Monday 7 May 2012

Oz Trip - Day 6

Day 6 – 7/5/2012 – Trilby Station to Penrose Park

We were up just on sunrise as we had another early start. The morning was fantastic. There were pelicans soaring around and swimming up the river all against an orange sunrise.

Sunrise over Trilby Station

We left Trilby Station at 8am. On the way out we asked Liz about the road conditions to Wilcannia. We were hoping to follow the road all the way down the Darling river to Tilpa and then to Wilcannia. Unfortunately the road was still closed as the floods had only just receded. Liz said that the locals generally started driving on the roads before they were official open, but at this stage they weren't even using them. So we had to take a detour. It ended up being about a 400km detour!!!

From Trilby Station we had to head to Cobar which was about another 100km of dirt. There were also still some wet soft patches of red mud along this path. The pajero and camper copped a nice splattering of red mud. The Stone Stomper between the pajero and camper saved a lot of it getting onto the front of the camper.

The good part of the dirt road to Cobar
After Cobar it was on to Wilcannia. At this stage we were probably about 4 hours behind where we wanted to be. There were so many beautiful old stone buildings in Wilcannia. It is a shame to see most of them abandoned and unused.

We were actually trying to make it to Eldee Station about 50km north of Broken Hill. At this point we didn't know what time we were going to get there so we decided to ring ahead to see if it was going to be easy to find in the dark. The lady at Eldee Station advised that it probably wasn't. So at that point we decided to see if there were any other alternatives. We consulted the travellers bible, “Camps Australia 6” book and found Penrose Park only 25km outside of Broken Hill near Silverton. In the end this place worked out a lot better.

About 100km out of Broken Hill, we pulled over for a comfort stop and found that a D shackle attaching the Stone Stomper on to the front of the camper had come loose or broken. This resulted in one corner of the Stone Stomper dragging along the ground and damaging the eyelet, shock cord and vinyl that held it all together. Not something that we really wanted to happen on this day, but at least if had happened after we had done this section of dirt. So we disconnected it and pressed on to Silverton.

We arrived at Broken Hill just as the sun was going down. We worked out our way through Broken Hill and headed to Silverton. On the road to Silverton we passed horses, goats, sheep and camels.

When we finally checked into Penrose Park we had been on the road for about 10 hours and it really felt like it. Hopefully we won't be having too many more of those days!!! We also had to do our first camp setup in the dark. As we pulled in and found a camp site we noticed that we were camped about 100m from another AORC Quantum. So later that night we went and met Pete and Sue who were in a group of about 4 others all heading in approximately the same direction as we were, only a few days ahead of us.

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