Yesterday I was sewing some last minute items for the twilight school fete and thought, this time last week I was in Bright and then Myrtleford op shopping, having afternoon tea in a bakery with Grace (she loves sitting in a shop or cafe and G would rather have chips, so it ended up being our special treat) and enjoying the sunshine after our lunch up near Mount Hotham. We had been intending to camp one more night and come home on Saturday but despite finding an OK free camp site near Oxley (the caravan park was full) for one reason and another we changed our minds and decided to barrel down the Hume and come home. I spent the next two days attacking a seemingly endless mountain of washing. But that's camping isn't it?
Anyway, based on the 7 day weather forecast we headed east rather than west, which had been our original plan. We are quite slow travellers most of the time and true to form were ready to set up our first camp when we got to Moe. I had sussed out some free camping just 13k north and it looked close to the road. Unfortunately my navigation took us down a wrong turn and we bounced along gravel tracks for ages. Grace slept through most of it but woke up before we made it to the campsite at Seninis recreation reserve. We were early enough not to be stressed setting up the new to us tent for the first time outside the back yard. It was a lovely camping ground with mountain stream running around it. We could have stayed another night but decided to press on to the beach.
The next place we stopped was Corringle Slips which is opposite Marlo and where the Snowy River meets the sea. I was a bit worried that being a weekend, it might be full. When we arrived, it was quite a bit fuller than I expected and it took a while to find a site. Turns out that it was the opening of the duck shooting season and the camping ground was full of duck shooters and a group from Orbost who come to party for the season opening. We decided to take things as they came and not be bothered by the noise, which as it turned out was pretty much blocked out by the generator at the next camp site. The scariest thing was walking to the toilets at night, past camp sites with men in camo gear polishing their guns. I don't think I have ever been somewhere with so many guns and so much alcohol. On the positive side there were two girls for Grace to play with, an older one who was camping with her dad who wasn't shooting (but his friend was) and a younger girl from the vegetarian Steiner family across the road (I found out they were vegetarian when I told the mum about the duckshooting and then asked later if they were at a Steiner school based on a hunch and the hats they were wearing - the family was lovely and it was nice to feel we weren't the only non-duck shooters or fishers). The girls spent a lot of time in the older girl's horse trailer and building a house for fairies in the crook of a ti tree near our camp site. It's amazing how absorbing this activity became once I got them started. There was also a beautiful ocean beach and cold but lovely swimming in the estuary of the snowy river. While Grace and I were having a swim, I looked into the distance and there was a person swimming down the river.
Next camping instalment will include being rained out at Cape Conran and coming home over the mountains. And I am already planning the two week Queensland trip for July with maybe some mini breaks in between.