DAYTRIP to SOUTH WEST ROCKS
Although the weather was not perfect, we decided to go out for a drive to South West Rocks.
South West Rocks is situated at the mouth of the Macleay River and has some wonderful sandy beaches along the Horseshoe Bay and Trial Bay. We parked close to the surf club but stayed in the car for a bit because of the rain. When the shower was over we walked over the grassy area and had a good look over the beach.
The Beach at South West Rocks
There was a nice cafe called the Heritage Guest House and cafe. This is where we had coffee and while we were walking towards the cafe it started raining again. After we finished our coffees, we went to see the lighthouse.
The Smoky Cape Lighthouse is one of the tallest lighthouses in Australia. After parking in the P-lot there is some walking up hill to do but not too far.
Smoky Cape Lighthouse
Two wallabies were on duty to keep the grass short.
Another historic site is the Trail Bay Gaol but the weather didn’t make it worthwhile to pay this site a visit and we decided to turn back and make a note that we have to come back another day when the weather is more welcoming.
Back at the golfclub we had a wonderful dinner at the clubhouse. The locals are really appreciative when you pay for your stay this way.
This lovely lady served us a wonderful dinner.
FREDERICKTON to DUNGOG
The weather didn’t improve and we left our spot at the golfclub and headed for Dungog.
Before reaching Taree the fuel gauge indicated that the beast we are traveling in was getting hungry. We left the freeway and drove through a little town called Cundletown where a service station got our attention with a diesel price that was economical attractive. We filled up, drove around the corner and had our morning coffee next to a large grassy field which is also used as a market place. (Not today). Without further interruptions we arrived at the Dungog showground. Three people were in the dooropening of a shed and I found out that one was the caretaker. He showed us some spots where we could park our motorhome. There were three more vans coming he said but was not sure if they would arrive because the weather has been awful the last couple of days. We chose a nice flat area, unhooked the Jimny and went for a walk around town. The info was closed but it would be open tomorrow so we decided to stay here for two nights and come back in the morning to hear about all the attractions Dungog has to offer. The showground is $20 pvpn power, water and showers included. $17 without power so not too big a difference.
The next morning we had another sightseeing tour (by ourselves) and found some amazing buildings as well as some old Hydro Bikes in someones backyard which, by the looks of them, haven’t been used for quite a while.
We had coffee at Chill Billies cafe where the open fire was warming the cafe. After we finished our coffee break we went to the info where a nice lady told us about the Chichester Storage reservoir and dam as well as a walk along the Jerusalem Creek in the Barrington Tops National Park, a 2km one way walk.
The Dam and the park are about twenty minutes drive and is worth the effort. At the dam are nice BBQ’s and picnic areas as well as a toiletblock.
To be continued
Tooloom Falls to Alice Flats
Tooloom Falls was great but we couldn’t stay there forever. After hooking up the Jimny, we left and slowly followed our path South. At Old Bonalbo Pioneers Park it was time for a coffee and we pulled into this P-spot.
Next stop was the destination for the day. Alice Flats is a wonderful place to stay overnight or a couple of nights. It’s private land but the owner leave it open and you’re welcome to stay there. Please, don’t leave any rubbish, take out what you take in.
We found a nice level spot next to the Alice River. Two people were walking their dog and started to chat with us. The area where you can stay is divided in two parts. The part where we were staying is directly off the road. The other site can be reached over a rather steep sandy section and leads to nice spots further from the traffic. Tim and his missus had their rig set up on that site and asked us over for afternoon thee. We had a lovely afternoon.
Off to Copmanhurst
The road from Alice Flats was a dirt road and we continued our trip slowly and after about two hours and 65km we arrived at the Newbold Lookout Picnic Area where we topped up on caffeine.
View over the Clarence River
Newbold Lookout Picnic Area
The road to Copmanhurst was better. Here would be a recreation area for overnight camping. A fee of $5 pppn is payable at the post office. We parked our rig across the road from the hotel and went to the postoffice annex general store. the attendant in the store didn’t know much about keys for the showers etc. but said that he can collect the money and we have to ring someone who’s phone number was at the entrance of the recreation ground. That person would come and let us in etc. We decided to see how we go at the said ground and left for the hotel to have lunch.
Lunch at Rest Point Family Hotel
Glad we went to the Rest Point Family Hotel first. We ordered our meals and chatted with the girl at the bar. She heard what we experienced at the post office and pointed at a dirt road next to the recreation park. That road is 100 to 150 m long and at the end, you can park and stay overnight for free, next to the Clarence River. There are toilets too about 50m walk. The spot we found was great. The toilet was closed but that was not a problem, we have our own.
Our spot on the Clarence River
There was a boatramp and we washed the Jimny with beautiful clear river water. After that, it’s so nice to relax next to the motorhome in a comfy chair enjoying the views over the river.
Go to Part Three
16 October 2015
First thing in the morning, we paid the gym a visit. The gym at this place is very well equipped with treadmills, rowers and more items. Too many to name, actually I don’t know how they are called. Next step was to check out the big heated pool. That was great and after a couple of laps and a nice shower, we thought we exercised enough and worked up a big appetite. Back to the “home”, having breakfast and then off to Maryborough. We had the idea to take our bikes but a quick tyre check made us change our mind. We left them on the back of Jimny and at the first servo we inflated the tyres. Maryborough has a Bunnings and that was the place to go since we had some problems getting the right adapter to connect the waterhose to the “home”.
Besides Bunnings, we visited Coles to top up our food supplies. In the afternoon the bikes got a workout, Yasmine washed the car and we had interesting encounters with some residents at the RV homebase.
14 October 2015
Today was the start of our new life. We sold our house and live in our motorhome for the next couple of months until the new house is finished. Some house-sitting in between travels, to make sure cats and dogs are looked after while the owners are out.
The A-frame to tow the Jimny is not ready yet so Yasmine is driving the Jimny while I drive the motorhome. Although we’ve lived about 23 years in the house and loved it, we left without tears, knowing we are ready for a change. Around 2.20pm, still loaded with lots of stuff in the car and motorhome, our first move was to the self storage place to drop off the last things like, TV, brush cutter and some other items we sure won’t need on our travels.
Along the Bruce Highway, at the Landsborough turnoff North of Brisbane is a spot well known to us. We’ve spent many coffee breaks there on our way to the Sunshine Coast or Noosa. The place has had some changes over the years but is still a nice area to stay overnight although there is quite some traffic noise. Some campers were already there and we found two nice spots to park the cars.