|Croydon – 11 October to 12 October (1 night)
The 226km drive from Karumba to Croydon was ok to start with and steadily improved, with the stretch from Normanton to Croydon being on “full” tar and the landscape was a lot more interesting.
Croydon is situated 1897km NW of Brisbane and has a population of about 300. Gold was discovered in 1885, which led to the development of a rich booming gold mining centre. For the next 40 years gold was the mainstay of the district and at its peak, Croydon was the fourth largest town in Queensland, boasting factories, foundries, schools and 37 hotels. Of the original 122 liquor licences issued, only one is still in operation today.
The actual town is unbelievably neat and tidy and the local council has placed significant buildings on the heritage register and been instrumental in having them restored. They have an organized walk through what they call “The Croydon Heritage Precinct”, which includes the Police Station and Sergeant’s Residence with Jail, The Courthouse and Town Hall. The Mining Museum houses all sorts of mining equipment and the Mens Ward from the old hospital has been moved and restored. As I have said previously, museum’s are not really my thing, but on this occasion I’m glad I made the effort. There was one incident worthy of mention. We had completed our walk through the Police Station and moved onto the Jail, where behind the barred door was a bed, complete with a dummy mannequin. As Lin moved to the door, the dummy burst into voice and scared the daylight’s out of her. A very strange noise came out of her mouth, which would have registered on the Richter scale and as a result my steady Eddie heartbeat went from 0 to 100 in a millisecond. Normally I’m battling to stay awake in museums, but after this I expected something to jump out of any and every nook and cranny, so the place had my full attention. What a good ploy.
We ended the day with a swim and had happy hour with a young couple from Sydney.
Oh yeah – I nearly forgot. We got to see our very first cane toad. Yes, you guessed it – it was just outside the loo. What’s with frogs and loo’s?
That’s it for this overnight stopover.
(Croydon Caravan Park) – Council run park, with heaps of grassed shady sites and good amenities. $25 per night for powered site with free use of washing machines.
No time, so no change in status.
Next stop is Mount Surprise – 239kms away.