Day 1 - Sunday 16th March 2014.

Home to Finley, NSW - 338 kms.

We left home at approx 8:55am, I had difficulty getting Marg up and into it, hence our later departure. We headed off along Lower Dandy Rd towards Dandenong to Eastlink, then Monash, Bolte Bridge to Western Ring Rd to Hume Freeway. I found a public weighbridge at the BP Cooper St, Epping, so we headed there for our weigh in. It took us 65 minutes to get there, a very easy drive with bugger all traffic lights, that's why we no longer go along Beach Rd (too many traffic lights). We drove around the service centre, which is HUGE looking for the weighbridge, found it near the 'restaurant'. I drove along the weighbridge to where the lights indicated that I was in the correct position. I walked over to the 'check out chic' who wanted a few details and $17 later it was all over. 5,505kg without me, with me 5,620kgs. That includes fresh water tank full (150 litres), Navara fuel tank full (80 litres), Evacool fridge/freezer Full, fridge/freezer in fiver FULL, and all our shit on board, so I was happy to be 185kgs under our Gross Combined Mass (GCM) of 5,805kgs.

We had 25 minutes to get to Maccas at Wallan until the breakfast menu is turned off ('Falling Down with Michael Douglas) and I wanted my sausage and egg muffin. We arrived there at 10:28am and I dropped Marg off at the door while I parked our rig and took some photos. We got our brekky menu, lucky for them.
After brekky we could relax and take it easy as there was no more deadlines to meet. Our next rest stop was Nagambie at 11:38am, the lake is beautiful. As we drove off I noticed the new Black Caviar stature, I was going to do a U turn, but couldn't be stuffed. Our final rest stop was at Wunghnu at 12:42pm. We arrived at Finley's Lakeside CP site 34 at 1:44pm.

While I set up camp, Marg made some beautiful egg sangas. After lunch I wound up the winegard aerial as I wanted to watch the Formula One at Albert Park. I managed to receive ABC, SBS and 10, so that will do for this stay.

As I am writing this, I am watching the Formula Ones and guess what, Marg is having a 'powernap'. If you ask me, she is 'dead to the world'.

Bye for now. The race is about to start. Congrats Ricardi - a brilliant drive.
Dinner was chicken parma. Absolutely YUMMA. I am a tad buggered, so an early night is on the cards.

Tomorrow, we head for Peak Hill.

Our route from Melbourne to Finley, NSW - 338 kms.

Maccas at Wallan for Brekky.

Maccas at Wallan for Brekky.

The 'child bride' at Wunghnu.


How level is that?? Bloody level.

A friendly truckie.

Site 34.

Site 34.

Marg reading her iPad.

Lakeside CP, Finley - site 34 and others.

Day 2 - Monday 17th March 2014.

Finley to Peak Hill, NSW - 466 kms.

It was a mild night, I awoke a few times, but eventually, pulled on both blankets and slept through to 6am, I listened to my radio through my headphones. After the 6:30am news, I got up and wandered over and had a shower. Water pressure was fair. I woke Marg about 7:20am, after our HWS had warmed the water for 'Her Majesty'. We didn't have much to pack up and were on the road at 8:32am.

We had 34kms to Jerilderie, arrived at 8:57am, where we filled the mighty Navara. Next stop was Narrandera (109kms from Jerilderie) arrived at 10;26am, where I changed into shorts as the sun was out and warm. A further 79kms up the road (Beckom Rest Area) we stopped at 11:29am, followed by another 92kms to our lunch stop, which was at Marsden Rest Area arriving at 12:39pm. We pulled into the rest area and I pushed out a slideout, while Marg made lunch. Beautiful egg sangas, they were YUMMA. While having lunch, 3 motorcycle trikes with trailers and pillion passengers roared past. After lunch we continued a further 69kms into Forbes where we stopped for petrol (1:52pm). It was a Woollies petrol station which opened last July, Very nice. We now had all our stops out of the way and had a non-stop run to Peak Hill a pleasant 82kms away arriving at 2:59pm.

Paid $23.40 and set up camp on site 22 in the shade. Leighton who owns the camp has been trying to sell it and for the past year, it has been leased out. It now appears that after their year's break, they have renewed energy and will be back at the helm by 1st April. It's a pity that we won't see them until probably Sept 2015.

