Cue across to
Sandstone, Leinster and on to Leonora
Our craving for hot chips met in Cue, we hit the road
again and decided to deviate from the Great Northern Highway and once
again took to the dirt.
Bypassing Mount Magnet, we headed across to Wondinong...rejoining
the bitumen at a place called Sandstone.
Leaving Sandstone, and after travelling several kilometres
along a signposted heritage trail loop (unsealed), we found a place to
camp for the night...behind an old gold stamping battery...complete with
It was almost evening, overcast and the wind was blowing
with enough strength to rattle several loose sheets of corrugated iron
on the old buildings...it was eiry...a bit like the movie set vision of
a deserted old western town...minus the tumbleweed.
After several hours of broken sleep, at around 12:30
am, we were awoken by splatters of rain on the caravan roof and decided
to pack up and make a hasty retreat from our camping spot to avoid the
prospect of being bogged.
We spent the rest of the night in a parking bay on
the road to Leinster...listening to the rain, which had by now set in.
The next day we set our for Leinster, enroute to Leonora.
Rod hadn't been through Leinster since 1985, when
he had visited his brother who was then working at the Agnew nickel mine,
and was surprised to find that a huge open cut gold mine had now been
developed adjacent to Agnew's operations.
Somehow we missed the turn off to Leinster township...probably
because we were being talegated by a road train hauling nickel concentrate
Steady rain fell as we pressed on to Leonora and our
spirits were dampered by the thought of not being able to get off the
bitumen to camp and detect for gold...and the thought of being holed up
in a caravan park was also a prospect we didn't want to contemplate.
Very early into our travels we had fallen out of
love with caravan parks...which we found to be like a micro surburb...and
were thoroughly enjoying the freedom and serenity bush camps offered.
So...we were determined to find one...rain or no rain
Braving the slippery wet conditions of an unsealed
road we headed out of Leonora.
A little over 11km out the Prado started to skate
around on the surface a bit and plastered the front of the caravan with
About the same time we spotted some old diggings up
on rise and saw a track that led up to them. Dropping into low range we
wound our way up the hill, past the diggings, to a flat section on the
ridge where we were surprised to find a concrete pad and driveway...and
a blue painted shower cubicle!
It looked like the diggings had been worked up until
recently and the prospector must have had a caravan parked in this position...how
convenient...it was flat, dry and had commanding views in all directions.
Best of all, we found that we could get TV reception...what luxury!
...too bad we only discovered we could get TV the
night after The Bill was on...so sadly we remain clueless as to recent
events on our favourite soapie.