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Buronga, NSW

Wednesday 7 - Sunday 11 Oct 1998

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Wednesday 7th

We decided to move on to Mildura. The caravan park in Buronga just across the river is run by a CMCA member and specialises in motorhomes though there are caravans here as well.

Spent some time making safe the awning after a minor altercation with a bridge. All will be well when I get a couple of new struts.

The fridge is still misbehaving. It has always been disinclined to cool properly when the outside temperature is high. In Brisbane I bought a genuine Electrolux vent set and had it fitted to ensure that the hot gas from the chimney does not pass over the condenser. The performance of the fridge had not come good so I sealed off the main part of the new vent (which is just below the level of the condenser) in case it was disturbing the convection in the air column over the condenser. Unfortunately we now have a new problem. The thermostat has jammed permanently on resulting in sub-zero temperatures inside the fridge.

Thursday 8th

This caravan park on the banks of the Murray River and all set about with giant River Redgums, is so nice that we decided to stay a few days.

I ordered new parts for the awning to be delivered to Berri so we will go there early to do the repairs before the rally.

We returned to Lock 11 for lunch. The Whistling Kites which we had seen in such large numbers in March are nearly all gone. We saw only two. Perhaps they went to Menindee where we saw so many last week.

photo of a crocodile We were surprised to find a crocodile basking in the sun on the beach.

The weir is running at 11,000 Megalitres/day (4,000 million US gallons/day) which is over twice the flow we saw in March. Lock 10, which takes the water from the Darling as well as the Murray, is running at 25,000 Megalitres/day ( 9,000 million US gallons/day). When the recent floods in the northern half of the catchment arrive in November, the flow will presumably rise dramatically.

Friday 9th

While we were shopping, Jean tried to get rid of a bag full of books at the local second hand book shop with little success. The owner didn't want most of the books and replacements cost three quarters of the new price. We found the Red Cross Op Shop where the donation was eagerly received and where the replacements were priced at three for a dollar.

Then it rained.

We had planned to take a guided bus tour to Lake Mungo National Park but the roads are closed because of the rain last night. Since it is raining again today, we wll take the trip some other time.

Saturday 10th
photo of flowering gum

With the sun shining, we decided to do the laundry. Unfortunately, we didn't get in early enough and there were no washing machines or drying lines left by eight o'clock.

We spent the day at Red Cliffs 15 kilometres (10 miles) south of Mlldura.

On display in the main square is an extraordinary machine called Big Lizzie. Built in 1915 by a mad Victorian inventor to replace camel trains for transporting bulk goods across the arid inland. It is a 50 tonne tractor with a 45 kW (60 HP) single cylinder oil engine driving patented wheels which lay down big timber planks as they turn. It hauled two 30 tonne trailers and on one occasion moved 900 bales of wool weighing about 50 tonnes in one load. Unfortunately, none of the bridges of that time could withstand its weight and it was stranded south of the Murray River. It lay disused for 45 years but has been restored and put on display to celebrate the feats of the pioneers of this area.

We lunched on the top of the red cliffs of the Murray River from which the town took its name amid masses of birds and some stunning flowering gums.

Sunday 11th

Washed clothes, waited around for the weather to clear, walked to the weir, wondered where to go next, wet our whistles with some other CMCA people at happy hour.

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Created by Robin Chalmers on Wed, 7 Oct, 1998
Last revised Mon, 20/9/07