About 4:30pm, Marg and I walked over to the Peak Hill Ex Services & Citizens Club, for Marg's fix on the pokies, my fix on a few chilled refreshers and both our fixes on the beautiful meal. Marg had fish and chips, while I had chicken parma. It was YUMMA.
Back at camp, Marg watched My Kitchen Rules, while I did this.

Tomorrow we driving to Moree for an overnighter and a dip in their artesian spa pools.

Our route from Finley to Peak Hill, NSW - 466 kms.

The mighty Navara amongst the BIG Boys.

Nice Trike.

Bugger all' traffic.

Lunch time.

Nice view.

Marg at the Peak Hill 'RSL'.

Day 3 - Tuesday 18th March 2014.

Peak Hill to Moree, NSW - 449 kms.

It was another mild night, I slept a lot better. Only pulled on one blanket and slept through to 6:30am, when I got up and showered. Leighton your CP needs you. We didn't have much to pack up and were on the road at 8:33am.

We had 68kms to Dubbo (9:20am) for a break, another 68kms (purely coincidence) to Gilgandra (10:19am) for the next break, then 98kms to Coonabarabran (11:48am) stopped on the outskirts, next stop 68kms down the road, was lunch at the Yarraman RA (12:40pm). We pulled into the rest area and pushed out a slideout, while Marg made lunch. Beautiful egg sangas, they were YUMMA. Then a non stop of 146kms to Gwydir CP, Moree arriving at 2:44pm. Today there were plenty of trucks on the road, but only 5 past me.

Paid $27.90 for drive thru site 19. I setup camp (power and water) and unhitched, drove into town to top up with fuel and buy 30 cans of XXXX Gold, I was running low. Back at camp, we changed into our togs, as it was over 30° and the pools here were calling us, so we walked over and jumped in the big COLD pool, but luckily, we acclimatized very quickly, then moved to the 34° pool, this was like a warm bath and the coolest of the 4 pools (34°, 35°, 37° and 39°). After more than an hour we walked back to camp, showered and had a chilled refresher or two. it is still 31° at 7:00pm, so we have had our Air Cond on since we arrived here.

Dinner was spagetti sauce sangas, bloody YUMMA. Followed by a bit of TV.

Tomorrow we driving to Warwick for an overnighter.

Our route from Peak Hill to Moree, NSW - 449 kms.

Resting in Dubbo.

Nice Cattle in Gilgandra.

Lunchtime at Yarraman RA.

35° Pool.

The BIG Cool pool.

We are here.

The Thermal Pools.

Gwydir Carapark and Thermal pools.

Day 4 - Wednesday 19th March 2014.

Moree, NSW to Warwick, Qld - 329 kms.

It was a very warm night(min 21.1°), we ran the Air Con all night and slept beautifully. The advantage of a powered site. Woke about 6:45am, got showered and after awhile on the internet, we finally started packing up and hit the road at 8:33am. Same time as yesterday, it is purely coincidential that we leave about the same time each morning.

We only did 14kms until our 1st roadworks (8:49am), then another 65kms until we stopped at North Star Rest Area(9:38am), followed by 8kms until our 2nd roadworks(9:52am), then another 88kms until we stopped in the township of Yeralbon(10:59am) don't blink or you will miss this metropolis. A further 40kms onwards, we drove into Inglewood looking for the Spur H CP(11:34am), we plan to stay here on our return from Yowah in early July. Our 3rd roadworks(12:16pm) was 46kms from Inglewood, then by our 4th roadworks(12:50pm) was a further 35kms onwards, followed by our LAST roadworks(1:04pm) just 15kms from the last one. We arrived at Rose City CP on the northern side of Warwick, a very basic CP, but no probs for an overnighter $29 on site 19. The above mentioned roadworks were where we actually stopped either by a 'stop/slow' man or a set of traffic lights, I have not included the 2 or 3 roadworks that we hit with a slow or a go light. Our 2nd roadworks was where we were stationary for 6min 40secs. I would like to thank my 'Harry Hema' Navigator 5 for all my timings on this website. thanks Harry, I don't know what I would do without you.

The traffic was slightly busier due to all the roadworks, we were caught up among the trucks. Still my UHF radio is worth its weight in gold, by talking the truckies past me. It should be compulsory in all RVs.

