Tag Archive | New South Wales

Setting the Scene

Kevtoberfest Road Trip #1

When Mr ET aka Glen began his Prep Year at school in 1963, he met Kevin. Glen and Kevin had a lot in common: they both had seven sisters and one younger brother, they lived not far from each other and they were fervent supporters of Essendon Football Club. It wasn’t long before they were best friends. When they grew older, the boys spent their weekends and holidays exploring far and wide on their bikes, only returning home at the end of the day for dinner.

Glen and Kevin at a family wedding, 1975

As adults, Glen and Kevin developed a mutual passion for beer. For many years, they’ve made their own home brews and they enjoy visiting craft breweries in Australia and overseas. In 2011, we holidayed with Kevin and his wife Mary Lou in Munich for a week, where we spent much of our time at the Hofbrauhaus and other beer-related establishments. Even though they live in different states, Glen and Kevin are often in touch and regularly discuss their latest home brewing experiments.

Hofbrauhaus, 2011

P&O Cruise, 2016

It’s not always about the beer – strudel and coffee in Munich, 2011

When Kevin announced his plans for a beer-themed party to celebrate his 60th birthday in October this year, it was a given we would be there. This wasn’t to be a one night event; it would start on Friday night and continue all weekend, before finishing up on Sunday afternoon. It would incorporate the telecast of the Australian Rules Football League (AFL) Grand Final on Saturday afternoon and a fancy dress party on Saturday night – Kevtoberfest was born!

Instead of a quick fly/drive journey, we decided to do a three week caravan trek to Kevin’s home near Bairnsdale in Victoria. The return journey of 3,500 kilometres would cover inland and coastal regions of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. It wasn’t by coincidence that the route Glen planned included several towns with craft breweries and, knowing my love of quilting and crochet, he made sure to include some craft shops as well. The itinerary was a winner for both of us!

To be continued…

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A Loo with a View – The Road Trip Edition

Round Australia Road Trip#32

Bush loos, city loos,

Practical or pretty loos,

Loos with info,

Loos with style,

With views like this,

you’ll take a while!

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Victoria River, Northern Territory

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Lake Argyle, Western Australia

Lake Argyle, Western Australia

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Marlgu Billabong, Western Australia

Marlgu Billabong, Western Australia

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Bungle Bungles, Western Australia

Bungle Bungles, Western Australia

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Geikie Gorge, Western Australia

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Windjana Gorge, Western Australia

Windjana Gorge, Western Australia

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Shell Beach, Shark Bay, Western Australia

Shell Beach, Shark Bay, Western Australia

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Port Denison Fishing Fleet, Western Australia

Fishing Fleet, Port Denison, Western Australia

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Perth, Western Australia

Kings Park, Perth, Western Australia

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Cape Bauer, Great Australian Bight, South Australia

Cape Bauer, Great Australian Bight, South Australia

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Barrier Highway, New South Wales

Barrier Highway, New South Wales

Sometimes the view is on the loo.

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Kununurra, Western Australia

And when there’s no loo

A tree will do!

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De Grey River Free Camp, Great Northern Highway, Western Australia

Looking Out

Round Australia Road Trip #31

Mr ET tells me the optimum speed for best fuel consumption when towing our caravan is 100 km/hour. But 100km/hour is not great for taking photographs, and there’s no point in saying, “Stop! I want to take a photo of that!” because by the time we stop the subject of the photo is way back down the road.

So when we are travelling, I set my camera to sports mode. If I see something amazing, I point and shoot through the windscreen and hope for the best. Often the photos are blurred or crooked or I miss the subject altogether, but every now and then, I manage to get a decent photo.

Here are my favourite “Through the Windscreen” photos from our Round Australia Road Trip.

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Brumbies in the bush, Bullita Stock Route, Northern Territory

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Fire over the range, Old Telegraph Station, Parry’s Creek Road, Western Australia

Mirage, Great Northern Highway, Western Australia

Mirage, Great Northern Highway, Western Australia

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Peak Hour, North West Coastal Highway, Western Australia

Landing, Karratha, Western Australia

Smooth landing, Karratha, Western Australia

Solar powered street lights, North West Coastal Highway, Western Australia

Solar powered street lights, North West Coastal Highway, Western Australia

Which way? North West Coastal Highway, Western Australia

Which way? North West Coastal Highway, Western Australia

Windblown trees, Greenough, Western Australia

Windblown trees, Greenough, Western Australia

Renovator's Delight, New Norcia, Western Australia

Renovator’s Delight, New Norcia, Western Australia

Outback telecommunications powered by the sun, Eyre Highway, Western Australia

Outback telecommunications, powered by the sun, Eyre Highway, Western Australia

Someone has a sense of humour, Eyre Highway, Western Australia

A sense of humour, Eyre Highway, Western Australia

Overtaken on the Nullarbor, Eyre Highway, South Australia

Overtaken on the Nullarbor, Eyre Highway, South Australia

Travelling in style, Eyre Highway, South Australia

Travelling in style, Eyre Highway, South Australia

Been there, done that! Port Augusta, South Australia

Been there, done that! Port Augusta, South Australia

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Leave the mail at the front gate, Barrier Highway, New South Wales

Emu crossing, Barrier Highway, New South Wales

Emu crossing, Barrier Highway, New South Wales

Wide Load, Newell Highway, New South Wales

Wide Load, Newell Highway, New South Wales

The Goondiwindi Grey

Round Australia Road Trip #30

On the last day of our road trip we have to travel a mere 348 km to reach home, but there are still places to see on the way.

