Paradise Valley Weekend
weekend of Saturday &
Sunday 18th & 19th of February 2006
I arrived Thursday afternoon to check the
layout of this large private camping park and settled on a cool grassy strip
several hundred metres long facing (and enabling easy access to) the clear
waters of the Macalister River. Not too far away were the amenities, powered
sites and cabins.
Half the members and friends had arrived by Friday evening,
with the rest turning up on Saturday. There were 32 of us in all age groups
staying in nine camper trailers, two pop tops, one A-van, various tents, and a
It was great to catch up with friends I had made from
previous get togethers & also to meet new friends face to face who were
previously only known from posts on the website.
The weather was great - mostly sunny and hot, with occasional
wind and cloudy periods. I think there were a few of us with some sunburn.
Luckily it was possible to cool down on the river bank and wade (or sit in a
chair) in the shallow water.
It was good to realize just how much we all had in common &
yet still have interests other than camper trailers. Everyone was friendly, and
the newer members and guests were made welcome. Many of us learnt some
interesting things to try and buy, as we all seem to do at these get togethers.
No activities were planned, but Mike and Sheryl gave a
fantastic demo of their new "Mangrove Jack 3.3" folding boat manufactured by
Flatout Boats of WA
www.flatoutboats.com.au An actual launch on the shallow river at the
campsite was not possible, but I’m sure the crowd that gathered round could
easily visualize the many relaxed boating trips that were easily possible, and
the fact that boats could easily be taken along to campertrailers get togethers
without much effort or space.
A number of us also saw what must be one of the largest solar
panel setups ever seen fitted on top of a camper trailer . Simon & Melissa in
their Trak Shak showed how one can easily be off the beaten track for days on
end without worrying about power or battery problems, even in cloudy weather.
The last of us left Monday morning around 10 am.
There were many memorable moments for all of us. From the
feedback I received, and in no particular order, they were:
• Mike and Sheryl’s folding boat demo (preparation for the Great Flood?)
• Simon & Melissa’s solar setup walkthrough
• Waking to “cow song”
• The wafting aroma of bacon & eggs and fresh coffee
• Floating down the river on inner tubes
• Sipping champagne as the sun went down
• Children playing in the river
• No one game to mountain climb the steep hill like the sheep
• Sleeping in until 8.30 am
• Chatting and laughing around the various campfires
• Robert’s “little stool”
• Prolific bird life including King Parrots & Gang Gang cockatoos
• Watching the sheep race down the steep hill to be fed
• Kevin P, scaring a sheep (that had suddenly turned turtle) back to life. Was
it a case of a mysterious laying on of hands, or is Kevin a New Zealander? (*at
the end of this report is an explanatory note about “rye grass staggers”).
Everyone who attended would probably agree that Paradise
Valley was a magnificent location for a get together, with the added bonus of
I noticed more video cameras being used than I’ve ever seen
at previous get togethers, so hopefully there will be some interesting DVD
memories for all of us to watch down the track.
Thanks to everyone who attended for a great time, especially
considering in some cases the long distances travelled from interstate.
I enjoyed your company enormously and I’m looking forward to
the next one!
- Tony and Chris in an Oryx & Landrover Discovery
- Mike and Sheryl (and Maggie) in an Ultimate &
- Fiona, Peter, Lara & Louisa in a Trackabout &
- Simon, Melissa & Jack in a Trak Shak & Patrol
- Robynne & David in a CUB Spacematic & Toyota
- Kevin, Kathleen Joshua & Courtney Beckwith in a
Southern Cross & Toyota Prado
- Neville & Vicki in a Tvan & Toyota Landcruiser
- Kevin & Karen in a Aussie Swag Rover LX-2005 &
Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo
- Robert in a CUB Kamparoo
- Linton in an A-Van & Landrover Discovery
- Barry, Lyn, Dennis, Ben, Paddy in a Supreme
getaway pop-top & Landrover Discovery
- Ron & Shirley in a Goldstream Link pop-top & GU
- Danny & Ben in a cabin (Range Rover Sport)
*About “rye grass staggers” which a number of us witnessed
late Sunday afternoon: during the dry season (in Vic anyway) sheep eat grass
seeds which often have bacteria. Suddenly running after feed can bring on
paralysis or a heart attack. A sheep can look dead (on its side or legs in the
air), but usually recovers.
Thanks goes to Robert Martin for this report
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