After a trouble free drive we’re set up, had tea and in the camper with the heater on. The weather was sunny and cool when we arrived but the 4pm chill rapidly set in and we’re already into our warm tracky gear.
This morning worked well. The idea of packing the car as much as possible last night was well worthwhile for several reasons.
1. our backs had a chance to stretch out and relax overnight and less rush and hassle this morning;
2. we had time to do running repairs on the apple tree insect netting that had come apart due to the incredibly strong easterly winds.
We actually have some really nice Granny Smiths on the tree and it would have been a shame for the birds to get in and destroy them while we were away.
Gordon put a new coil in the Hornet yesterday and it appears to have fixed the intermittent coughing and spluttering that’s been causing a bit of angst. I didn’t suggest the coil this time because that’s what I always do (it’s become a family joke) so I wasn’t really surprised when it appeared to fix the problem. So with the what appears to be an electrical problem solved, we had an easy drive down to Albany today.
Having travelled this road so many times over the years, it’s easy to get a bit blasé about the whole exercise and say “boring”, but surprisingly it’s not. So, what did I see along the way today?
Firstly, an ad for Sheep Showering! That’s right … there’s someone who showers sheep and if you’re interested, here’s the link
I didn’t get a chance to take a photo of the sign on the side of the road, but imagine a picture of a sheep standing on its hind legs and taking a shower. Got that image in your mind? Well, that’s what it looked like 😉
Next, was a big MPM sign and underneath it said “Multi Purpose Merinos”. Now this really had my mind going. What is a multi purpose merino and how does it work. Do you shear the sheep for its wool and then eat it? Thanks to Mr Google I found this site that tells you all about it
and it looks as if I was right. Good wool, good breeding rate and good meat … multi purpose indeed. See, even though we were just driving along we were being educated at the same time 👌
Just after Kojonup I noticed some new metal-type fencing and thought it was to keep sheep from falling into a creek or something but as we got closer I realised that it was actually fencing that led down under the road and to the paddock on the other side. This area of Albany Highway has been recently upgraded and it looks as if the farmer has some how arranged to have an “under the road” tunnel built to move his livestock safely. Goodness knows what that would cost, but I saw another one further down the road, which could have been the same farmer or perhaps a neighbour. Great idea!
Past Slab Hut Gully and unfortunately all that remains, of whatever slab hut was there to give it the name, is a lonely brick chimney. I don’t think I’ve even noticed this chimney on previous trips (maybe I was sleeping at the time!).
The countryside started off reasonably green as we left Armadale but as we came into farming country the colouring and landscape changed. The predominant colour to start with a pale brown/oatmeal colour of the drying stalks of harvested wheat, although in some places it was more a silver/grey stubble. Many trees along the roadside have been affected by previous fires. It’s amazing how resilient the bush is with what appears to be many dead trees with ghostly limbs reaching to the sky but new growth peeping through and creeping up the bare trunk and limbs. As we left the Kojonup area we started to notice water in dams and a pale tinge of green amongst the stubble. Approaching Mt Barker and on into Albany and the green became darker and more lush. When we drive this way later this year we know the whole area will be green and gold with wheat and canola and the dams will probably be overflowing if there a good rains.
Near Mt Barker is Fox River Wines. We’ve noticed for quite a few years that the place looks deserted and run down and I’ve just had a look at Mr Google again and it appears it was sold in 2010 but I get redirected to McLaren Vale in South Australia so I guess they may have been the purchasers and perhaps they use the grapes. No idea and I can’t seem to find much information. It’s a very eye catching building as you drive down Albany Highway. Shame it didn’t survive.
And finally, the sign that always makes me smile. Located somewhere between Narrikup and Albany is a sign in the middle of a paddock that declares you’re in “Mafia Country”! One of these days I’m going to get Gordon to stop so that I can take a photo. The problem is that we’re so close to Albany he doesn’t want to waste time stopping for a photo 😥
A few photos of those ghostly trees ….
and Gordon’s cartoon for today is in the Gordon’s Cartoons tab.
That’s it from us for today. Good to be on the road again with no chores needing to be done. Wonder what tomorrow will bring?
Sleep tight 😴😴