After we did a quick setup (power and water) Marg and I drove back into downtown Warwick to dine at their upmarket restaurant. It had a drive thru, so we ordered 2 large big mac meal deals with choccy shake and choccy sundae. YUMMA.

During the afternoon, Marg had a nanna nap and so did I.

Tomorrow we driving to our destination of Broadwater Tourist park, Southport.

Our route from Moree, NSW to Warwick, Qld - 329 kms.

Resting in Yeralbon.


Rose City CP - Site 19.

The thunderstorm just missed us.

The view from our park.

A 'thorn' among the roses.

Day 5 - Thursday 20th March 2014.

Warwick to Southport - 204 kms.

It was a very warm night(min 18.5°), we ran the Air Con all night and slept well. Woke about 6:00am, got showered and after awhile on the internet, we finally started packing up and hit the road at 8:10am.

As soon as we left we drove into the rain, and it was at its worst at Cunningham's Gap, but we were very lucky as I sat behind a sand truck going down the slope. We went very slow and had no dramas at all. After 64kms we stopped at Aratula (9:05am) then stopped and checked out Willowbank CP (9:37am) for early July. It looks OK. We followed the motorways to Southport arriving at 11:09am. We did a full setup which took hours as I was continually interrupted by your typical Gold Coast rain squalls passing through.

Our new vinyl wall ends appear to work very well. I am happy with them. After a lovely shower late afternoon, we visited both our sons and then got home and relaxed.
Dinner was a frozen pizza and washed down with a few chilled refreshers. We ran the Air Con all night due to the humidity.

Tomorrow we are visiting Marg's sister in Brissy.

Our route from Warwick to Southport - 204 kms.

Approaching the rain.

Top of Cunningham's Gap.

Approaching another steep slope.

Thursday's social yachting race.

Stardust Circus - our neighbours.

All setup.

The view near our site.

Day 6 - Friday 21st March 2014.

Visiting Marg's sister.

It was another very warm night(min 22.9°), we ran the Air Con all night and slept well. Woke about 6:30am, watched Kochie's Sunrise and did some loads of washing and bummed around camp until 9:30am, then we got ourselves organised and visited Centro Southport aka South Park for a quick shop, and then drove to Brisbane to visit Marg's sister (Liz) who has stuffed her knee and is in hossy. It was great to see her and we stayed for over an hour, she was happy to see us or anyone. We got back to camp just after 2:00pm. Back at camp, I pumped up my bike tyres and hope to go riding tomorrow morning. The rest of the arvo was spent checking out the circus and there are 2 male lions and at least 1 female. I tried to take photos of the lions, but none came out. They are in a large steel cage just on the side of the main tent.

Dinner was steak and vegies, washed down with a few chilled refreshers. Very yumma.

Tomorrow is a quiet day.

A view across the Broadwater.

Our new vinyl wall end.

My view while sitting out the front having a chilled refresher or two.

The Circus is about 50 meters away.

Our new vinyl wall end.

This weather is approaching us.

The view near our site.

Our site is on the left.

Day 7 - Saturday 22nd March 2014.

Bike riding and Jodi's Hens party.

It was another very warm night(min 20.5°), we ran the Air Con all night and slept well. Woke about 6:45am, Marg was still 'dead to the world', so I listened to Gold 92.5 FM 7:00am news and then got up. Changed in to my 'cycleman' lycra, and left Marg asleep as I rode off towards Surfers. I checked out the circus next door, but the lions must have been asleep, as they were not in their large outdoor enclosure, or they had escaped (that could be a worry). Anyway, I didn't see the lions. Just an aside, it is magic, sitting outside the fiver, just as it is getting dark, having a chilled refresher or two (you can't have just ONE), and the 2 male lions roar for about 5 minutes. It is just magnificent listening to them. Anyway, back to my bike ride, as I left camp about 7:30am with a threatening sky, there weren't too many people about, which was good. I rode past the Kid's Rockpool, no one about (open time is 9am to 5pm), then past the Kid's playground over the road from Australia Fair, a couple of earlybirds were there. Down over the Nerang river, the Tram bridge is now fully finished and the shared path bridge has only ONE span to go, until it is all joined. It is looking good. I wonder if it will be opened by the time we return here on 3rd August, then again we don't leave here until 13th May. Down past the Southport Yacht Club, where I cross over Sea World Drive and follow the shared path towards Surfers. Now the earlybirds are out in force, there are people all over the shared path, so I just slow my speed to suit the pedestrian traffic. I eventually make my way to my turnaround point about 2 streets south of Cavill Ave.

