Posts Tagged With: burra

Day 7 – Burra to Port Augusta

WOW!! Winter must be here! The weather bureau forecast 4 degrees overnight, and this time it’s pretty certain they got it right!  Freezing this morning after a night with heavy rain and strong buffeting winds. At least it was nice and cosy in our Tardis.

We drove into Burra and parked in Ann’s favourite street outside her favourite stone houses before walking from one end of the shopping centre to the other.  We stopped for delicious coffee at Burra Fresh then visited Coopers Butchers for some of their award winning saltbush lamb sausages, as recommended by our friend PK.  We also bought some lamb back-strap and some other meat – if we’re going to eat dead animal we’re going to eat tasty dead animal!  We also stopped at the bakery for some fresh bread and at the IGA supermarket for milk, water, fruit and vegetables.  Now we have fully restocked after our quarantine inspection!

Views of Burra

Views of Burra

After making our contribution to the Burra economy we headed north along the Barrier Highway.  It wasn’t long before we were stunned to see a wind farm of 35 to 40 wind turbines, but only 2 or 3 were actually turning and generating electricity!  And it was a very windy day!  Doesn’t say much for being able to rely on wind power for energy production that’s for sure.

Wind Turbines not generating electricity

Hallett was our next stop to check out a potential free camp at the recreation reserve and on the way we spotted the very interestingly named Wildongoleechie Hotel.

Wildongoleechie Hotel in Hallett

Continuing along the highway toward Peterborough we couldn’t help but notice how dry the landscape was and that many creeks and dams still look empty – we assume that the farmers must be enjoying the recent rain!

Dry landscape on the way to Peterborough

As we drove into Peterborough we noticed that the road was quite wet and once we parked the wind and rain started again.  We have stayed in Peterborough a few times and decided to just have a quick lunch in Bertha and watch life in the main street.

Welcome signs indicates that Peterborough is a rail town!

Refreshed, we headed for Port Augusta in sunshine but it didn’t last very long.  As we approached Orroroo we could see the rain ahead of us and we did end up driving in and out of a rain cloud.

We drove through a rain cloud

Views of Orroroo

On the road to Wilmington

We continued through Orroroo and Wilmington and then through the challenging Horrocks Pass, which we have been through several times.  Taking things easy and ignoring the lead foot behind us ensured that we negotiated this very steep section of road without incident – the photos don’t quite reflect exactly how steep this pass is.

Views of Horrocks Pass

From Horrocks Pass we simply stayed on the road into Port Augusta – although we have driven through Port Augusta several times we have never stayed here.  After bypassing the city centre and going over the bridges, we secured a nice site at the Port August Discovery Caravan Park.  Dinner tonight was somewhat predictable – delicious saltbush lamb sausages cooked on the BBQ!

Coming into Port Augusta

Tomorrow, from Port Augusta we will be heading further North, so we will make sure that tyres are pumped up, batteries are fully charged, water tanks are full, etc.

Categories: 2017 Up The Centre Adventure | Tags: ,

Day 6 – Paringa to Burra

Although it rained most of the night, we woke to a pleasant, if slightly chilly, morning.

We left the caravan park and joined the queue of traffic as we approached the Paringa Lifting Bridge. On checking the time it was close to 9.30am, so we suspect that the traffic hold-up was due to the bridge having been lifted to allow river traffic to go underneath.

Traffic delays at the Paringa Lifting Bridge

We bypassed the main part of Renmark as we had been there about 12 months ago.  Being a public holiday nothing much was open anyway.

Skirting Renmark

Further along the highway we went through the small town of Barmera and again, nothing much was happening. Just out of town, however, we found a great bakery which was open and we stopped there for morning coffee.

Barmera main street on ANZAC Day

Barmera coffee house

There was very little activity anywhere much, other than the occasional ANZAC Day celebrations at RSLs, etc.  We continued through to Waikerie, where we couldn’t find the bakery (say that sentence out aloud).


From Waikerie we headed along very quiet roads to the Historic Port town of Morgan where we caught the ferry across the mighty Murray River.  When we told our son Phil about this later he commented that Bertha had temporarily become a houseboat!

Views along the highway

Approaching the ferry at Morgan

On the ferry at Morgan

Once off the ferry we stopped for lunch at a great spot overlooking the river where there were BBQs, tables and seating for families, a boat ramp, all well occupied by families having a day together.  We could also hear some young men obviously enjoying liquid refreshments while listening to a football match somewhere nearby.

River views at Morgan

From Morgan we proceeded along the Goyder Highway through “saltbush lamb country” to the historic town of Burra, where we had a quick look around.

