Monday, February 21, 2005

Gone Walkabout

walk·a·bout (wôk'ə-bout')
  1. Australian. A temporary return to traditional Aboriginal life, taken especially between periods of work or residence in white society and usually involving a period of travel through the bush.
Today I went walkabout getting sick of my life in the unit. Yeah it's nice but sometimes one has to get out, see new things and meet new people. I actually enjoy the solitary life but on occasions, it gets a bit much.......

I headed out to Katoomba which was 20 minutes drive and saw the second largest canyon in the world. It was a little cloudy and the clouds were in the valley below the lookout. I then perused an antique/ rare book shop and decided to hold onto my money as they were a rip off. I mean $25 for an old G-shock digital watch that still sells for a couple of bucks is a bit much.

I then decided to head out to Oberon, taking a leftturn off on the Great Western Highway. The country changed from rocky to soft rolling green hils and then to pine and eucalypt forest.There I saw some new growth and cleared forests and a very large "moulded wood" factory. Also was a couple of enormous wind generators perched on top of a hill which I took a picture of. They were amazing, swishing around and speeding up as the wind increased. Marvellous engineering.

The country looked good after some decent rain and the cattle were pretty well fed. Most of the cockies(farmers) in town seemed to have new four wheel drives and utilities. So it must have been a pretty good year.

In Oberon I managed to get a snap of the "Big Trout Motor Inn" complete with a big trout at the front. I had a meat pie at the local bakery, it was pretty ordinary.

Then I travelled back through to Lithgow via Portland. Here was a lot of coal mining as well as two rather large coal stations. Portland proudly proclaims' The town that built Sydney" due to the one time cement works there, of course in these days of a level playing field, they've long shut down. The new industries seem to be coal mining, power, tourism and composite timber.

One thing I noticed was the change in soil from Oberon to Lithgow. Oberon has great "terrarossa" soil which would be superb for grape growing given the right climate. It was bright red with all that extra iron in it, Lithgow had band of black and cream from shale, coal and linestone sediments. Stopped at the Lithgow workers club for a cold beer.

Then it was down along the Bells Line of Road to Blackheath and down to Megalong Valley which saw me driving through some rainforest. I had a coffee at the teahouse. Then drove back up the winding road to home.

A rather pleasant day out.


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