Sunday, 11 December 2016

750km Sunday Silo Sojourn!

We loved the Brim Silos earlier this year.  They were absolutely awesome!

My images from the trip have featured on our 2016 Christmas cards as well as in our 2017 calendar and photo diaries - because you can't have too much of a good thing!

Since we visited Brim in April, two more sites have been added to the Silo Art Trail - one at Patchewollock and another at Sheep Hills. (I've kept track of their progress via Facebook).

Nick works shift-work and we try to make the most of his rostered days off.

He and I were planning activities for his next break when he commented that we should do a day-trip to see the silos. (The round trip would be close to 750 kilometres).

Due to school term, we planned for Sunday departure - which meant leaving shortly after Nick returned from a full 12-hour night-shift.

Erin and I shared the day's driving between us.  We left at 7:42 am and didn't return till 10:52 pm, so it was a huge day!  Was it worth all the effort?! Yep, it was brilliant!

We stopped for breakfast at Beaufort.  From there we drove to Ararat, detouring into Green Hill Lake cos I could see water sparkling from the highway!  The lake had been very dry during our stay in 2014 and then completely dry in April - so it was wonderful to see it really full!

The Sheep Hills silos had only just been completed the week before we visited. Such amazing detail. Just beautiful! There is a story here and you can Google Adnate to see more of his work.

We stopped quickly at the Brim Silos for a few more photos (and admiration) before driving to the Brim Weir Pool for a BBQ lunch.

Erin did some great sausage sizzling and we were quite impressed that the town had provided paper towels as well as scrapers to aid clean-up!

Patchewollock was close to 90 km away from Brim.  I drove while Nick and Erin dozed.  Vaughan looked up from his book when I queried the type of the bird on the yellow signs but didn't recognise the picture.

Further along we saw more signs that identified the bird silhouette as a mallee fowl - warning us to be careful as the birds made their mound nests in the area and were oblivious to traffic!  I was a bit sorry we didn't see any - though we did like the huge corrugated iron sculptures near the silos.  (As Nick walked behind one a fast pigeon flew out from the tail end, which was funny)!

The silo at Patchewollock was the second to be completed but furthest away from us, so we viewed it as a finale (of the three sites but not our day).  You can read about the work here, which gives the story of the farmer and the artist.

We made our way home from Patchewollock, following the same route we had come - with a few detours.  I checked my map at Hopetoun where there were signs indicating "Lake" without any distance noted.  As it happened, Lake Lascelles was only a short distance down the turn-off and we spent some very pleasant time by the water.  Vaughan paddled, we watched ski boats doing laps and basically enjoyed our late afternoon tea while sitting quietly.

The sun was low by the time we reached Ararat.  We managed to order takeaway just before our chosen shop shut for the night - and then ate our hamburgers, fish and chips on top of the One Tree Hill lookout as the sun set - which was an experience on my wish list.  Serendipity!

The Wimmera region was experiencing a bumper harvest and we saw lots of farming activity during the day.  Huge hay bales were being stacked in massive groups, non-painted silos were being filled and there were grain bins and other machinery on the roads.  So much to see!

We were tired but very happy campers by the time we finally arrived home - 15 hours and 10 minutes after we'd set off!  Nick had been up since 3:30 pm the previous day, so slept magnificently.  The rest of us were pleased of our beds also. What a magic day!

Saturday, 3 December 2016

Shy Platypi

We have driven through Skipton on a few occasions lately and I'd seen signs at one of the parks featuring a platypus.  Even so, we didn't stop to look and therefore only realised the town was home to platypus several days later (when I did some internet research)!

Of course, our next mission was to head over to Skipton one evening in the hope of spotting platypus. We chose a lovely night and the observation deck was a pretty place for viewing the little creek. As we stood, we saw a family of ducks, some movement among the reeds and bubbles in the water.  We like to think the ripples and moving reeds were possibly caused by a platypus - and who's to say we were wrong?!