Monday, August 14, 2017

August 14th 2017

My day began, around 7.00 am,when I looked out the window and saw the most colourful sunrise.
Sunrise at my front door
But there were dark clouds to the south. This disturbed us a little as we planned to travel to Pooncarie on the east side of the Darling River and the road is mostly gravel. Luckily for us the road was very good and the rain came only in very light sprinkles. Some sections had been sealed since we travelled this way before. The grey soil of the Darling River continued but, sadly, the water flow was weak and low in the channel. We saw the Darling and Murray Rivers in flood last November when we visited Mildura... what a sight it was with these two major rivers merging during a flood.

On going through Pooncarie we thought of our friend Doug as we saw a white Peugeot truck, high on a pole.

Gradually as we travelled south we left the red sand dunes behind us. Usually I find some plants of Cunningham's Parrot Pea in bloom while we are travelling through dunes but not this year...I was disappointed not to see them! Murray Pines began to appear as we went south and closer to the Murray River.

Coming south down the Darling we passed by the Tolarno Wool Shed where shearing was taking place. The yards were full of sheep..some shorn and some unshorn. It was an interesting comparison to the old sheds we have seen. From the distance the scene was similar, I think.

Luckily the rain did not come our way. We are told that gravel roads, following the Darling R. will be closed after as little as 4mls of rain. The bitumen was welcome and made our trip much easier as we planned to travel nearly 400 km today.
Murrumbidgee River

Later this afternoon after settling our camp into Yango National Park we inspected the old Yango Station Shearing Complex which was supposedly the largest shearing shed in the Southern Hemisphere at its peak. In the 1922 shearing season there were over 93,000 sheep shorn with 40 shearers working together. I cannot image the number of workers employed to support such a team...these would consist of men to pick up fleece and throw it on the sorting table, men pressing the wool and men quickly sweeping the floors ready for the next sheep to be shorn....and do not forget the meals to be cooked...several buckets of potatoes would have been peeled each morning.

A section of the Yango Shearing Shed
The Shearing Season would have been a huge and exciting event!

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