Archive for May, 2008

Closing in on Kununurra

May 29, 2008
28 May
Russ and Ros are 32km out of Kununurra. "Baci" is still struggling and losing condition so they are very worried for him. A difficult decision is pending at the next stop, Kununurra.
Daily distances are now averaging 18km/day, daily temperatures are becoming much more manageable, the humidity is petering off and the miles and miles of neck high spear grass are largely gone.
The country is spectacular but the walking is very tough.
Other than "Baci", the camels are doing fine, even eating spinifex and getting a lip gloss of resin 🙂
Russ and Ros would like to thank the border inspectors (Ag. Dept.) for their assistance with respect to quarantine requirements (thanks: Ian, Kym, Donna and Hayley!!).

Timber Creek

May 15, 2008
13 May
Russ and Ros arrived at the small town of Timber Creek today, which services a regional community of approximately 300 people.

"Baci" is still a little unwell and coughing but his saddle and trek gear has been sent back to Darwin and he is continuing with his mates as a bit of a tag-a-long without a load or saddle.

Other camels are doing well although "Charlie" the tail-ender has some rub marks that need to be managed carefully.

A pushbike came up behind the camels and utterly freaked the entire string out except for rock-solid "Charlie" at the rear. His lead rope snapped as the camels in front of him started to buck and muck about but all settled down as rapidly as it started, much to the bewilderment of the passing cyclist!

The weather is still warm with most days being in the mid 30s (degrees C) but the humidity has lessened and all in all it is more comfortable travelling.

Travel distance now approaching 20km/day. Bigger distances will be essential if the planned route is going to be completed.

Many, many thanks to the Fogarty family for the use of their paddock and also to Cate, Mark and Mel (& all the wonderful kids) for their interest, help and encouragement.

Russ and Ros departed Timber Creek on the 15th May.

28 km west of Vic River Roadhouse

May 9, 2008
8 May 2008
Russ and Ros are moving slowly due to concerns about "Bache".
They remained at the Vic River roadhouse for a few days in the hope that he would improve but initially his condition worsened. They seriously contemplated leaving him behind, giving him a good dose of antibiotics and a lot of care in the hope this wouldn’t be necessary. He sat alone and kept away from his mates which is always a clear indication something is not right. He still maintained an appetite but his droppings were small and striated yellow (fibre showing through due to a lack of coating on droppings), another indication that all is not well.
Plant poisoning is suspected but who knows these things?? So many things can go wrong in new country that is unfamiliar to the camels (insect and spider bites, plant poisoning, ticks, snakes …….)
"Bache’s" condition improved a little and Russ and Ros decided to head off again, keeping the little fellow with them.
Russ and Ros would like to say thanks, a BIG thanks, to Milton Jones at Coolibah Station and Roy and Theresa at the Vic River Roadhouse, for their concern and friendship. It is incredibly difficult when things go wrong on the road and no amount of words can account for the assistance given by such terrific people. Thank you.
Country is still very tropical, lots of grass and very hot. They will be thankful when they reach the drier desert country in a few more weeks.

Victoria River

May 2, 2008
1 May 2008
Russ and Ros arrived at the Victoria River Wayside Inn on May 1.
Camels are all happy and working well.
"Bache" however is very tired and they’re worried about him ??
Days are very hot (mid 30’s °C) and humid.
Travel is slow and restricted to the roadsides due to long spear grass lining the road.
Many large trucks travel this road. Russ and Ros would like to extend their thanks to them all. They are considerate, obliging and responsive. Thanks so much (even when they run out of you-know-what!).
So many bridges to cross and poisoness plant everywhere – can’t wait to get into the desert country.
Plenty of crocodiles too but can’t seem to explain this to the Lake Eyre camels when they look to go for a cooling dip!! Ouch.
Next communication – Timber Creek (NT).

We’re away !!

May 2, 2008
12 April 2008 – Start
Russ and Ros departed Katherine on April 12 on their 6,000km, 18 month THANKYOU CAMEL EXPEDITION 2008-2009 across the Australian continent.
Departure – seamless
Camels – cruising
Weather – perfect
Equipment – faultless
Planning – impeccable
Rus and Ross – NERVOUS!
They’re away – good luck Russ and Ros, and all your beautiful boys.
The Darwin To Melbourne Thank You Camel Expedition 2008-2009
is acting on behalf of the Children First Foundation
and is
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