Making the most of the Home Journey

by Steven Chater from Trip Plan Australia. Check out Trip Plan’s free Itinerary Planner that will help you make the most of your next road trip through regional and outback Australia.

When thinking about organising our trip, we realised that when we’d ticked off our main goals – Hungerford for me, Longreach for dad, and Carnarvon Gorge for Helen – we’d be 1,400kms from home. It’d be a crook end to the trip if we just hightailed it home.

So a bit of investigation with Trip Plan was required!

Our neighbours had told us to make sure we call into the “emu egg man” in St. George. The instructions were that we’d find him at the back of the sports store in the main street, and to make sure we don’t miss him.

Well, what a character! His name is Stavros (Steve) Margaritis, and he has led a very interesting life, which he is sure to tell you about. He’s got a fairly sizeable chip on the shoulder about his educational background, but what an artisan. He learned wood carving during a very poor childhood in Greece, and transferred his skill to engraving emu eggs during a jack-of-all-trades working career in Australia. His engraving has even ended up in Barack Obama’s office – what a talent!

Unique Egg St. George

Unique Egg St. George

There were around 100 eggs on display.  I’ll leave it to Stavros to tell you how he goes about preparing and engraving the egg.

We’d also been told about the national parks and forests around Narrabri. We worked out that we could take in part of Mt Kaputar National Park first up in the morning –  Sawn Rocks is only 35kms out of town and they are spectacular.

Sawn Rocks

Sawn Rocks

Then we could drive down the Newell Highway to a turn off called No. 1 Break Rd (a well maintained dirt road) to see the Sculptures in the Bush in the Pilliga State Forest.

There are 5 sculptures located around a 2 hour gorge loop walk, with new gas barbeques ready for when you return.

Sculptures in the Bush, Pilliga

Sculptures in the Bush, Pilliga

We are going to try and get back in spring to check out the wildflowers along the gorge walk – there are apparently 115 different species to be seen within a metre of the circuit path.

Walks and Wildflowers, Pilliga

Walks and Wildflowers, Pilliga

The Pilliga Forests are quite widespread so the Discovery Centre in Baradine is worth a visit.

And perhaps that’s where I should leave the stories from our central Queensland journey – a sign of a good trip is to end it with a taste for more.

Thanks for reading about our trip, and I will next be writing about the trip we did to Tasmania earlier this year.

It’s great out there in regional and outback Australia – use Trip Plan and make the most of it!

This post is the sixth in a series about our trip through Central Queensland in June 2013. The TripPlan itinerary we put together prior to the trip is at this link.