Posts Tagged With: Winton

Winton to Boulia

 

Beautiful sunset as we were driving in to Boulia

Beautiful sunset as we were driving in to Boulia

Yesterday we drove the 360km’s from Winton to Boulia.  We left Winton at 12pm after sleeping in and being a bit slow in the morning and doing a big stock up on groceries and meat at the butcher.  We arrived in Boulia at 7pm which was far too late and really silly/dangerous to be trying to find a campsite in a place we have never been to in the dark – we have vowed never to do that again!

It was a nice drive – quite scenic and probably the most remotest countryside we have driven through so far.  We stopped at the Middleton Pub for lunch (and Matt had to buy a beer from the bar).  This pub is known to be one of the most isolated pubs in Australia – there is literally nothing at Middleton but the pub!  While we were making our lunch – a very friendly pig called ‘Pig’ wandered across the road from the pub to us and tried to steal our food – the kids thought it was hilarious!

From Middleton we stopped at the old Hamilton Hotel site (each of these sites were Cobb & Co carriages change-over points on their route between Winton and Boulia – there were 9 changeover points – qute interesting!) and filled up with water – thanks for the good tip Aunty Nerida and Uncle Garth!  It saved us having to do most of the drive with a heavy camper full of water and we got some of the best tasting water straight up from the Artesian Basin!

We ended up travelling in to Boulia in the dark (silly as lots of Kangaroos on the road!) but we wanted to make Boulia so we could only have one set up and stay put for a few days!  It took as a little while to locate the free camping area behind the racecourse, but when we did we were lucky enough to be directed in to a lovely spot by some Grey Nomads – saved us driving around dangerously in the dark and no arguments!

North Gregory Hotel where we free camped (gold coin donation) in Winton

North Gregory Hotel where we free camped (gold coin donation) in Winton

Campsite in Winton - quite crowded but a great spot!

Campsite in Winton – quite crowded but a great spot!

Tobes checking out 'Banjo Patterson' in front of the Waltzing Matilda Centre in Winton

Tobes checking out ‘Banjo Patterson’ in front of the Waltzing Matilda Centre in Winton

Swagmen Statue Winton

Swagmen Statue Winton

Lunch stop Middleton Pub

Lunch stop Middleton Pub

Very friendly pig who joined us

Very friendly pig who joined us

Pig

Pig

Matt having a beer and a chat to a local at the pub

Matt having a beer and a chat to a local at the pub

Cobb and Co carriage at the Middleton changeover point

Cobb and Co carriage at the Middleton changeover point

Feeling up with the best water at the Hamilton Hotel changeover point rest area

Filling up with the best water at the Hamilton Hotel changeover point rest area

Kids playing while we got the water at Hamilton Hotel - windmill pumps water straight up from artesian basin

Kids playing while we got the water at Hamilton Hotel – windmill pumps water straight up from artesian basin

Categories: Camping, Qld Camping | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Winton

Out the front of the Age of Dinosaur museum

Out the front of the Age of Dinosaurs Museum

Well – we finally left Winton today – we definitely got a case of the Winton go slows while we were there – it was really lovely to stop and slow down a little!

We drove into Winton with the family on their way home from Carisbrooke and did a little more sightseeing with all the kids.  We checked out Arno’s Wall – basically a wall of junk but quite interesting really and our kids loved it!  The kids are at the age where they are collecting junk wherever we go – driving us nuts – but we have given them a plastic ‘treasure’ box each and they are enjoying filling them with bottle tops, screws, rocks, glass and whatever shiny things they find!  I will have to get a photo of them.  The deal is once the treasure boxes are filled – they must throw something out – hopefully then we won’t come home with a van filled with trash!!  Anyway – a little off track there!  While we still had all the cousies together we also checked out the ‘Musical Fence’.  The kids loved this and made sooooooo much noise there!  I’m sure we ruined the experience for the poor Grey Nomads who ended up there at the same time as us!

Arno's Wall

Arno’s Wall

Kids checking out Arno's wall - Tobes thinks he's making one when we get our 'new home' hmmmmm

Kids checking out Arno’s wall – Tobes thinks he’s making one when we get our ‘new home’ hmmmmm

Playing 'laser noises' on the musical fence

Playing ‘laser noises’ on the musical fence

Not much music but lots of good racket happening!

