|Travelling Australia - Journal 2011
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|9 August 2011 - Clermont to Capella|
We planned to drive about 60 kilometres today to Capella so packed up and connected the caravan without haste. As we were leaving the caravan park I set up Capella as a GPS destination and the calculated time of arrival was so early that we stopped in Clermont for a cup of coffee before finally heading out of town.
We left Clermont on the Gregory Highway which was the continuation of the Gregory Developmental Road we had travelled along from The Lynd. The road was no better but now had a more prestigious title - "Highway" sounds better than "Developmental Road" especially to those who have experience of developmental roads. The road route was mainly in long straight stretches but was never level with a succession of hills and valleys. The road was a full two-lanes wide but the surface was uneven and bouncing was common; it was about normal for outback Queensland which generally has inferior roads. We had been spoilt by some good roads around the Gulf region but now had to get back to average Queensland outback roads.
The weather was bright and sunny with very light traffic comprising a few caravans, a motorhome and three Rio Tinto buses presumably carrying mine workers. Cattle were visible from the road but there were also large paddocks reaching to the horizon growing sorghum ready for harvest or wheat still green; this extensive cropping was a change for us after weeks of cattle country. Scraps of cotton still lined the road but we didn't see cotton plants in paddocks. Bird life was a bit different with kookaburras and butcherbirds on power lines and several brolgas flying overhead; there was very little roadkill.
On the edge of Capella we passed grain storage comprising several of the white concrete silo storages characteristic of grain growing areas. Beside the silos was a mountain of additional grain covered by blue plastic. The presence of the silos was confirmation we had passed from cattle grazing regions into a cropping area although we were more probably in a transient area where cattle were grazed or crops grown depending on soil suitability.
The day had been bright and sunny but cool, and even cooler in the breeze.