had a reasonably early night as we want to get away early in the morning as we intend to make it to Emerald tomorrow.


Catch you out there,
PopPop, Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog

The three wise monkeys (Ed, Grandma, Ros) & Beau the Wonder Dog LOL
Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog on the bank of the river

DAY 20 - LLOYD JONES WEIR TO EMERALD & THEN TO SPRINGSURE

We were up nice and early this morning, packed up and were on the road by 7.40am and went into Barcaldine, fueled up and headed for Emerald.


Had a pretty good trip however we did have quite a strong headwind today. Went through the town of Jericho and didn’t see any walls or any Joshua's there either. LOL


Made our way to Alpha where we stopped and had morning tea which we bought from the local bakery and was very very enjoyable.


Made it to Emerald around midday and went to the freecamp near the Botanical Gardens CAW7 #319. This spot is right under an overhead bridge which has heaps of traffic and there are also thousands upon thousands of fruit bats in the trees nearby. Really it is not a very nice place to camp as it is very very noisy and busy there.


We unhitched the van and made our way to the Telstra Shop which took a bit of finding but we finally got there and was able to get the crook broadband SIM card changed over without any hassles and then we went back to the vans where Grandma and Ros decided to go shopping up at the local Centro shopping Centre (We only found out later that there is a larger shopping complex with BIG W Hardly Normal etc etc a bit further out of town – thank heavens LOL)


When they got back from shopping Grandma said she didn’t really like the spot and also was afraid of all the bats etc so we decided on the spur of the moment to pack up and head off and find a nice spot somewhere along the way and we are now in a small free camp near Springsure called Virgin Rock Rest Area CAW7 #409. There are a few vans here as well – it is rather close to the road but beggars can't be choosers and we are only here for the night. Nice and peaceful since it went dark.


There are some rather interesting cliffs and rock formation nearby and we were told by a camper that they light them up at night, so hope we can get some pics of it later on.


There is a couple here who were towing their van yesterday with a Mazda BT50 and he had an AGM battery in the rear tray which has a canopy on it, also a gas bottle, generator, fuel container and Engel Fridge. Something has gone astray and a fire has started in the rear with the battery exploding etc. Quite a bit of damage but it is still drivable. They are thinking that the battery may have exploded causing the problem. Poor buggers the car is brand new and has only done 5000 K's and is on it's maiden voyage. He is hoping his insurance will cover it all.


We are off to Roma in the ironing where Ed will visit with his older sister and then we hope to make it to Judd's Lagoon CAW7 #577 where we will meet up with our friends Herb & Dors and spend a few days with them there before heading for Miles etc.


Catch you out there,
PopPop, Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog

Virgin Rock in Daylight

Virgin Rock at twilight

Virgin Rock lit up at night  - it is very pretty to see in the night

DAY 21 - SPRINGSURE TO JUDDS LAGOON, YULEBA

Had a good night's sleep, had a bit of traffic noise form about 4.30am onwards but we just ignored it and went back to sleep, was up reasonably early (if you ask Grandma it was VERY EARLY) and we readied and packed up and headed off at 7.40am to Springsure where we fueled up and then made our way towards Rolleston, Injune and the Roma arriving at Roma at midday.


Went to the dump point and emptied the cassette and Ed & Ros went to Ed's sister's for a visit.


We then went into town, did a bit of shopping, refueled and then made our way out to Yuleba which is about 65K's west of Roma, and Judds Lagoon CAW7 #577 arriving here around 1.30pm and found a nice spot away from all the shade of the trees etc and set up. Ed & Ros will meet us here later.


This is a really nice peaceful location. There are another 2 vans here and a group of campers nearby as well. There is one terrific spot that is taken already which would be great. Maybe they may leave tomorrow and we could move to that spot.


Grandma just spotted a pair of geese and had to take some bread out to feed them so no doubt we will have geese and geese crap around us for the next few days. There are 2 ducks and 2 geese here and the gander is pretty vicious and tries to attack you if you get too close. LOL


We will stay here for the next few days before venturing further south towards home.


Catch you out there,
PopPop, Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog

Judds Lagoon campsite
Another part of Judds Lagoon
Geese on the Lagoon
Geese eating Grandma's Bread

DAY 22 - JUDDS LAGOON YULEBA

This is is truly a terrific spot here.

Had a very quiet and peaceful nights sleep in total darkness and awoke to a glorious morning with the sun shining and just peace and tranquility abounding.


Magpies warbling and various other birds whistling their happy tunes in the trees, a few geese waddling about and birds catching fish in the lagoon.


This spot is well worth visiting if you are ever this way.


We are just going to sit back, relax and take things easy for a few days here.  Our good friends Herb & Dors are coming up to visit this morning and stay a couple of days as well and it will be good to catch up with them again.



