I had an interesting evening on Thursday. After a day and a half of steady rain things cleared up but I was a bit concerned that the creek next to the caravan park was starting to rise and my camp was only a couple of feet higher than the current level (I was the only person camped there). I had moved camp to get to a site that was a bit higher and not so soggy so I left the van coupled up and lowered the roof so if I needed to leave in a hurry I could. I talked to a couple of locals and they were reasonably confident I would be OK but no guarantees. So I kept checking the rising level each 1/2 hour from about 5 pm and the kept rising until the creek was well over twice as wide but still below the road level. I was very relieved when I checked at 10 pm and the water had dropped about a centimetre, phew I could get into bed and relax, which I did.

It reminded me of a time we were camped at Ulupna Island when I had done the same thing, checking the level each 1/2 hour. Around 10 pm the Murray started to over-run a bank at the start of a creek that flowed across our access road so we packed up very quickly and moved out to a safer spot. The water was about 30 cm over the road when we drove out, Adam was lucky as he has an all-terrain Sigma! When we checked in the morning the water was about 1.8 metres over our road, not sure what we would have done to get out if we hadn’t moved when we did.

I was heading for Forbes and called in at Collingullie water tanks again on the way, I just love those water tanks

The next stop was in Harden for a couple of disappointing silos. The artwork was not particularly noteworthy and the house owner had planted Cyprus trees along the boundary. Fortunately they were young trees so I could get photos in the gaps, in a couple of years this will not be possible.

From here I headed for Forbes, but as I drove through Grenfell I decided to stop there for a few days. Marg and I stayed here nine years ago when Marg tripped on a discontinuity on the path to the toilet and broke her wrist badly. We had to abort our holiday head for a hospital and then home. We did threaten to sue for negligence but eventually reached a good settlement with the insurance company. It was interesting to observe that every discontinuity in the paths around the toilets has since been ground absolutely flat, no trip hazards now.

There are a couple of National Parks nearby which I thought would be good to visit. They are located on the Lachlan Fold Belt which is a zone of folded and faulted rocks of similar age. It dominates New South Wales and Victoria, also extending into Tasmania, the Australian Capital Territory and Queensland. It was formed in the Middle Paleozoic from 450 to 340 million years ago, so there!

The National Park to the east of Grenfell is Conimbla which is covered mainly by open forest of cyprus and gum trees. The park stands out above the mainly cleared surrounding plans having the highest peak in the area. The first road I went down ended in a locked gate not shown on the map, but I got a good view on the return journey.

I had a picnic lunch at the Wallaby Picnic Area the only developed area in the park. I was lucky that it was sunny at that time and enjoyed lunch in a very peaceful setting.

After lunch I walked for a bit up the Wallaby Walking Trail which I enjoyed. Not many flowers but I managed to find a couple. The one on the left is a creeper, it looks like a type of hardenbergia and the one on the right looks like a pale wattle

Next day was not a good one and I headed out in rain toward Weddin Mountains National park. Fortunately the rain cleared while I was at the park. The first place I visited in the park was Seaton’s farm, a small farm that Jim Seaton owned and farmed in what is now the National Park. Jim and his family lived in extremely rough circumstances, a house with unlined galvanised iron walls and roof, no windows except for a couple of shuttered small openings and all built with material recovered from the tip or discarded on farms.

Jim used to gather scrap discarded wire and twist it together to make his fences. He also had a problem with kangaroos so he added height to his fences with small cyprus branches and scrap wire, and he did this for the 3 Km boundary of his property. At the same time he was also working elsewhere as a farm labourer. He built a collection of farm machinery assembled from cast-offs from other farms. The machinery shed is very much the worst for wear today. Just click on the photo to see a larger image.

I then moved on to the picnic area for lunch which is also a camping area. Again I enjoyed a very pleasant picnic lunch in peaceful surroundings.

On heading back home it started to rain again, so I had been very lucky to have enjoyed the park in the dry. Tomorrow I’m off to Forbes for a few days.

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