Day 19 - Wednesday 27th April 2016.
Gemtree Zircon tour.
I slept well until waking up cold about 4am, but I was ready for the coolness andf pulled on my sleepingbag. I went to check the time on my iPhone, but it was flat.
For a split second, I was worried that we would sleep in and miss today's tour, then it hit me that the Camp's generator fires up at 6:30am, and it would wake us.
It did. As soon as it was working, our clock beside the bed started flashing and I put on TV and we laid in bed watching Kochie. SO it was all good with the world.
There was no point showering before we went zircon ing, as we would be covered in red dust and red mud and I was. We had brekky, got ourselves organised and drove
over to the fossicking meeting point, same place as yesterday.
There were 2 other cars, Mick and Anne from yesterday was on our zircon tour and some other guy and his partner was on the garnet tour. We were given the same
equipment as yesterday except for a bigger pick and an extra 20litre water bottle.
Chris was our tour guide again and led out our safari at 8:10am and headed along the Plenty Hwy for 8kms before heading off road at the Zircon sign at Mud Tanks
and continued for 10kms to the fossicking areas arriving at 8:31am. Chris showed us what we were looking for and how to do it, then we were set loose. Our usual
fossicking routine, which is, I dig and Marg sorts out what I dug. Similar to yesterday, we put on sunscreen and dug and sorted in the hot sunshine. It was very
tiring, we had plenty of water breaks and some food, we lasted 2.75hours before we 'pulled the pin' and headed back to camp. Before leaving, I took some photos,
and on the gravel road back to the Plenty Hwy, we came across 3 stockmen on motorbikes and a quad, mustering cattle, SO we stopped and took more photos.
We had a pleasant drive back to camp, arriving at 11;55am. Dropped off all their equipment at the meeting point, showed Aaron our zircons which ranged from crap
to 5 carats of cutters.
We had another BEAUTIFUL shower and washed all the 'red dust and mud' off us, then we walked over to the shop and had pies for lunch. THEN Marg and I had a nanna nap.
Just on 6pm, we walked up to the Camp Kitchen area for the "Chalmers Family Camp oven dinner" held each Wednesday and Sunday, with the Chalmers Family who own the
Gemtree CP, it costs $20 per head and Crownies cost $6 each, I had a few, they went down well. We sat with Mick and Ann who were on both our fossicking tours.
There were approx 25 guests and at least another 10-15 family and staff. About 6:45pm, after a few drinks, Carmel the Chalmers Matriarch told us what the procedure
for the night would be. This included an explanation of the Camp Oven setup, what was for dinner and a brief movie of the Chalmers that were one of the FIRST
white people to arrive in this area.
Dinner was roast lamb, potato, pumpkin, broccoli,
cauliflower with white sauce topped off with gravy. It was absolutely YUMMA.
Tomorrow, we leave Gemtree and head to Ti Tree for an overnighter.