It was raining early this morning so we planned on having a bit of a sleep-in, until the phone rang at 7.20am. All was good but it prompted us to get moving.
Once on the road we thought that we’d do a bit of a tour of Dalby before we really got going. First stop was one of the most famous houses in Dalby, at least to channel 7 viewers.
Dalby is a nice town, quite diverse and quite busy. There are heritage buildings and churches, modern shopping centres, a couple of caravan parks, a good tourist information centre in a great garden setting, some big businesses and some small businesses, industry, rural enterprises, and more.
Back on the Warrego Highway, there were some interesting scenes, including eucalypt plantations, big trucks and a good looking country hotel at Jondaryan.
Our morning coffee stop was at the small town of Oakey, 4 or 5 kilometres off the highway. We were expecting a small country town and were very surprised at the bustling town that we found once we arrived. There is an Army flight base here and some big industry that we suspect is associated with fertiliser, given the odour as we passed. Main street is very busy and the town is quite modern although there are, of course, some old/heritage buildings. We had coffee at one of the bakeries and it was very good.
From Oakey it was back on the highway and through Toowoomba, where we were very pleased not to come across any of the flooding we saw on TV last night. Our planned route today was quite simple: stay on the Warrego Highway (A2) until it changes to the M2 (motorway), then keep going until we get to the M1 which becomes the Bruce Highway and then eventually turn off onto the Sunshine Motorway to Mooloolaba and Maroochydore.
Being on highways and motorways meant that navigation was straight-forward, and the driving was quite pleasant as the road condition was generally very good to excellent.
We did face a bit of a challenge when we unexpectedly came to a steep descent, but we got through that OK.
There were some interesting sights on the side of the highway, including a cow and a dinosaur, a Big Orange, and a large red elephant.
Eventually we came to the Brisbane Gateway Bridge, which is quite spectacular. We have been over it several times in the opposite direction but this was the first time heading north.
As we got closer to the Sunshine Coast we saw our first signs of sugar cane and also vegetables growing under irrigation.
We stopped for a quick pit stop and lunch at a servo just after the bridge and then continued on to Cotton Tree Holiday Park at Maroochydore. Our actual booking here doesn’t start until tomorrow but we had a one night temporary site organised. We did a quick set-up before joining our friends Downunda and Faye and some new friends for happy hour and a beautiful sunset.
Tomorrow we will move onto our designated site and set-up properly, and hopefully put away our winter clothes for a while.
So far this adventure hasn’t been quite what we had hoped. Concerns about the weather have disrupted our plans and we didn’t get to see many places we had hoped and ended up changing our booking here to get in early. Hopefully we can get to see the places we missed when we eventually leave Cotton Tree and head in the general direction of home.
This will be our last post for a while as we will be in Cotton Tree for several weeks. We will of course post updates of any significance.
Still living the dream …