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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Towards the East Coast

We’re not the fastest of travellers… you’ve probably worked that out by now. We’ve been here two months and haven’t made it as far as either the west coast or the east coast, yet. We’ve been to the north coast, again, and are slowly getting closer to the east coast. Maybe by the weekend… or maybe next week… it doesn’t really matter…

After leaving Burnie we did head east, through Launceston and up to Lillydale Falls Reserve. It rained all night but stopped for a while the next day so we went for the short walk to the falls. It was a pretty place with lots of mosses and lichens.

The next day we went up to Bellingham and spent a few nights there. One fine morning we set off to do a loop through Scottsdale, to Launceston, up to Low Head and back along to Bellingham. The morning was stunning, but by the time we got to Launceston it was shrouded in thick fog. Low Head was cold and windy.

We did have slightly nicer weather in Bridport – a lovely beachside caravan park. The only thing between us and our private little beach was the foreshore walking track. There were a number of walkers, runners and bike riders even though it is the middle of winter, and apparently the beaches and absolutely packed in the summer. We’re happy to be avoiding the crowds, even if it is a bit cold.

From Bridport we did a bit of a loop east to Tomahawk, through Gladstone and back to Scottsdale. It was another pretty drive, and we came across Little Blue Lake – an old tin mine that has fine white clay in the bottom. It really was blue!

The most memorable event of the past few days was our first taste of abalone! A lovely dinner at Glen & Jan’s (met them at church in Bridport) resulted in a discussion on catching the specialties of the area and where Glen has caught abalone. Just before we left he produced three frozen ones for us to take home and try! Last night I defrosted one of them and carefully prepared it according to their instructions (slice thinly, marinate in garlic and lemon juice and BBQ on a hot plate for 30 seconds on each side) and it was great. Very subtle flavours that went well with a ‘salsamole’ (my own invention – think combination of fresh tomato salsa with guacamole – chopped not mashed), and Dazz’s crispy BBQ potato slices. I’m saving the other two abalone for a nice sunny seaside lunch, and we’ll definitely take pictures J Thanks again Glen & Jan!

The weather has been overcast and showery the last few days. We’ve spent a few nights in Scottsdale and are now at Branxholm. No major sight-seeing or photography, but a few pretty drives. Like I said before, maybe we’ll get to the east coast by next week…