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Published: October 7th 2015
The fish ladder allows fish to swim "around" the weir and continue upstream....but, firstly, they must run the gauntlet of waiting pelicans and cormorants (far right at the entrance to the fish ladder).
First job of the morning was to check out the tyre repair place. Yes, they could help but they might be a while. So we went up to the bakery for a coffee. We were sitting down reading the Melbourne papers and having coffee when the tyre repair guy walked in. Bad news I'm afraid, the tyre can't be repaired. They didn't have the same tyre that we already had installed but they could fit something comparable. At $275 each, we weren't rushing to change all six tyres but we eventually decided to change two. The tyre replacement would take more time so Georgi went window shopping and Lenny had a haircut.
When we got back to the bus, the story had changed again! It seems one of the wheels (the one with the flat tyre) was not the correct wheel for this model Coaster and they couldn't fit it on the outside of the rear pair. So they only changed the one tyre. Too complicated for us to understand. We'll let Toyota in Hobart sort it out when we take the bus in for the next service.
After some food shopping, we headed off to Torrumbarry so we
Lock 26 location
could see the workings of the Murray River weir and lock system. The original weir was built in 1919 but eventually failed in 1992. Luckily, the failure occurred after the irrigation season and repairs were affected before the next season. A complete new weir was constructed, and, although the lock chamber was kept, it was strengthened. The total project to rebuild the weir was $33M. The new design also incorporates a fish ladder that allows fish to either swim upstream (to breed) or downstream. The lock allows paddlesteamers and houseboats and other watercraft that are too large to be trailered, an easy way of travelling the Murray upstream.The locks work similarly to those found on European rivers with the boat entering a chamber which is either flooded or drained so that the boat can continue either upstream or downstream.
At Torrumbarry, the lock height is approximately 6 metres and the weir is more than 1600 kilometres from the mouth of the river at Goolwa in South Australia. A houseboat cruise on the Murray for the entire length (up to the Hume Weir) would take some months.
We had lunch at the weir and then continued on to Echuca
The weirs taken from near the lock
where we drove through the town, and out to a camping area on the Murray just out of town. It was great to be able to park the bus right on the edge of the river bank (up high) and watch the houseboats cruise past.
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