15.07.2010 - 18.07.2010 26 °C
So the car has now started to intermittently lose power as well as whine and rattle. We really need to find a mechanic!
The trip to Iron Range National Park
A bumpy, dusty but overall uneventful trip to Coen. At first glance Coen seemed a strange town. We booked in the "the homestead" for the night. We went to the pub to get a couple of beers and started to chat to 3 Vietnam Vets who subsequently offered to come and look at the car and see if they could help identify any of the problems. They arrived with one additional member of their group who happened to have some mechanical experience. After many "expert" opinions and having paid mechanics to work out what the rattle is they found the problem. It seems the bolts that hold the manifold onto the engine were all loose. This is a worry as the rattle started just after Len left Burleigh so it seems the garage at Burleigh made the mistake and could have been a disaster.
The road to Iron Range NP was steep in parts with lots and lots of river and creek crossings. The car started to lose power which is a huge worry especially as we are trying to get up muddy, slippery and quite steep tracks after crossing a creek. Had to stop a few times to let the car "cool down". Arrived around 4pm at Chili Beach to find the campsites were just about all taken. We snuck into a small spot that the little blue overnight tent would fit.
We walked down to the beach - it was beautiful. There seems to be a bit of a sheltered "lagoon" to swim in. We went down to it later in the afternoon with the lady in the campsite opposite. It was so good to get some of the red dust off even if it was with salt water! Had salmon sandwich for dinner and went to bed. A long, hard, taxing day.
It was windy the whole time we were there but luckily we didn't get any branches falling onto us or the tent.
When we walked to the northern end of the beach the amount of rubbish that is washed ashore is a disgrace. It takes away from the beauty of the place but it is also good to be reminded how much rubbish is dumped at sea.
Spent the rest of the time walking along the beaches, drove to the little town of Portland Roads that overlooks Weymouth Bay, walked around the point, stopped for coffee and cake at "The Cafe". The cheesecake was the best cheesecake we have had in years!!! What a treat.
Iron Range NP to Weipa
The car didn't get much further than the main road out before it started to lose power. We were concerned with the Pascoe River crossing and the car not making it out the other side.. We know that it is a steep bank on the other side and hope the car won't lose power going up. We rested it before we got to the river and it crossed it well.
That was the last good thing about the drive. We ended up having to stop at first every 20kms, then 10kms then 5kms and occasionally 4km. It took over 5 hours to drive the last 146 kms. It was a really long, hot dusty frustrating day. The less said the better.
We arrived in Weipa at about 5:30, booked into a cabin (no facilities), showered, opened a can of stew, watched the news and found an election had been called and went to sleep.
We really need a mechanic!!