Saltbush lamb country

Views around Burra

From the town centre we then went to the historic copper mine just out of town and drove up a rather steep and winding road to the mine lookout.  The trip was worthwhile as the views of the mine and associated buildings were fantastic.

Views of the mine from the lookout

Views from the mine lookout

Views over Burra from the lookout

Turning around we could also see wind turbines along a line of hills.

Wind turbines in the distance

Heading back down the hill we drove the short distance to the Burra Showgrounds where Arty the friendly caretaker set us up on a powered site next to the Poultry and Pigeon Pavilion (no birds are present at the moment).

Burra Showgrounds

We will do more exploring in Burra tomorrow when the shops are open.

Categories: 2017 Up The Centre Adventure | Tags: ,

Day 7 – Renmark to Peterborough via Burra

We both slept well last night and woke up to quite a nice day – slightly overcast but with blue sky poking through and great for driving.

Packing up Bertha is a lot quicker than what was required for the Trailblazer – just roll up hoses and power cable, wind-down the TV aerial, clean the windscreen, and without too much further ado we’re off.

Preparing to leave Renmark Big 4.

Preparing to leave Renmark Big 4.

As we left Big 4 Renmark we spotted a group of intrepid Avanners heading off on their way into town.

Intrepid Avanners heading off to town.

Intrepid Avanners heading off to town.

I love driving around places like Mildura and Renmark with grape vines growing right up alongside the road even on the outskirts of town.  After getting onto the Sturt Highway (A20) we passed through Barmera which again featured vines and citrus.

DSC04830_690 DSC04832_690

Our morning coffee stop was at Waikerie where the roadside revealed vines, stone fruit trees, citrus, almonds and walnuts.  Along the way we spotted several well-known vineyards including Angoves and Banrock Station.

Waikerie Tourist Information Centre - coffee stop.

Waikerie Tourist Information Centre – coffee stop.

From Waikerie we headed on to Morgan where we got two surprises.  The first was that the road ran out and we had to catch a ferry across the river.  As new motor-homers this was quite exciting but it was something of a relief to back on dry land again.

Crossing the river ferry style!

Crossing the river ferry style!

The second surprise was that the weather turned nasty – the skies clouded over, the wind came up, and it started raining quite steadily.  And here we were thinking that we’d missed most of the bad weather.  None the less, we persevered.

At Morgan we changed to the Goyder Highway and the fruit and vines pretty well vanished from the roadsides, to be replaced by mostly scrub and saltbush.  We passed a turn-off to World’s End, but things hadn’t got quite that bad yet so we continued on the highway.

At our friend PK’s suggestion, we took a slight detour off the highway to Burra.  This is a historic precinct with many delightful old stone buildings.  According to the brochure from the Tourist Information Centre, Burra was made famous though the finding of copper in 1845.  By 1850 Burra had one of the world’s largest copper mines and saved South Australia from bankruptcy.  There are organised tours of the town for those who have the time.  The copper mines resulted in a large Cornish population settling in the area, so we couldn’t ignore PK’s recommendation to have Cornish pasties for lunch.  We got the last two in the shop and they were very good!

Views around Burra.

Views around Burra.

Returning to the highway we again faced strong winds, and then realised that we were passing a large wind-farm so it made sense that it was windy there.

Just passed Mt Bryan coming around a bend we were confronted by a huge tractor and some sort of harvesting equipment coming towards us and taking up most of the road.  Immediately behind that were two B-Doubles with large “Explosives” signs on them.  Needless to say we made sure we got off the road and let them pass safely.  Ann was so stunned by this that she didn’t think to take a photo!

From Mt Bryan it wasn’t very far to our destination for tonight – Peterborough.  Peterborough is a railway town and even the Tourist Information Centre is in a vintage railway carriage.  We have stayed here before and found it to be a nice, comfortable place.  We checked in at the Peterborough Caravan Park and set up Bertha for the night, then went for a good long walk into town.  The rain had stopped but the wind was still quite fierce, so we rugged up for the walk.  There are some beautiful buildings around town but like many country towns things don’t appear to be as prosperous as in the past.

Peterborough is a railway town!

Peterborough is a railway town!

Beautiful heritage buildings around Peterborough.

Beautiful heritage buildings around Peterborough.

After our walk we came back home to Bertha for a light tea, update this blog, and do some reading.  There’s no TV reception here but we can cope with that!

Today has been another tough driving day but the scenery has been interesting and varied, and we have stopped and seen some great places.  Bring on tomorrow!

Categories: 2016 Short SA Adventure | Tags: ,

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