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Blue Snoopy is a 2012 Nova Vita Caravan pulled by a 2012 Nissan Navara ST Dual Cab Ute.

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25 – 26 February 2012 – Carcoar NSW

Our original plan for our February trip was a short weekend excursion to Wanderest at Richmond NSW, however, “He” had some work commitments on the Sunday that could not be done remotely so we cancelled our planned trip.

With a couple of trips planned for March, we decided that it was not a big deal to miss our February trip as we would definitely find things to do at home over the weekend. 

Well that idea changed when we received a telephone call from friends we had met on the road a couple of years ago saying that they would be in Canberra for the weekend of 25/26 February and would we like to meet them.  We jumped at the opportunity.

Most of the time we generally check local events for our destinations and fortunately we decided to do so for the upcoming weekend and after looking on the internet for “What’s On in Canberra”, we had an answer, the “Royal Canberra Show”!   Whilst that is not all bad, the problem was that the intended overnight stop in Canberra was the Exhibition Centre which is the venue for the show.  There would be no camping there and all of the caravan parks in and around Canberra were full.

We spoke to our friends and suggested that we meet at Carcoar Dam which is located just to the south of Blayney and in the direction that our friends would be travelling.  From our perspective, there was a difference of 40k’s in the distance and 2 minutes in travel time.  Carcoar was agreed upon.

With a four hour trip (including the mandatory stops for fuel, morning tea and fresh bread) in front of us, we decided that a 6:30am departure from home would be the way to go and that would ensure we reached our destination before lunch.

So at 6:25am (no need to email, this is not a misprint!!) we headed to the motor home and a few minutes later we were heading towards the M4 and our destination.  We stopped at traffic lights not far from home and then another set as we turned onto Parramatta Road.  The next time we stopped was at Lithgow and it had taken us a neat 2 hours to get there.  We had decided to refuel at Lithgow and the low fuel warning light came on just as we turned a corner when the Shell petrol station came into sight.

We had a discount voucher for 14 cents per litre and a further purchase gave us an additional 2 cents.  The overall savings was just over $10.00.

We stopped on the other side of Lithgow for morning tea and again in Bathurst to purchase fresh bread and a tea cake.  We arrived at Carcoar just after 10:30am having experienced what must be the best every trip across the Blue Mountains.

The camp site was packed with campers and speed boat owners but our friends had secured us a relatively flat spot between themselves and the lake.  Our camp was setup camp about 20 metres from Lake Carcoar.

Our friends are “full-times” travelling around their backyard, Australia, in a fifth wheeler towed by an Isuzu.  We met them back in 2009 during a CMCA Charity Safari event and renewed acquaintance again in 2010 when we saw them near Tilpa when we were involved in a Winnebago safari.  At that time they were working on a property called Trilby Station.  During the past couple of years we have been fortunate enough to be included in a regular email that updates their family and friends of their adventures. 

It’s amazing how time gets away.  Driving a motor home ensures that you don’t have to spend a lot of time doing a setup and all we need to do today was to place some ramps under the right side of the vehicle.  We had stopped on a slight incline but managed to achieve perfect level with the ramps.

Carcoar Dam is one of those magic camp sites.  Blayney council has provided a small amenities block with toilets and showers (cold one) and there are ample rubbish bins located in the area.  During summer holidays this would be a very popular place and one would imagine that getting a camping spot would be impossible sometimes.  Today the dam was at 84% capacity and the whole location was wonderful.

We had a late morning tea with our friends and then, as would be expected, we spent hours catching up.  We condensed a couple of years into several hours.  We finally had a late lunch.

Our friends invited us for an evening meal.  For us, an evening meal is normally something simple that is both quick to prepare and leaves very little mess to contend with.  That was not to be the case tonight.

Adjacent to our camp site, an earlier camper had dug a small pit and during the afternoon, timber was burnt to create a mass of hot coals.  A steel camp oven was produced, a leg of lamb place inside and when the lamb was nearly cooked, a stack of veggies including potatoes, pumpkin and onion were added.  Combined with greens via a microwave and gravy, we were served one absolutely delicious meal.  This was followed by an excellent desert with the meal washed down with a couple of bottles of red wine.

