9th September to 12th September
As we got used to a heavier load behind the car we settled in for the 300km drive north towards Mildura. We stopped at a familiar recreation oval in Ouyen that we had been to before on numerous occasions, we were very excited to be able to open the van door, walk inside and grab lunch out of the fridge and pantry, something so simple…… BEX days (before expanda days) we had to be extra organised in the mornings and pack lunch up before we packed the van up and then put everything we needed into the car fridge, we even had to have separate plates and cutlery for the car. We (sorry, I) was always guaranteed to forget some vital ingredient for lunch!!!! After we ate our lunch we stretched our legs at the playground and then kicked the footy on the oval. Then we headed off towards Mildura, not really knowing where we were staying. First on our list we checked out a freecamp on the Murray River about 25km south of Mildura, just before the outer suburb of Red Cliffs. The freecamp was called Karadoc Sandbar, it was perfect, boat ramp, fire pits, picnic tables and not another sole there, also new drop toilets to boot. Our only gripe being that even though there was a huge skip bin there for rubbish, it was overflowing and hadn’t been emptied. We had hoped and thought perhaps this was a popular and busy spot and the rubbish was only from the weekend…….
After we set up we explored a bit, basked in the beautiful sunlight, lit the fire and settled in for the night. The next day we all woke up early as it was Jessica’s 8th birthday!!!! We had a very excited little girl as she had just been through her 2 older sisters birthday, so FINALLY her day was here. We spent the morning opening and playing with her presents and then we headed into the bustling town of Mildura to do a few odd jobs and to have a birthday lunch at the local gluten free friendly tavern. We then headed back to camp and the girls decided to unpack the surfboards and paddle in the river, after they had their water fix they warmed up and threw in a line, to no avail. All in all Jess enjoyed her birthday and we had icecream cake for desert!!!!
We stayed another 2 days here as we had an appointment at the blood bank in Mildura as they had sent us an email saying they were desperate for donors!!! So after our donation we headed to the grassy banks of the Murray river in town for a picnic lunch and kick of the footy, before heading back to camp for more swimming and fishing. We love Mildura, mainly perhaps because of the lovely warm weather which thawed us out, however we were ready to move on to our next adventure and destination on our OZLAP……………