Belmore Park, Goulburn, NSW
We enjoyed a coffee overlooking this oasis
After breakfast we made the phone calls to the various sites we’d chosen last night. Unfortunately, that only eliminated a couple as the rest insisted that their sites were fine for large RVs. We’ll have to go and check them out physically. If you’re not sure, there’s nothing better than to walk around the site and look at how flat the ground is and whether the roads have tight corners or over-hanging trees. It takes time but stops any problems when you’re halfway in!
On the way, we called into Goulburn to buy a few supplies and look around the town. It was full of old buildings from the 1840s but there were a lot of empty shops in the main street. One highlight, however, was the Belmore Park, in the centre of town. It was full of statues commemorating historic events in the town, as well as a lovely fountain, rotunda, war memorials and a glasshouse, all set amongst lovely trees and flower beds on immaculately kept grass. Quite an oasis of peace!
We were also tickled by the street sign warning pedestrians that a narrowed area of the road was NOT a pedestrian crossing – skittles anyone?
Just in case you didn't realise this was NOT a pedestrian crossing. Skittles anyone?
After our stroll around town, we stopped for a break at a small coffee shop that looked across to the garden. Lovely coffee and view.
We finished our visit with a look at the old, still functioning, Court House, which was quite impressive. I stuck my nose inside to see if the interior matched the outside but was disappointed to see that it didn’t. Ah well, you can’t have everything.
Back at the rig, we set off for Canberra. Then, just on the edge of Goulburn, we had an encounter of the giant kind – The World’s Biggest Merino (a 15.2m x 18m, 97 tonnes concrete ram built in 1985) standing on a corner next to a Shell garage, which reminded us we needed fuel. On the way out, we passed the back view, which Barry found hilarious as the ram was well endowed!
About 40 km short of Canberra we found ourselves driving alongside the 155 square km Lake George, which was like a huge plain– no water, completely flat and very green! It even had animals grazing on the long grass. It seems it is also known as the “disappearing lake” and has been extensively
studied for more than 30 years, People who see it full can’t imagine the water emptying completely. I can’t picture it full! I wonder how often it gets filled.
We arrived at the Canberra Carotel Motel and Caravan Park at Watson, just a quick drive up the highway to Canberra itself, and walked around and decided we should be OK. The site was used for school camp groups but we were not really close to their bunkrooms, although we did have to share the toilet facilities. They kept to their part of the site, though, so it wasn’t a problem.
We got ourselves into position on the site and then looked at the spirit level we have on the van. It was too low on one side by 5 inches! Our drive on ramps only took it up 3 inches so we then spent the next 20 minutes devising schemes to raise the side up the extra 2 inches. We finally rigged up something with our wooden blocks, the chocks, the ramps and our repair ramps put together. It all felt rather precarious but it was the best we could do. We even had to put the fold-up
The World's Biggest Merino dwarfs the petrol station
stepping stool from indoors next to the outside steps, as I couldn’t get up onto the first one from the ground! A man from a site nearby came over to say that he was very impressed with how well we’d planned the set-up. I thought he was having a dig and laughed it off but he said he meant it. He’d seen many people come to the site and get into all kinds of trouble because they just drove in and didn’t think it out.
We were finally in place and ready for dinner so I made a macaroni mix-up with tinned corned beef and banana pancakes (like pikelets) to use up some squishy bananas. Easy to make but delicious.
After the meal we planned our day in Canberra and got ready for bed. I heard some strange grunting noises outside but couldn’t work out what they were and they stopped when I went to look. It sounded like kangaroos but there were none around the site. Curious!
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