Not much music but lots of good racket happening!

Unfortunately then we had to say goodbye to the family and our much loved little dog Jerry who has gone to live with the Grandparents while we do our trip!  We are missing him lots already but I am pretty sure he thinks he has gotten an upgrade!!

Goodbye Jerry!

Goodbye Jerry!

After that we decided to free camp behind the North Gregory Hotel (the pub where ‘Waltzing Matilda’ was first played publicly).  It was very crowded, but it was central and we had toilets and a hot shower!  We decided to spend our ‘treat’ money this week on the most delicious lunch ever at the pub!  My mouth is just watering thinking about our yummy BLT’s, Steak Sandwich and chips – definitely get a meal there if you are ever in Winton – real pub food!  We then spent the next few days doing some washing, replacing the camper trailer plug that fell out and got trashed on the road back in from Carisbrooke, hanging out at the library – Jack was kindly allowed to borrow a book (‘Diary of A Wimpy Kid’) for the night which he really enjoyed and finished, and doing some more sightseeing.  Oh and we got to have a free singalong ‘Waltzing Matilda’ show at the pub, put on by ‘Helen’.  It was good for the kids as she told them all about the history of how Waltzing Matilda the song evolved and the different versions of it!  They did well joining in on the singing – Tobes likes to belt out a a very loud chorus of Waltzing Matilda!

Lark Quarry exhibit in the Corfield & Fitzmaurice building

Lark Quarry exhibit in the Corfield & Fitzmaurice building

The dinosaur wheelie bins everywhere in Winton - awesome!

The dinosaur wheelie bins everywhere in Winton – awesome!

On the deck chairs outside the North Gregory Hotel

On the deck chairs outside the North Gregory Hotel

Waltzing Matilda Centre Theatre Room - a pretty good story of how the Waltzing Matilda song evolved

Waltzing Matilda Centre Theatre Room – a pretty good story of how the Waltzing Matilda song evolved

Statues in the main street depicting the Waltzing Matilda story

Statues in the main street depicting the Waltzing Matilda story

Open Air Theatre

Open Air Theatre

World's Biggest Deck Chair - Huge!

World’s Biggest Deck Chair – Huge!

We loved the ‘Australian Age of Dinosaurs’ museum just outside Winton – it was great for the kids and soooo interesting to see people working on cleaning up real Dinosaur bones and learning how a dinosaur dig actually happens!  Jack said he can’t wait to be twelve which is the age required to join a dig – Jack was really interested in it all – excited and asking lots of questions – a good age for it!  Lex feel asleep on the floor during the talk about the collection of bones that have been found – hehehe – might have to make sure she has a sleep before the next tour – the Grey Nomads thought it was quite funny!!  Very inspiring too, to hear how David Elliot (the founder of the non-profit museum) discovered the first dinosaur bone on his station in Winton, and to hear about his passion for the Australian Dinosaur history to be uncovered while at the same time, putting his local community on the map as a tourist destination and helping to keep a rural town alive – definitely a great story of an aussie farmer who cares deeply about our country and the community he lives in.

Age of Dinosaur Museum

Age of Dinosaurs Museum

Awesome experience to see how Dinosaur bones are uncovered and made ready for the museums

Awesome experience to see how Dinosaur bones are uncovered and made ready for the museums

Dinosaur bones in their 'jackets' waiting to be processed

Dinosaur bones in their ‘jackets’ waiting to be processed

Volunteers working on cutting the dinosaur bones from the rocks in the laboratory

Volunteers working on cutting the dinosaur bones from the rocks in the laboratory

Australia's most famous dinosaur bones from 'Matilda' a huge dinosaur who they think died as a result of getting stuck in the mud in a billabong

Australia’s most famous dinosaur bones from ‘Matilda’ a huge dinosaur who they think died as a result of getting stuck in the mud in a billabong

View from Age of Dinosaurs museum was great!

View from Age of Dinosaurs museum was great!

