OVERNIGHT AT A ROADTRAIN REST AREA
Trip Start Oct 05, 2009
325Trip End Oct 31, 2013
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WEATHER: 0 degrees overnight, 13 degrees daytime
JOURNEY: Broken Hill to Cobar Barrier Hgwy 460kms
It was a freezing cold morning when we packed quickly and left the racetrack at Broken Hill after a long and restfull sleep in the van. We had a quick chat with our fellow campers but we were shivering too hard to hang about for long.
We had a 460 kilometre journey to Cobar, on the Barrier Highway ahead of us with not much in between so we connected the ipod and chose shuffle to entertain us along the way. It was a cool day but sunny and bright and the sky was very blue against the golden grasses and red dirt.
We passed huge cattle and sheep stations and were astonished to see thousands of feral goats feeding amongst the low vegetation and grasses. Goats were introduced to Australia with the first colonisers and apparently there are millions of goats decimating the vegetation throughout the country; some are rounded up and killed for meat.
The cruising wedgetail eagles, kites etc. are a very impressive sight out here and they along with the crows do a good job of cleaning up the daily road kill.
We crossed the Darling River at Wilcannia and drove on to Cobar, another mining town with a lot of history. We were surprised to see two cyclists battling the wind a long way from anywhere
The driver was tired but willing to investigate the Old Reservoir camping area which was pretty but the road in was very churned up and the sole camper said you get stuck out there if it rains; that was enough to send us back to the road train rest stop, close by the information centre.
We found 2 caravans and 2 motorhomes already set up for the night and we tested a few sites for flat ground until we were satisfied. It was buckwheat noodles and Sheila's special tomato sauce for dinner after a stroll around the main street of Cobar.
The town has wide streets and interesting buildings and stands at the cross roads of the Kidman and Barrier Highways and the Cobar Shire's economy is about mining and sheep and cattle enterprises.
The Great Cobar Mine was digging up copper since 1880 and by 1912 the copper mine employed 2,000 workers and supported a population of 10,000. 8 years later the mine closed and the town's population was impoverished and reduced to less than 1,000 people. Boom and bust!
We took a look at the New Cobar Open Cut Gold Mine that is still operating today.
Surprisingly the rest stop was fairly quiet, considering its position at the junction of the highways; two big road trains parked early and filled the bays!
Sheila set the alarm for 4am to watch the Europe Cup soccer final between Spain and Italy, Kath took a peak but fell asleep again until Sheila snuggled in to sleep at 7am for another 2 hours.
Then, it was on the road again, this time on the Kidman Way north to Bourke.