When arriving at Rockhampton at 1 a.m. we first tried to walk with all our luggage to the booked hotel – 8 minutes by foot. But right away it started again to rain. So we took a taxi.
We checked into the “Denison Boutique Hotel” with a code. The room, we got is quite bizarre – some 4 m high, victorian interior, plush, canopy bed, a jaccouzi in the room and teak furniture.
Usually, check out is at 10 a.m. but the lady at the counter gave us a bit more time. Wendelin went to fetch the next rented car at 10 a.m. at the airport (close by). The 4WD he got, is of the same model and color….
In order to get information we first go the the quite uninformed information center in Rockhampton. There, a lasy recommended among others to visit the nearby botanical gardens (and zoo).
However, about our special interest, the highlight of this region, the Canarvon Gorge NP, she didn’t know much.
We first went to the recommended garden – indeed quite nice. At a kiosk we watched a lot of birds /rosellas that are attracted by food and have a coffee.
Then we had to state that we can forget about our highlight. Wendelin found in the internet some information (a park alert) that a lot of trails are closed. A a phone call to the ranger station confirmed: the unsealed road in impassable (the water of a creek running over it is getting more and more), all this due to heavy rainfall.
This means we have to look for alternatives. We decided to go instead to another, not much know NP only 200 km westwards (not 400 and 100 South), the “Blackdown Tableland NP”.
During our ride westwards we passed a lot of coal trains (with up to 200 waggons and 4-5 locomotives) which start from Blackwater, our goal for today, eastwards to the coast until Gladstone. Here, the millions of tons of blackcoal from Blackwater from the mines around (all in surface mining) are exported. Here you feel: Australia is mining country.
In the remote village of Blackwater (some 5000 inhabitants) we get a motel room in the friendly Discovery Park Motel. And we food our dinner in the golf club… (nothing fancy).