About Blue Snoopy

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

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13- 16 February 2015 – Katoomba NSW

With not a lot planned between our January trip to Robertson and our March trip to Wagga Wagga, an invitation late last year from friends to attend with them the annual Blue Mountains Ukulele Festival at Katoomba was too good to pass.

Our friends would be staying in a guest house at Leura and we were fortunate enough to book into the Katoomba Falls Caravan Park without any difficulty.

The festival is run by The Blue Mountains Ukulele Group and this would be the sixth time that the festival had been held.

This festival is a multi-award winning event and in 2015, was held in and around the iconic Carrington Hotel in Katoomba with part of the event held in the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre.

There was a dinner on Friday 13 February in the Grand Dining Room of the Carrington Hotel, however, all tickets were sold before we considered attending.

After leaving home at 9:00am, we had a trouble free drive to Penrith at the base of the Blue Mountains. Just before we started to climb the mountains, our conversation turned towards discussing the merit of purchasing additional warranty for the Nissan Navara after the factory warranty expires in August 2015. As fate would have it, no sooner had we decided to make a decision closer to the expiry date, we had smoke coming from the front air vents and mostly on the driver’s side. There was an unusual smell associated with the smoke.

As soon as it was safe to stop, (Glenbrook near the information centre) a quick inspection under the boot confirmed that there was no engine fire, however, the smoke indicated that something was not right.

As we drove further, reference to the vehicle owner’s guide disclosed the fact that a sudden change in temperature could indeed cause vapour to come from the air vents. We hoped that this was the case as the outside air temperature had dropped 10 degrees from the base of the mountains to the point where we stopped at Glenbrook. However, with a service due shortly, we spoke to our Nissan dealer and made arrangements for the car to be serviced on our return to Sydney.

Due to the reduction in temperature, we continued to Katoomba without using the air conditioning. From time to time, there was still a small amount of smoke continuing to flow from the air vents.

After setting up the caravan on a site very close to the amenities block, we headed further up the mountains to Blackheath where we met our friends for lunch.

Later that afternoon we returned to our caravan to collect food for the evening meal that we would share with our friends in their Leura accommodation.

Saturday started as a fine day with the possibility of storms forecast later in the afternoon. We spent the majority of the day sitting in a large marquee in the grounds of the Carrington Hotel enjoying the numerous performers all armed with their ukuleles. The performers included young school children through to large groups of seniors all enjoying the unique sound made by this instrument. We were really delighted being there.

After enjoying lunch at a local café, we headed inside the Carrington Hotel to another venue where we could enjoy the talents present.

We had our predicted storm later in the afternoon and again headed to Leura for the evening meal with our friends.

Our friends had to leave their accommodation on Sunday morning and we joined them at Leura for a look around the shops before another lunch in a local café.

They returned to Sydney later in the afternoon and after a quick stop at the Leura Cascades, we returned back to the caravan park at Katoomba where we decided to spend some quiet time in our caravan before our departure on Monday morning. We did a couple of walks around Katoomba Falls late in the afternoon and returned to the lookout at dusk hoping to see the landscape lit by floodlights. That did not eventuate.

We had an uneventful trip home on Monday with our fuel consumptions from the trip down the mountains sitting at 10 litres per 100 kilometres. And that included the trip down the M4 from Penrith to our hone.

The Nissan was serviced shortly thereafter when we learnt that a component of the heater unit in the air conditioner had failed. It has been replaced and unless we decide to change our tow vehicle for something with more power, we will probably purchase extended warranty.

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