Waltzing Matilda - Mt Isa to Normanton

Trip Start Feb 20, 2010
Trip End May 28, 2010

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Where I stayed
Normanton Caravan Park

Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Sunday, April 25, 2010

We decided that 2 days in Mt Isa was enough time to see what we wanted to see and do what we wanted to do. We went up to the lookout and did the shopping/washing etc.  We also did some research on our route and decided to go to Karumba (via Cloncurry/Normanton).  We left early on Sunday morning (ANZAC day) and planned to stop at the Burke and Wills roadhouse which is about half way between Mt Isa and Karumba.

Again we left at sunrise to try and beat the heat – the only problem with this is that as we were heading directly east, the sun was in our eyes all the way to Cloncurry.  We had a quick roadside break about 60km out of Mt Isa to meet up with a couple that we had met in Broome then, after a fuel stop at Cloncurry, we turned onto the Matilda Highway.  The roads up to now had been quite good, but I guess that couldn't last forever…

We arrived at the Burke and Wills Roadhouse at lunchtime, had a look around at their camp ground and decided that a rest area would be better.  So after lunch we continued on to the next rest area with toilets – 90km up the road.  The road from here on got much worse and most of the time was single lane (that’s one lane only, not one lane each way) and we had to dodge the potholes, rutts, sink holes and grooves.  The vehicles coming the other way were all good to us and they moved over so that we didn’t have to go into the dirt at the edge of the road – even a truck!  I didn’t like this road at all.  We arrived at the rest area very hot and sweaty.  There was very little shade except for the shelter over the picnic table – not a good place to spend the night.

We decided to rest for an hour or two and then keep going to Normanton (another 110km) – hopefully it would cool off a bit, there were quite a few clouds promising shade or even maybe some rain.  We arrived at Normanton at about 4.30pm, set up and went for a swim to cool down.  The mozzies were so bad that they were biting us on the head while we were in the pool.  We went to bed early because the mozzies were so bad that nothing would keep them away.  It was soooo still and soooo hot that we hardly slept at all.
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