Gibraltar National Park
Trip Start Oct 05, 2009
325Trip End Oct 31, 2013
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Gibraltar NP via Gwydir Highway, Mulligan’s Hut camp ground.
Fees $10 pppn.
Because the park had only just reopened after a bushfire in the area, we found just 4 other camping spots habited so once again we were able to choose a perfect site.
The van parked, we collected firewood and thought about tonight’s menu – BBQ chicken, with broccoli infused black lentils and of course a bottle of red; Sheila keeps saying at these low temperatures the wine is too cold but keeping the bottle close to the fire raised the temperature a little.
Our camp site was invaded by a group of three bird watchers chasing the progress of a Superb Lyrebird thru’ the trees in search of its nocturnal resting place. Agatha and Majek, 2 young Polish travellers joined us to check out the commotion and told of their adventures around Oz, Asia and USA. They had bought an old combi van to travel here and they were keen to hear stories of Australia and our aboriginals. We liked their fearless and adventurous attitude and enjoyed a good old chat with them until.......
The night got very cold and, under the doona in the van, seemed like the best option when our visitors returned to their camp sites. Only a brief session of reading and then lights out!
Saturday morning was 5 degrees and Sheila had to return to bed to warm up after a very cold shower.
Our camp site has a table, benches and fire place so no need to unpack our own gear.The park is so quiet and peaceful with only sounds of nature to attract attention. We were fascinated by the red necked wallabies chomping on the green grass by our table and especially the mother with baby in pouch; the baby was tiny and without fur.
Enjoyed getting out the books for some quiet reading time and kept alert to the birds dropping by our spot.
No camp neighbours tonight, so we started an early fire, cooked a fine feast of pork steaks and vegies and settled into the van early to keep warm. The lyrebird came by again just after sunset.
Sunday presented cold and drizzling. Bed is warm and comfy but Kath gets up to have a face washer bath and meets the beautiful lyrebird scratching around on the forest floor; the tail is spectacular but the bird is shy and retreats further into the scrub. Kath excites Sheila about the lyrebird and she jumps into the cold morning air and we are able to catch glimpses of him in the same place. Wow that is a special treat.
A walk to "The Needles" took us to an area, burnt out in the recent fire; it was spooky, charred black flora and no birds. We could smell the fire and had to take extra care in following the track amongst the ruins. A heavy rain period cleared in time for the night’s camp fire and a spectacularly clear sky.
This has been a really beautiful camping spot and we were interested in the history of the area; apparently an engineer had planned a dam in this spot in the late 1800’s; lucky for us it didn’t happen. Mulligan’s hut remains in the park today as a reminder of the past history of cattle, wood milling etc.
Thank goodness for the forward -thinking people of that era who saw the need to preserve such places for the future!