Just as I arrive at my turnaround point, the heavens open up and I get drenched. As it is warm, I don't put on wet weather jacket and just ride in the rain. It was just beautiful. The BIG advantage was that 99% of my pedestrians scattered out of the rain, so I had bugger all people to contend with, only a few 'diehard' joggers. I made my way along the coastal gravel path which starts behind the Sheraton Mirage and continues the whole way to the Spit (Seaway). I noticed that the council has NOT done any maintenance to the gravel path since when I was last here in September, the parts of the path that had holes etc are still there and slightly bigger.
I got to the end of the Spit without any dramas and the rain had stopped somewhere along the ride. I then rode along Seaworld Drive back to the Yacht Club and back onto the shared path and headed back to Cafe Rockpool near Aus Fair.

This is where I had a MAJOR, MAJOR drama.

I had left my bike lock back in Melbourne on my 'good' mountain bike, consequently, NO BIKE LOCK, NO COFFEE. I was distraught, beside oneself, flustered, in a panic, out of one's mind and rattled, you get the idea.

UPDATE: As I am writing this, the lions have started to roar. MAGIC.

Jump forward 4 hours and I am at the Reject Shop buying a $3 bike lock. I am now at peace with the world, I also had a coffee with Marg at Michels South Park (Southport).

After overcoming all those emotions, I gather up enough strength to continue my ride upto today's other turnaround point at Angler's Paradise. On the way back to camp, I noticed heaps of Georges sitting on the light poles and one flew over my head. I am sure if he could talk, he was 'Welcoming me back to Southport'. I do love my Georges. Just in case, you have forgotten or don't know who or what George is, see 3 photos below.

Today's ride was 36.23kms average 21.1 kph.

Late arvo, Marg was picked up and taken to our future daughter-in-law's Hens party. I wander what state she will be in later tonight, when she rings me for a lift home. I had cheese and bikkies for dinner with only 2 chilled refreshers, as I have to pick up Marg later.
Update at 10pm: Marg rang to be pickup at the Main Beach restaurant area, I drove over there, Marg was sober and the rest of the party appeared OK.

Tomorrow Luke and family are coming around. I hope to go riding early morning.

Today's route.

Can we fit some more up here.

He is welcoming me back to Southport.

That's hysterical. hehehehehe.

Day 8 - Sunday 23rd March 2014.

Chillin' in Southport.

We didn't get to bed until after 10:30pm (late for us). The Air Con wasn't used, it was borderline whether we needed it or not. We slept well, I got up about 6:30am and went for bike ride while Marg slept.
Left camp at 7:00am, didn't take my camera, still getting into a routine. Rode the same route as yesterday, being Sunday morning, there were more people on the shared path than yesterday before the rain squall. No rain today, only brilliant sunshine. Up until the Spit, the ride was uneventful, at the Spit (with no camera) there was a pod of at least 20 dolphins/porpoises herding fish. They got as close as 5 meters off the end of the Spit. A group of us watched them fish for at least 10 minutes. Mother nature at its best.
I didn't stop at any of the coffee shops, even though I have a bike lock, as there are too many people about. Weekdays are when I stop for a coffee.

The weather was 21-26 deg with a light Southerly, today's ride was 37.24kms average 19.5 kph.

Lukey had texted us and said that he would ride over to us on his motorbike about 10:30am, so I had time for another refreshing shower. Yesterday, we gave Luke Marg's laptop to rebuild it. He brought that with him, all rebuilt and working better than ever. He stayed for an hour or so and we sat in the shade of the awning with a slight cool breeze. After he left, Marg and I walked around the perimeter of the Stardust Circus and shock, horror, I took some photos. I also spotted a large yacht at the marina.

We are still NOT acclimatised to the humidity, so this arvo we will have a nanna nap.

