Author Topic: Easter 2017 Trip Report - Stanthorpe  (Read 723 times)

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Offline boxxy

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Easter 2017 Trip Report - Stanthorpe
« on: April 22, 2017, 10:03:03 AM »
Attendees : Matt and Leigh Joy and kids; Wombat and Jay; Tom “Pigdog” Diamond; Jimmy and Wendy; Boxxy and Mrs Boxxy; Christopher and Amanda and kids; Alex “Eastie” Eastwood

Wombat Jay and Tom had headed down Thursday afternoon as they were able to get off a little early but for the unlucky ones we had to settle for leaving at a sparrows fart on Friday morning.

Bronny and I slept in the van Thursday night (parked at Tony and Amanda’s place at Moggill) so we could get an early start so we were able to head off around 4.30 and make our way to Aratula to meet Chris and Amanda and kids around 5.30. After the normal greetings and hugs and kisses for nan and pop we fuelled up, had some breakfast and headed off for Stanthorpe.
Chris had borrowed the in-laws 4x4 for this trip and had told me the Hilux was pretty gutless at the best of times and the added weight of camping gear didn’t help either so I pre warned him that if he saw me getting rather large in his rear view going up the range to make sure he got out of my way, momentum is a great thing negotiating Cunninghams and as everyone knows it only takes one slow poke to kill off a good run. Thankfully the traffic at that time of the morning was pretty light and I soon left him to chug his way up and regroup at the top of the gap, Amanda at this stage had left us both behind and scooted along at her on own pace.

The rest of the trip was pretty uneventful and we made fairly good time on the run into Stanthorpe. The traffic was slightly heavier going through Warwick but considering the time of day and the fact it was a holiday weekend it was a lot less than I expected. There was not even a heavy presence of police which surprised us.

We managed to arrive around 8.30 and after ringing Jay (cause Wombat never answers his phone) to find out where in the showgrounds they were set up, Wombat scooted up on his bike to guide us in. The caretaker had allocated us an area all to ourselves with plenty of room to set up. The power was situated so that we had to group up a little but that did not present too much of a hassle anyway. The showgrounds area is huge with camping spots everywhere and plenty of amenities to cater for a large crowd.

The showgrounds has only just had camping approved by the council in the last 3 weeks as there had been objections by the caravan park (which is right next door) which is a pretty normal situation, caravan parks seem to want a monopoly on camping these days.
After the normal hellos and greetings we went about setting up camp. Chris was tenting it this time so we were able to sit back and watch the show all whilst trying to entertain and organise 4 kids, must say it was like a well oiled machine the way it all came together.


« Last Edit: April 25, 2017, 11:00:17 AM by boxxy »
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Offline boxxy

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Re: Easter 2017 Trip Report - Stanthorpe
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2017, 10:11:06 AM »
The rest of the day was spent sitting around relaxing, catching up (talking crap) and waiting on the others to arrive. Jimmy and Wendy arrived near lunchtime closely followed by Matt and Lee Joy with Eastie a distant last. After they had all set up we had the kidlets do a timber run to ready things for the evenings fire, we had to have a brazier for our fire but that was not a real drama as Wombat and Matt had brought theirs with them.

Seems Jimmy had been able to procure a large amount of hamburger meats and Wendy was really wanting to get them out of her freezer so Jimmy and Wendy had kindly donated them for the evening meal so everyone jumped in and organised the salads while Jimmy went about cooking to feed the masses. Of course the conversation of to “beetroot” or “not beetroot” the hamburgers reared its ugly head with all and sundry (except Jimmy) agreeing it was UNaustralian to have a burger without beetroot which of course disgusts Jim (LOL). Seriously Jimmy, how did you ever get away with no beetroot on your burgers in your Fish n Chip shop?
After a great meal and a few ales we settled in for a another round of talking crap and a few more ales. As per normal I piked early and left everyone to it, I can’t seem to last as long as I used to after my operation. Tom was missing his drinking buddy Mick Franklin aka Spot so it wasn’t a late night, probably a good thing as we were doing a run the next morning.

Next morning was a great sleep in I think bought about by the cold weather, just wanted to snuggle up and not come out of the van. It wasn’t as cold as we were expecting overnight probably because of the cloud cover and first indications on getting up was that it was going to be a cracker of a day weather wise and it was.

After finishing breakfast and cleaning up we started preparing for our trip into Sundown National Park. Tom had an immediate problem in that the Patrol would not start, seems the glow plugs picked this particular time and trip to decide to pack it in. After a few unsuccessful jump starts it was decided to try and flat tow him to see if he could clutch start it and thankfully he managed to get it going so after making sure he would be able to restart it on its own accord should the need arise we finished organising our vehicles kids and lunches to get under way.

After fuelling up and grabbing some last minute snacks from the local servo we made the short trip to the gates of Sundown to air down. The group of 4wd’s in front of us at the gate turned out to be a few of the guys “n” Gals from the North Coast club out for the day as well. Appears they were staying at The Springs 4wd park and were out for a drive too. (to be continued.....)
« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 10:18:38 AM by boxxy »
I am the king of my castle - when Mrs Boxxy is not at home

Offline boxxy

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Re: Easter 2017 Trip Report - Stanthorpe
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2017, 06:38:34 PM »
Our first stop was to be Red Rock to have smoko and a walk around. Bronny and I had been out here many years ago and the track does not seem to have changed that much from what I can remember, very rocky and slow going, last time we were here we towed the Cub Camper in with our Navara and from memory it took us 1 ½ hrs to go 12 – 15 klms. This run was only 7 klms into Red Rock and it still took us about ¾ hr. Once in the carpark it is a 200mtr walk down to the viewing are and quite a nice bit of scenery as Bronnys photos will show.

