Monday, August 15, 2011

Chillagoe weekend

Chillagoe weekend - July 9 - 10 - Day 1
Gone by 9 am west up the Kuranda range, stopped at Henry Ross Look Out, then Barron Falls before stopping in Kuranda for the morning.  Walked along the streets and into the shops.  Cary & Bryce were buying lots of souvenirs and gifts.  Had a picnic lunch in the park, where a bird pooped on Cary!  LOL though she didn't think so!!  Some more shopping at the Heritage Markets before meeting Scott on his motorbike.
SHOPPING!!!  Oh look shoes!!

Kuranda candy- that's one big lolly
Heaven for some - Hell for others

Headed out again on our drive to the sleepy historic town of Chillagoe along Wheelbarrow way.  We went about an hour and half west of Mareeba on a mix of bitumen and gravel roads, passing a few road trains along the way.  Scott was in heaven riding his motorbike today. 
Australia outback

Arrived at the Hub, the local meeting place, we got a map of the area and booked a cave tour for the morning.  Stopped at the Eco Lodge and dropped off our luggage in our 2 suites.  We drove to the Balancing Rock and then the Wullumba art site before going to the caves.  We did Bauhina Cave and Pompeii Cave on our own.  They were very narrow and rocky descents.  Brody, Darby, and Bryce went exploring in the first cave further than the rest of us.  We all went in the second cave and it opened up to a huge cavern.  Good thing we had our torches as it was very dark.
hiking in the outback

The Balancing Rock

trying to read the aboriginal writing on the rocks

The small entrance hole

Big stretch for some!
inside the cave

Heading into a cave

There was a very beautiful sunset and a very clear sky for looking at the stars after supper.
Sunset in the outback

Day 2
Breakfast at 7:30 am that we pre-ordered the night before.   Bryce tried veggie-mite, 'okay' but, he didn't take a second bite.  Loaded all of us into the Kluger and made our way to the BP Fuel and Historic Ford cars.  We didn't make it far as Cary spotted a kangaroo bouncing by, then another.  She was very excited as it wasn't a dead one on the side of the road.  Eventually got to see the Fords and a Falcon GT in great condition.
9:00 am tour of the Trezkinn Cave along the steel catwalk encircling a huge central mass of limestone.  Our ranger, Bob, led us through the well lite cave with information signs along the way.  There were several steep and narrow flights of stairs.  We learnt stalactites come from above and stalacmites grow up.  We saw some magnificent formations including the 'chandelier'.  We saw the 'column' where a stalagmite & stalactites meet and grow together.  We saw seashells, as the caves are from the coral reef 400 million years ago.  The brilliant sparkling calcite crystals were my favourite!  The caves were discovered in 1967.  Cary didn't like seeing the few bats hanging around.  We all had a great time exploring them this weekend!
Cary chasing kangaroos

'72 Ford Falcon GT

waiting for our tour

watch your head - even Cary


Amazing limestone

Long way up the lime caves
Did a driving tour at the smelter before leaving Chillagoe.  I read the information as we drove through the old smelter site.  
Smelter - where iron ore was melted


  1. WOW!!! Those caves look SO cool!!!! I have a picture like that of Cary trying to get a picture of an ELK on our way home from BC one year!!! LOL

  2. I see you have been busy once nice that your sisters could join you and you could share Aussie adventures. Good pics, liked the sunset...nice. :)Susan