Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Road trip: Eden to Lakes Entrance


Second morning away on our road trip and I was up early for another run, a rather monotonous sprints session on the wharfs in Eden. (My enthusiasm for running waned as this was the last run of the holiday.)

I mentioned in my last post how we struck gold with our B&B and breakfast didn't disappoint. How about soaking up the morning sun with a view like that? The food was pretty good too, fruit, cereal and eggs. We drew the line at the pancakes.

After breakfast we visited the Eden Killer Whale Museum. The town of Eden was settled as a whaling port in the 1840s and the museum tells the whaling history of the town. The Lonely Planet describes the museum as full of 'improbable stories'. Three of our favourites were about a friendly pack of killer whales who helped the seamen hunt baleen whales, in return for being allowed to eat delicacies of the dead whales - their lips and tongue! A modern Jonah who was swallowed by a whale and escaped alive after 18 days. Finally people who used to sit inside the carcasses of a dead whale for its therapeutic qualities. Apparently they stunk for a week by the effects were remarkable!

Beside the oddities, the museum was quite interesting and we spent a couple of hours there learning about the history of Eden.


Leaving Eden we headed south to the Ben Boyd National Park to visit Boyd's Tower. The tower was built of stone from Pyrmont in Sydney (where I live). Boyd hoped to use the tower as a lighthouse but was never given permission by the government. A local businessman, Boyd hoped to make his fortune from the lighthouse and whaling but ended up leaving his creditors in the lurch and running away to America.

From a lookout near the lighthouse you can see some cool geological features.


After the national park we headed south to Mallacoota for lunch. There didn't seem to be a lot in the town apart from a huge caravan park. I'm sure it's packed in summer, but there didn't seem to be a lot going on at the start of spring. We had some decent homemade dumplings and noodles at Lucy's.


After lunch we went on a nature walk through the forest which promised koala sightings. Much to Ruth's disappointment we didn't see any.

Not far from Mallacoota along the highway we decided to climb Genoa Peak. To get to the start of the walk you have to drive up a gravel track where we saw a snake basking on the sun. It slithered out of our way as the car approached. Not particularly re-assuring!

The light was already beginning to fade as we started the walk, so we set off at a cracking place up the rough track. We didn't quite get to the top, but as we weren't properly prepared (no map, tourches, water or stout footwear) we decided to turn round just before the summit when the scrambling over boulders started to get serious. It was the right decision as we got down as darkness fell.

As we left Genoa Peak we were still quite a long way from our next over night stop at Lakes Entrance. We had to do 2/3 hours of night time driving. The Aussies really do love their road signs. At one point we counted twenty reflecting back at us. Trying to take them all in didn't leave a lot of time for actually looking at the road!

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