Rob 'n BOB on the BNT
15 December 2003
Robert's BNT Journal -- as told to and
prepared by Gwen on Wednesday, November 26, 2003:
Ravenswood to Collinsville, Queensland -- November 20
- 25, 2003
After a few days
pleasant R&R in Ravenswood, it was again time to head out on
the track. It was an easy enough ride south to Connelly
station but wild camping beside "weedy river water" was just
so-so! The next day, though, despite quite an elevation
gain, it was smooth biking on the paved road to Burdekin Falls Dam
and Rob averaged 17km an hour! Not bad, with a fully loaded
BOB being pulled along behind him! He must be growing
"strong, lean, and 'mean'", by now!
At 5pm, Rob's time, when he phoned me, the temperature was still
35C in the shade, so, he was grateful for the quiet campground and
little swimming pool there! There has been a store but it
was closed and appeared to have been closed perhaps for some
years. But, thank goodness the payphone was working!
And, there was a clean "ablution block" and even a laundry!
That's always been my "little measuring stick" of a satisfactory
campground! Amazingly, there was a considerable amount
of water in the Reservoir behind the dam so THAT's good for the
people it supplies!
For this portion of his trip, Rob has bought a BOX of "fine wine"
to offer himself some quiet evening activity. He mentioned
something about "doing a taste test" and that it DEFINITELY was an
improvement over Rob's own homemade Shiraz (that so many of our
friends had the "pleasure" of experiencing at it's "release" a
year or so ago!) BUT, this box wine PROBABLY didn't "quite"
measure up to anything in the "Oldfield Reserve Library" that
Tinhorn Creek Vineyard winemaker, Sandra Oldfield, has so
carefully developed!! Rob will have to bike a VERY LONG WAY,
INDEED, to find many wines better than THAT collection!
Dam to the Bowen Pub (in Strathbowen?) was another 102km day as no
interesting wild camping locations showed up along the way.
The last 35km were downhill but tiresome, indeed, with a rough,
corrugated, gravel surface! Since the few customers in the
pub cleared out early in the evening, Rob and the Publican sat out
on the back porch till 10pm, visiting, sipping, and enjoying the
songs of the night birds. Pleasant pastime!
Bowen pub he biked just 35km to Boralee station, alongside the
WONDERFUL Bowen River, which had LOTS of water. When he woke
next morning, the temperature had taken a dip down to 12C!
Too COLD to make an early start! But, not to worry, as it
was only another 35km into Collinsville! "Flat and boring
country roads these two days", he said.
THEN, it was "down to business"!! Enough of this "playing
about"! HOURS of reading and responding to email on the
"public computer" at the Shire Office; purchasing of
"treats" for "energy food" -- Christmas fruitcake and
apricot/peach "sugar cubes" (THAT ought to do it!); Powerade
crystals to mix with water (to disguise the flavour of the water,
and, to give him "energy"); also, MILO, as well as flavoured
coffee! At home he wouldn't be caught dead consuming such
stuff -- but -- this ain't home, baby!
stretches of heavy biking over many kilometres, Rob thinks that
it's dehydration that plugs up his ears and even makes him hoarse
to talk! Just shows you some more of the consequences of
one's "water table" growing low! And, this happens, he says,
despite drinking, drinking, drinking! All this is a
discovery in progress!
He had to "wait in line" before 7:30am beside the one and only
Automatic Banking Machine in Collinsville, for the "money truck"
to come along to "fill 'er up"! so he could get some cash!
Credit cards are good and handy -- but --
they don't answer all a consumer's needs!
His computer time in Collinsville cost him $20.00+ --
and -- then, he "lost" the Trip Journal he composed
"to those cyberspace gremlins" that "grab our stuff", from
time-to-time! Hence, the need for ME to prepare these last 4
segments! The next internet stop, Rob will have to prepare
his composition in a different format and thereby prevent any
further accidents befalling his labour intensive writing!
His next stop is to be the Bowen River Weir, where the station
folks say there's "no worry" over crocodiles being in that
water! The "town folks" regaled Rob with many warnings about
the "crocs" there, though. So, he'll just have to exercise
reasonable vigilance! That Weir is at least 150km inland
from the sea, but, crocs are reported at least 200km inland on
some of those rivers! Makes one humble and respectful of