Update at 8:30pm:

We had a nanna nap and then walked over to one of the two pools in our park. Usually, there are kids of all ages in the pool, but for whatever reason, there was noboby about, so we had the pool to ourselves for over an hour. It was really refreshing. I then sat in the shade and gazed out over the Broadwater, it is so relaxing. About 6:15pm, we drove over to Lukey, as Marg and Jodi are being spray tanned, as a test for the wedding. She is green, but it will change. We will wait and see.
Dinner was steak and vegies. Very YUMMA.

Tomorrow, I have Mont's bike to fix. It has flat tyres and a loose chain. Where did I go wrong with Lukey, he said some excuse that he does not have the correct tools. So another hectic day.

One of our views - it looks nice when the suns out.

Superyacht Encore at the Marina Mirage.

Zooming closer.

Zoomed right in.

Scenery view.

Labrador in the distance.

The larger apartments in Labrador.

I wasn't talking crap (this time), there ARE lions next door.

Stardust Circus.

Day 9 - Monday 24th March 2014.

Riding, then shopping at Helensvale Westfield.

The Air Con ran all night, consequently, we slept well. I got up about 6:30am and went for bike ride while Marg slept. (sound familiar)
Left camp at 7:00am, rode the same route as yesterday, being Monday morning, there were less people on the shared path than yesterday. No dolphins today. Just a beautiful view. I managed to stop at Cafe Rockpool for a coffee.

Today's ride was 38.46kms average 19.5 kph.

Marg and I went to Helensvale Westfield to check on her makeup appointment for the wedding. All good. I had to buy a tube for our granddaughter's 16" bike. I tried KMart and Target for a 16" tube. No luck, they had every size except 16". In desperation, I bought a puncture repair kit. We had lunch there, Marg had a crepe and I had 2 hotdogs. Very yumma.
Back at camp, I tried to repair the tube, but after pumping it up, it leaked, so I drove to Australia Fair and at KMart, I bought 4 tubes, a floor pump and a shifter (total cost about $30), so Lukey can repair any punctures in future. We did have another swim during the afternoon as there was nobody about.

Dinner was 'chicken with sticks up them' with salad. YUMMA. Followed by a bit of TV.

Tomorrow, we have to meet Luke at his mechanic and drive him home, and then hopefully, get to Bingo before it starts, otherwise, we will go on Friday.

Day 10 - Tuesday 25th March 2014.

Chauffeuring, Riding, then more chauffeuring.

We are running the Air Con nightly, consequently, we slept well. I got up about 7:00am and by the time I was organised, I had to leave to pick up Luke from his new mechanic and drop him home. He was having his car serviced. After arriving back at camp, it was too late to go to Bingo, so we will go on Friday. So I went riding for something different. As I rode to Surfers, I passed Ted and Sue, our neighbours at the CP. Luke rang me when I was about 2kms from camp, saying that his car was ready. SO after a quick shower, I picked up Luke and took him to his car. In the meantime, Marg had received a phone call from her family, saying that her sister Liz that we visited last Friday, is not flash, so this arvo we drove back to PA Hospital in Brisbane, so Marg could visit her. She is not flash, she had a heart attack on Sunday and is in an induced coma on life support..

The peak hour traffic from Brisbane to the Gold Coast was absolute shit.

Today's ride was 35.5kms average 21.2kph.

Dinner was shepherd's pie. YUMMA. Followed by a bit of TV.

Tomorrow, Marg has a makeup test for the wedding.

Day 11 - Wednesday 26th March 2014.

Make-up and Riding.

We are running the Air Con nightly, consequently, we slept well. I got up about 7:00am and and buggered about camp, as I had to drive Marg to Helensvale for a make-up test at 11am. I went home and watched 2 episodes of NCIS before leaving and meeting Marg for a coffee, then headed home, so I could go for a ride.

