June 2018 – Home on the West Coast

Back home on the West Coast for a week, so that Mike could attend the West Coast Leisure & Adventure Expo.  All too quickly, our time in Western Australia was over and we returned to New South Wales.

Over the next few days, we will be featuring places we love to visit, literally right on the West Coast.

June 2018 – Hill End Village Camp

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Situated near the edge of the Hill End Historic Village, this campsite is smaller in area than Glendora Campsite.  It has powered sites with contained camp fire, amenities block and a dump point, and the advantage of being a short walk into the village.  Approx. $25 per night for 2 people powered site – check the National Parks web site (below). Coin operated hot showers. Kangaroos – free.  Imperative to book ahead of arrival, on-line bookings at least one day in advance.

https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/camping-and-accommodation/campgrounds/village-campground

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June 2018 – Hill End – Glendora Camp

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Under 2km from the Heritage Village of Hill End is the large Glendora Campground.  (40.powered sites.)  Details above.  Hot showers are coin operated.   BBQ under cover.  Amenities block.  No bookings in advance.

https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/camping-and-accommodation/campgrounds/glendora-campground

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3.6.2018 – Hill End, NSW

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As happened in gold rush areas, towns sprung up in rural areas and after the rush, the hastily erected shacks and buildings over time, disappeared.  At Hill End Historic Site a walk around what is left of the town gives you an idea of life back then.  Large areas of grass where once there had been homes and shops etc. are now fodder for the kangaroos.  Plenty of signs with information and photos show what once had been, alongside relics of bygone eras.

And the kangaroos!  They’re everywhere!  In front of people’s homes, in the back yards…

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Mike’s Mob

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Lots to see:

https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/visit-a-park/parks/hill-end-historic-site

 

3.6.2018 – Golden Gully, Hill End

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On the way to Hill End

From Bathurst, we travelled north towards Sofala and then westwards to Hill End, a journey of about 80.kms and  the views as we climbed the hills, spectacular.   In some sections the road had been chiseled into the rocky hillsides and notices warned of falling rocks.

Not far from Hill End is Golden Gully – a short walking trail and listed on the State Heritage Register and named because of all the Golden Wattle that blooms along the gully in July.

With the 1851 gold rush in this area of Hill End – Tambaroora, European and Chinese miners sank shafts and dug to retrieve alluvial gold from a buried river bed. The intense fossicking caused massive changes to the landscape.  Subsequent erosion has turned Golden Gully into what it is today, exposing squarish European shafts and some round Chinese shafts (to prevent ghosts from hiding in the corners) in the dramatic landscape.  Apparently the Chinese didn’t sink their shafts further than 60.feet.  Scary stuff when looking at this shaft exposed from erosion.

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Atop some of the ridges, it’s only the tree roots holding the softer rocks and soil together and often the roots are exposed, showing the roots stretching to the base of the gully.

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And a significant feature of Golden Gully:  “The Arch”

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2.6.2018 – Abercrombie House

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Like something out of Wuthering Heights!

Abercrombie House (“The Mount” as it was then known) was built in the 1870s by the pioneering Stewart family and took 8.years to construct.   It ceased as a Stewart home in 1927 when Athol Stewart moved away and sold the contents.  Thereafter caretakers and tenants occupied The Mount until 1939 when it was rented to the Federal Government for war time use for £1 a week.  The Australian Women’s Land Army came to Bathurst (1942-1944) to harvest asparagus for Edgell and billeted at the house.  Following the 1944 harvest, the women left and the house was empty for the next 8.years.  From about 1951 there were periods of renovation and members of the Stewart family resided in the House, which required a great deal of work and restoration.

Rex Morgan AM, MBE and his wife Mary purchased the “The Mount” in 1969 and began a programme of gradual restoration, still going nearly 50.years later.  It is currently the family home of their son Christopher and his family, who continue with tours of the home and hosting events to assist with the ongoing upkeep and restoration of Abercrombie House.

Having wandered through many of the 50.rooms of Abercrombie House and its expansive grounds, it is easy to understand why so many people come back time and again.  Throughout the home is an eclectic array of items on display – numerous paintings interchanged from time to time from those in storage (some painted by members of the Morgan family), photos and memorabilia.  History is everywhere, presented and explained well by the tour guide.   There are items for sale at the back of the House in their antiques and collectibles shop and from there, more to see including the Stables Village (for accommodation) and chapel .

It was a pleasure to meet members of the Morgan family throughout our visit.  It is obvious they work very hard on the property but it must be a daunting task to keep on top of everything.

Some photos of the grounds:

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And inside:  The Entrance to Abercrombie House

And some more of the interior.  The detail in the house is amazing also.  Simply, a ‘must see’ if in Bathurst.

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http://www.abercrombiehouse.com.au/

Maintenance of your Home on Wheels

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It goes without saying that keeping your vehicle well maintained, prolongs its life, not to mention re-sale value.

Just like your residential home, your home on wheels will need maintenance and not just the motor, if you have one.

Like anything worth keeping, the old saying, “A stitch in time saves nine” is true.

Mike has cleaned, sanded and re-sealed wooden edgings to bench tops before the age, wear and tear damage was too great and they look like new again.  He has re-sealed around joins on the top of the motor home as a precaution to prevent water seeping in.

Previous owners of our motor home have kept it immaculate and well looked after, but age sucks.  We recently replaced our hot water system, reversing camera, hatch coverings, and some minor fittings.

The faded decorative striping and some old, yellowed and cracked covers on the outside of the motor home have now all been replaced.

Luckily, some of the work Mike could do himself.  Other work we have had done by Sydney RV Group or their associated sub-contractors.

And now we feel like we are in a new motor home! A far cry from our first home on wheels….

Our first caravan – 1977.  We were living in it at a caravan park south of Adelaide, and each of us were holding down a full time job, plus three part time jobs between us. This was our first attempt at a working holiday in Australia.  Looked after the old caravan, which came with a ‘cool box’ instead of a fridge, changing a few things and sold for a good price when we upgraded.  Augh! “The good ole days!”

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