Posts Tagged With: wyandra

Day 86 – Westing in Wyandra with the Kangawoos and Emus

We both slept like logs and woke up to a nice morning with clear blue skies (they’re back)!

This place is pretty much as close to free-camping paradise as one can ask for.  Plenty of space, basically flat sites, toilets and showers, fresh water, clothes lines, seating, access to power points – and all for a suggested donation of $5 per person per night.  Why be in a hurry to leave?  So we decided not to.

The Wyandra Camping Ground is managed by the local progress association and relies on donations to upgrade and maintain the camping area, and other community services around the town.  They receive no council funding but do a great job.

Wyandra Camping Grounds

Wyandra Camping Grounds

An added bonus here is the wild-life.  There is plenty of birdlife overall, plus a pair of emus that seem to be quite unphased by having people around and just wander around pecking here and pecking there.  Kangaroos are plentiful around here, but are a bit more wary about humans.  A mother and her joey seem to be very at home down our end of the park and there are several other adults as well.  At one stage I counted a group of seven kangaroos, happily munching.

The campground is next door to the local school, and the grounds are kept quite green for the kids to play on.  Even though there were some kids running around the school grounds the kangaroos did visit to take advantage of the greenery.

After a lazy start and a delayed breakfast and morning coffee, we went for a long walk around the camping grounds and the town of Wyandra.  We have actually stayed here before, 5 years ago.  At that time the free camp was full and there were no amenities, so we stayed at the small caravan park behind the general store/post office.  It was an interesting experience to say the least, but we were quite happy to be staying at the free camp this time.

Apart from the general store/post office/caravan park there is the Gladstone Hotel, which appears to have received a coat of paint since last time.  These seem to be the only businesses in Wyandra, and both would get a certain amount of business from the camping ground.  There is also a CMCA style dump point; a CFA/SES shed; the Powerhouse Museum (not open); a deserted service station; a church; quite a few dilapidated buildings; and some very nice buildings.  There are some relatively new walking tracks and even some exercise equipment for public use.

Views around Wyandra

Views around Wyandra

Views around Wyandra

Like many country towns Wyandra is very proud of its contribution to the War effort, and there are some magnificent memorials to fallen service men and women.

Memorials to the Fallen in Wyandra

It doesn’t take long to walk around the main town area.

After our walk we returned to Bertha and lazily filled in the rest of the day reading outside.

Welaxing with the Wildlife at Wyandra

Oh – what a life!

Another one of Ann’s excellent Sunset photos

Categories: 2017 Up The Centre Adventure, Free Camping | Tags:

Day 85 – Charleville to Wyandra

When we woke this morning it was much warmer than yesterday – Bertha’s thermometer showed 6.5 degrees at 7.30 am.  Still, after having the heater on for a while, and having had hot showers, the sun started to make a difference and we were obviously off to another beautiful day.

We took our time getting started as there was no way we could leave the caravan park early even if we wanted to – vans and motorhomes and SUVs are squeezed in everywhere so we had to wait until quite a few had moved before venturing out.  We probably shouldn’t admit it but it was actually quite interesting sitting back with a cup of tea just watching as others struggled to maneuver around trees, SUVs, caravans etc in an effort to escape!  Full marks all round – not a single bingle, and only a few frayed tempers!

From Bailey Bar Caravan Park we headed off into town for a bit of a drive and a walk around.  We had stayed a few days in Charleville 5 years ago and it is always interesting to see if we can identify changes since our last visit.

Our first stop, after filling up with diesel, was at the Charleville railway station.  This is a nice old building and was apparently built in 1957 after the previous station burnt down.  It is huge and must have handled a lot of passengers and cargo way back.  Today it doesn’t even seem to be permanently manned. It was interesting to see the old pay-phone still in use.

Charleville Railway Station

Next door to the station was a major change since we were here last – the Bilby Experience attraction has relocated to the station from the Cosmos Centre further out of town.  We would have liked to go in but they were mid-way through a tour and we didn’t want to wait for the next one.

Bilby Experience is now at the Railway Station

We then found an area set aside for motorhome and caravan parking and set about on a walk around town.  There are some beautiful old buildings here; many still used for their original purpose but others which are now used quite differently.  As some of our readers will expect, we had to stop for coffee and cake at a bakery, and it was delicious!  All in all we spent a couple of hours exploring Charleville, and made a few purchases along the way.  We will almost certainly visit Charleville again sometime, but we will try to find somewhere with a bit more room to stay.

Views around Charleville

Views around Charleville

By now it was nearing lunch time so we thought that it was about time we hit the road.  Once back on the Mitchell Highway we couldn’t help but comment that for an A grade highway this road was in quite poor condition.  Lumpy and bumpy and very narrow in places – meeting an on-coming truck was a bit of a test of nerves at time.

