The Big Lap - Grampians



We headed inland to avoid the Christmas and New Year crowds.  The Grampians sounded like a good idea.  We stayed in 2 places, Dunkeld and Cavendish, both just south of the mountains.


The Caravan Park in Dunkeld is so cute.  Our host was warm and welcoming.  The park was filled with lots of personal touches.  Gardens full of figurines, vegetable gardens, paintings on the wall in the loo, motel soaps and shower caps etc in the loo as well as a hair dryer too.  Lots of trees and birdlife here as well.  We could also use the fireplace which was great because we were looking forward to our home-made jaffles.  See pix below.

Dunkeld is a small town.  Blink and you'll miss it.  We visited the Cafe in town, Bar 109.  Food and service was good, however they wanted to charge me $4 for a plate as we were sharing.  That was a first.  So I used the napkin and put my knife and fork on at the end and watched the waitress pick it up along with the other plate lol.





From Dunkeld we took a trip through the southern end of the Grampians and also checked out our next place to stay at Cavendish.



I booked us into the Cavendish Recreation Reserve, a quite bush setting with a creek down the hill.  We chose the powered spot up top near the amenities and BBQ.  You can also stay down the hill beside the creek.  We booked in advance to secure our spot.  You need to pay cash here as it is run by volunteers.  The amenities are relatively new and very clean.  Nice huge cubicles and hot water for the shower.  For $20 a night including power, this was great value we felt.

Steve, the volunteer ran the place like the army lol.  We had fun watching him through our van window when ever someone turned up.  Aparently he has ruffled some feathers in town with the locals.  The lady down at the Cafe said that the football club won once and they celebrated all through the night with a horn blasting.  That is until Sargent Steve came and disconnected it haha.  Steve told us that he used to be a sparky, so no brainer.  😁

We found Steve to be alright.  He's just doing his job and making sure no one camps for free.  He told us that he enjoys coming over in the night and catching the freebee campers, knocking on their door and giving them the altermatum haha.  A man after hubby's own heart lol.

Anyway the setting was lovely.  We were joined for a couple of days after Christmas by a few families and kids.  They weren't too much trouble so Steve stayed away haha.  Then New Year's Eve and day we pretty much had the place to ourselves. 

Hubby liked the pies and pasteries at the Cafe in town.  My pie was good but it wasn't hot enough for me so I didn't enjoy it as much. 



From Cavendish we headed north and then east through the Grampians to check out lookouts and waterfalls.  First stop was MacKenzie Falls.  There were quite a few steps to get there.  We didn't go all the way down the bottom and thank goodness for that, because going back up was difficult for us old ducks.  We had to stop a couple of times to rest our legs and regain our breath.  With my hip and hubbies knees, we make a funny old pair lol and boy did we pay for it the next couple of days.  

The falls were well worth it though with plenty of photo opportunites.

We took the other turnoff to Wartook Reservoir.  The jets weren't running so not a great deal to see.

Next stop was Reed Lookout.  It was difficult to get decent shots here due to the haze.  Being just after Christmas too, there was quite a crowd and the windy road through the mountains was full of traffic.  There is no way you could tow a caravan here as the road is very narrow with cliff face on one side and sheer drop on the other.  Hubby's virtigo was playing up severely.  

Our last stop before Halls Gap was Boroka Lookout.  This is very scenic.  I asked hubby to take a shot of me posing like a model.  😆



Halls Gap is very touristy.  Reminds us a bit like the Gold Coast Hinterland.  We drove through and back out again and headed to Stawell for lunch.  Hubby and I don't do crowds.  So I snapped off a few photos and we drove another 25k's into Stawell.

Stawell is quite a big town.  We stopped at this Pub called the Gift Hotel.  The name Gift is due to a foot race that they hold annually.  Interesting.  Unlike the Cafe in Dunkeld, the Gift Hotel had no problems with giving us an extra plate for our shared burger and knife too.  And I didn't even have to ask.



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