Out for a walk near the Cape Otway Lighthouse, Victoria, Australia.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Free camping in the hills north of the Great Ocean Road near Apollo Bay, Victoria, Australia.

Where are they going next? Somewhere along Australia's Great Ocean Road!

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Tomorrow, we begin Australia's Great Ocean Road!

Woke up Wednesday morning to the steady drumming of raindrops on the roof. Just like they said it was going to do. Fortunately, the temperature was comfortable. I don't think it went below 13C (55F) at night, so it was quite nice for sleeping.

With the forecast calling for rain continuing until mid afternoon, we got up and did 50 kms (30 miles) of  driving into the small city of Warrnambool (pop 36,000).

We had some chores to accomplish though, so the rain actually forced us to get some things done. If it was a beautiful day, we would have been out exploring!

We found a park in town, again with very nice public washroom facilities. Someone want to explain to me why Canada and the U.S. don't have nice public washrooms everywhere?! I remember talking about the toilets in South Korea. Same thing here.

And graffiti. VERY little graffiti here in Australia. You know why? They have all the spray paint for sale behind locked cabinets, and you have to be over 18 to buy it. Makes sense to me. And they have apps that people use to report graffiti and it's cleaned up within 24 hours.

Anyhow, we had a late breakfast and then headed over to the local library. It was still pouring rain, so we figured we would get caught up on some computer work without having to worry about electricity usage.

Our single 105Ah battery has been serving us fine. And we haven't really even used our solar panel yet because 1) there hasn't been enough sun and 2) because we've been driving at least an hour each day and that's been about all it takes to get the battery charged up enough for the next night's usage. But, with a fairly short drive, and no sunshine we figured it would be better to use the library for a couple of hours.

And so we did just that. I spent most of my computer time planning onward travel. We now have all of our necessary flights booked for the fall, including our return to Ottawa at the end of August. I've booked our car rental for Saskatoon, and I did some searching for our Ottawa car rental, but there are no deals to be had yet. And I contacted some couchsurfers in Honolulu, and will wait to see if we hear back from them.

Bundy needed diesel fuel. He has a fairly small fuel tank, at 70 liters (18.5 gallons). And I've figured out that he only gets 17 mpg, which is not great.... but it's a whole lot better than Sherman! Filled up the tank, at $1.439 AUD per liter ($1.33 CAD per liter, or $3.80 USD per gallon).

After that, we went back to the camper and had some lunch. Then we went to the Aldi and did some grocery shopping. So far, Aldi is our favorite grocery store. By this point, it was about 2:00pm, and the skies had cleared earlier than forecast.

Next we drove down to check out the whales. But the rain returned just as we were getting to the lookout point. We went back and sat in the truck for ten minutes until it stopped, then went back out again. Just as we got there... the rain returned again! By this time, we figured we had better move on. We still had some things to do.

We drove to the BCF (Boating, Camping, Fishing) store to get our propane tanks filled. Joyce has two tanks... one is a 3.7 kg (8 lb) tank, and the other is 3.0 kg (6.6 lb) tank. The girl tells me that they can't do it because they only have two staff on the floor and one would need to go outside to do the refill. She sends me to the BBQ place next door!

The BBQ place tells me, sure, no problem. I bring both tanks inside, and she says she will only charge me the better 9 kg  (20 lb) tank price of $19.95 AUD ($18.50 CAD, $14 USD) to fill both tanks.

Done deal!

By the time I gt the propane tanks and lines hooked up again, it was getting close to sunset. Warrnambool is not an RV friendly town, but I had scoped out a location about 20 kms (13 miles) away that looked good.

Not raining anymore!

We'll be fine here.

There is actually a free camping spot behind that building you see in the photo above. But it's not very level, and it's too close to the main road. I went for a walk, and found this lane that runs down to the basketball court. We're confident that we'll be fine here.

Tomorrow, we begin Australia's Great Ocean Road! Let's hope the weather cooperates for some photo opportunities!

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Gillette Fusion Proglide Men's Razor Blades. Record low price... they don't come on sale very often, so time to stock up! In fact, at this price, you should be buying 3, which is a full year's supply!

And in Canada..




12 comments:

  1. Ouch that's terrible fuel consumption knowing you are very light footed. Knew it would be bad but expected around 20mpg. Good job you are not planning a trip around Australia. We've spent many hours in libraries in Australia and even go to one in a small town where the lady recognises us each time and brings us tea and biscuits. Didn't know that about the spray paint and reporting it. Having said that there is a special street in Melbourne where it is actively encouraged and worth a look. Enjoy the great ocean road.

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    1. Kevin was kinda hoping for 20 mpg as well but we did have a fair bit of headwind which of course would bring the mileage down. I think rainy days may be well spent in the libraries along the way.

      We don't mind the street art as long as it is legal and not on public or private buildings without permission, it is the tagging that is the main issue with us, it is just plain ugly!

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  2. Yep, like Steve & Glen said, we have alley art with spray paint and they are tastefully done...on First Friday people drive around to look at them. The art is hidden away from view. Although the stores have spray paint under lock and key and age restriction, they find a way to get a hold of them. I guess it's human nature to draw...from cave man days on up. We have public restrooms on the out skirts of each city...in parks but very few on the road. I guess it's costly to maintain them and I agree. Some people trash them...not a pretty sight. We use to have rest stops in Arizona but they've closed most of them down due to travelers destroying the rest stops.

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    1. To us there is a difference between street/alley art and graffiti, usually street are is tastefully done and usually with permission or on walls that have been set aside specifically for this purpose, it is the tagging and defacing of public and private property that is our issue. We see way too much of that in our travels and just find it plain ugly to see.

      As for public washrooms here in Australia, you will see them all over the place not just at a rest stop, most parks have them and you will see them throughout the city for use and they are almost always kept clean and tidy.

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  3. I am looking forward to seeing what the Great Ocean Road holds...should be fun!

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    1. I do not think we will let you down! :-)

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  4. More rules and fines to go along with them. Not sure what the Australian culture is, but in the Americas it's mind your own business. We found that true in Canada. Very few people we met in Canada wanted to talk politics or religion. I know they're out there, but we didn't seem to find them.

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    1. We definitely agree with you Chris, fines and even jail time if necessary. Places need to show that they aren't going to put up with the graffiti, especially the tagging! Here there are numbers to call if you see someone defacing property or if they see the graffiti, then they just call it in and it will get cleaned up within 24 hours.

      I think back home not enough places try to get people to report it or as you say people just turn their back on it and pretend they don't see what is happening. Not everyone wants to talk about religion or politics, it could just go the wrong way!

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  5. Plenty of graffiti and tagging in inner Melbourne. I hope you get to see some whales today.

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    1. We don't mind street art but not the tagging! Too bad that Melbourne doesn't seem to have a handle on it but it does seem to be more difficult in the bigger cities.

      Nope, no whale sightings today and we were looking for them. :-(

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  6. Hoping your winter weather cooperates with your travels.
    Be Safe and Enjoy the Whales along the Great Ocean Road.

    It's about time.

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    1. We are hoping that it will cooperate as well! :-)

      Haven't seen any whales yet but we still have lots of time.

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