Catch you out there,
PopPop, Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog

A panoramic view from under our awning this morning
Rope swing and picnic table kids use to get into the water
Ducks & Geese on the lagoon
Ros going on a "photo shoot"
Ed 'The Woodman' bringing a load back for the fire

DAY 23 - JUDDS LAGOON

Awoke to a cool and foggy morning with mist all over the lagoon.  


Sat around and just relaxed and had a nice easy day sitting and chatting amongst friends.


Cooked a nice pot roast with garlic dumplings etc in the camp oven over the campfire last night and we all had it for dinner. It was really a rib sticker of a dinner this time but was nice to eat as usual.


Listened to the Rugby League last night on the radio and was really great to hear Parramatta beat the Ponies 19-18. Couldn’t wait to rub it in to the Pony supporters here. LOL


Had a rather early night readying ourselves for Mother's Day tomorrow.


Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma and Beau the Wonder Dog

Foggy Lagoon this morning
Herb 'n Dors sitting back and relaxing after their shower

Ed checking the pot roast

After checking the pot roast
Herb going to check his fishing line

DAY 24 - JUDDS LAGOON YULEBA - MOTHER'S DAY

Awoke to another glorious morning with the sun shining in a beautiful cloudless sky and about 18°C.


These rotten geese were honking as loud as anything and waking everyone up this morning and giving everyone the pips.


Herb n Dors packed up and headed off around 8am and we just took things nice and easy.


Later in the morning most people camped here had packed up and left and it is now beautiful and peaceful here, even Ros mentioned that it is such a beautiful and quiet day now that even the geese has shut up. LOL


We just had an easy day again today sitting around chatting, went for a bit of a drive around the place to see where the old township of Yuleba used to be etc, came back listened to the football games on the radio then packed everything up that needed to be put away before we head off tomorrow for a rather BIG day with over 400K trip to Texas. 


There is a girl who comes every day and gives her dogs a run and swim in the lagoon and she also has a baby kid goat with her and Grandma was again taken in by the goat and today she just had to go down and give it a BIG cuddle.  I was wondering how long it would take before she asked for a cuddle.  Didn't take her long at all actually.  LOL


Will stay 2 nights at Texas and then head to Bingara for 2 nights before heading for home on Friday.


Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma and Beau the Wonder Dog

Grandma and the kid goat
Mothers Day morning campfire

DAY 25 - JUDDS LAGOON TO TEXAS QLD

Up early again, packed up had breakfast and headed off at 7.40am towards Miles where we refueled. Didn't need fuel but thought we would top up there as it was still cheap and would then get us all the way to Texas. We also went to the dump point and emptied the cassette and then headed south for Condamine and then Goondiwindi.


We arrived at Goondiwindi around lunchtime. It is rather a large busy country town these days and we decided to see if we could get a feed of fish and chips for lunch. 


Amazingly, there are no fish & chip shops in the town. The one that was operating is closed down and the only other one that sells it is a pizza shop that doesn’t open till 4.30pm, so we ended up going to a bakery and getting some bread etc for lunch and then headed off towards Yelarbon.


Once at Yelarbon we turned south and headed towards Texas following the Dumaresq River along the Queensland-NSW border arriving in Texas around 2.30pm where we went to the dump point and filled our tanks with potable water from a tap that is nearby, also went to the local Foodworks store and got some last minute groceries and then headed to the freecamp CAW7 #693 on the Dumaresq River about 2K's out of town where we plan to stay for 2 nights before heading towards Bingara.


It's been cloudy and overcast all day and the forecast is for possible rain tonight, also it has come in quite cold this evening so we are now inside the van keeping warm.


Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma and Beau the Wonder Dog

DAY 26 - TEXAS

Started raining about 1am last night and rained on and off all night and through the morning as well.


Was quite cool outside today so when it was raining, we spent this time indoors, however it did clear a bit later in the day and we sat outside chatting etc.


Later when evening fell it was quite cool outside so we all ventured into our van and the girls played Candy Crush on their tablets and Ed and I chatted and watched their antics whilst playing the game.


Had an early night to bed as it was quite cold however we were nice and snug inside.


Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma and Beau the Wonder Dog

DAY 27 - TEXAS TO BINGARA

Awoke early to quite a cold and foggy morning with the temp being around 6°C so we put the diesel heater on for the 2nd time this trip to warm the van up and 20 mins later it was lovely and warm.


Had breakfast, packed up and then made our way into town to the dump point where we emptied the cassette as well as filled the tanks up with potable water and then went to the service station where we fueled up, said our goodbyes to Ed & Ros and they made their way back home and we headed off for Yetman, Warialda and Bingara.

