beatit to Normanton day 61

Friday, Oct 05, 2012 at 00:00

Member - Beatit (QLD)


We departed Burketown in high spirits and made our way in the direction of Normanton. There is about 80K of bitumen to the Shire border where it changes to the Carpentaria Shire and dirt road once more. There was no ambitious goal or timeline our plan was to take as it comes but we wanted to have a look at the Leichhardt River and see if it could be a possible overnight camp so we were not in a hurry.
Once we pulled over and had a look around we decided to stay for lunch only the place was very dry and there were an oversupply of flies. Obviously a much nicer place just after the wet! We pressed on to the Flinders River and I could easily have stayed there but for some reason it did not appeal to Lis so on we went.
Just before Normanton is a historic Burk and Wills site (camp 119) from which they never really recovered. It was a fascinating site and like many others it had me thinking how tough it was back then but also that it was just 150 years ago! We sure are a young country! Sadly many of the blazes have all but disappeared and some have been destroyed but luckily some have remained and can be identified from old photos. We arrive at Normanton late in the afternoon and set up at the van park for a couple of days.

The Albion was recommended to us as being the best feed in town so we though it’s Friday lets hit the town! It was a good recommendation and the place was popular with the locals so we had a great time but Lis had an allergic reaction to something yesterday and we needed to find the chemist. We got some directions but in the dark we ended just driving around in circles long enough to be picked up for a breathalyser hahahaha. We got better direction from the local copper and off course it wasn’t open so drove back to the van later in the evening. We were greeted by alarms in the van from an electrical system that had a major failure somewhere.
I spent till midnight looking at all the possibilities and got nowhere simply because the normal problems were not there, you know no broken cables or corroded joints or anything like that. As a consequence the fridge has also stopped working it was almost like the ghosts of Burke and Wills were haunting us. After much troubleshooting and cursing (that didn’t help at all by the way) I still had no firm answers just likely possibilities. The solar regulator does a lot of controlling and it seemed confused about the state of the batteries thinking them to be full and low at the same time so this was high on my suspect list. The charger seemed to be working but why then would we have a low battery situation and as we had this repaired already it was also on the list. The batteries were new so I did not even consider them. Fatigue set in and I just had to go to bed with the problem unsolved.
A new way of life is emerging.
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