One of our philosophies of life is that every cloud has a silver lining. Sometimes you may need to look a little. So when circumstances changed we decided to take the opportunity to try one of those things we had often dreamt of doing.

Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Loxton May 30th 2015

Directly opposite the caravan park in Ouyen is a train line … a very busy train line, especially on a Friday night. We suspect they were doing a lot of shunting backwards and forwards loading grain carriages. Then early Saturday morning more train noises. This challenged our belief that trains no longer operate in much of rural Australia. Maybe this only applies to SA. This together with the noisy bikie, who made regular trips around the caravan park, made for quite a noisy evening. Thank goodness all was quiet by bedtime. Our next stop was Loxton via Pinnaroo. Our GPS was not keen on this idea directing us to Pinnaroo then back to Ouyen, up to Mildura then down to Loxton. Suspend navigation was the only option … besides we really did know the way and ... read more
Such a difficult choice, but you can do it, Greg
The Pinnaroo Hotel – looking good
The busy main drag in Pinnaroo

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Moulamein May 29th 2015

“Moulamein where is that?” did I head you say. We decided to return via the northern side of the Murray River but not as far north as the Murrumbidgee and Hay. This meant driving through the Riverina and Moulamein is on the western end about half way between the Murray and Balranald. We did not know this country at all as the major interstate routes all run around it. We discovered that for much of the way we followed the Edward River and that the country is criss-crossed by many creeks that drain the land to the big rivers. Generally the land is flat, in fact it is the southern end of the notorious Hay plains, and the vast majority is irrigated. This is a huge area and the amount of water being used must be ... read more
Repairing the road with…dirt!
Part of the massive solar array at Barham
This pile driver was used to build 53 bridges in the Riverina

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Deniliquin May 28th 2015

As we travel around we are constantly asked where we have been and where we are heading. The answers we give get some interesting reactions. There are nods of approval when we have visited the most popular tourist spots and quizzical looks when we say we are heading somewhere more rural … like Deniliquin. A common response might be, ‘Why do you want to go there? There’s nothing there!’ Fortunately we don’t pay much attention to these comments as we like to go to places a little off the beaten track, exploring the countryside and seeing what’s on offer. As we headed away from the wine regions and into cropping country we couldn’t help but shudder at the large number of open irrigation channels wandering over the countryside that are obviously used to flood irrigate paddocks. ... read more
These parks with water features in the centre of Deniliquin are lovely.
Deniliquin is the home of the annual ute muster
You know that this is a rural town by the John Deere toys

Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Rutherglen May 26th 2015

Rutherglen was only a short hop from Glenrowan but it gave us the chance to fill up with discount fuel in Wangaratta. The Rutherglen caravan park was another council run spot on the edge of a small lake. At this relatively quiet time of the year we got a lake side position. After setting up we wandered into the main street of Rutherglen to have a look. What we did find was Parkers Pies. This was obviously a well patronised lunch spot and inside there was a whole wall covered with the many awards they had received. Naturally this was just too much – we had to try these pies for lunch. The selection was very promising and the pies totally delivered with rich full flavour. After lunch we headed out to Morris wines, an old ... read more
We enjoy wine tasting in Rutherglen.  (Actually we enjoy most good wine.)
Joan is happy to find a cat to pet. The cat seems happy with the arrangement as well.
Whoa there!

Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Milawa May 24th 2015

The morning after the Baileys dinner we rose to a very cold morning but the sun suggested that the day might warm up a little. Our traditional Sunday morning omelette allowed us to procrastinate a little more before we headed off to Milawa to sample its gourmet delights. We had no sooner started driving than the phone rang and since we were on a back road Greg pulled over to take it. It was Greg’s sister Angie who was staying at our home along with Greg’s Mum. The hot water at home was not working and water was flowing out of the hot water system! This did not sound good at all. After discussions Angie turned off the gas to the HWS and attempted to also turn of its water supply. To be safe a plumber ... read more
Greg ponders one of the reds at Brown Brothers.
Brown Brothers winery
King River Café

Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Glenrowan May 24th 2015

When departing a town around 10am we plan for a mid-morning coffee break somewhere before our next destination. Sometimes spots to pull off the road are easy to find, other times they are a little more challenging. Some towns have deliberate large vehicle parks conveniently located and clearly signposted whilst others we drive around until we find a suitable parking bay. As we drank our coffee in a convenient highway rest stop, enjoying the warmth of the sun, a cyclist dropped by for a quick chat. The usual stuff, where are you from? Where are you heading? Satisfied he knew our story he was on his way and so were we. After a lovely chat with Zoe and a lunch break in Benalla we arrived at the Caravan Park in Glenrowan. This place is much cheaper, ... read more
All dressed up and ready for dinner. Not your usual caravan attire.
Dinner in the Bailey cask hall
Ned’s armour is impressive and very heavy

Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Gunbower May 21st 2015

The morning we leave Swan Hill for Cohuna begins with bacon and eggs while we listen to our slightly rowdy neighbours, a flock of corellas feeding just outside the caravan. Cohuna is a town that we have driven through many times on our way to the Australian snowfields but we have never stopped for longer than a petrol fill. So this trip we decide to stay and have a look around for a couple of days, just to see what is here. The Gunbower Island caravan park sounded promising and we are delighted with our site facing the wetlands of Gunbower Creek. Looking at the black swans and pelicans gliding past we wish that we had packed the kayak. We have a waterbird paradise right outside our door. After setting up we decide to walk into ... read more
Not hard to tell that we are in the middle of Dairy country
For a lot of its length Gunbower Creek runs through Red Gum forest.
Cooking bacon and eggs in the caravan

Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Swan Hill May 19th 2015

In the middle of the night a few bright flashes of lightning accompanied by some loud claps of thunder heralded the arrival of rain. It was so nice to be snuggled up in bed listening to the gentle pitter-patter of rain on the caravan roof. By morning the rain had largely stopped and an early excursion to the amenities block was exactly that, as one needed to negotiate your way around the large puddles so as to keep your feet dry. A spout of water pouring from the over-flowing tank provided another obstacle. We left Murrayville Caravan Park knowing the $9.90 fee had been excellent value for money. As we proceeded along the Mallee Highway we noticed almost every town offered a similar deal. Some charged extra for showers, but even this gave good value. This ... read more
The Mildura council mobile library truck was set up in Underbool.
Some of the ploughed fields were nothing more than sand dunes.
If I step out of the 4wd where do I put my feet?

Oceania » Australia » Victoria May 18th 2015

The sun shone brightly through the trees at Kaloola when we first arose this morning. However a big bank of cloud moving in from the west soon dulled the sun and it was clear we should get on our way sooner rather than later. Having hooked up the van and set everything up the night before made for an easy get away. Our first stop is always a service station to check the tyre pressures. This done we headed through Angaston and out the road towards Keynton, passing the turnoff we take to Rock Water Springs, one of our other favourite haunts. The countryside is a patchwork of green and freshly planted crops. It’s lovely to see at this time of the year. The route we took was easy driving bringing us into the back end ... read more
Early morning in the Barossa with a bank of cloud building up.
Greg says goodbye to Mum at the gateway of her driveway.
Greg says goodbye to Mum at the gateway of her driveway.

Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Murray Bridge March 25th 2015

We are on our return. Just one night at Murray Bridge and we’re home. Another great trip done and dusted!... read more
Sunset lighting
A family of ducks enjoying the plank. Some hopped off graciously whilst others crash landed into the water.
Paddling around. Is that really only one family?

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