Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Lake Woods, Daly Waters Pub & Mataranka thermal pools

We intended on going out to Lake Woods at the end of our drive up from the Devils Marbles. We checked in with the local constabulary, who advised in not taking the van out to the lake. We must have driven through Elliot x 2 to get an idea whether we should stay in town for the night.
We unhitched the van out the back of the servo & went out to Lake Woods - Longreach Lagoon.
We weren't disappointed & found the road capable of our off road van being driven on - a few sandy patches, but we just let the tyres down for a free day / night camping @ the lake the next day.

We had the lake side area to ourselves, bar 1 other van 200 mtrs away. The place was very idealic.
Sue (me) was in her element with the thousands of birds on or around the lake. In the pic above you can see a few black lines in the sky. There were prob 1,000 little black cormorants, & pied cormorants, flying up & down the lake all day long. I mean all day long.  Every now & then they would land & fish & take off again.
Sunset was lovely as usual.

 Sunrise the next morning (above) & after day break, the cormorants - & pelicans - have a feeding frenzy - herding the fish. Was quite a spectacle to watch.
Late arvo - & Rod has hardly moved all day from his chair & his book reading.
It's lucky we had our own toilet in the van, but no one else was there to perve on us if we did use it!! (Well we did use it just the once each. hehehehehe.
This great egret is 1 of dozens & dozens of egrets (small, intermediate & great) around he 40km long lake.

On the road to Daly Waters, I was lucky to get a fairly decent pic or 2 from the 90km / hr moving car of these 2 wedge tail eagles having a feed from some fresh road kill.

Daly Waters is famous for it's unique & very remote pub. It is hundreds of kms from any where, but 1000's of people make the visit to the pub on their way along the Stuart Hwy.
 This is the souvenir shop across the road from the pub, but has plenty of character as well!

 The owners go to a lot of trouble in making the place look more appealing.

Lots of international travellers leave some of their belongings behind as donations to the place. Hardly a space could be found on the inside walls for stuff every where.

 Plenty of collectables from Oz as well.

 Most people sit outside in the 'Bough Shed' - more nic nac items hanging around from the rafters there too.
We had our 1st dining out meal in a month of travelling here on a meal of 'Beef & Barra'.
The Barra is brought in fresh from the Gulf & tasted just sensational (that's saying a lot as I'm not a keen fish eater!)

 The 8.2 km return walk to Mataranka Falls on the Roper R in the Elsey Nat Pk was hardly worth it. Lots of sand to walk through made the walk more difficult. There was further around from the falls, some pools where the Little Roper R flows into bigger Roper R.

Rod has his daily 'was here'...............

 I got a foot massage. Needed 1 when we got back as well as I was 'buggered'.
 I think that's a bubble of air - but Rod is smiling at something!!!

 There are 2 thermal pool areas @ Mataranka. 1 near the Mataranka Homestead - not as nice as the next 1!

This is called "Bitter Springs" for some reason - not sure why, as this thermal pool was just beautiful. Water temp was lovely & warm, & we just floated down stream 100mtrs to walk back & do it all again -

After the record floods from this yr - just a few lilly pads were growing. Usually nearly the whole main pool area is covered in lilly pads.

Just to finish off Mataranka area - we had our 1st croc sighting - well it is a fresh water croc - supposed not to eat people. We weren't going to try that theory out & hop into the Roper R to see how safe it was!!

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