The North Coast Club joined us at the lookout and I was curious as to how we had got in front of them. Turns out they took a different track in that we were unaware of and it took a little longer than our more “direct” way in. They gave us directions to try this track on our way out.

The walk out was a bit different for me as it was uphill and took a fair bit out of me, besides my recent op slowing me up my legs cramp up so I pretty much just had a slow paced stroll back to the car to recoup.
The day was getting on so we decided instead of heading down to Burrows Waterhole and then back out that we would head on to the track the North Coast told us about and start our run out, we estimated we would be getting back out of the park around 1.30 – 2.00 so we would have lunch then.
I am the king of my castle - when Mrs Boxxy is not at home

Offline boxxy

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Re: Easter 2017 Trip Report - Stanthorpe
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2017, 06:42:43 PM »
It wasn’t that far into the run that we came across a bit of a tricky part of the track and needed Jimmy to decide if he was comfortable taking on the ruts etc in his Suzuki. After a bit of a discussion and trying to plan how he would tackle it the decision was made that he would turn back rather than risk doing any damage. With that I turned around as well so that Jimmy was not left to get out on his own and the others continued on. As it turns out this was a correct call as Tom told us later that there was no way it would have got through a section further up.

Tom later told me it was a great little track with quite a few technical parts that kept everyone on their toes.
Chris being new to 4wding followed closely on Wombats heels and just drove the same line and everyone reckons he handled it very well. The grin on his face also gave it away that he was enjoying being out of his comfort zone out here.

Jimmy and I met up with others just as they were re-joining the main track so we could not have timed it better, so we just kept going and headed into Ballendean to air up and grab a quick bite. Aired up and lunches taken care of some headed across to the markets for a quick look see, was very quick as there were only a handful of stalls to visit. Purchases completed we started heading back to our campsite for a quiet ale or two but were going to make a stop at The Jam Factory on the way through. There are these sorts of places all throughout Stanthorpe it is a wonder they can all manage to survive. Just as we were leaving The Jam Factory we happened to run into an old member, Warren (wazza) Horne who was in the area overnight. After a quick chat Wazza decided he may as well join us at the showgrounds to camp for the night as he hadn't picked anywhere as yet.

We had decided we were going to partake of the local offerings for tea tonight and we needed to get somewhere that had Foxtel so Matty could watch his beloved Cowboys play. The RSL was selected and after confirming we could get a table we all headed off for showers and then in to town for tea. Matt and Leigh had organised a camp roast so they were not joining us. The RSL was crowded as expected with all the tourists in town and we were advised there was a 1 1/2hr wait but we were in no hurry and the beer was cold and priced right. The wait was nowhere near as long as they thought and they did manage to get the kids fed first which was great. The meal was worth waiting for, well presented, great service and tasted great, certainly filled us up and we were famished after such a busy day.

I think we managed to stay around long enough to see the Cowboys lose (bad luck Matty, try being a Wests Tigers supporter, we are used to losing) so after a nice relaxing evening we gathered up the kids and headed off back to camp to get them to bed in preparation for Sunday. I don’t think telling the kids that you had just run over the Easter Bunny on your way in went down too well Wombat. So after getting all the kids off to bed we settled in for a few ales and tall stories. Not wanting to make it a late night everyone called it quits around midnight (I was already asleep by this time) knowing full well it was going to be a real early start to Easter Sunday.

And…..we were right, just before 6am the kidlets were up and about chasing their Easter Eggs and they were not being very quiet about. So being the responsible Nan and Pop that we are we uncurled ourselves from our warm comfy bed to join the kids and everyone else for an early morning coffee. Easter rituals complete we set about making breakfast of pancakes  for some and bacon and eggs (not chocolate) for others. Seems the kids didn’t want any cereal as they were mysteriously not hungry….. go figure.

Today was tourist day so after saying our goodbyes to Wazza and Bev we set off as Jay was going to lead us to some wineries, a brewery, some knick knack shops etc etc. Like I said earlier these place are everywhere and some you have to go back of the black stump(not really but they are off the main road a fair bit). Was an interesting day sampling the cheeses, wines and beers but not being a wine drinker the pricing didn’t tempt me to purchase anything. Lunch today consisted of fish and chips in the park on our way around and the poor guy in the shop didn’t expect 4 car loads of people to suddenly dump on him and order lunch.

We didn’t quite get around to do everything we wanted this weekend so that night having a drink around the campfire it was decided we would be back for the May Day long weekend seeing as though the Ballina trip for that weekend was cancelled. Matt is keen to get back out into Sundown as there are heaps more tracks out there and I was thinking we might be able to take a run to Girraween National Park (or we might just relax and veg out).  Everyone was so buggered after their shopping expo that lights out tonight was around 9.30, now that’s a first for a Motley trip, no late night drinking session.

Pack up Monday morning was slow and uneventful, Wombat, myself and Jimmy had arranged with the caretaker to leave our Vans and Campers locked up near his residence as we were returning in 2 weeks, just saves towing them home and back again. At least that way Bronny and I can get a Friday departure instead of sparrow fart on Saturday.

Cheers to everyone who attended, as always great company makes for a great weekend away, Christopher and Amanda thoroughly enjoyed their first trip with the club and looks like we have a 4wd convert and it was great to get away camping with my grandkids. Thank you everyone for making the weekend a success and we are looking forward to May Day long weekend.

Cheers
Boxxy


« Last Edit: April 25, 2017, 11:00:59 AM by boxxy »
I am the king of my castle - when Mrs Boxxy is not at home

Offline Hangman

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Re: Easter 2017 Trip Report - Stanthorpe
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2017, 05:37:54 PM »
Great report mate. Apparently there are some fines to follow.
"Wax on Wax off"........... The Karate Kid(1984)