Saturday, August 2, 2008

Home Again...non creative post to some warning :o)

Oh my time has flown.We ended up being away nearly four weeks rather than three.Once we got home I got quite ill for over a week after I caught some awful viral even had me in bed asleep a few days which is something I never normally do even when I am not well.I also had a book swap I had to finish off before the 31st.Got them finished and posted in the nick of time and feel well now at last.I'll get the holiday snaps up today and then share the arty stuff in the next few days as I had some gorgeous arty mail from others awaiting me when I got home :o)
It took four days and three nights to drive to Queensland(QLD) with stops to sleep overnight.The kangaroo's are thick crossing the roads from dusk and can easily wreck the car if you hit one so night driving is not a good option.On the way back we left from Port Macquarie in New South Wales(NSW) so that took five days and four nights to get back.One of the places we love to stop at on the long drive over and back is Lubra's Lookout which is a few kilometers past Renner Springs roadhouse(approx 785km South from Darwin).It's a small flat top mountain and we know when we get to it we are close to the Three Ways road house where we turn off to go to the East to QLD or only a days drive from home on the way back.It's also the sort of rock that seems to glow with rich red to oranges depending on where the sun is and it's the only thing of any height as we approach the desert and table land country.

It's quite easy to climb as well for a lovely view too.This is from the top looking North up the Stuart Highway that goes to Darwin.That's our XTrail car mid right

We stayed at the Three Ways overnight and then headed across the 440 odd km stretch of the Barkly Highway to QLD.It's a long drive with only one petrol station across the whole length.Allot of people think this is a boring lifeless area as there does not seem much to look at beside desert and cream tufts of grass/spinifex as they speed past.Being married to a reptile enthusiast means lots of stops when on trips to check behind bark and rocks for lizards,snakes and geckos etc.You soon realize that there is life everywhere out there on that long drive and the desert is far from lifeless.
A non marked dirt track off to the right about three quarters of the way across the Barkly leads you to Barry's cave.When the highway was built a road worker called Barry wandered off and lost his way back to the road.Unfortunately he was not found in time and he died in the cave from dehydration.Grant loves coming here as swallows build nests from mud on the cool roof of the cave.When they vacate the nests some then become homes for black headed monitors.My daughter found this one you can see still asleep in the old bird nest just as we entered the cave

Here is the same monitor after Grant took him out and placed him on a rock.We of course put him back after his photo shoot :o)

On another section we stopped at Grant found this little Panther Skink

We made good time and as soon as we got to my Mum's in QLD(3400kms and several days later) all the kids wanted to do was go to theme parks and attractions...we have none at home.The first one we went to was Australia Zoo.It is still mind boggling to us the Steve Irwin has passed away and we will never see him there again.The zoo is huge now to when we were last there in 1999 chatting to Steve.I'm a sucker for Aussie furry animals so we had to get the usual pictures of them while we were there.Here is a sleepy Koala in a tree.

a cute rock wallaby

and of course the kids had to feed the kangaroo's no matter how old they are(the kids that is LOL ...Carlia is 18 and Tim 12)

It's Dry season at home and there we have long warm days and cooler nights but in QLD it's winter so we felt the cold heaps.Poor Tim looks like he has been swallowed in the sleeping bag as he watched TV at mum's while trying to stay warm.

On another day we went to Sea World and I could have watched the polar bears for hours.My sister in laws brother is head keeper of them and we had an awesome behind the scenes tour with him.Amazing creatures and man they are BIG.This female seemed to look straight at me

We also went to Dream World and although I didn't go on many rides I did go on this one.It's called the Big Drop and after you are pulled up on the outside of this pole(see the people with legs hanging at top)they drop you and you feel like you are free falling.Once was enough LOL

We stayed one night in a hotel on the Gold Coast across the road from Surfer's Paradise beach.This is the view from the balcony in the morning

After a family reunion BBQ and three weeks we headed to Port Maquarie in NSW where Grant's Mum and Dad live for a few days.They have beautiful beaches there too.Tim and Melissa couldn't resist even though the water was freezing to us.At least there were no crocodiles or box jelly fish here like there are at home

It seemed like no time before we were on our way back home.Again we stopped at several spots.This long stretch of road had the kids amused as they felt they didn't know which way we were going after we stopped to have a break.First view is looking forward

and looking back

We stopped several times again as we crossed the Barkly Highway.At this spot you can see delicate tracks from a small lizard...there are his feet prints and tail print...sorry about my big ugly feet there

There are not only reptiles to look at across the desert areas if you stop but at this time of the year there are wild flowers.I took some photos of some of them.I have no idea what they are called sorry.Lets call this one "the purple fluff" grin

and here is a green vine making an awesome pattern as it hugged a tree

This yellow one felt like velvet
Our last night we stayed at Renner Springs and got there as the sun started to set so we raced up to Lubra's lookout to see the sun set from the top.Here is Melissa(aged 16...she turned 17 today) and Tim gazing across the land
The beautiful sky just minutes later

That night was full moon and as if to give us one final shot of beauty to end our holidays on the moon seemed to dart in and out of silver lined clouds.What a lovely end to a much needed holiday and probably the last that all the kids will want to come on with us.Much of the way we had no radio coverage and we had some very funny conversations...I will treasure them for along time :o).


Nancy Ward said...

Hi Annette,

Wanted you to know today I posted an entry about your blog on mine. Let me know if you don't mind.

Thanks for those grand pics of your trip.

Nancy Ward

Froggietalks said...

that sounds like a fantastic holiday Annette!! My husband loves to take pictures, so I can imagine stopping everywhere to take pictures.

Karen G

Dawnie said...

Well this is my kind of holiday Annette. loved all the pics of our countryside so thanks so much for sharing.The sunset is just divine !

welcome home
Dawnie T

christina d said...

I'm glad to see you made it home. The pictures are beautiful. Must have been an outstanding vacation. Sorry to hear you got sick, but at least it was at the end.

Rhonda C. said...

wow Annette it makes me want to do a road trip just so I can take really cool photos. Glad to have you back now so we can see more of your great arty creations.
Cheers Rhonda [from Stamp Craft]

texasbarb said...

I LOVE your pictures!!! Thanks for the tour of OZ!!!

Glad you're feeling better....don't you just hate getting sick afer a trip.

And...of course you know how much i LOVE your ART!!! Isn't it time for another video?!?!?! I love to hear you talk!!!

Hugs & God Bless!!
Barb A

sandyh said...

wonderful pictures, annette! tfs your vacation with us! glad you had a great time...but sorry to hear you were sick after.
nice to have you back!

Night Owl Designs said...

Hey, welcome home Annette! Really enjoyed reading about your trip and wow, great photos!

Debbi Baker said...

Wow what a fabulous post Annette - great piccies too!


Thanks folks
I have an aweful natural shake in my hands so I am never sure which photos will look OK till I get them in the computer.


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