Monday 4th of September
Coonabarabran to Narromine
Our squatters on our camp site at the Coonabarabran tourist park left around 9am, so Linda and I were able to pack up and be leaving Coonabarabran by 10.30, heading for Narromine that is about 35 Km west of Dubbo. We originally wanted to stay at Dubbo, a rather large rural city in central NSW, but the tourist parks there charged like wounded Bulls. So we decided on nearby Narromine, and besides, we are heading west to Cobar in a few days, Narromine is more convenient. Our reason for wanting to visit Dubbo was to go to the well known open plains zoo there, an annex to Sydney’s famous Taronga Park Zoo.
The drive out of Coonabarabran was through the hilly foothills of the Warrumbungle Ranges, but on a good fast highway despite being a bit ‘up and down’ in nature. Soon we descended from the Warrumbungles to the wide Western Plains of NSW with flat roads with long straight stretches. The Western Plains of NSW extend over to the South Australian border, then continue to the Flinders Ranges of SA. The Western Plains are about 800 Km wide as far as the Flinders Ranges in SA. Southward they extend down to the Murray River border with Victoria and then on as far down as Creswick where we live, around 800 Km south of here. So it is flatland driving all the way home from now on.
Once on the plains we came to the town of Gilgandra where we stopped for lunch. We passed through Gilgandra many weeks ago as we were coming up from the Hunter Valley to Lightning Ridge, this time though we were heading south. I had been driving as far as Gilgandra, then Linda took over for the remainder of the drive to Narromine. About 20 Km south of Gilgandra we turned off towards Narromine. We were really in plains country now; sheep and cropping being the main rural professions here with vast sheep paddocks and vast expanses of both wheat and canola.
After 50 Km along this road we finally came to Narromine and soon found the tourist park out on the road to Bourke. The tourist park here at Narromine as actually located at the Narromine Arrodrome which was once an RAAF base during World War 2. It is now a civil Aerodrome hosting an aircraft museum, commercial operations such as crop dusting, and a large gliding club. Being a past glider pilot myself I will try and call in on the club tomorrow if they are operating.
Having set up camp on the perimeter of the Aerodrome, Linda and I drove the 4 Km into the town centre for some essential shopping for tonight’s dinner and tomorrow’s meals. One unfortunate aspect of the camp at Narromine today, is the very strong north westerly wind. Being perched on an Aerodrome there is no significant buildings or trees to moderate this howling wind. Hopefully it will drop with the approach of night time.
Sausages (gourmet) and mash for dinner tonight.