Monday, August 31, 2009

Tidy rustic


The Southern Highlands are quite high-brow. Here old is tidy.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Antiques


We headed off in a different direction for a change. We are visiting Berrima in the Southern Highlands. An old town turned tourist stop with quite a range of lovely shops, particularly antiques.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Another fence


Aw shucks .. I had to do just one more fence before wrapping up this tour.

Today we are swapping back to Blue Mountains Journal for a few days before returning for another very short trip.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Fences


Hill End is all about fences. I took lots of photos but in the end settled on this one which is not typical ... it's not a paling fence and it's standing up straight for a start. Check out Julie's Hither and Thither for a sample of some of the other fences on show at Hill End.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Warm fire


We settled on the rather unpromising looking place over the road from the Royal. Pleasant to warm up by the fire.

In light of some of the questions about the closed shop the other day I thought I would add some commentary here about country towns. While we were sitting by the fire I overhead a conversation about where the local people shopped ... Mudgee or Bathurst. These regional cities are each 60-70kms away in opposite directions so they could take their pick but apparently the Mudgee trip involves dirt road.

Now not so long ago, country people stuck exclusively to their own town. All the facilities they required were within the town but that is no longer the case, the banks moved out, the goverment facilities moved out, the hospital closes, the grocery shop is no longer viable because people travel to the big towns to do their business and shop there, the kids have to go elsewhere for jobs, the churches empty and slowly but surely the fabric of a town shuts down. Some, like Hill End have an interesting history and a quaintness that lets them turn to tourism as a lifeline. Others just fade away.

Tourism attracts arts and craftspeople so a form of renewal begins. Also with the connected society of today it's now possible to work remotely and hold down some types of 'city' job in the country. Perhaps we are going to see a new era for country towns.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Still looking


Hey this is another Royal Hotel to add to my collection.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Closed


We set off in search of a warming cup of coffee. Nup this shop won't do ... closed.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Afternoon snack


It was getting late and the rain was getting icy. The kangaroos had moved in to graze on the grass opposite the church. Got me thinking about afternoon tea for myself.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Old church


Eventually we bumped our way into Hill End. It's an old mining town that seems to live off its history these days.

AB showed a monastry building from 990 the other day. How vastly different is the sense of age between the 'new' and 'old' world. The buildings in this town dating from the 1850s gold rush are very historic by Australian standards.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Old Beauty


I found this old beauty a little further along the track.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

No shooting


Ooops ... am I breaking the rules again?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

No stopping, no passing


The road then gets very narrow and climbs -- no stopping, no passing. mmm ... not much traffic about so we did stop to get this photo.

I've added an addendum to yesterday's post showing what the river can be like in different light.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Turon River


Some shots of the Turon river. A really lovely spot but none of the shots turned out to be a stunner so take your pick.

I dug through my archive to find this trio done a couple of years ago. Puts the river in a better light.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Camp fires


Soon we reach the river. There are numerous camping sites all along the Bridle Track. The road is not suitable for vans or trailers so they are pretty much the preserve of tent campers.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

House and car


I noticed the old car so had to stop. But wasn't tall enough to get a good shot of it.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Parrots


When driving west of the mountains we frequently see the flash of these green parrots. I have been hoping to get a shot of them for some time and this is the first time I saw a flock that I could sneak up on. I didn't get very close before they took off in flight so it's not a great picture. I don't know what type they are, we certainly don't see them in the mountains.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Bridle Track


We're back in the west over the mountains. This time on a drive along the Bridle Track which runs between Bathurst and Hill End. It's a very scenic drive beside the Turon River. About 60kms of narrow dirt track. But we pass through some farming country first. The weather was sporadic, sun alternating with light rain.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Day is gone


At Lake Lyall, Lithgow's water supply.

That's it for this trip. If you go over to the Blue Mountains Journal for the next couple of weeks you can see what I've been up to at home.