The last couple of days were remarkably uneventful so we haven’t wanted to bore anyone with the details or lack thereof. Needless to say we spent some time preparing for the next part of our adventure, and also time exploring Rockhampton.
This morning we left Rockhampton and hit the Bruce Highway and from prior experience that means one thing – roadworks. Leaving Rockhampton township we were immediately delayed by work on the road, and several times during the day we waited through sections of single lane road. Much of the work we saw was simple patching, but to be fair there were other significant works involving road duplication and major road straightening. There is plenty of activity along the Bruce Highway but the condition of the highway is still a huge discussion point throughout Queensland.
First stop was at Gladstone, which held some interest with us as one of Ann’s brothers had lived and worked here for several years. We suspect that things have changed quite a lot since he was here! One of the first sights to greet visitors from the North is the power station and in other areas of the city there are new housing developments, apartments under construction, and so on. We stopped for morning coffee in the relative tranquility of Apex Park. Our time in Gladstone was only short, although we did tow the fiver around many parts of the town, but we have included Gladstone on our ‘longer visit next time’ list.
From Gladstone it was a relatively short drive to Miriam Vale for lunch, and what a surprise this place turned out to be. First impression is a small village on the side of the highway. Fortunately the GPS took us to a back street which was a hive of activity with plenty of visitors, a couple of coffee shops/bakeries, several other shops, an inviting country town pub, shady parking, walking tracks and exercise equipment and so much more.
After a couple of delicious pies from one of the bakeries, it was a further 100 kms or so to our final destination for the day at Gin Gin, which is 50 kms west of Bundaberg. Traffic in town was incredibly busy for some reason. First off we checked out the free camp on the edge of town which was quite big and appeared to have good facilities, but after a drive around we didn’t see a suitable site for us. We then made our way to the Gin Gin Showgrounds where we struck gold – water and power and basic facilities at a bargain price. The sun was shining and the wind was blowing so Ann did a load of hand-washing – it was washed, dried and ironed within a couple of hours. TV reception is limited – SBS or SBS or SBS Radio, but we can live without TV for a night. We sat outside reading and relaxing but eventually had to go inside because we were getting a bit cold, and we’re not used to the cold!
Still living the dream!