Mural in the town of Alpine, Texas.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Lost Alaskan RV Park, Alpine, TX.

Where are they going next? Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico.

Monday, July 8, 2019

$200 fine for camping by the riverside

We woke up at 7:00am, but stayed in bed until 7:30am... just to stay warm! Actually, it was the warmest night we've had for a while, but there was a pitter patter of rain on the roof, and when we did finally decide to get up, we got up and drove.

Not that far though...  to the small city of Bairnsdale (pop 15,000).

We were due for another grocery shop, and the wine supply had evaporated. Also, our propane gas was getting low. So we had to do some stocking up of various supplies.

This was at 7:45am in the rain, leaving our campsite.

If you click to view the full screen version of the photo above, you might see the kangaroo on the left side of the road trying to get out of our way. The kangaroos aren't that smart! He could have easily gone to the left, but he kept trying to go right for whatever reason. The rest of his group were off to the left.

In town, we found a park and had some breakfast in the rig. Then, off to get our shopping done. The first stop was the BCF (Boating, Camping, Fishing) store to refill our propane tanks. We have two tanks... one is 3.7 kg and the other is slightly smaller at 3.0 kg (8 lb and 6 lb). The larger tank was empty, but the smaller tank was still about 1/3 full. We paid $24 AUD ($22 CAD, $17 USD) to fill them both up. A little more than last time, but there weren't a lot of options in that area. At least it's done.

I was also shopping for the adapter to be able to fill the small 1 lb tanks myself. You can buy it through Amazon Australia, but none of the camping stores sell it, and in fact had never even heard of it. One guy figured it must be against the law in Australia... despite the fact that it's available online here. I went to four different places, and they had never heard of it.

I may order one online, but I may not. Overnight temperatures have warmed up a bit, and we are heading north. We've also learned that to run the oven for a half an hour in the evening warms us up nicely. Much cheaper than using our heater with those overpriced cylinders.

Next stop was groceries at ALDI, and then a couple of boxes of wine. On sale at this time... $15 AUD ($14 CAD, $10.50 USD) for 4 liters.

We popped in to K-Mart... where Ruth bought a couple of pairs of socks and I bought a button up shirt on sale for $12 AUD ($11 CAD, $8.50 USD).

Then, it was off to find our next overnight spot.

The Tambo River.

There were a few campsites along the river pictured above. And I'm sure we would have been okay there, but they are geared towards fishermen, and we are not fisherman. As we were driving away I saw the not very well displayed sign saying "$200 fine for camping by the riverside"

So we're glad we had decided against it. Still, I don't think we would have been bothered at this time of year.

But, we carried on to another option at Chinaman's Creek. There, they have an actual RV Rest Stop... with a 36 hour stay limit. 

It's not ideal because the parking area slopes quite a bit. And, the washroom building is probably 50 years old, but at least it's clean. And the parking area isn't very big, so I'm glad we were the first ones to arrive to be able to select the best spot.

And, it turned out we were the only ones to arrive. Another benefit of being here during slow season. I would hate to be here during busy season when I have read that up to eight rigs of various sizes pack themselves in here!

We are happy to be alone here.
(By the way, Bundy and Joyce are level... the parking lot and the bathroom are not!)

And while the RV parking isn't ideal, (although it is certainly okay by our standards)... it is located very close to the marina and the long boardwalk that leads into the town of Metung.

And the marina and boardwalk are really pretty!

The Hot Springs Overlook.

Back in the 1920's, an oil and gas developer drilled some holes in this area, and while he didn't strike oil or gas, he did strike hot water! A local resident bought the rights to that hole, and put in a rudimentary hot springs pool. Locals and visitors alike loved to come for a soak in the pools... until the 1990's when the Australian Environmental Protection Agency insisted that the pools be chlorinated at an unsustainable cost... and the pools were shut down.

The board walk runs almost 3 kms (2 miles) in to town.

A big fish sculpture... made out of smaller fish.

Oh look... a ship is on the horizon.

Nope... just a sculpture of a ship! 

Pelicans are so odd looking.

What a large beak you have!

This tree was full of cormorants.


And the next tree over had a royal spoonbill and an intermediate egret.

We arrived back at Bundy and Joyce just after 4pm... in time for happy hour! But there was nobody here but ourselves. We're quite happy with that. It should be a quiet and peaceful night!

Monday's drive, 56 kms (35 miles).

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10 comments:

  1. Metung is lovely. I didn't know about the hot water spa.

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    1. Yes, it definitely is a very pretty spot.

      It's a shame that the government has it's own ideas of what what regulations should be at to keeping the water "safe", too bad they can't just let people be sometimes, and perhaps just put up a sign that says to use at your own risk!

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  2. Phew you had me worried there that you had been fined, and the first person I had ever heard of to do so in Australia. Do take care further around the coast though as the free camping is prohibited in more places until North of Sydney.

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    1. Lol, Kevin figured that might catch the eye of a few people! ;-)

      We don't take our chances, if there is a sign stating no camping or overnight parking we just don't bother staying there and risking it.

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  3. That fish sculpture was neat ! Thanks again for posting a map which helps us keep up with your travels.

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    Replies
    1. I thought so too! I really enjoying seeing sculptures like that and the one of the ship.

      We are glad that you enjoy the maps. :-)

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  4. Love the bird photos! Never seen white cormorants! From a distance, the ones in the tree looked like a tree full of Egrets, a much more common sight state-side!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Emily! The cormorants are actually black and white and they are Pied Cormorants and yes, there were a lot of them in the tree. If you click on the picture of the tree full of cormorants, you will see that they are black and white and definitely not white egrets. In the other tree (the last picture) there was one Royal Spoonbill and two of what I am pretty sure are Intermediate/yellow-billed egrets.

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  5. Really enjoying following along with you in Australia. How do you identify a new bird that you see. I'm not very knowledgeable and finding it difficult to identify some.

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    Replies
    1. We are happy to hear that you are enjoying our adventures. :-)

      I am not all that knowledgeable about birds either, "Google" is definitely my friend! Sometimes, there are panels around mentioning some of the birds that we might see, sometimes there are pamphlets that you can pick up at the tourist information centres. If I can't identify them that way then I usually just google the key features of the bird and add Australia to the quest and hit enter, then I go to images and look through the pictures until I can hopefully find a picture of a similar looking bird that has a name to it. I then google the bird's name and again look at the images just to make sure I have the correct name.

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