Day 2, Tuesday 7th Jan 2014 Mt Franklin – Moonambel
We walk up the dirt road to the rim of the crater to see the view. Sadly, it has been blocked out by the trees. But the walk through the pine forest gets our blood pumping and leaves us feeling ready to face the day. All the gadgets on the van worked well overnight making it the most luxurious night of free camping we’ve ever spent. Now the hot shower before breakfast just tops it off. But will I have to put up with Woody’s moans of ecstasy with every shower or will he get used to this pleasure?
As we pack up, we realise that we have a puncture on the car. It looks like a rock has punctured the tyre wall. It’s a case of unhitching the van, jacking up the car, changing the tyre, then hitching the van up again. We nick into Daylesford and do a quick U-turn into the tyre repair place. Suddenly, there’s a heck of a bang and we discover that we have popped the load leveller onto the roadway. Our turning circle isn’t as tight with this longer rig. A passing pedestrian has also had the shock of her life as this 5kg rod of metal has hit the road. While the tyre is being assessed we have an excellent coffee at Frangos & Frangos. It is a cold morning with an icy wind. Is this really January? The tyre isn’t salvageable, so we drive down to Ballarat to have two new ones fitted. The guys at Beaurepaires are faster moving than the fellow at Daylesford and before we can scratch ourselves, we’re back on the road and heading west to Avoca.
We decide to stop for the day at the little town of Moonambel. The Mountain Creek Reserve is just behind the town. It is warm, dry and dusty and there is a breeze blowing high up in the treetops. We’re so close to town that we’re looking into the backyard horse paddocks. There are hundreds of cockies serenading us and the hum of a million bush insects. Unlike Daylesford, here it is summer. As evening creeps in, the currawongs rummage about the grass strutting and scratching with their little chests puffed out. What a lovely quiet spot to spend the night.
Towing Kms: 148Kms