We negotiated the terror track out of Greenglade to Wonboyn without a hitch. Equipped with the confidence of getting in meant we could get out, Margaret walked in front through the couple of Kms tight bits and calmly called ‘all clear’ on the CB. Quite a contrast to two days back J
Stopped at Wonboyn Lakes boat ramp for a visit to those magic rubbish bins to add our minor contribution to some bloody strong pongs from empty pilchard wrappings. We had hoped to find a tap as our washing had been in the Esky for two days and was overdue for rinsing. Nothing more than a small tank on the loo block so we passed but back on the hiway found a track into a state forest rest area where we did one rinse in brown (tannin stained) creek water and one in tank water. Now we need a dryer. Back to pongs for a mo. The Black & Gold lemon flavoured ammonia based disinfectant has worked just fine. A stubbie (375mm) in the tank and emptying at five days has given no bathroom odours. It still ain’t roses to bucket away to a dunny but on par with the full loo brew.
About 40Km on to Genoa. Not much to say about that town other than they may as well finish closing it up. Three quarters (5 of eight) had the doors shut shelves empty. I needed some smokes and stuck my head through the doors of the pubs saloon bar. Dark, dingy, old & empty. The public bar. Similar décor, a disinterested barmaid who offered me the choice of three brands I’ve never tried so I bought one and drove on across the hiway towards Gypsy Point and Mallacoota. GP was a pretty and private jetty and boat ramp on the lake. Looked up market and not too welcoming to itinerate travelers so a quick look and onwards. Coming out, R2 turned over 100,000Km so I sang happy birthday to her. Mallacoota was a surprise with wide roads, telegraph poles, housing estate, shopping center, lots of motels and caravan parks. The welcoming sign proclaimed ‘no camping on council land’. On the map, Wonboyn and Mallacoota have the same sized dots yet are a hundred times different in size. The area is very smoky from controlled hazard reduction burning. We drove 3Km out of town and found the car parking area above Davis Creek Beach. Another pleasant overnighter with no problems and our clothes line discretely strung behind R2.
We have just been a bit spoiled with Wonboyn and as nice as Mallacoota is it is different. Walked the heath track yesterday evening and I copped another dose of bites all over my ankles. One day I’ll wise up and put a pair of jeans and socks on when the sun is going down. Most unfair as they don’t even touch fair skinned Margaret but just adore me. Tried for fish this morning in a big surf. Not my turn yet. An old chap, the only other on ten miles of sand, hooked a few very small Tom Ruffy on pippies.
The front diesel tank has developed a slight weep so along with its rust flakes it’s due for retirement. I’d be happy to put back a genuine 200L tank (the original from R2 is on the back) so if anyone in our path can locate a tank from an FT series Hino let us know.
Today we’ll have a closer look around Malacoota, fill the tanks at 99.9c and unless we find another good spot we’ll head south and around the corner toward Point Hicks.
You gotta smile. When I first sent the diary out I said let me know if you don’t want it. Two contrasting comments –
Geoff, we are happy for you while you are enjoying your adventure and sending us the highlights.
By reading your diary, we almost can feel and imagine what you feel and see.
Generally, would prefer the executive summary only, the basic domestic stuff is of little interest. Have consulted with others and this is a consistent request.
Yesterday we made a late exit from DC Beach to get diesel, do a little shop and have a cruise around Mallacoota.
Both tanks full. Rear topped up with 107.13L and front with 192.68L. Total 299.81L @ 99.9c, $299.51. I did a quick mental calc on fuel consumption and am pleasantly surprised. 823Km on less than 200L smells like better than 25L/100Km. Our last calc was done on the trip to Casino which was 32.5L/100Km. This was all at 70Km/h on the hiway, our cruising speed at 2200rpm. Since then I’ve cleaned out the tanks & fuel lines, replaced all filters and, under the guidance of a fuel injection specialist, opened the nut on the fuel pump by a full turn. Ken Grimes had said that as R2 never blew smoke, not uphill under load or with a big tromp on the pedal, it was starving for fuel. I have read where bigger injectors have been installed (on Detroits I think) and used less fuel. I guess if you get more power to hold on to a higher gear at low revs you may run more efficiently. Time for the calculator. This said I must presume that when the pump clicked off the tank was at exactly the same level as the previous fill. An inch of fuel in such a big box tank would bugger up the calculation. 192.68/8.23 = 23.41L/100Km. And this included a lot of low gear and low range driving on mountain dirt roads. I have also been a feather foot, just poodling about rather than sticking the boot in. If the next fill confirms these figures then I’m very pleased.
Drove down to the boat ramp at Mallacoota then cruised along Lakeview Drive. The lake is an endless row of small jetties, many not in great shape and needing new timber. I remember up at Woy Woy a friend told me that the jetties could remain as long as they lasted and then waterways wanted them gone. Maybe this is the case here. Having seen around we were looking for a place to turn and it happened to be a pull in along side a row of jetties where a couple were fishing. I tossed up whether to give it a go and got out the rod. Baited with a bit of squid we had been given at Wonboyn my first cast was a bit heavy to retrieve, AND IT WIGGLED! I pulled in the biggest flathead I’ve ever caught, about 50cm plus. Having come unprepared without glove or rag I placed a size 11 thong firmly across his back and sent Margaret for a rag and the gaff handle. He’d lay still for a bit and then gave a really muscular writhe which nearly got his freedom. A couple of whacks on the noggin slowed him down. Half an hour of nothing more, fillets in the fridge and off we went.
It was after 4pm so knowing we were unlikely to make our next coastal target (Point Hicks, Croajingolong NP) we headed out to the Princes Hiway looking for a picnic area shown on our maps at Wingan which never materialised but after a confusing overlapping set of rest area signs (5Km, 5Km, 300m, 5Km) we found a ‘power nap’ picnic area at the Drummer Rainforest Walk on the Thurra River. 10Km east of Cann River and 200M off the Hiway in East Gippsland. Nice little overnighter. Flathead fillets on a free gas bbq and we’ll do the 1Km, 45 min walk in the morning.
Maybe coincidence but our first two overnight spots since crossing the border into Victoria have both suffered the same disgusting fate. They are littered with shit and toilet paper along with cans, bottles and picnic rubbish. DC beach had no facilities but here at Drummer sides of the very track to the windyloo are covered with shit and tissue paper. A rotted bag of beer bottles dumped in the shelter, a bag of food scraps left on the bbq and cigarette butts all over the place. Fair dinkum the bastards who have been here before us need a flogging. Where does this horrible attitude of ‘I won’t be back, someone else’s problem’ come from. Whilst we usually find it no problem to pick up a few cans and bottles where we stay I’m afraid this is beyond a joke. Two days work with tongs & bucket then burn it all in a fireplace. Certainly should be a consideration for weekend detentioners, work for the dole and many other freeloading money for nothing members of our welfare society. Much more than that tho it shouldn’t happen in the first place.