Great views

Great views

The Waltzing Matilda centre was pretty good, but probably a bit expensive and we had seen a lot of the stuff that was there (old trucks etc) for free at Ilfracombe, so apart from the little Waltzing Matilda theatre show and the holographic show about aussie legends, the kids weren’t terribly interested.  We had purchased the ‘Gold Winton Pass’ for $140 which gave us entry to all of the attractions around Winton so we feel we got pretty good value for money from it – especially as I got $5 off at the butcher today too for having that pass!  And that was Winton!  Oh – forgot to mention the amazing shop called ‘Searles General Store’ – it had everything you could possibly imagine jammed in to it!!  And the shop just kept going back, and back!  The kids and I loved having a dig through all the toys, clothes and ‘stuff’ in there!  Thanks for the tip Mrs Holman to check it out!!!

 

Categories: Camping, Qld Camping | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Longreach to Carisbrooke Station

On the 'Old Cork Mail' Road to Carisbrooke Station - quite corrugated in parts!

On the ‘Old Cork Mail’ Road to Carisbrooke Station – quite corrugated in parts!

We left our free camp outside Longreach at 8.30am last Saturday morning (the earliest packup and getaway we have had so far on the trip – getting more organised now!) and headed for Winton.  We were all very excited as we were meeting all the family (my sister Beth and her husband Rod and their 4 boys, plus my mum and dad – just missing Kate!) at Carisbrooke Station today!  It was a short and easy trip to Winton – only a bit over an hour in the car and the scenery was very flat and dry!

After having a quick look around Winton we set out for Carisbrooke Station which was where we were to spend the long weekend.  It was a very rough 80km trip from Winton to Carisbrooke – we opted for the shortest route to the station via mostly dirt road as advised by the owners but it was quite corrugated in parts and took us an hour and a half to get there!  We didn’t let our tyre pressure down on the car or camper as we thought it would only be a pretty short trip but that turned out to be a bit of a mistake!  The road was quite bumpy and we found oursleves looking for the station homestead after only a few kilometres in!  Winton and surrounds are in drought at the moment and everything is very dry and dusty!!!  We were a little shocked at the harshness of the station camp site when we finally arrived and felt a little disappointed as it didn’t look much like the website photos, but once we got over the bumpy ride and settled in a little, we could appreciate the beauty of our surroundings!

We arrived about an hour before the rest of the family and the kids were sooooo excited when they drove in!  So was I because I was a little worried that they may have hit the dirt road and decided it was too rough and turned around and gone back to Winton!! But ‘Tessie Tarago’ and the trusty ute (who is not 100%) came through once again and tackled the dirt road no problems delivering the kids their cousins, aunt & uncle and grandparents!  Our kids after a week on their own were really hanging out for the company of other kids!!

We set up camp and the ground was surprisingly not too hard to bang the tent pegs into and we really did have a good weekend – I’ll fill you in with my next post!

Sunrise at rest stop free camp about 20kms from Longreach

Sunrise at rest stop free camp about 20kms from Longreach

On the road to Winton - very flat, dry and dusty

On the road to Winton – very flat, dry and dusty

Our rig on the way to Carisbrooke Station

Our rig on the way to Carisbrooke Station

The corrugations rattled the stove top loose!

The corrugations rattled the stove top loose!

And also rattled the tops off a couple of bottles of cider we had in the fridge (fortunately they didn't smash!) we also had a lot of dust in the camper - so a mess to clean up when we arrived!

And also rattled the tops off a couple of bottles of cider we had in the fridge (fortunately they didn’t smash!) we also had a lot of dust in the camper – so a mess to clean up when we arrived!

The Campbells and Grammy & Grunda made it!!!

The Campbells and Grammy & Grunda made it!!!

Lex and Cory - playmates getting to know each other again!

Lex and Cory – playmates getting to know each other again!

Kids playing while we set up

Kids playing while we set up

Setting up camp

Setting up camp

Sunset on day 1 at Carisbrooke Station

Sunset on day 1 at Carisbrooke Station

All the cousins together

All the cousins together

Categories: Camping, Qld Camping | Tags: , | 5 Comments

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