17th – 23rd October 2016: Maitland – Ceduna

Just avoided a disaster leaving the Marion Bay Caravan Park, while busy keeping an eye on a shelter support pole we nearly took out the overhanging eaves of the same shelter:(.  Fortunately, stopped in time and no damage done. Phew!!

Our ‘showground trial’ is working well; most provide power, water, toilets and showers and the usual cost seems to be $15 per night.  Almost like free camping but with power and water and we’re not packed in like sardines (as per some caravan parks).

So our next stop is the Maitland Showgrounds; clean tidy toilets, nice showers, power, water and walking (or riding) distance to town. Perfect!

The weather is still atrocious, drizzly rain, icy cold winds with a 14° C maximum.  At least the wind dried the clothes very quickly, just bought them inside to warm up.

Day 2 we thought a nice drive to Port Victoria, for a look round and pub lunch would make our day.  The drive and the look round was great only problem was today is Tuesday, pub lunches are only available Wednesday to Saturday.  Not to be deterred, we returned to Maitland asked a local which pub had the best lunches and we were not disappointed.  The Yorke Valley Hotel lunch was amazing and delicious.  For a total of $19 we both ordered a beef schnitzel, which came with the mandatory side of chips and a salad bar to rival some of the major hotels in the city.  There were at least 15 salads from which to choose.  Just scraps for dinner that night:).

Leaving Maitland our scenery included paddocks of wheat, lupins, and sheep.  We travelled through Moonta, the home of the Cornish pasty, where we stopped for the obligatory sausage roll or Cornish pasty from the Cornish Kitchen.  Then back on the road we headed to Kadina to shop, thinking we would camp the night at Port Germein.  Shopping done, back on the road the weather is closing in again with strong winds forecast for the evening.

The Port Germein Caravan Park although very nice is located right on the coast with no protection form the winds.  Decision made we continued on through Alford, didn’t like their free camp site, to Port Broughton, whose caravan park is also right on the beach.  We stopped for lunch at Port Pirie then continued on the the Shoreline Caravan Park at Port Augusta.  Although the park is on the gulf it is quite protected.  By the time we arrived the wind was howling; it was so good to be off the road in some protected space.

Ok, today’s temperature is forecast to be 33° C; we’re back in shorts (if only for a day).  Back on the road, lots of emus and sheep in the paddocks, we headed for the Iron Knob free campsite which had come well recommended.   By the time we reached Iron Knob the wind was howling, again.  We stopped for morning tea, had a look around and marked the site as one to remember.

The wind gusts were up to 60 kph from the south west, so across the rig making it difficult to drive.  By 12 noon we were parked up at Kimba Lions/Apex Park sheltering from these dreadful winds.  Not long after another 4 vans and a motor home joined us.

By 5pm the winds were horrendous; we shut all vents, windows and doors and hunkered down for the night.  By 9pm the temperature had dropped considerably and we were back to jeans and jumpers.

The park asks for a donation of $5 per night, pretty good when they supply clean tidy toilets, gas barbecues, bins and a safe haven.  Kimba has a second ‘donation’ site at the Kimba Recreation Reserve which also provides hot showers and a dump point.  There was 6 of us at our camp and when we went to dump the toilet we counted 20 or so vans at the Recreation Reserve.  Another spot to mark as a favourite in Wiki Camps.

We departed Kimba around 9.20am heading to Kyancutter then on to Wudinna where Derick refuelled the car and jerry cans.  Around this area the paddocks are filled either wheat, barley, canola or sheep and it goes on and on and on, for as far as the eye can see.

We stopped for lunch at Pelubie Landing information site then continued on the Haslam Campground, arriving around 1.30ish.  Found a site, set up, then went for a walk to the beach and around town.  Haslam is a ‘donation’ camp site of $5 per night, with toilets only.  The wind is howling and from the South Pole!!  Need I say more?

The distance between Haslam and our next stop Ceduna is around 90 kilometres.  We arrived around 10ish, booked in, set up, then started to catch up with the domestics; washing, wiping all surfaces down (so dusty after Kimba), vacuuming and washing the floors.

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