Breakdown Blues – Day 19 Jack’s Place

Day 19 Thursday 23/6/2022, Millmerran to Braemar, sunny 2 – 23

We’re on the Darling Downs now, black soil, cotton, sorghum.

The Jeep seems to struggle when the roads are undulating. Try explaining that to the mechanics! We pick up the Toowoomba Bypass highway and pass the privately owned  Wellcamp International Airport. With little warning, we are plunged into a heart-stopping descent down the Toowoomba escarpment into the Lockyer Valley. The descent is so steep that the Coles truck in front of us is crawling down at 27kmh. It is a steep, long, and nerve-wracking descent and not the old steepish zig zag highway that we’d expected!

The Lockyer Valley is blessed with acres of vegetables and lush tropical gardens, mango orchards, rich red volcanic soil, and grass as tall as a cow’s belly. Every house is a haven in a tropical paradise amidst tall gums.

With trembling knees, we admire the vegetables in the Lockyer Valley

We stretch our legs at the village of Esk. The town is nestled between craggy outcrops and has quaint weatherboard shops and Queenslander-style houses. The pies from the local bakery are delicious but it’s hard to eat them without wearing the beef, bacon, and cheese filling. I feel for whoever has the job of sweeping up all those pastry crumbs.

We stop at the Toogoolawah Showgrounds to use the dump point. Unlike any other, we’ve seen it’s located in a concrete pit and all we can see of El Prado is the top of his head as he gets on with the job at hand.

Five kms north of town in an area called Braemar is Jack’s Place. Norm meets us at the house on his ride-on mower and leads us down to the creek-side camping area. There is no fee here, just a request for all our bottles and cans from which Norm makes a few bucks recycling. The campsite is a rough mown area with fire pits and plenty of wood at our disposal. Four horses wander over to check out the visitors. There are two other vans here but there is oodles of space.

Our fire pit takes centre stage
A view of the creek from our ‘living room’

We spend the afternoon quietly reading in the sun. It’s not a place where you can go walking as the terrain is rough and the grass is long. Ever early with fire lighting, El Prado lights the fire at 3:30 right beside an anthill. The poor little buggers must think they’ve got central heating.

There’s a big orangey red sunset reflected in the creek. Dinner is stir-fried salmon and noodles.

Accom: $0 (rustic campsite only)

Fuel: $55.83 (238.9 c/l)

Towing Kms: 191kms

Sunset reflected in the creek at Jack’s Place
Braemar / Toogoolawah (Map Source: WikiCamps)

10 thoughts on “Breakdown Blues – Day 19 Jack’s Place

    1. That sunset photo is great and I can imagine the ants near the fire
      Also – needs wracking at times and whew – enjoyed this part of the Journey today


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