Got to Warialda around 10,30am so we stopped there and Grandma bought some bread etc from the local bakery and then we headed off for Bingara arriving at the spot we are in now at 11.30am.


This spot is even better than the one we were in on our way up. Perfect spot to camp for a few days. So quiet and peaceful with hardly anyone around, only trouble is it may get quite cold tonight with the forecast for the temp to get down to around 2°C but we have our diesel heater to keep us nice and warm anyway. Have I ever told you how good a diesel heater is??????


We will just relax and chill out here for 2 days before making our way home on Friday.


Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma and Beau the Wonder Dog

Where we are located - shown on the map as Bingara 2 as this is the 2nd time we have stayed here and are at a different location further along the river from last time
Google Maps view of roughly where we are camped at Bingara - we are where the green arrow is right on the banks of the river.
Panorama pic of our location
Grandma outside of van near the river
PopPop outside of van
The 'Choofer' fire that we used to cook dinner on tonight and then sat around for a while till it got too cold and we came inside.

DAY 28 - BINGARA

Had a nice night. Fired the choofer up in the afternoon and then cooked our dinner over the fire.


After dinner we sat around the fire for a while till it got a bit too cool to sit outside and we then ventured indoors where Grandma played Candy Crush on her tablet and I updated our blog page and tried to fix up the problems on the page, (which has been a real pain in the backside as sometimes it saves the changes and other times not, which is shown by some of the pics only having the words 'Text' alongside of them,) so I just have to keep trying till it does.


Awoke to a glorious morning with the sun shining, not as cold as we thought it would be at 7°C but we didn't put the diesel heater on as it wasn’t really that cold.


Forecast for today is 21°C and presently 17°C but it's not that cold and quite lovely in the sun.


Fired the choofer up again this morning and cooked breakfast, showered and we will just take it nice and easy today before packing up and heading for home tomorrow.


Just found out that there is a problem with the Webs.com site regarding the loading of pics etc onto the blog and now I have had to re-do the whole thing and put it into separate pages as some pages with the pics became too long. 

So I have spent most of today re-doing it all but it is now finished thank heavens........


Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma and Beau the Wonder Dog

Tonight's Choofer Fire after we cooked dinner - kept us nice and warm for quite a while till it got too cold and we came inside.

DAY 29 - BINGARA TO HOME

Had another lovely night which also brought a bit of rain in the early hours of the morning but not much to worry about.


Slept in as long as we could this morning then packed up and headed off for home at 8.30am just taking our time and enjoying the scenery on the way home.


Stopped at Willow Tree for fuel and also had some lunch whist there and then continued on our merry way striking heaps of traffic from Muswellbrook onwards towards Newcastle, which made the trip seem like forever and we finally made it home safe and sound at 3.30pm.


We have had a wonderful 4 weeks travelling in outback Queensland with our friends Ed & Ros and and have really enjoyed ourselves and totally relaxed.


We had a lot of laughs and fun on the way and would do it over again in a heartbeat.


We freedom camped the whole time, and only paid for 2 nights on the whole trip, which was at the Barcoo Riverside campsite at Blackall where we were charged $5.00 per night and was also a terrific spot, no power or amenities etc but right in the heart of town with free showers and toilets nearby as well. We never had to resort to using a generator or any external power etc as the solar kept the batteries topped up the whole time and we never even looked like running out. It is great to have a good solar set-up and not have to worry about charging your batteries form another external source.


The only thing we will change on our next trip is to take the small twin tub washing machine we have here at home that we used on camping trips and use it instead of our fully auto Lemair washing machine. As this machine uses far too much water and takes way too long to do a wash. It is excellent for use when in caravan parks or attached to an external water supply, but for small loads the twin tubs are excellent as well and use far less water and are quicker, so we will take it along with us.


We will now unpack everything, clean everything up, and begin planning our next trip which is only for 2 weeks from the 5th to 19th August to the mouth of the Murray and follow it back to Mildura.



Catch you out there,

PopPop, Grandma and Beau the Wonder Dog

Total Trip

Totals for our trip are as follows :-

Total Trip :- 5349.20 Klms
Total Fuel Used :- 1022.39 Litres
Average cost of fuel :- $1.53/Litre
Average Fill :- 60.83 litres
Average K/Litre :- 5.28 K/Litre
Average Litres/100km :-19.12 L/100 Klms
Average MPG :- 14.92 mpg
Total cost of fuel :- $1566.40
Average cost of fill :- $93.31

Catch you out there,
PopPop, Grandma & Beau the Wonder Dog.
This map shows the total trip where we travelled on a relief map - the blue line is the outbound route and the pink is the return route we took