One thing we did notice was that for most of the distance we travelled today, both sides of the road have been graded as part of water and flood management efforts.  The plan seems to be to keep any flood waters, and there are plenty of “floodplains” signs around, off the actual road surface and divert the water out into the scrub.  In this way, presumably, there is a better chance of at least some traffic getting through.

Graded Roads out of Charleville

A fair distance outside Charleville we came across some obviously quite recently completed bridge works at Angellala Creek, and the remains of what was the original bridge, and a memorial.  Unfortunately we couldn’t find a place to stop to check things out properly but subsequently Dr Google has advised us that in September 2014 a B-double truck carrying 52 tonnes of ammonium-nitrate crashed at the bridge and caught fire.  The combination of spilt diesel and the ammonium-nitrate subsequently caused an explosion that destroyed the bridge and was heard up to 30 kilometres away.  There were multiple firefighters and rescue workers hurt in the fire and subsequently a total of 15 heroism awards were made.  The new bridge was opened in May 2016 and a memorial commissioned to thank all those involved.

Bridgeworks at Angellala Creek

We eventually stopped for lunch at the tiny town of Wyandra.  There is not much to this place – a hotel, a general store/Post Office/caravan park, a ‘Powerhouse Museum’ (closed today), a primary school, and a free camp.  Oh, there were some emus and kangaroos wandering around town as well.

Views around Wyandra

Views around Wyandra

There was plenty of room at the free camp so we pulled over and had lunch.  It was such a nice quiet, open and flat space that we decided to stay here the night, so we did a quick set-up for Bertha then got out our chairs and enjoyed some reading time in the sun.  Several more visitors have arrived but there is plenty of room for us all.  Not even the kangaroos seem to mind a few visitors to their land.

This really is the life!

Sunset at Wyandra Camping Grounds

Categories: 2017 Up The Centre Adventure, Free Camping | Tags: ,

Day 16 – Wyandra to Charleville

Up early and had nice hot springwater showersand after chatting with our neighbours Terry and Margaret, we headed off to Charleville. Rough road and lots of road kill on the way, but it was only 101 kms or so.

We arrived in Charleville and checked in at Baileys Bar Caravan Park. It is friendly and a bit higgledy piggledy and is jam packed but we were squeezed in next to the laundry. We could not even put out the awning. But we were in and enjoyed a lovely camp oven lamb dinner by the camp fire with a poet and a singer.

Bit Cramped at Baileys Bar Caravan Park at  Charleville

Bit Cramped at Baileys Bar Caravan Park at Charleville

We met Chris and Alice here. Chris had worked with the Dept of Forestry and as a journalist with CMCA. He had suffered terrible burns at some stage and had a Venture 5th Wheeler which they had had especially fitted out to meet his needs. We also met up with a surprising number of people who we have previously met on the road – we all seem to be headed in the same direction.

Categories: 2012 Winton Adventure | Tags: ,

Day 15 – Bourke to Wyandra

We were up early and set off for Cunnamulla. We stopped at Barringun for morning coffee and arrived at Cunnamulla by lunch time and went for a long walk around town. It is a pretty place but apparently has nearly as many social problems as Bourke.

On the Road to Cunnamulla

On the Road to Cunnamulla

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Cunnamulla Fella

Cunnamulla Fella

We continued driving to Wyandra where we intended to free-camp behind the school. Unfortunately about 40 other vans had the same idea. There was a sign behind the Post Office advertising powered sites for $15 so we drove in. The owners of the Post Office have set up a small Caravan Park with new shower block (totally hot artesian water – no HWS) and about a dozen powered sites. They have an indoor/outdoor movie theatre and a big fire pit for happy hour.

Caravan Park in Wyandra

Caravan Park in Wyandra

We ordered burgers for dinner by the campfire at the Post Office/General Store and then went for a walk around town. That didn’t take long. There was a very well done war memorial to remind us just how many young people from country towns went on a big adventure to WW1 and WW2 and never returned. The main street also had a double row of wire with bras displayed right along the length of the town as part of a breast cancer awareness campaign.

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We started the night with happy hour around the fire. The owners’ dogs came out dressed in their Dryzabone coats. The local school teacher joined us as did the other vanners who were staying there. The owner had some very entertaining stories to tell until it was really cold and dark and he showed us into the “Movie Theatre” where we watched old Cinemascope movie reels and ate our “Roadkill Burgers”.


What an interesting night!

Categories: 2012 Winton Adventure | Tags: , , ,

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