I digress, this is my dilemma. Marg and I are less than 2 weeks from our youngest son's wedding. I have my suit, tie, new shirt and shoes, all ready to go. Marg today has a test make up day, then a test nail day, a test hair day, she has already done the test spray tan (which she didn't like). It must be a woman thing. I'm not game to suggest just get dressed on the day and away you go. (I am also a tight arse, she is spending a mint on this 'test' crap).
Anyway, back to the important topic, I went riding this arvo. The weather has been wet but warm and humid. I wasn't going to ride due to the increment weather but thought, stuff it, there is nothing better than riding in rain when it is warm. It was 26 degs during my ride. I only carried anything that could get wet, eg phone and wallet wrapped in a snaplock bag. And off I pedalled into the eye of a storm, it was grey, overcast with beautiful storm clouds. Off I head to Surfers, there were 10 people max on the shared path, I feel a drop of rain, my hopes rise, hoping for a deluge, but no, only 10 drops. But the storm clouds are building offshore and are being blowing ashore by an Eastly gusting to 41kph. I make my way to the end of the Spit (GC Seaway), still no rain, but the spray at the end of the Spit is covering a good 20 meters of seawall. The ocean is full of white caps with a strong onshore breeze, I sat on the boulders, just out of range of the spray, watching some very large sets roll in and crash against the seawall. Ohh to have my camera, but not to be.

I rode back along the Seaworld Drive with a howling tail breeze sitting on a very comfortable 30kph without much effort. More rain clouds are developing, I stopped at Cafe Rockpool for a coffee and choccy mud cake (the owner remembered me from last September, anyway, he warms up the mud cake. it was bloody YUMMA). Shock, horror, due to the weather, I was the only customer. I continued riding to my turnaround point at Anglers Paradise with the weather still looking threatening. I am now less than 3 kms from camp, and I am heading towards another rain squall, as I approach it, it weakens to another couple of drops.

In summary, I was all prepared to be drenched, get 'wet as a shag' BUT in the end it was all show with no rain.

Today's ride was 35.48kms.

Dinner was our sausage sizzle. It was YUMMA. Followed by a bit of TV.

We received an update about Marg's sister. She's not looking good.

Tomorrow, nothing is planned.

Day 12 - Thursday 27th March 2014.

Visiting Aus Fair and Riding.

We didn't run the Air Con last night and didn't sleep well. I got up about 7:00am, while Marg had a sleep in. We left late morning for Australia Fair, where we bought me, a shirt and tie for the wedding. I have now completed my attire. Back at camp, I left camp a bit after 1pm in the rain, just constant rain, not real heavy, just constant in a warm 23degs. Nearly identical ride to my other 5 rides. I headed off to my turnaround point (7.9kms away) just south of Cavill Ave Surfers, I passed 19 people and 1 cyclist on the shared path. At the main beach of Surfers there were 10 guys swimming and no one else on the beach between Surfers and The Spit, except for the 5 or 6 Lifeguard towers which were manned but no one on the beach to watch over. Today would be a very long day for the Lifeguards.
On the way from Surfers to the Spit (8.5kms away), I passed 5 people and 2 of those were young female joggers that I passed earlier. On the gravel path that starts at the rear of the Sheraton Mirage until the Spit, there was no one, I was alone, just me and my mighty trusty steed and the constant rain. It was heaven.
I rode to the end of The Spit and the waves were bigger than yesterday with wind gusts upto 50kph directly onshore. As I stood at the end, protected by the 2.5 meter diameter beacon, I noticed a 40ft ish cabin cruiser heading out the seaway, it was tough going (I think the skipper is bloody mad, but then I was out riding in this weather). Based on the Spit is the Volunteer Marine Rescue, I stopped and spoke to the guy who was just about to start his shift, we both agreed the skipper was crazy. The visiblity was down to 100 meters due to the numerous rain squalls. If you look really close, you may see me at the end of the Spit. Same as yesterday I rode back to The Southport YC along the Seaworld Drive, again the gale blow me there. It was beautiful.
I rode to my cafe Rockpool for a coffee and it was closed due to the crap weather. As I approached camp, instead of riding the extra 8kms to Anglers Paradise, I turned into our camp, but I did last 27.2kms in the rain.
Today with a little rain, the Queenslanders have locked themselves inside. They should be out playing in the rain, like this old fart was. In summary, I did get drenched, 'wet as a shag on a rock' unlike yesterday.

Today's ride was 27.24ms.

Dinner was chicken parma with vegies. It was YUMMA. Followed by a bit of TV.

Tomorrow, we plan to visit Marg's sister, some of her brothers and sisters are flying in from Melbourne tonight and tomorrow.

*2014 - Index page*

Staying at Southport.