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Tales of the travels, trials and triumphs as we explore Australia in a converted bus

Motorhome Travels - November 2007


We are now back in Queensland and on the Sunshine Coast - where there has been very little sunshine in the last three days. We have just spent a few days with Rob and Chris Gray, these guys are in the process of rebuilding their motorhome "Wothahellizat" - a very cool six wheel dive off road machine. Rob claims that this will be the last motor home he ever builds (he said that last time too).

Whatthehellisit - without her skin on! - [Click for a Larger Image]
Whatthehellisit - without her skin

You can read more about this amazing machine in Robs construction diary here.

As we were packing up to leave we were talking to Rob and Chris about replacing the plasma rope on the Moke winch (they have just bought some plasma rope for their recovery winch). When Tracey was putting the Moke away the rope decided that a demonstration of the need to be replaced was in order, it snapped, allowing the Moke to roll down the ramps. Again, we were fortunate that no one and nothing was in its way. We will purchase a new rope ASAP!


After our visit to the glasshouse mountains we travelled north to see Martin and Michelle. These guys are celebrating their 11th year of full time motorhoming! We spent quite a bit of time with Martin and Michelle when we were on the Gold Coast three years ago and have kept in touch with them since then. We are staying in Eumundi, a small town close to Noosa that is well known for its street markets. These run every Wednesday and Saturday (rain or shine). The town takes on a whole new persona when the 800+ stall owners display their offerings on the streets and car parks of the town. It took us most of the day just to wander around all the stalls.

We have had so much rain and cloud in the last few days that we have had to run the little Honda generator to charge the batteries - a first for a very long time!


From here we will be heading inland and south towards Victoria.



From Eumundi we said goodbye to Martin and Michelle, turned inland and stopped to say hi to Paul and Wendy in Kilcoy. West of Kilcoy, we found a really nice state forest to stop in for the night.

Crows Nest National Park is quite small and the falls were dry. However, it seems that we arrived there on the day that all the cicadas emerge from their beetle state and try their wings for the first time.

A large cicada emerges, Crows Nest NP, Qld - [Click for a Larger Image]
A large cicada emerges, Crows Nest
NP, Qld

We watched and photographed one specimen for over an hour - it was amazing to watch the hard shell split and the soft insect slowly extract itself from the old body. It took a further hour for its wings to unfold.


We crossed the border into New South Wales at the tiny settlement of Hebel. Lightening Ridge was our next stop. This is an interesting place - life here revolves around the pursuit of the black opal. We visited the town artesian pool where many of the local miners come in the evening to sooth away the pains of the day. Some told us how "the opal grabs ya, and gets into ya blood". One bloke we spoke to arrived in a Bedford bus 15 years ago for a short visit and never left. I can say with all honesty - it has no chance of getting into my blood.

The sun sets on NSW - Mt Oxley - [Click for a Larger Image]
The sun sets on NSW - Mt Oxley

Not far from Bourke we came across Mt Oxley. This is the only high ground for hundreds of kilometres in all directions. Our guide book said we could climb it. Our guide book for NSW is now 7 years out of date. After 15kms of dirt road we found a locked gate. No choice but to turn around and head to Bourke. It turned out that you need to visit the information centre and pay for a permit to visit Mt Oxley! ... so we did.

This is an amazing spot - and we have it all to ourselves (not a surprise given the lack of information, signs or a web site - you just about have to be a clairvoyant to know that you can visit.) However, if you manage to side step all the obstacles and actually get up here, it is a treat.

The view is fantastic and there are even flush toilets and a shelter for eating. Wedge-tail eagles inhabit the northern end of the mount and soar the cliffs by day.


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