Travelling Australia - Journal 2015c
|28 May 2015
Cobar to Bulla Park
We left Cobar on the Barrier Highway on a cloudy-bright day for an event-free few hours driving 120 kilometres to Bulla Park rest area we had selected for our overnight stop. The road remained moderately good, fairly flat and running on long straight sections. There were no overtaking lanes but neither are any needed on such flat terrain with long nearly-straight stretches. Traffic was very light; heavy transports, caravans and sedans.
We didn't bother checking on the official weather forecast for today after yesterday's forecast fiasco. The Bureau of Meterology predicted scattered cloud for yesterday but we had solid cloud cover all day except for a brief break in mid-afternoon. The Bureau also predicted "zero probability of rain" for the Cobar area for today and we had four and a half hours of continuous rain beginning at 8 o'clock - hardly zero rain. There were no complaints in this dry rural area at the rain falling but there was some comment at how unexpected it was.
This was predominantly sheep country with many feral goats grazing along the road. Emus and kangaroos, especially kangaroos, were fairly common. We also saw a pair of Major Mitchell Cockatoos. The land along the road was dominated by mulga with scattered gum trees and some cypress.
Many of the more prominent, better-signed rest area along the Barrier Highway have been modified to be most suitable for heavy transport drivers to have their compulsory rest periods and are not well-suited for caravans and motor homes to spend a night. But a handful of rest-areas are the opposite; they are very difficult for heavy transports to use but well suited to recreational vehicles.
Bulla Park was one of these RV-suited rest areas north of the Barrier Highway with a small bitumen turning circle off the highway (too small for a heavy transport to conveniently use) with dirt tracks leading down to a large unpaved area suitable for RVs. There is no toilet but there is a picnic shelter and a water tank (labelled unfit to drink).
We pulled off the road and briefly debated what would happen, and the likelihood of getting bogged, if rain fell on the large off-road, unpaved, parking area. But the surface looked as if it had been successfully used while wet (that is, there were many vehicle tracks but no sign of vehicles having been bogged recently) so we decided to stay the night.
28 May 2015 - Cobar to Bulla Park, page 2
28 May 2015 - Cobar to Bulla Park, page 3