Blogs from New South Wales, Australia, Oceania - page 4

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Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Inverell June 24th 2014

We headed out of town towards Glen Innes, our next place to stay along the route to the coast. One small town, Warialda, had a sign outside the Tourist Info Centre advertising their gem collection, and as we were ready for a short break, we had a look. It was mostly some nice pieces of fossilised wood and a lot of agate. They had a small historical display, too, which had one surprising item in it – the Queen Mary Chocolate Box, a gift from 1925. The box looks more like a sewing box, padded and made of brocade. Fancy putting chocolates in something like that! Sufficiently rested, we set off for Inverell, the next main town. We stopped there at the Lions Park for a picnic, but it was sunny but freezing with a strong ... read more
Best Employment, Inverell
Inverell Tourist Information Centre
Inverell Tourist Information Centre

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Moree June 23rd 2014

We were picked up from outside the Showgrounds for our Cotton Tour, although the bus was rather late and I started worrying that he’d forgotten us. There were already 9 other people on the small bus and as we were the last, our guide, Scott, started to give us a run down on what the tour would entail. Unfortunately, all the cotton had been picked in the local area so we wouldn’t be able to see the harvesting, but he had organised for us to see the machine up close on one of the farms. We drove right into one of the huge fields and got out to see the denuded plants (well almost – they miss a lot of the lint!) and watch the machine that pulls the rest of the plant out of the ... read more
Cotton Fields Irrigation
The Cotton Harvester
Round Bales

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Moree June 22nd 2014

It was a cold night for me without the heater but the morning was sunny so we started warming up. After breakfast, we set off, through Collarenabri towards Moree. Again everything was very flat but as we got closer to Moree we started to see much more green in the bush and beside the road. Some of the fields had been planted with crops and some were obviously recently harvested cotton crops, with the white stubble still in visible. There was also water in some of the creeks. Just a few hundred kilometres can make a huge difference to the climate. A wallaby jumped out of the bush and hopped along beside us for a few metres. We were lucky he didn’t try to cross the road, as he’d intended. I think our large size changed ... read more
Quilt at Tourism Moree
Jellicoe Park, Moree
The Dining Room at the Victoria Hotel, Moree

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales June 21st 2014

It rained on and off throughout the night but not too heavily. When Barry went out to check how boggy the ground was, he was met with a horrible surprise of a different sort. One of the tyres on the ute was flat. The ground was too wet to try and jack the ute up, it would have just sunk into the soil. He decided to pump it up and hope the leak was a slow one so he’d have time to get into town and find a tyre repairer. Allan, the caretaker of the caravan park, told him where to find one. I stayed back to stow all the food into the new plastic boxes and get us ready to roll, if we could. I was very happy to get a phone call to say ... read more
Free Camping at Collarenabri
A Black-Backed Magpie

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Mollymook June 21st 2014

In search of we are not sure what ?? 2014-06-18 It's called retirement, I think. Here we are at Alfies on Berry, a B&B, you’ll find them on the town’s official website. I quote from the town’s website: “The town of Berry is one of those rare finds. Set amongst the rolling green hills with the Cambewarra range providing a stunning backdrop, the landscape is unparalleled in NSW” I quote because I agree with the tourist talk. We drove thru a stunning , stunning kangaroo valley, both the pass and the town to get here. We will certainly have to drive back this way , it was too dark and too fast to take pics. “Berry is the first truly rural town south of Sydney, a mere 2 hour drive (it took us 4 and a ... read more
We picked this up in a bottlestore in Kangaroo Valley
Feast ended, chillaxing with the last few drops
Alfie on Berry

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Oceania » Australia » New South Wales June 20th 2014

Our last day at the Ridge started with some shopping for plastic boxes to store food in the top cupboard and make it easier to access, and to stop the contents of the fridge top shelf jumping around when we go on bumpy roads. Having found what I was after we went to look for the Opalised Fossils we’d heard about. Instead, we came across Coopers Cottage, built in 1916 and now a very rusty shack which shows how the early miners built from whatever they could find. Barry was fascinated with the way they joined beams and the frame timbers (whole thin trunks or thick branches of trees) by just drilling a hole through them and tying them together with thick steel wire. The floor was bit of old carpet laid directly onto the dirt. ... read more
Cooper's Cottage, Lightning Ridge
The Dunny of Cooper's Cottage
The Australian Opal Centre

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales June 19th 2014

We had a more relaxed day today with a slow start (although I did go and watch the sunrise – very pretty) and then a visit to Kangaroo Hill, which is just a few kilometres away from Lorne Station, right on the edge of Lightning Ridge. It is owned by Gwen and Athol Jenkins and Gwen gives a tour of their collection, herself, complete with wonderful stories of her great grandmother, who first came to Australia during the gold rush days, and her own early days. There are several display “rooms” behind glass which hold items (like a glass domed group of stuffed birds amongst grass), clothes (notably a long black dress) and furniture (including a table made of cedar from Gippsland) that used to belong to her great grandmother. Gwen explained that she was given ... read more
Kangaroo Hill, Lightning Ridge
Gem Collection at Kangaroo Hill, Lightning Ridge
Sculpture at Kangaroo Hill, Lightning Ridge

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales June 18th 2014

After a picnic lunch I wanted to do the Chamber of Black Hand Tour and Underground Shop but Barry wasn’t interested (especially as the price was a bit high at $35 each) so he dropped me off and went back to relax at the van. While waiting for our tour guide, I strolled over to have a look at a mullock heap and got a surprise when a wallaby and her joey came jumping out from behind it. When the guide arrived, I was given another ride for the 12 m down to the underground shop in a little lift, even more jerky than the last one! Still, beats walking down all the stairs and back up later. We started by being taken on another mine tour, but I found this one more lively and interesting ... read more
Chambers of the Black Hand
Chambers of the Black Hand
Chambers of the Black Hand

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales June 18th 2014

No sleeping in this morning as we had to be at the Tourist Information Centre by 8.50 am to be picked up by the Outback Opal Tour bus. There was only one other couple doing the tour so we could sit anywhere on the minibus. Our guide Peter, wearing a T-shirt saying “Grumpy Old Man” on it, told us the basics about opal formation and had a few samples of the various rocks, clay and potch to pass around (except he didn’t unless you asked to see them!). He then took us around the town, past some quirky buildings, like Amigo’s Castle and The Astronomers Monument, some extravagantly large, like the second largest bowling club in Australia (pipped recently by a new one in Sydney) and the Olympic size and standard swimming pool. Lightning Ridge residents ... read more
Big Opal Shop and Underground Mine
Who Cares Clock, Amigo's Castle
Amigo's Castle, Lightning Ridge

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales June 17th 2014

I was up in time to see the sunrise this morning and try to photograph it. Didn’t quite work as I couldn’t remember how to get into the setting for sunrises and the new camera washed out the colour. Back inside to reread the manual, so I’ll be able to do it tomorrow. On the way back the area became a riot of sound as the birds all came to life. One group of Noisy Miners decided that the best insects were around the doors and windows of the toilet block. They were hanging every which way and chattering away as they did it. Nearby, sitting on one of the wires of a power pole was a small very colourful parrot. I managed to sneak up close enough to get a good photo. He was a ... read more
The Green Car Door Tour, Lightning Ridge
Opal Fields Lightning Ridge NSW
Lightning Ridge Opal Fields




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