Let’s drive up to the Gold Coast

This was Trip No. 4 for us. Our Viscount pop top had just had the side panels replaced and a new awning fitted after our altercation with a roadside fence. We were towing it with a Ford Territory. We had only been retired for 6 months and as you’ll read, we were still doing things in a tearing hurry.

Day 1 Saturday March 16th 2013 Home to Tarcutta

With Woody’s brother, that’s Woody the Elder’s birthday imminent, we decide to drive to the Gold Coast to surprise him before heading south to meet up with friends at their farm outside of Bendigo for the Easter break.

Now that the city of Albury is bypassed, we have a divided road from the Mornington Peninsula up the Hume Highway to just 5 minutes south of Holbrook in New South Wales (over 400kms). That makes for easier motoring. At Holbrook, we stop to view the HMAS Otway, the Oberon class submarine that has been set into the park lawns. Wow, it is long and yet we can only see what would have been above water whilst surface cruising.

HMAS Otway at Holbrook, NSW

At Tarcutta we choose the truck stop interchange to spend the night. Being halfway between Melbourne and Sydney it has an enormous concrete apron where drivers can meet their counterparts and swap loads before returning to whence, they came. As we figure that there is plenty of room for hundreds of trucks, we park ourselves in the far corner and watch this fascinating activity. The amenities are excellent, separate heated bathrooms with toilets, showers, and power points. Across the road is the very moving Truckers Memorial to the professional truck drivers lost on Australian highways. Time for bed and “Oh my God” the noise from shunting trucks and their air brakes, is high pitched. Thankfully all activity stops around 11:00pm and we have a peaceful night until they start rolling in again at 7:00am. I’m guessing that Saturday night is possibly the only night of the week that this spot would suit caravanners, not such a great decision, we’ll cross that one off the list.

Hiding down the back of the Tarcutta Truck Stop

Towing Kms: 505Kms

2022 Note: We were obviously happy with the divided road back in 2013. Nowadays it’s hard to remember how tiring the drive between Melbourne and Sydney once was when it wound back and forth through the highlands. Back then Tarcutta and Gundagai being roughly halfway were always in the news because of horror road crashes and tired drivers.

Gosh, it’s a far cry from when we used to drive to Sydney in one day!

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