Smithsdownunder
Our journeys around Australia

15-Dec-2004
   

We have crossed the border from South Australia into Victoria and also adjusted our clocks again, this time by adding another half hour. It's much easier to work out the time back home now, as we are exactly 11 hours ahead of UK time. The weather is still a bit rough with the southerly winds bringing cool air up and from Antarctica. It's supposed to improve later this week! The dodgy back has just about recovered and just needs a little sun on it to make it 100%.

We are staying in a nice little council run camping ground at a place called Yambuk which is to the west of Port Fairy. We now have to plan ahead a bit for the next two or three weeks as a lot of the caravan sites are fully booked for the Christmas period. The site we are in has had a cancellation so we have decided to stay here for Christmas but between now and Christmas we will go north to The Grampians for a few days.

The site is situated alongside a lake, which is fed by the Eumeralla and Shaw rivers. The water from the lake flows into the sea just across the sand dunes so when the sun eventually decides to shine, we will be on the beach. There is an island called 'Lady Julia Percy Island' about 9kms offshore which is home to a very large colony of seals. We have been advised that there are Great White sharks in the waters feeding on the seals and it is not a good idea to swim too far off the beach! As the sea is quite rough at the moment and still rather cool, the Great Whites will not be getting much of a chance to nibble on us. The river is the place to swim in just before it gets to the beach apparently.

We are now back in places we have visited on a previous trip to Oz about 8 years ago. One of the places we visited back then was Port Fairy; it was good to see that it hadn't changed much.

This is a pretty little fishing village with interesting old buildings and a small but active fishing harbour. Port Fairy Harbour We stopped at the restaurant in the centre of the picture for an excellent fish and chip supper.

Port Fairy Harbour
Fishing boat in Port Fairy Harbour I think all the very large lamps on this fishing vessel are for attracting squid or maybe the ship's crew have poor eyesight!
Further along the Princes Highway is Tower Hill. This is another extinct volcano, which is flooded and has an island in the centre. The area is a national park and there is a lot of wildlife wandering around. Tower Hill
Koala at Tower HillKoala at Tower Hill

This is the ash rim of the crater and some of the wetlands inside. The expedition ornithologist reported seeing sacred ibis and black swans on the lake. We saw a koala bear for the first time this trip, it wandered across the road in front of us and climbed up a tree to pose for a photo or two.

It's a bit different to the toy ones I have seen, just look at the size of the claws on it - cuddly, perhaps not!

Here is a picture taken from the caravan tonight of the sunset over the Yambuk Lake and the Southern Ocean beyond.

Hmmm, doesn't look like the back is going to see much sun tomorrow!

Yambuk