June 18th 2017
We left our camp on The Darling River with some regrets as we had absolutely enjoyed the 2 nights of camping on Mt Murchison. It was peaceful but had a large number of birds flitting about enjoying the Red Gums and the ‘Chocolate Milk’ Of the Darling. The other sadness we felt was the fact that Mt Murchison is no longer a working sheep station. The shearing sheds and shearers’ accommodation rooms are both showing the ravages of white ants and weather. Most nearby stations would be in a similar condition.
Ian Marr had left his Homestead, by the time we came by with a bottle of red wine for him. We knew he was leaving early to go to Clare in South Australia where he is able to access the slate that he uses for letter cutting. He is a skilled artisan.
We said our farewells to Peter and drove into Wilcannia and on a few kms on the other side where the Wilcannia Cemetery is. It is a large cemetery with some old graves and some unusual graves. We spent over half an hour there wandering around. John spotted a grave with the name Desailly on the memorial stone.
|A memorial to a young member of the Desailly Family Ancestry|
Alfred Clive Desailly Brougham died as a baby of a few months in age. He was the son of Connie Desailly’s sister, Emma who had married John Waugh Brougham, from the nearby family of Broughams. He was Connie’s nephew and Alfred Desailly’s grandson. It was not uncommon for small children to die, during the early years, especially being so far away from medical assistance. There was quite a number of tiny graves in the cemetery, indicating the death of a small child.
We drove back through Wilcannia, photographing Desailly Street on the edge of the township. The morning had quickly disappeared so we lunched on the side of the road. No more salt bush covering the country. Red sands and acacias were much more common as we drove north toward White Cliffs which showed only a small amount of activity despite opal mining pursuits which continue to benefit those who live there. John and I camped in White Cliffs during the late 1980s. At that time the White Cliffs 5 star Hilton Hotel was advertised as BYO Everything. Today the building is completely missing from the main street and has been replaced by an Information Centre.,
We continued along the road to Walnarring, travelling through the Paroo-Darling National Park where we had hoped to camp. But No Camping only Day Visiting. We went for a short walk,from the Day Area, to the top of a nearby rise to view Lake Peery.
We had no alternative but to travel on until we were out of the National Park where we turned off the road and camped behind a row of small trees on a Station Property near a large ‘tank’/damn of water.