Left our little riverside camp and needed to buy some bottled water. The variety of water supplies had finally caught up with Philippa's tummy and she needed something much more predictable.
We went into St George for a look and out to the Beardmore Dam on the Balonne River.
Free camp tonight at the Nindigully Pub. This is a place that my brother-in-law has spoken highly of many times. Amazing place where you can get to talk to some very interesting fellas. The locals as well as the travellers.
We had way too much to drink talking to some blokes who had just come for a drive out here from Gympie for the weekend. While Nindigully is famous for their huge burgers, we settled for a delicious steak cooked on a plate on a fireplace next to the Moonie River under the coolabahs. What a place- free camping, great beer, steak on the fireplace, a good night's sleep and delightful company.
Straight forward trip out the Cunningham Highway and New England Highway. Headed out the Stanthorpe - Texas Road to the main campsite at Sundown NP.
We camped at Middle Rocks campground. This is the one with no facilities. Our campsite was under dense trees which was great for keeping cool, but terrible for charging the batteries with the solar panels. I was moving the panels around all day chasing small patches of sunlight. A lesson there in campsite selection.
There was one day of rain. We chose that day to walk north along the beach towards Red Rock. I suspect we passed that and arrived at the next headland. Unfortunately, I did not take my iPad so was not tracking our progress. We managed to find a spot under a rocky overhang to have lunch. We had remembered to take our rain jackets. They certainly proved their value that day.
Drove home via the township of Woodgate. This was Election Day, so we tried to do an absentee vote in Woodgate. However, there was such a long queue, we decided to head off and make sure we got home to vote at Karalee. We succeeded.
Woodgate is a very pretty town. The real estate world seems not to have arrived in a serious way yet. It looks quite small and unspoilt. This will certainly change though.
Scored a free camp for the night on the banks of the Balonne River. W found a very secluded camp by following a side road off the Ballon - Dirranbandi Road and then taking a track off that towards the river. It was across the road from a camp on Wikicamps. We had the camp to ourselves. Pretty cool! This means w have now managed to camp for free on the banks of four of Australia's famous rivers- Snowy, Murray, Murrumbidgee and now the Balonne.
Following unseasonal rain in January, there was quite a lot of water in the river.
This was the first trip with the Trayon. Also the first trip using the tracking functionality of Hema Explorer.
Took a site for two nights in the Crocodile Caravan Park in Lightning Ridge. Strange name for a caravan park in the middle of NSW. It was quite pleasant with a swimming pool that helped us cool off in the afternoon after walking around town.
The site cost us $53 for the two of us for two nights.
We went on a bus tour of the local sights in the morning, then had lunch at the bowling club. Wow! What a place for such a small town.
We stopped in Kyogle on the way through to visit a laundromat. There was also the mandatory stop at a cafe for coffee. We found a very nice coffee shop next to the Super IGA and the bottle shop.
The coffee shop also sold nice boutique chutneys, sauces, etc.
Continued onto Toonumbar National Park and Iron Pot Creek Campground.
The beach was very smooth with good firm sand this trip. There had been only one or two other vehicles on the beach since the high tide, so it was not chopped up at all. Easy, comfortable driving on the sand. There seemed to be a very wide beach compared to the last time we were here.
Tyre pressure at 18psi. Used high 4WD most of the time.
Very little traffic- only passed one other vehicle going the other way.
Great weather- comfortably warm, clear, gentle breeze.
It was not difficult to get into Kinkuna. We didn't feel the need to deflate the tyres at all. There was hardly anyone there. However, there were signs that it must get very busy at some times of the year. It is similar to Bribie with campsite accessible from the beach. However, there is also a sand road that runs along just behind the beach past all the campsites. The sites are not organised or numbered and there are no fire rings. We had a great campsite. However, next time we will venture a bit further along the road to get a little more privacy.
There was a very big tide difference, meaning that at high tide the beach would be completely impassible to vehicles.
We had a couple of great walks in both directions along the beach. It was even warm enough to have a swim.
When we left, we drove along the beach as far as possible to the south. It is not possible to get to Woodgate via the beach. Theodolite Creek has a very wide estuary that is too deep for vehicles- even at low tide.
This would be on the list for a revisit sometime.