Monday, June 25, 2012

It started with an eathquake and roadworks.

Well we decided to head off for a few days with the van after an earthquake of 5.3 (depending on where you read) came and shook the house enough that I had to hang on to Paul to keep my balance. This area certainly does not normally have them (maybe a small tremor) but this was the strongest one to be felt in 109 years. 2 towns across from where we live was hit the hardest with groceries falling off shelves and quite a few cracks appearing. Also they are still working on our road and this is the 3rd time they are digging/working/fixing the road/path/driveway/nature strip so we figured lets get away for a few nights for some quiet.
This is the neat setup inside our other 4wd Challenger and as you can see shows the temp for the morning/day we headed off and is about what the top is now that winter has set in at Gippsland.
We arrived at our first destination to discover this...... not really a good start with the table being ripped out of the floor. But hey we are away and that is a good thing, right???
Nice little camping site near Eden in the next state from where we live in Victoria.  The asking price for the night at this bush site was $10 a person so $20, which is pretty steep seeing as there was only a drop toilet and BBQ.  We have stayed at place similar for free and paid $20 for a powered site at a commercial place so wont go here again but was nice though.
We were within walking distance to the sea so that was a bonus and the weather was ok, just cool.
Had a good walk around and enjoyed the views.

Sorry for the blurry pic but camera is playing up. A grey stork like bird happy at the beach area.

The bbq's which did not work, so another reason not a good price at this camping area.
Anyway, after a good breaky of bacon/egg roll off on the road we headed with no real place in mind.
The weather was beautiful and as you can see a lot warmer too ♥

Our mini sunny was happy to be away too and we headed to Bega to check out the cheese factory.  Picked up quite a few good cheeses to enjoy on our travels.
We got to a town called Cobargo and saw they had a national park so decided to head that way and check if they had a good free camping ground. Headed on through the cattle grid area with sign saying Cattle for the next 5klm's and road ok.

Had a small creek crossing which our van has done before as is an off road type, not that you would go too far off road with a van.

Came to this wonderful camping spot which had fireplaces, so I got to work and had a fire happening very quickly as knew the temp would be low overnight.

Even had a drop loo, bbq if needing to use it.  Our van has gas bottle so able to still cook and also run lights off the battery, so the little home away from home. Just no power so no heating or electric cooking but that was fine as Paul was cooking up a chicken Korma on the gas in the pan, yum.

I thought sitting near the fire was a good place to get on with those socks I have been knitting for ages. Nice purple colour with flecks.
See I make great fires lol, so warm.

Next morning Paul enjoyed a cheese roll before our trip onwards.

Sun was shining as we headed off and decided to turn right instead of left back down the way we came.
And as you can see not good........the road actually gave way and slid the car sideways to the edge where it was like quicksand. The van initially was still on hard road surface, but with the car pulling it obviously got itself over too, but not stuck like the car!!

We were only 1/2klm from where we had stopped for the night and knew we had NO mobile reception, so decided to walk the way we were heading to see if we could get reception and ring for HELP!! Paul knew there was a picnic ground about 5-6klm's away so we reckoned good chance of mobile reception.....right?????.......

Came to the river and walked across still checking for reception as we walked. 
Wet feet and did I mention HILLS, we were climbing up, then down, then up, then down. Certainly getting a fitness work out with the walking.
We then came to a tree across the road which certainly would have held us up if we had got this far with the car and van but could have cut it to make room if needed. Road surface too was no where near like what we had come across back where we were stuck.  It was all good surface.

The picnic ground and still NO MOBILE reception, so we decided to walk a bit further and still zilch. So walked on back to car/van as we had walked for at least 2hrs and wanted to be back with the van before getting cold and dark.  Roughly 12-14klm's walked so was glad to be back at the van. 

Paul set the van up on a stump as jockey wheel sunk down and tried to level the van to at least keep it stable so we could go inside.

Car had definitely sunk more whilst we were gone, but because van was no longer connected it was pretty much in same spot, just on a not good tilt. Paul started up a little fire on side of road too so we could get a little warm. We also walked back down to the campground in case anyone else had come, but no and yep no mobile reception.
Following morning (freezing) Paul headed off alone as he figured one of us should stay with car/van in case someone did come from the directed where we found NO mobile reception. He went past the original campsite and beyond.

And I watched the other way for the next few hours, doing a bit of walking (to warm up) and also reading to kill time.

Success, Paul walked for under an hour and got slight mobile reception and was able to put in a call to racv who advised even though in top cover, bogging is not included even if the road collapsed under the car. But the said they would ring back with who would be able to help us, so after 5 call attempts to Paul down the road, she was able to find out exactly where we were and was sending a guy from the town Cobargo who knew the road well, to come and help us.  And as you can see the car is out and van ready to be rescued.

The challenger up the road waiting for me to go and get it to bring it back to link up with van.

Getting chains on to pull van out from the back first to try and straighten it up.

Major mud on those wheels.

NRMA the rescue man now going to reverse the van down the road and help paul turn it around. I headed up to get the challenger ready to link up again.

But noooooo, yep as you can see flat tyre....... we sent the nrma man on his way and told him we would, well Paul would change the tyre and we would meet him in town to pay him for his help.

Ok so spare wheel on and then this is what we come across, a tree has fallen overnight just low enough to stop the van going under so Paul got to sawing by hand as he discovered the inverter which allows you to have power in remote areas was now not working so little electric saw could not work...

Thankfully the other branch just slid/scraped over the aircon/heat unit and we were at last on our way to freedom, yay.  Called in and paid the guy who also attempted to repair our wheel, but the alloy rim had been damaged by a rock so it also will need to be replaced, one expensive vanning trip!! But still fun and we will do it again lol.

Oh and here are the completed socks, they are sooooo warm to wear ☺☺☺ What has everyone else been doing lately??


  1. What an unexpected adventure you had! Bet you're pleased that you had your knitting with you - and your book!!!

    1. thankyou sharon, lovely to know someone reads it lol Yes, even got to finish the book which I had been reading for months lol

  2. Good grief, what an adventure. You Aussies are made of strong stuff - I think I would have had a meltdown!!

    1. lol thankyou It was an interesting time lol


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