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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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22 May 2012 – Mornington to Healesville VIC

We have not had a lot of luck with internet connections since leaving home with only slow connections being achieved.  We have also had problems with our access point and have reverted to using our mobile telephone with a limited data pack for our internet connection.  This has made posting our blog entries difficult and uploading of photographs virtually impossible.

After what was a glorious day weather wise yesterday, today we awoke to rain and strong winds.  Our original plan was to visit the Puffing Billy today and return to Mornington in preparation for a trip via ferry to Queenscliff tomorrow.  On Monday night we saw a weather report that indicated that the Great Ocean Road would not be the best place to visit later in the week with a front coming from the west expected to provide rain and strong winds.

We had an alternative plan if we decided not to cross by ferry from Sorrento to Queenscliff and that involved an overnight stop at Dandenong after the visit to the Puffing Billy.

We expected it would take about 1.5 hours to travel from Mornington to the Puffing Billy so we departed Mornington at 8:00am in passing showers.  Actually the passing showers lasted all of the way to Belgrave where you board the Puffing Billy.

We arrived at Belgrave just after 9:00am and after driving around looking for a parking spot, we eventually parked in a vacant lot that was actually the car park for the Puffing Billy.  It was a pity we did not go there first.

We last travelled on the Puffing Billy in 1977 and were actually on the last trip when the railway was operated by Victorian Railways.  Today we gave the historical society a picture that we took after the trip in 1977 of the steam engine that was used with writing on the back of the loco regards the last trip.

Today there were only tourists and school children.  They actually put an entire train on to transport the school children and our train followed 30 minutes later.  The trip to our destination took a little over an hour and the lack of people allowed us to take plenty of photographs.  The rain did make it difficult sometimes as we were travelling in an open carriage.  We spent an hour at Lakeside before returning to Belgrave.

Near Belgrave the train travels over a trestle bridge and this is one of the most photographed tourist locations in Australia.  As luck would have it, as we arrived at the bridge on our return journey, the sun suddenly appeared for the first time that day and made a photograph virtually impossible due to lens flare that we were not prepared for.

We checked the weather forecast when we returned to the motor home and decided not to head back to Dandenong but to start to head north towards the border.  We decided that we would overnight at Healesville.

The drive there was through parts of the Yarra Valley and the scenery was beautiful.  We shopped when we arrived and checked into the local Big4 Caravan Park.  By this time the wind was near gale force and we were happy that we had changed our plans.

We rang some friends who we knew were travelling in Victoria and much to our surprise we learnt they were relatively close by so arrangements were made to meet them at Kerang on Thursday.  We decided that we would travel to Bendigo the next day.

 

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