Since it looks as if our days living the dream in Oz are numbered (more on that some other time) I feel compelled to [try harder to] better document our adventures. So, without further ado or hand-wringing apologies for 5 months of radio silence: we went camping.
Monday was the New Year’s public holiday so we left Saturday for two nights of car camping *with the dog* … public service digression ahead … unlike in the US you cannot bring you dogs camping in national parks here. And there are a LOT of national parks here. At first glace it might seem that all the good camping areas are in national parks. Not so! Like in the US, you can camp (with dogs) nearly anywhere on forest service land and in many state parks. I repeat, for extra keyword emphasis (for anyone googling for this very information): bush camping in Victoria with dogs … go to Victoria Department of Sustainability (DSE) Forests > Regional Information.There is a nifty click-able map. Click a region and peruse “Places to Visit” which will list any available camping areas. I think the assumption is, if dogs are not explicitly prohibited, they are welcomed. The DSE sites are like Forest Service campgrounds in the US - bare bones: just pit toilets & fire rings. Probably no water and definitely no rubbish bins (pack out everything you brought in). This is just the way we like it since having the car and a cooler feels totally hedonistic after years of only backpacking.(And, fewer amenities usually = fewer hoons, yahoos, bozos, etc.)
So, anyway. Back to our regularly scheduled (HA!) programming. We headed towards Marysville. I am compelled to go there and just throw money around - it is a community trying very hard (and succeeding I dare say) to rebuild after the 2009 bush fires. It has come a long way since we were there last (throwing money - in the bakery). So, yeah. Go to Marysville! Buy lunch! Buy groceries! Buy petrol! Buy buy Buy! (Lunch, FWIW, was bought at Fraga’s Cafe, and it was delish). We drove out to the Upper Big River State Forest(outside the zone of bush fire devastation) and found a spot in the Frenchman’s Creek camping area. Oh, and by the way, “Pets are permitted but must be kept under control.” Did I mention you can bring your dog there?
I’m going to wrap the rest of this up in bullet points. Stuff we did:
- Hiked around the campground and waded in the rivers - Frenchman’s Creek & Big River confluence
- Lawrence threw a stick for Quinnie just as I was saying “I hope the current isn’t too strong for him”
- Lawrence rescued Quin when the poor puppy could not indeed swim back against the current
- Made and ate pudding, as is our family camping tradition
- The grown-ups drank wine from a box (another tradition)
- Lounged and read (LTM: The Economist; LJO: How Perfect is That - Sara Bird; ZJM: Puppy Place 4 Rascal)
- Packed up and Drove to Yea via Marysville & Alexandra
- At lunch at Elmer’s in Yea (delish)
- Visited the Yea Wetlands
- Bought some cherries near Flowerdale
- Came home via Yarra Glen (drove straight past all those wineries! even Graeme Miller’s in Dixon Creek - my personal fave).
And some choice photos:
That's the rescue ...
See the rest on the Shutterfly share site (if you are not a member and would like access, email me).