When life gives you lemons, go ride Lemonade!

More Dinosaurs

But first a word about our campground in Richmond. We had no more than set up when these guys appeared.  We got out half of a crust of bread and they started in on it.  It didn’t take them long to devour it.

They are Lorikeets.





Then the word went out and a total of 18 of them showed up and cleaned up the crumbs dropped by the first two.  We noticed that whenever a new camper pulled in they headed straight for it.  And they usually got fed!






We were up and underway before the museum opened the next morning so we went out to the public dig area about 12 k out of town.  It was an old gravel pit that had a shale bottom.  Someone had used a ripper blade to turn up the shale in long rows (like plowing a field).  Kathy and I looked around but we only found some clam like shells.  No fish skeletons or leaves.





The center of Australia was a large inland sea about 100 million years ago.  And things like this lived there.  This museum is self-guided and has many complete and partial fossil remains on display.

It is famous for this guy, a Kronosauras.





This is what they found.  All but a few tiny bones that would be fingertips in a human are there.  And he has big teeth!







As we left town headed to Hughenden these birds flew around overhead.  They are cockatoos.

It has been an interesting town.



On the way to Hughenden we had to get out of these guys way.  Not a road train but even bigger.








The last of the dinosaurs on our four-stop tickets is “Muttaburas”.  (I do not pick these names!)  He is another complete skeleton that was found locally.  And he is another meat eater.  This was another self-guided museum and the smallest of the four.  It even had local handicrafts (crochets etc) on sale down one side.


Now we are headed north on a dirt road 265 km (150 mi) long.  It has patches of pavement for 10 km or so then more dirt then another patch and so on.  We are headed to gold and gem country.  We had planned to spend the night in a small, tiny town but the campground was closed.  So we go on 70 more km to the next town, the same size.  We get there and stop at the hotel for a beer.  (Australian outback “hotels” are more bar and restaurant than hotels as we know them in the US.)  While we are drinking our beers a person comes in and tells us (we’re the only tourists so its obvious that the camper is ours) that we have a flat on our camper.  We find a screw in the tire.  A nearly new screw that we had to have picked up in the last ½ km. This is a learning experience for us as we have not changed a tire on our van yet.  A hot sweaty 45 minutes later it is done.  Next time will be easier.  We go to the campground, next door, and set up.  We’re the only ones in it.  And I NEED a shower.

This is the start of the wet season in the north and we are finding things closed or reduced in services.

The dirt/gravel roads we have been on for the last 300 km have been very rough.  The washboarding shook us to the core.  I’m very happy at how well the van held up.

In the morning we head to the main highway 40 km north with 20 as dirt and more washboards.  We make it and stop at a gem shop where the guy and his wife collect locally and polish most all of the stones they sell in the store.  Kathy likes Blue Topaz so we get her a very nice teardrop one for her upcoming birthday.

Now it is on to the east.  We are getting close to the edge of the Outback and will be entering the tropical rain forest around Cairns.  But first we stop to see some waterfalls and Platypus.  We will spend two nights there.