Day 7 -14th April

We were up at 6am again for a sunrise but we found it hard to find a good spot with reflections of the dead looking trees over Lake Wetherill, we will keep our eyes open for a more suitable spot. I did get one quick shot before the sunrise went as did Chris.

Lake Wetherill Sunrise

Sunrise at Lake Wetherill

After brekkie we put the Kayak on the Darling River and went for a paddle. It’s hard getting into it as the water is down so the banks are a bit high. Half way on our journey we swapped spots as I was in the back in the Kayak and we weren’t going in a straight line very well, I was taking the scenic route. It was better with Chris in the back as he had more control and could put more power into it. Better for me in the front too as it’s not as hard work and I can just get paddled along, hee hee, I get to see more too. We are not doing to bad for only our 2nd time in it. It was very nice, we got to paddle past people’s camp sites and have a chat to some. We wore our rock wet suit shoes and they were fantastic, nothing seems to stick to them and no dusty or muddy feet either.

Paddle

The area we are camped in is huge, with plenty of gum trees for shade. The ground is just dirt and is very dusty and turns to mud if it gets wet. There are quite a few water taps spread around the camp area, one not far from us that we think the hoses will reach. The water is crystal clear so we assume drinkable as there are no signs saying otherwise. We plan to fill the tanks before we leave and do some washing while we are here. There is Telstra coverage here too. It’s a beaut spot and it would be lovely to sit out under the awning or under a gum tree in the shade but the flies drive you NUTS and all this for free.

Burke-and-Wills-1

We can manage quite well without the extra power we have this trip but it is so nice to have it and the genie to top everything up and run the micro and washer later. We have the fan running, fridge is running on power and the batteries are being topped up, very cool and the yoghurt maker running off the inverter.

After lunch we went into the town of Menindee, along the other dirt road. It was slightly better than where we came in but not much and over all is a longer way back to the Hill. Menindee is a small and appears to be a dying town especially when there is no water around. We called in at the local info centre and had a chat. Lake Pamamaroo had water in 5 months ago but they let it out to run it out down into the Murray. Lake Menindee hasn’t had water in it for 10 yrs and if it did they would release it into the Murray, a small amount of water is release from Lake Wetherill everyday to head down stream.

Burke-and-Wills

We had an early tea to see if we could get a sunset over Lake Menindee, there is an area on the map called Sunset Strip so we thought sunset. Well it’s actually an estate right on the edge of Lake Menindee, all those houses would of had prime views of this massive lake and now it’s like an open flat plain with dead trees and some bushes with prickles as the under growth. Would have been an awesome site had the lake had water in it. We raced back to the lookout area but the sunset was a fizzer. We came back to Lake Pamamaroo and found the spot for tomorrow night.

We get to have a sleep in tomorrow, yeah.

Day 6 – 13th April

Well last night was quiet, the reunion people left early evening. We were up early again for a sunrise, this is getting to be a bad habit, one I must break, after all I don’t do mornings, I have a reputation to up hold. We went back to the hotel but the troopy was still there so we did what we could. The lightening was excellent. We had hooked up the van the night before so we had an early departure from Silverton.

We headed into BH, looked around for water to fill the tanks, they keep their water under lock and key. We eventually found a park that had a tap but no handle; luckily we had the universal tap that our good friends had bought us, so we managed to get some. We then went up to the Line of Lode which is a miner’s memorial. Which was closed until 10am, which is 10.30 our time, there is a seat that was made especially for the giant miner, so we had fun sitting up in that swinging your legs made you feel like a little kid. I sat up there while Chris put the camera on a tripod on a timer, then he would run like mad jump onto some bricks that were there to help you get onto the seat and then jump onto the seat and sit next to me just in time for the camera to take the shot.

Little Kids

After we finished playing little kids we had a look around the outside before deciding we would go check out the Sculptures at the Living desert which is approx 10km out of BH. You can get a key from the Info centre to drive up to the sculptures otherwise it’s a 40min walk, also this gives you access when the main area is closed so you can get sunset and sunrises shots. Entry into the Living Desert is $10 so we thought we may as well get the key in a few days and camp out that way for the night, there are plenty of places to pull over and we saw a motor home doing just that.

Miners Memorial

We went back to the Line of Lode which still wasn’t open so we had morning tea before going in. We were the first ones in and headed straight to the memorial through the gift shop, we didn’t realise until we came out that they want you to pay for that as well $2.50 each. The memorial lists all the miners who have died since around 1885 up until present, not many present of course. It listed the year they died, name and what they died from.

Line of Lode #2 Line of Lode

BH would not be on the list of CMCA RV friendly towns. We then headed to Menindee which is 110km from BH. The road is on the verge of desert, again we saw some emus. We took what appears to be the main road into the free camping areas along the Darling River about 8kms out of Menindee, 12km of dirt road that had a few sections of severe corrugations that had the teeth chattering on their own.

We are camped on the Burke and Wills camp ground up on a bank overlooking the Darling River, very nice and finally some decent size gum trees. We have just checked the area out today.

Burke-and-Wills-2

We chatted to some local people from BH or the Hill as the locals call it. Found out that they are going to put a wind farm on the Mundi Mundi plains at Silverton, 500 windmills.Lake Pamamaroo is totally dry; apparently it had water in it 5 months ago. It is a big lake but is very shallow. Lake Wetherill has water in it and is the main storage for water for the Hill. You can take a sunset boat ride which we may do one day; the lake has lots of gnarly dead looking trees that would make great sunrise and sunset pics. Lake Pamamaroo also has the gnarly trees so we are going to get some sunset pics there tonight. Lake Menindee has been dried up for well over 15 years. There is another dirt road into Menindee that is 25kms but the road sounds much better. We will take a run into Menindee tomorrow and check the place out and see if it’s a better route out with the van.

Lake-Pamamaroo-Sunset