Page 4 of SilverLinings Travel Blog Posts

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Bourke September 22nd 2015

Everybody has heard of Bourke but usually it is as part of the “its back of Bourke” quote that indicates that something is way out in the outback. Few people get to visit this town to find out what a gem it really is. Bourke is a regional centre that tries really hard to appeal to tourists and encourages support of its local businesses. The Mitchel caravan park is a good example. It is a medium sized caravan park with van sites around a central area of lawn that contains the camp kitchen, fire pit and a playground. Every day there is some sort of activity. This includes billy tea with muffins, hot dog night, burger night, happy hour and a BBQ night. These either occur near the camp kitchen or around the fire pit. Some ... read more
The old paddle-steamer wharf at Bourke
The locals have seriously tough bull bars
Here the locals reverse angle park

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Bourke September 21st 2015

We woke to the sound of bird calls in the first dawn before sunrise. It was a beautiful morning, much too nice to sleep in, so we made coffee and an early start. The goats were still grazing close to the road as we headed for Cobar, an easy 150km drive. The country around Cobar is beautiful, with undulating hills, large native pines and wild flowers everywhere. This area must have had a rainfall event in the last month, the country looks gorgeous. While fueling in Cobar Greg decided to ask if there was a local medical centre. Then with instructions memorised Greg announced that Joan was going to see a doctor. There was only one doctor of the usual four on duty and a full waiting room meant we had a queue. Although it seemed ... read more
The highway seems to stretch out forever at times.
Our morning coffee stop surrounded by wild flowers.
The bush here is stunning.

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Broken Hill September 20th 2015

Sunday morning started with our traditional omelette breakfast. As we sipped our coffee Joan announced that her throat was still feeling really sore and probably it was time to seek medical attention. What better place than Broken Hill, the last city we would see for quite a while. An internet search found two medical centres but showed that in Broken Hill you can not be sick on a Sunday, as this was the day they both were closed. We were heading through Wilcannia, but that did not inspire confidence. Bourke was the next major town and they had a number of medical centres, so that will have to do in a couple of day’s time. Stopping for mid-morning coffee we spotted an old 4WD connected to a very old Kombi van on a trailer. It looked ... read more
This is not what you see every day.  Also our third overtaking manoeuvre.
North of Broken Hill we spotted these two large satellite dishes.
A freight train heading into Broken Hill

Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Burra September 18th 2015

We suddenly found ourselves free of a commitment and made the impulsive decision to head off to the central Queensland coalfields to visit Tristan and Zoe. But wait… we better do some repairs on the caravan first. So off to Adventura we went with a list. Of course they would be able to complete this in two weeks! No pressure, not for us anyway. And deliver they did. Sporting a brand new stone guard with super strength catches we felt confident our wind deflector would be able to be used to help us save on fuel costs. House sitters were contacted and they eagerly accepted. Packing and shopping was done. The relaxed organisation became for frantic when we received a call to say that the caravan would be available in two hours – half a day ... read more
We pass through maturing crops in the settled areas
A great overnight spot in Burra
Feet up, sipping bubbly red, we watch the Crows get thrashed

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

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