We are fans of “My Kitchen Rules” so the opportunity was not lost to score the entire meal.  Our overall rating was 9.5 out of ten. (Why 9.5, we knocked off 0.5 for presentation on to the plate (hang on, just remembered, the mark was harsh as we served ourselves)).

As the dark of the evening descended upon us, the temperature dropped and we needed to find light jackets.  The sky was pink from the sunset and overall we had just experienced a most wonderful day.  What was the rest of the world doing because we were in paradise!

Prior to leaving Sydney we had performed our mandatory weather check and the forecast for Blayney was a 40% chance of rain.  It rained twice during the night and it was overcast when we ventured outside in the morning to make a “mother nature” call.

We had an early breakfast and packed the van ready for a departure.  “He” was a little concerned that we could experience difficulties departing on the wet grass as we were well down the slope and uncertain as to how stable the footing would be if the rain continued.

We had morning tea with our friends and reluctantly decided to depart at 11:30am due to the deterioration of the weather.  Our departure was only 30 minutes before our intended departure time.

After agreeing that our next get-together has to be sooner than later, we were on our way.  The windscreen wipers were on before we returned to the main road and they stayed that way until just short of Penrith.  The BOM prediction of a 40% chance of rain was wrong!

With the exception of passing what looked like a fairly serious motor vehicle accident (near Little Hartley a small car had rolled and ended up into a bank – we believe that a combination of speed plus the wet road was the cause of the accident) we had an uneventful trip home.

Since refuelling at Lithgow on the outbound part of our trip, the overall fuel consumption was 12.9 litres per 100k’s.  Before our fuel stop at Lithgow, the average consumption was 14.9 litres per 100k’s. 

Footnote:  Since we wrote this blog, NSW has been subjected to the worse flood in living history with 75% of the State impacted.  Our friends departed Carcoar the day after us and apparently had some minor problems in getting off the grass.  With the rain coming down and a spot at Canberra not available until the end of the week, they headed to Gooloogong where they setup camp near the banks of the Lachlan River.  They were forced to move to higher ground when the Lachlan started to rise but they were safe.   At the time of writing, they were still safe and dry but considering an alternative route sound to the CMCA rally at Sale VIC.

2 comments to 25 – 26 February 2012 – Carcoar NSW

  • Kylie

    Hello,
    Sounds like you had a great weekend. I just wanted to inform you of something. I live in Blayney and in your blog you wrote you would imagine getting a camping spot at Carcoar Dam in Summer would be difficult. Suprisingly that isn’t the case. Carcoar Dam is usually filled with people there just for the day. People from Blayney and surrounding areas usually go to Carcoar for a day of skiing and a BBQ lunch. If one wanted to camp most head to Wyangala Dam. We went to Carcoar Dam every day between Christmas and New Year in 2011 and arrived at approx 11am. We always had a great spot right near the waters edge. If you are there before 9am you would most likely have your pick of camping spot. MOst decide to camp at Wyangala because there are more ammenities, a kiosk, service station, waterslides, cabins and a much larger dam. I would encourage anyone to camp at Carcoar Dam. It is peaceful, 10 minutes from Blayney and free entry. I hope you get the chance to visit again soon.
    Regards,
    Kylie

  • Hi Kylie

    Thank you for taking the time to respond to my blog post.

    There are a lot of people who follow our adventures and Carcoar Dam must be on the radar for a lot of them as it is a great place to stay. Wyangala is a little far for us for a weekend coming from Sydney so your comments about summer are appreciated. One thing for certain is that most travellers support the local town and we are certainly aware of what the local council has done from camping at Carcoar. For a free camp site the amenities are wonderful.

    If you happen to see Blue Snoppy camped at Carcoar, please stop and say hello.

    Kind regards
    John

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