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Published: November 10th 2013
Well here we are in Yass a country town about 50ks from Canberra but to get here we had to travel through some beautiful grain growing country.We left Cobar and headed for Dubbo City famous for it's zoo and historic jail.We stayed at a C/P just out of town,having heard that the parks in town were the subject of thefts from caravans and cars.We found the town clean and well spaced out, saw a couple of the other C/P's one having a barbed wire perimeter(which we later stayed at).As usual we visited the tourist information and loaded up with local information and wandered around the main street and town.
The famous Dubbo jail is on the high street being, built in 1847 as a court house lock up, later upgraded to a jail in 1859 it was designed to hold only 36 prisoners all male until a further 2 cells were built to house female prisoners in the early 1900's Over the years the prison population varied between only a handful to over 60.The prison was also a designated gallows center and in all 8 prisoners were hanged here the last being in 1905.The jails colorful and sometimes horrific history
8 men were hung here
is well told and illustrated within the now tourist attraction.It was closed in 1966 and was reopened as a tourist attraction in 1974 ans is well worth a visit.
Next day off to the zoo.6km,s of road meander around the zoo with viewing stations and platforms at which to stop and view the animals.You can use your own car or hire bikes or electric trolleys,we opted to use our own car.Plenty to see with lots of African animals on display,the zoo prides itself in being part of a world wide breeding program for endangered species in particular the black rhino.We were lucky on our visit not to be among crowds,it being a week day, so we were able to take our time and not miss anything. I think the highlight was watching the giraffe's being fed by members of the public, such graceful creatures.
We were expecting a parcel to be delivered to the local post office (a battery for the computer) and was assured it would be delivered the next day.The next morning we broke camp and headed for the post office no parcel,but it would be delivered the next day for sure.So we decided to spend
another day in Dubbo, feeling slightly embarrassed to return to the camp site we opted to stay in town at the C/P with the barbed wire.Which turned out to be ok and the swimming pool was heated,we managed to get a drive through site so remained hooked up overnight.The next morning I walked into town to the post office,taking no more chances,the parcel had arrived ,we can continue journey.
We were headed for Forbes but stopping at Parkes to view the famous radio telescope used during the first landing on the mood to listen to the space ship and relay it's information to Houston.The telescope was also used in the making of the film The Dish.At the foot of the dish is a well resourced visitor center full of information not just about the moon landing but of the universe.We know the landing on the moon is shrouded in controversy and is the subject of a conspiracy theory but this dish and it's visitor center is impressive.
We moved on intending to stop at Forbes but I had a need to push on having only completed 200ks.So we made our way to West Wylong a town made famous
by a good friend of ours who can not have a conversation with out mentioning West Wylong. By coincidence that day was his birthday so we had a drink in a pub he had often drank in and wished him happy birthday.We backtracked to a place called Cowra where we stayed overnight in a free camp.We let Cowra without visiting the town on reflection a mistake.
From Cowra we moved on to Yass a small town only 50ks from Canberra our nations capital.The lady in the information center was most helpful and persuaded us to stay a while if only to see the rodeo at the w/e.Taking the opportunity to visit the countryside we saw some beautiful landscapes including the Burrinjuck Waters state park, a tourist park set on the lake which has twice the capacity of Sydney Harbour, it would be a great place to chill out,however the road in and out while being tarmac was very narrow and steep in parts, not in my opinion caravan friendly.
This was an opportunity to visit the capitol being so close, so we chose to visit the Australian War Memorial.What a magnificent memorial to those who served in conflicts
all over the world.Well laid out with exhibitions depicting all the area's of deployment that Australia was and is involved in.Although several school party's were in there is so much room it didn't matter and we were able to roam around at our leisure taking in the history and the gallantry of so many,it is a place every Australian should visit if possible.
The rodeo was billed from 1pm with the big events taking place after 6pm,we decided to clean the car and van in the morning before heading off to the rodeo which was being held in the local showground,rain had been forecast but we woke to a bright sunshine day albeit a bit chilly which quickly warmed up to a beautiful spring day.We arrived at the rodeo mid afternoon to see some of the junior events taking place, what a great country atmosphere.cowboy hats,jeans,big boots,spurs and that's just the women, no i'm joking honest.The action in the arena was fantastic fast and furious ,if this is the junior rounds bring on the big stuff.The senior events started with the singing of the national anthem followed by a minutes silence for a recently departed event organizer.Then the show
began. What followed for the next 3 hours was pure excitement with thrills and spills mixed with shear skill.From bulls to horses which only a few stayed on, to skills with a lariat and horsemanship that had to be seen to be believed, what a great event.
Today we went to a small country show about 15ks away from town,it is cold and threatening rain on a good spring day it would have been great but the cold put a damper on the morning.We returned to Yass found a good pub with great pub food and had roast lamb dinner yum.The rest of the day is spent writing this blog and sorting out the pictures. Tomorrow we continue south and hopefully to warmer weather
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