Week One of the Adventure

Trip Start Jun 27, 2010
Trip End Oct 01, 2010

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Flag of Australia  , South Australia,
Saturday, July 3, 2010

Week One of the Flood Family Adventure

Day 1 – packing, packing and more packing. A rainy Saturday had set us behind, but eventually we set off at 4.30 (after a brilliant 1-1 draw by the Strikers ...Go Strikers ... keep the scores coming).  Luckily we only had to trip up to Bendigo to find a welcome 3 course dinner and electric blankets at the world renowned Flood (the Elder) B&B.

Day 2 – Conor and I rug up and go for an early walk in the crisp Bendigo morning (good training for what was to come).  Then we set off for Mildura (late lunch), a quick cross of the Murray to say we'd been in NSW, then a fruit fly inspection at the SA border.  Why we’d have contraband in a miniscule glove box I don’t know!  First set up of the trailer at Renmark Big 4 overlooking the Murray (shower rating 9/10 - sheer luxury in retrospect).

Day 3 – Early morning stop at Jimmy’s Fruit Barn to stock up on fruit and veg, then Banrock Station to grab just a couple of bottles of our favourite drop, crossed the Murray on a vehicle ferry at Cadell and then up to Burra for lunch.  Arrived Wilpena Pound after sunset and kept warm by setting up.  Conor and Keir thrilled to meet a kanga on the way to the toilet block – they promptly christened him Frank.

Day 4 – Declan, Keir and I head off on a walk to Hills Homestead and up to Wangarra Lookout for a brilliant view across the Pound – 7.8 km – pretty good stroll.  Keir’s boots are rubbing so when we return to camp I go to get his other shoes from the Landcruiser ... no luck ... check the tent ... no luck.  Turns out somehow manage to leave an entire bag of kids shoes between Renmark and Wilpena – somewhere on the side of the road sits a St John of God bag filled with boys shoes #$@^!!! (Okay Mum stop tutting now)

Day 5 – Trek back to Port Augusta to restock with shoes  and to buy 2 subzero sleeping bags for youngest boys.  Visited great ruins at Kanyaka dating back to 1850s.  The drive is dotted with dry creek beds and 100 year old stone ruins of abandoned farms.

Day 6 – Chris, Keir and Conor tackle the Homestead/Wangarra walk, Declan takes a solo bike ride up part of the Mawson Trail and I tackle the laundry.  In the afternoon we 4WD out to Sacred Canyon where we climb into the canyon to see aboriginal carvings.  On the way and way back we see a couple of emus and masses of kangaroos.  We have our first campfire that evening.

Day 7 – It’s 1 degree Celsius in the tent when we have to get up to pack up.  3 hours later (we’ll get quicker I’m sure) we’re off through the Bunyeroo Valley, fording lots of beautiful dry creeks, with amazing views of the bluffs and escarpments of the Flinders Ranges.  We get to Blinman (apparently SA’s  highest town) for lunchtime, then onto Arkaroola and our bush camp.  It’s all feeling incredibly remote.

For the dedicated readers only, this week’s story is titled "the tale of marsupial ratty":

We fell fast asleep relatively early. It’s quite windy but we are cosy inside our canvas home.

I awake –it’s pitch black.

                Scratch, scratch.

The surrounding trees were way to allow a branch to scrape the canvas.

Scratch, scratch, scratch.

It’s definitely hard claws on canvass I decide – not big, but tiny.  A marsupial mouse is trying to get in just above my head.

                Scratch, scratch.

Ignore it – it’ll go away.

                Scratch, scratch.

I bang the canvas and for a moment it ceases... it must be frightened ... so it’s definitely something alive!

                “Chris! Chris!”


                “Chris! Chris! Are you awake”

                “I am now”

I explain about the marsupial mouse.

                “No it’s just a tree branch in the wind” he says dismissively”

                “No, it can’t be ...can you go check?”

Very reluctantly my defender rises and torch in hand goes to survey the exterior of Chez Flood.  He locates the offender – a Velcro tab dancing in the wind –not an endangered species after all!

Next week – the magnificent Arkaroola and more.

Suzanne's Bush Camping Beauty Tip No.1 - A woollen hat worn 24/7 hides all sorts of hair disasters.

PS. Desperate for news of Masterchef and Julia’s cabinet (probably in that order), please post comments.

