Elokin and Hendrix with Ted

Day 444 – Day 447: Flora River – Oolloo Crossing

Wednesday, 20 to Saturday, 23 August 2014                                                  462.9kms

Wednesday we left early and headed into Katherine. While we were shopping we found Kellie, Mark, Oscar and Ethan and went for coffee with them at the Coffee Club. Camped for the night 10kms north of Katherine at an unmarked rest area.

Camp at roadside 10km north of Katherine
Camp at roadside 10km north of Katherine

The next morning we headed out to Top Didj to look at the beautiful Aboriginal Art and didgeridoos. Turns out I have rather expensive taste as I there were 3 pieces I really, really liked, and they were all about $2500. We met a couple, Jon and Rhonda, from Crescent Head in the room with the didgeridoos. Jon was playing them all and gave us some pointers for Hendrix. Turns out, the didgeridoo will choose you, not the other way around. And he was right. The first one Hendrix picked up, he was able to toot out a drone easily. Nath thought it must be an easy didj to play, but couldn’t get it to work. Hendrix tried many others, but returned to that first one, time and time again. So that is the one he now owns. Elokin bought clap sticks, plus we bought an instructional dvd for Hendrix and Nath to learn with. While we were there, Elokin got to hold a 6 ½ month old agile wallaby named Ted. It was the cutest little thing, all bundled up in his pouch. Hendrix got to feed an older one named Balla (Aboriginal for “Fella”) a piece of sweet potato.

From here we continued out to Nitmiluk National Park (Katherine Gorge) and set up camp. The washing machines got a work out from us in the afternoon and they are $4 per load. We met a family camped near us in the evening and Elokin and Hendrix enjoyed playing with Jarrah and Keira while we chatted with Jodie and Josh.

Friday saw us do school work in the morning and go for a swim in the pool after packing down the camper. We then headed to the visitors centre where we had intended to go for a walk to the Katherine Gorge lookout, but spent too long in the centre chatting, and the kids played with Lex, that we had to go straight to town to collect the mail. As all of the school work didn’t arrive, or any of the other packages we were waiting on, it put us in a bit of a pickle that left us unsure what to do with ourselves for the weekend. Do we hang around Katherine, which is going to cost us loads to potentially get the mail on Monday if it arrives; or do we go somewhere close by and come back on Monday, although there is nowhere we want to go close by; or do we say stuff it and head north and get the mail redirected to Darwin? Over a cup of tea in a park we decided to do the later. It’s not worth waiting around for mail, even though Elokin has no school work for next week and Hendrix does. Oh well, we get the week off to catch up and take a break. After coming to a decision, we attempted to start the car to discover we had a flat battery! I finally managed to flag down a lovely family in a patrol from Coffs Harbour to give us a jump start. It was then McDonalds for dinner and driving north into the night. We arrived at Douglas Hot Springs after 9pm, pulled into a big open area and went to bed. What a day!

 

Camp at Douglas Hot Springs
Camp at Douglas Hot Springs

The next morning we went for a swim in the Hot Spring before driving the 45 odd kilometres to Oolloo Crossing on the banks of the Daly River.

We found a lovely shady camp in amongst tall trees on a concrete slab and set up camp.

Nath and Hendrix flicked lures around in the river and the water was so crystal clear we could see the Barramundi come in to give them a tap. No hook ups this afternoon, but there is always tomorrow.

The family watched the Didgeridoo dvd in the evening and practised on the didj. The boys are getting really good at it.

Until next time…. Happy and Safe Travels.

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