A Travellerspoint blog

July 2015

Lloyd Jones Weir, near Barcaldine

Sunday 5 July to Tuesday 7 July 2015

Temperatures each day ranged from about 10 degrees overnight to about 24 degrees during the day - fine and sunny.

We spent an enjoyable few days at Lloyd Jones Weir free camping. Being only 15 km south of Barcaldine we visited the town each day for groceries, newspapers, fuel, and tourist information. Our new batteries performed well with regular charging with the Honda generator each day. Two to three hours of TV with the inverter resulted in a minimum voltage overnight of 12.4 volts.

Each evening we had the fire pot out, and had a plentiful supply of fire-wood collected from along the access road to the camp. Surprisingly, while we were only 15 km from Barcaldine, there was no Telstra mobile phone service. Come on Telstra - lift your game!


Camped at Lloyd Jones Weir


Campers at Lloyd Jones Weir


The latest model of slide-on campers.


A kookaburra sits on an old gum tree.


Lloyd Jones Weir, near Barcaldine.


The Labour Party Tree of knowledge - I think that it is dead?


Barcaldine Tourist Information Centre.


Spirit of the Outback having a rest stop at Barcaldine.


Spirit of the Outback Dining Car.


Cobb and Co route from Blackall to Barcaldine.


Reflections on Lloyd Jones Weir.


Pelican on Lloyd Jones Weir.


Evening sun on the trees at Lloyd Jones Weir.


Late sun on the trees at Lloyd Jones Weir.


Di's got the fire pot out again.


Cattle grazing outside the camp-site.

Posted by TwoAces 03:23 Comments (0)

Charleville to Barcaldine

Saturday 4 July 2015

Our trip today was 409 km from Charleville to Barcaldine. We stopped firstly for fuel at Tambo, and again for lunch and a walk around at Blackall. Being a Saturday there was not much happening in Blackall.

We arrived at Lloyd Jones Weir late in the afternoon and set up for a few days of free camping. The Lloyd Jones Weir is a Barcaldine free camp with flushing toilets, a supply of good drinking water, and a dump point and room for about 30 caravans and campers.

No Photos today.

Posted by TwoAces 03:19 Comments (0)

Charleville - Day 2

Friday - 3 July 2015

It was very cool overnight because of the clear sky - down to 3 degrees.

On the way into town for papers, we were stopped by a policeman for a RBT. When David suggested that it was a bit early, the policemen suggested that he may have had a big night last night - the result was 0.00, so all OK.

After lunch we decided to pack up as we will want to be on the road early to Barcaldine which is more than 400 km away. This evening we are having a camp oven dinner of beef in a red wine gravy with damper and vegies - it was good. After dinner we went to the Cosmos Observatory which is open air and very cold - about 8 degrees. The overnight temperature is expected to get down to 2 degrees.

The Cosmos Observatory comprises four twelve inch Meade reflecting telescopes in a special building with a roof that rolls back to reveal the night sky. All electronic devices had to be switched off, cameras, I-pods, I-pads, phones - you name it, as they can interfere with the GPS tracking systems on the telescopes. We viewed 5 objects in the night sky, some of which were hard to see with the naked eye because of the very bright full moon.

The first object was Saturn, which along with Venus is very prominent in the early evening sky. The planet is about 12 times larger than the Earth and was clearly visible along with its rings. As well as the rings Saturn has at least 60 moons.

The second object was Alpha Centauri, the brightest of the two pointers to the Southern Cross, and our closest neighbour at 4.3 light years away. The system contains 3 stars, Alpha A and B are a binary pair that orbit a central point of gravity every 80 years. The third star Proxima Centauri is not in the field of view when observing the binary pair. Alpha A and B were clearly visible through the telescope.

The third object was Albireo - a double star clearly showing as a small blue star and larger orange/red star, and often called The Sapphire and the Topaz. Di had no trouble seeing these two stars! They are 385 light years away and are separated by 650 billion km.

The fourth object was the Jewel Box, situated close to Beta Crux in the Southern Cross, and comprising an open cluster of approximately 150 to 200 stars, displaying many different colours. The stars are 7,700 light years away and were discovered in the 1830s by Sir John Herschel. The smallest of the stars are more than 50 times the size of our Sun.

The final object was the full moon with many of its craters clearly visible. The largest craters are 300 km across and 8 km deep.

It may have taken two visits to Charleville, but we finally got to see the stars from the Cosmos Observatory.

Posted by TwoAces 03:16 Comments (0)

Charleville - Day 1

Thursday - 2 July 2015

Mainly sunny today, but still intermittent cloud, which does not bode well for the Cosmos Observatory. After a couple of trips into town for papers, a gas bottle refill and a few odds and ends at Mitre 10 and Home Hardware, we headed for the Tourist Information Centre to book in for evening Cosmos Observatory session. Thursday was booked out but we got a place on the 9:00 pm session on Friday. They were hoping that the cloud would clear that afternoon and be fine and clear for tonight and tomorrow night. Here's hoping it will be fine - as the last time we were here we missed out because of heavy cloud on both nights.


Bailey Bar Caravan Park at Charleville.

Posted by TwoAces 22:54 Comments (0)

Miles to Charleville

Wednesday 1 July 2015

A bit cloudy this morning with a hint of rain. We retraced our route back to Miles and turned west towards Roma where we refuelled, before stopping for lunch at Mitchell. After lunch at the Anzac Memorial Park we walked back into town for papers, and while we were doing this a 4 trailer road-train passed us heading west. We ended up following him for about 100 km to Morven, and as the last trailer tends to wander all over the road we did not attempt to pass. Even the oncoming road trains were giving him plenty of room. While he generally maintained a speed of 85 to 90 kph, which suited us, he frequently slowed to about 60 kph on the hills. Thankfully at Morven he turned north for Augathella while we continued west to Charleville.

We arrived at the Bailey Bar Caravan Park at about 4:00 pm and booked in for three nights. It was just as well that we had booked ahead as the park was full of families with kids in town for a football carnival (rugby in this part of the world) at the nearby showground. Being a 5th wheeler we got one of the two large sites either side of the amenities block. The last time we were here we got the one on the other side. After a long day driving we had a quiet night watching TV. For some reason we had an excellent signal on Foxtel, but could not get good reception on VAST.


Lunch at the Mitchell Memorial Park.


New growth on a paper bark.


The Western Hotel in Mitchell.

Posted by TwoAces 22:52 Comments (0)

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