Day 4, Thursday 9th Jan 2014 St Arnaud – Elmore
A warm morning and we have blown a fuse in the bathroom. Yesterday it was a fuse in the TV’s 12volt plug. With this new van these are all new issues for us, but I guess that’s the price you pay for modern appliances. Woody does another quick dash down the hill to Leale’s Camping store for more fuses. No doubt we’ll need spares.
On the way to Dunolly, we pass Cochrane’s Creek where my ancestors mined for gold before taking up land at Carapooee. We note that the Logan Pub which provides free camping ‘out the back’ is tiny but has a huge parking area. Right on the highway it could be a noisy camp spot though. We turn off at Moliagul and head into Dunolly. The town is idyllically quiet, but perhaps too quiet as we find that our favourite pub, the Station Hotel has now closed. The lady at the historical society is helpful and we are able to find the manse of the Congregational Church. The manse being all that remains of the church where my great grandparents were married. It is pleasant sitting outside the butcher shop waiting for today’s batch of saveloys to be cooked. Aah, there’s nothing like country butcher shops. Before leaving town, we visit the Old Pioneers Cemetery. The cemetery is little more than a patch of dry scrub with only six gravesites now recognisable. This could be the last resting place of my great-grandmother’s brother.
At Bendigo we replenish our beer stocks, this hot dry country makes one thirsty, then have lunch beside the lake. Salami from the Dunolly butcher makes a great sandwich as we feed the ducks and water hens. A tortoise suns itself on a log. Woody grins with pride as people walk past admiring our van.
We camp at Ayson’s Reserve just outside of Elmore on the Campaspe River. This is the site of the old Elmore Field Days. It is perfectly flat with enough room for a hundred camps. There are toilets and a dump point. It is well grassed and maintained and stretches for about a kilometre along the riverbank. There are about forty camps here, yet it is quiet and peaceful. This is a perfect spot to be in this hot weather so we decide to stay for two nights.
Towing Kms: 143Kms
2022 Note: We now carry plenty of fuses. And know the tricks to turning on the TV without blowing fuses.
Years later I find that great grandmother’s brother and her mother are buried in a Melbourne suburban cemetery. I guess we’ll never know what drew them to Melbourne.
Ayson’s Reserve, well we had heard a lot of talk about this spot and were pleased to find it. It’s another place that we enjoy returning to.