The Wandering Tops

The Wandering Tops

29 June, 2018

Lara Wetlands

Lara Wetlands at sunrise with caravans parked around the edge.
Had a leisurely 60km drive to Lara Wetlands from Douglas Ponds free camp and was great to see Lynn & Janice (caretakers) again. Friends Terry & Joan arrived not long after we set up and was great to catch up. Helen & I soaked in the artesian hot pool and enjoyed a combined BBQ, entertainment and camp fire evening which is held most Friday nights - the weather was quite mild which was different to what we had been experiencing. I had another soak in the pool before going to bed - very relaxing.

Rissoles and onions for the burgers tonight!

Lynn is a bit of a pyro when it comes to lighting the campfire.

A few sitting around the fire 

Lynns a bit of a "hot devil"

The girls had a turn at karaoke 
Early morning to watch the sunrise from the hot pool

Terry & I drove into Barcaldine the next morning for 'secret birthday business' as both Janice and Joan were celebrating birthdays the next day. Enjoyed an afternoon tea supplied by Janice then settled around their fire after tea for plenty of stories and laughs.

On the day of the birthdays (Janice 70th/Joan 77) we packed up in the morning and drove into Barcaldine checking into Roses 'n' Things Caravan Park.  We all met for lunch at the cafe also run by the owners of the park, and had quite a celebration for the ladies including a birthday cake organised by Terry. Said our farewells before they drove back to Lara Wetlands and we returned to our van.  Very nice park - only 10 sites so better to book ahead.
Joan and Janice cutting the cake Terry organised.

The gang!

25 June, 2018


Drove to Charleville and stayed at the Bailey Bar Caravan Park where Helen got all the washing done and I got under the van and wrapped 10mm thick polyurethane around the water pipes hoping to protect them from the stones we may encounter on way to Birdsville.

The next day we went on a bus tour of the town which was enjoyable. The driver was very informative telling stories about the history and in particular about the devastating 1990 floods. After the tour we stocked up with food and then enjoyed a nice roast dinner plus dessert provided by the Caravan Park and traded stories with some of the other campers.
Ian our Tour guide
Charleville Heritage, Flood and Fire tour

These galahs flew in while Ian was talking.

Hotel Corones, an iconic hotel in the outback.

The Post Office with the original bank building in the background

Rain and thunder started around 2am -  just a steady soaking rain for a couple of hours. I had to help a guy travelling by himself when his jack gave away and drawbar hit the ground with a huge thud.  Headed north turning onto Landsborough Highway stopping at Augathella for coffee then onto Tambo and camped at free camp - Stubby Bend by the Barcoo River. Cooked fish in the oven tonight so van was nice and warm!

Travelled to Blackall and stopped for coffee where we met a young girl (Cloe) selling her artwork to raise money for her to go to Calgary in Canada. She was very talented - sketched horses and Brahma cattle.  Drove to Douglas Ponds free camp (approx 15kms N Blackall) where we set up camp. Had a great fire which I cooked steak for tea and sat around the fire watching the full moon rise.
Our camp at Tambo, with the full moon

Our first campfire for a long time.

A little Robin came near our camp at Douglas Ponds
The rising sun on this bird