Slideshow Report as Spam


Lizzie on

Hi Suzi and boyzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz,
All is sounding lots of good fun and no doubt good humour being dispatched by your white knight in times of near-wildlife-misses - can just hear chris's chuckle in the middle of the night:)
Well as so far as Jules is concerned - not keeping abreast of the Cabinet but haven't been so impressed with her policy on the refugee "crisis" or her outright "no" to gay marriages...hmmmm...have to wait and see hey...
But on another political front - steve and I actually enrolled on the electoral role! had been doubting whether or not I wanted to with my disillusionment, but now that local, Lindsay has stepped down, figure that my vote my count for something?
Now on a more contraversial matter - Marion was knocked out of Masterchef - what a disaster - everyone is outraged and apparantly Australia is in grief if you believe the media!!!! It began when she was in a Team of 4 against a Team of 5 (who won) and had to cook for the army....so it was a bit of bad luck and then the whole team went into elimination except Adam used his "pin" and it was an elimination between Jono, Aaron and Mazza - they had to identify "nuts" - yes nuts - pathetic choice of food groups - but anyway....Jono won so it was a 15 min cook off between Aazza and Mazza - doing satay sauce....and apparantly both tasted fantastic but Aazza's looked better - YES LOOKED better - that was about it....THAT SHOW IS FULL OF _ _ _ _!!!!! (just found your entry doesn't accept swearing - very clever) - anyway now disillusioned about whether to continue watching or not...but they always suck you in, don't they?!
Finally 2 exciting things:
1. Settlement took place Friday arvo and we now are paying $1m to the bank - aaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh - who ever would have thought - and you thought (some years ago) buying a house for 1/2 m was outrageous!!!! Removalists come next Stday - so got heaps of packing to do - best be on me way....
2. MOST IMPORTANTLY - Netherlands are in the FIFA final with Spain!!!!!!!!! we are so excited but Steve is driving all over Melbourne to try and find Hannah an orange t-shirt before tonight!!!!! So 4.30am tonight/tomorrow we'll all be squashed on one 2-seater couch (cause the other one is still in storage!) - HUP HOLLAND HUP! Then back to school tomorrow first day of Term 3 with exhausted children! ha

btw are you on stalkbook too? I am....

love to you all and looking forward to your next week xoxoxoxoxoxo

Lizzie on

Oh...I almost forgot - half our household have been in jubilation by the Tig's latest win - must tell Chris...Phoebe is starting to get smug though and is saying things like "Tigers are going to be in the Premiership" - ha!

Mum on

Well that got the endorphines going. Great stuff! Make that Conor's job to look around the camp site after every pack up, he has the best eyesight. Jasper I'm sure is missing you all but he is not being neglected. This morning we walked along the beach to P'dale yacht club and back along the tea tree track, he loved it. And guess who pats him on returning home, sits and scratches his chin, has him upstairs and TAKES HIM FOR THE OCCASIONAL WALK!!!! We had an email from Annette last week to say that Omar had died 94! We enjoyed reading the blog perhaps the boys will write a day every now and then that would be impressive! Pics are good I think Declan and Keir have grown already. Continue to refine that pack up, enjoy yourselves and stay safe. Love to all .

Ana on

Hello travellers... wonderful to hear (and see) details of the adventure so far! Even though I've been watching Dora the Explorer repeatedly for the last twelve months, I am yet to tire of hearing travel tales (lost baggage notwithstanding)... so please keep up the good work of bringing the stories of our great land back to us, city dwellers, stuck in the Melbourne winter wonderland. (Honestly Suz, there's nothing but latte and foxtel here worth missing)...
gotta go, someone is hollering for me... xxx

Althea on

Mpressed! photos n all and it sounds like you are having a great time, small hiccups notwithstanding. Boys can go barefoot and harden up the feet :-) And at least you don't have to worry about rhinos, hippos and lions at your tent door... Njoy.

Ellen on

Thanks SHR. Blogging is new to me but in the same spirit in which you have embarked on your epic journey I will follow the links and do my best to find you.
Found the first week and want to see a picture of the hat and bad hair.
Can I send your links to new F&P team?
See if you can buy the monopoly card game - Guaranteed non-screen entertainement for hours and HUGE hit in the Sinclair family. Take care all.

kennedy on

We need a photo of that very special woolen hat!! Hope Chris spoke severely to the offending velcro tab, but did not frighten it into extinction.

Caro Flood on

Had a great chuckle reading about your adventures. Keep 'em coming and love to all

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