Moree, on the northern plains of New South Wales, is the Artesian Spa Capital of Australia. Water from deep underground flows to the surface at a temperature of 39 degrees C. The therapeutic qualities of the mineral rich water are well-known and many visitors spend several days relaxing here.

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We have just one swim in the heated pools at the Qwydir Thermal Pools Hotel and Carapark. There are four artesian pools at different temperatures and we start at the coolest one, 35 degrees and gradually work our way to the hottest.

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Further north, on the New South Wales/ Queensland border is the town of Goondiwindi. The town’s most famous resident, the racehorse Gunsynd, is remembered with a statue on the banks of the MacIntyre River and a museum dedicated to his record breaking career.

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In 1969 a syndicate of four Goondiwindi men purchased the horse for $1200 with plans to race him at local meets. His name was a compilation of Gun, the first syllable of Goondiwindi, and synd, from the word syndicate. It soon became apparent that Gunsynd was destined for more than the local country race tracks and he became known as the Goondiwindi Grey.

Gunsynd went on to become one of the best loved and most successful racehorses in Australian racing history. He won a total of 29 races, including the Cox Plate. He is the only horse to have won the four major mile races on the Australian racing calendar in the one year. He is also the only animal to be named as one of Queensland’s top twelve icons.

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The Gunsynd Museum is located at the Goondiwindi Visitor Information Centre. On display is a collection of trophies, photographs and riding memorabilia from the career of this famous horse.

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It’s also the last stop on the Round Australia Road Trip, as we head north to home.

Coo-ee!

Round Australia Road Trip #29

In 1915, after the Allied disaster at Gallipoli and the ever-increasing casualty list on the Western Front, voluntary enlistment in the Australia Imperial Force had dropped dramatically. A stirring recruitment poster from that time shows an Australian digger calling to his countrymen to enlist, hand cupped to his mouth in a bushman’s coo-ee.

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In the central western New South Wales town of Gilgandra, local brothers Richard and Bill Hitchen came up with a plan to encourage local men to enlist. They organised a recruitment march from Gilgandra to Sydney, a distance of 320 miles (515 km). On 10th October, 1915 a group of 35 men left Gilgandra with the cheers of the local townsfolk ringing in their ears.

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As they passed through towns on the way, the men gave rousing speeches and, by the time they reached Sydney on 12th November 1915, another 238 volunteers had joined them. On their arrival in Sydney, excited crowds greeted the Coo-ees as national heroes.

The Coo-ee Heritage Centre in Gilgandra houses the Coo-ee March Collection, a fascinating display of memorabilia, posters, uniforms and personal recollections.

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A statue in the main street of Gilgandra depicts a digger coo-eeing to his comrades, while a plaque marks the place where the march started.

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In 2015, to mark the centenary of the Coo-ee March, a re-enactment march followed the original route, leaving Gilgandra on 17th October and arriving in Martin Place, Sydney on Remembrance Day, 11th November.

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Take a Seat

Round Australia Road Trip #27

Jude’s Bench Series – The Road Trip Collection

This year Jude, writer and photographer at Travel Words, set a challenge to photograph benches, with a different theme each month. While I enjoyed seeing the beautiful benches that appeared on participating blogs, I didn’t ever post any photos myself. When we set off on our road trip I started taking bench photos, especially with Jude in mind. The result is a year’s worth of bench challenge photos – The Road Trip Collection.

January – In the Garden

A shady spot in the heat of summer when the temperature soars into the high 30s

Fraser Range Sheep Station, on the edge of the Nullarbor Plain

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February  – Benches processed in Black and White

Old school benches at this historic school building from 1865

Central Greenough Historic Village, Western Australia

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March – Wooden Benches

Resting place, at the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden

Port Augusta, South Australia

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April – Benches with a View

Big rocks, a big view and a big sky

Murphy’s Haystacks, South Australia

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May – At the Beach

High tide

Streaky Bay, South Australia

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June – Benches with Art Effects

Original colonial features at the Kalgoorlie City Market

Kalgoorlie, Western Australia

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July – Unusual Details

A Lone Pine, descended from the Gallipoli Lone Pine, in the garden of the Northampton RSL

Northampton, Western Australia

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August – Colourful Benches

Weather worn benches at Red Cliffs

Port Augusta, South Australia

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September – Metal Benches

Metal benches watching over an iron ore carrier – metal carrying metal

Port Hedland, Western Australia

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October – People on Benches

An over-sized bench at the Line of Lode Miners’ Memorial

Broken Hill, New South Wales

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November – Benches with Messages

It’s a long way to anywhere from Willare Bridge (bench almost hidden behind the railing)

Willare Bridge Roadhouse on the Great Northern Highway, Western Australia

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December – Free Choice

Sunset over Shark Bay – the bench ignored in favour of comfortable camp chairs

Denham, Shark Bay, Western Australia

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And my favourite bench photo – a place to rest in case there’s a queue for the phone box

South Australia/New South Wales State Border

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Off-Season ~ Weekly Photo Challenge

The Tenterfield area is best known for its lush pastures, which produce excellent beef and lamb.

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There are also several popular wineries in the district. Prior to harvest season, the vines are protected by heavy netting. It stops the birds from stealing the ripening fruit and, should there be storms, also prevents damage from hail.

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Weekly Photo Challenge – Off-Season