Sunday, 5 May 2013

Calliope/Gladston/Rockhampton

Working the hotel was pretty laid back for Jen and I, although the hours were quite long and we didn’t really get much opportunity to see too much. So when we got our first day off, we were pretty pumped!
When we knocked off Tuesday night (30th of April), we set off for a place called Calliope (Cal-eep-ee) and decided to camp out in the free camping location Calliope River Rest Area.
Calliope River Rest Area was pretty nice location, busy yet quiet plus we were even fortunate enough to have an efficient security alarm in the form of the neighbouring caravan's yap yap dog. In the morning we brewed up some coffee on the gas burner, had a spot of breaky by the creek and took in the serenity.

Up the road was the Historical town which we observed from the troopy as we set off towards Gladstone!
It had been a while since Jen and I had been on the coast, well over a week which was long enough for us! And upon entering Gladestone we appreciated the feel of the breeze, however it is very much an Industrial town, much like that of Newcastle in the past. The beaches weren’t quite as enticing as we imagined, so we decided to head up to Aukland Hill Lookout.

It was a nice lookout, could see all around Gladestone and out over the ocean where several small islands dotted the coast. I thought to myself that this is one of those places that if man had never touched would be incredibly beautiful.

After driving around Gladestone for a while we decided we’d treck north and scope out Rockhampton, which was an hour and half away. Might seem quite silly spending our day off just driving around however we had quite the pleasant day!
When we got to Rocky we exchanged an Ipod we purchased (We felt the way Apple and Itunes operates is disgusting) for a really neat tablet. We then found a nice little park with a creek through it called Wood Park where we munched on some Sandwhiches, didn’t end up walking through the park, however it had some beautiful gardens through it and is definitely something we shall do on our next trip in, we wanted to keep moving as we heard about the chimpanzee in the free zoo!  

Rockhampton Zoo is located within the botanical gardens, a really beautiful part of the city which you can see the council truly prides themself in, the hole city of Rockhampton has a very “Green” coastal town feel despite it still being about 20ks from the coast. As you walk into the zoo you see a small bridge leading into a great green sphere, it’s a giant birdcage!
Full of all sorts of various avian life you walk through over a boardwalk and can split off to see some Cassowaries nesting or continue into the park and check out all the Aussie favourites, Koalas, emu, kangaroos, crocodiles and dingos. A variety of cockatoos and other birds seem to fly around uncaged calling the park home too, but the big attraction here is the chimpanzee!

Now these buggers are crazy, yelling and screaming, chasing each other around, banging the cage and getting into all sorts of strife, initially they were quiet, just doing there own thing, but hang around long enough and they’ll put on a show that will make you laugh, look around and be thankful there is a cage between you and them!

We strolled around between the zoo and the garden for a little longer and realised we were loosing sunlight. Back in the troopy we began to plot our next course of action, whether to head to Yeppoon, find a close by camp site or something else… As we sat in the car, Jeni said something and I just stared at her with wide eyes. Jeni didn’t understand why, but when Jeni was trying to speak, all I could hear was the radio saying “$2 tacos”. Needless to say we cruised straight into Rockhampton and ordered ourselves a plate of tacos from the Giddy Goat Pub and it was a mad feed!

When we departed the Giddy Goat we decided it was too late for Yeppoon and thought it best to drive back to Thangool, after all we had such an awesome day it couldn’t get any better!
On the drive home we decided on a name for the troopy, since our first super awesome and memorable day out and about in the troopy was in Rocky, we decided the name for our beloved troopy should be just that, ROCKY!

- Cameron