Storm King Dam
After dropping off the dog at her temporary home we got underway for our ANZAC Day weekend destination at Sommerville Valley Tourist Park located on the banks of Storm King Dam outside of Stanthorpe. I was looking forward to the drive and in particular how the Pajero would go towing the van up Cunninghams Gap as all the places we had gone to date were under 2 hours drive away and fairly flat. The weekend started with a drama just as we were about to turn on to the first main road from our house when Megan announced she had forgotten to pack the mince for tonights dinner into the van . We decided to pick some up in Warwick or Stanthorpe on the way and I decided not to mention it again because I was still in a little trouble for staying back at work the night before to have a couple of beers with the boss 🙂 .
We managed to find a nice new Aldi at Warwick with van parking over the road. We arrived at the caravan park about lunch time and practiced our set up routine which is still a bit rusty given the limited times we have done it. We’re definitely getting better though cause it only felt like about 10 mins before we were sitting under the awning having a beer.
The park was really nicely spaced out with plenty of room between sites and each site had its own fire ring big enough to do all manner of cooking.
We were meeting up with Liam’s mate and his family who are regular visitors to the area and had invited us along for the weekend. That afternoon we went for a drive out to the Cheese Factory at Thulimbah where we enjoyed tasting some really nice cheeses and the kids enjoyed the creamiest milkshakes around. After that it was back to camp for happy hour and to get the fire going. Some time that evening a couple turned up in the site next door to us and proceeded to erect The Tarp Mahal with approx 50m2 of under tarp space for their tent and dog.
The wind came up in the night and I had one of those not very deep sleeps where I kept one ear out for the time to pull in the awning. We awoke the next morning to clear skies and a developing breeze. After a trip to the market in Stanthorpe in the morning we then went for a run to Mt Stirling Olives for olives, fudge and excellent chillis, The Berry Patch for a selection of jams and fruit ice cream for the kids and then Just Red Wines for a bit of a taste for the adults.
After a really nice morning it was back to camp for lunch where the kids pestered us to blow up the dingy we had brought whilst we were trying to cook lunch. Once lunch was done the kids headed off to the dam with dingy and kayaks and then proceeded to be blown half way across the dam whilst trying to paddle into the wind. Megan and I walked around to where they had been blown ashore to tell them to just drag the boat back in the shallows when a squally shower came through and put an end to the boating. Liam and his mate still stayed at the dam and had a great time covering themselves in mud.
Had a lazy afternoon in camp while waiting to see if it would clear up enough to have a fire that evening. Sure enough it did and a few drinks were had around the fire. During the night the wind and rain came back and I was very glad I had rolled up the awning before going to bed. The guy next door with the Tarp Mahal was either up in the night pulling it down or mother nature assisted because by morning his tarp was gone. The morning was cold, windy and raining so after brekky a slow pack up was undertaken and we headed for home.