Friday 26th July 2002
We arrived in Winton looking for fuel. It seemed the fuel stations we saw were owned by the same company and had the same price so we looked further and found cheaper fuel at the Caravan Park on the northern side of town. The girl serving us was lovely and full of helpful advice.
After leaving Winton we stopped near a "tank" to give the dogs a run. After that stop we travelled for many kilometres looking out the window at the drought affected land. It seemed that nothing could survive but cattle dotted the countryside or gathered around windmills with their life giving troughs of water or under shrubs, sheltering from the elements.
We drove on to Kynuna Roadhouse. We decided to have food there. We nearly had to take a personal loan out to pay for it but being cold and hungry we bit our tongue and payed. There is very little in Kynuna. Across the road from the roadhouse is Magoffin's Matilda Expo, a touristy arrangement that plays on the Australiana theme. We gave it a miss.
We made for McKinlay and were to see the ‘Walkabout Creek Hotel’ which was in the ‘Crocodile Dundee’ movie. Sure enough, it was there but we continued on after changing a blown fuse in Judy's car caused by a short in the plug used for the 12 volt gear running out of the cigarette lighter.
The scenery began to change as the day grew older and we drew closer to Cloncurry. Rather than dry, grassy areas with creamy colours, we started to see oranges and reds in rocky outcrops. Eventually the trees began to show up and by the time we reached Cloncurry we were driving through hilly, tree covered country.
We had set our minds to staying in Mt Isa so refuelled in Cloncurry and drove on. The sun was getting low in the sky as we drove west towards Mt Isa. The driving was pleasant as we wound our way through the hills into Mt Isa. The blue colours of the shadow covered hills blended with the oranges and yellows of the sunlit areas.
We arrived in Mt Isa to stay in a caravan park chosen by Ray and Coral called Argylla Caravan Park. It was perfect as it was on the eastern outskirts of town, allowed dogs and had a lovely lawn area shaded by palms that we erected our tents on. After setting up our camps we showered and went into the main town area to get supplies we found necessary on the trip up. As well, we ventured into a Maccas for a burger and thickshake. As the air conditioning wasn't working, we moved outside to avoid the fumes from the cooking and the stifling heat that the poor staff were enduring. While we were there we watched in amusement as a giggling young female employee instructed a similar aged male employee in the fine art of mopping the floor. He truly had no idea what was required of him!
We eventually headed home and went to bed. Because of the warmish night, we left the flaps of the tent windows up. Big mistake!
At some predetermined time during the night Judy let out a yelp as the lovely sound of rain on the tent walls turned out to be a lawn sprinkler which sent a stream of water straight through the meshed window and drenched Judy. I was lucky, so couldn't help laughing but for the next hour or so, after zipping the flap over that window, we were treated to the regular sound of the sprinkler stream hitting the tent walls every couple of seconds till we finally fell asleep.
Next morning we packed up and headed to Camooweal, before crossing into Northern Territory.
As we were to be returning to Mt Isa, I didn't take any pics of our first stay.
|Click on the pictures for larger versions|
|Looking up the street in Winton|
|The scenery after leaving Winton where we gave the dogs a run.|
|The drought affected land as we travelled towards McKinlay and Kynuna|
|Judy settling into the long long stretch of road ahead of us on the way to Kynuna|
|Dry grass as far as you can see|
|Cattle gathering around a windmill looking for feed and water on the road to Kynuna|
|Magoffin's Matilda Expo opposite the Kynuna Roadhouse|
|More of the dry landscape north of Kynuna|
|The changing landscape nearing Cloncurry|
Last Updated : 28/01/2012 09:07 PM +1000