JUstDreamInparadise.......JUDI living in Paradise

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Dirt n Dust 2018

It was a bit of a rushed trip to Julia Creek this year as we have tradies working at home and it didn't feel right to not be here.  So, we left after lunch on Thursday and were home again by Monday afternoon.  We were away about 96 hours and travelled a couple of thousand kilometres.
Those 96 hours, I can tell you, were jam-packed.  We got as far as the Oasis Roadhouse at the Lynd Junction on Thursday night.  This is a great place for an overnighter.  The grounds are nicely grassed, although there are a few khaki burr.  The restrooms are kept sparkling clean and there is nothing like that hot shower at the end of the day.
Oasis Roadhouse Van Park
The next day we arrived into Julia Creek at around about 3.00 pm.  We collected our tickets for the weekend including our life member tags and headed across to the camping grounds at the Race Course where our friends were staying.

Catching up with the Mossman crowd.
There was time for a couple of cool beverages before making our way back into town for Philip to sign-on for the Triathlon the following day.  After that we headed to the Julia Creek Caravan Park where we were booked in for the next two nights.
We had a quiet night and were in bed by 8.30 pm for the early start the next day.
Saturday we awoke to a beautiful day and no wind!  It is highly unusual to have a calm day for the triathlon and there was talk amongst the triathletes that records were going to be broken today without the gruelling head wind on the cycle leg.
We were at Dirt n Dust Central by 7.00 am so that Philip could be numbered and attend the race briefing.  I think after 24 triathlons Philip pretty much knows this off by heart!  Pre-race is a great time to catch up with old friends and in Philip's case chatting to his arch-nemesis, Mal.
Philip and Mal chatting

Competitors at the briefing

After the briefing we drove the 20km to Eastern Creek for the swim leg and bike transition.  The flies at the creek were atrocious.  Actually there were atrocious everywhere and Julia Creek sold out of fly veils on Friday.  They apparently jumped in price from $4 to $14!  We didn't bother as the flies don't seem to worry us as much as they do others.  Perhaps it was all those years living in the west that made us oblivious to them.
Bike Transition area at Eastern Creek

The chilly muddy waters of Eastern Creek

Awaiting the start of the 24th Dirt n Dust Triathlon

The swim leg started on the dot of 9.30 am and I said my goodbyes to my husband and drove back into town to wait for him to cycle in and then begin the run leg that is three laps of the main street - 5kms.
I parked the car back at the caravan park and walked the short distance to the main street where I caught up with our friends.  It didn't seem to take long at all before we were cheering Philip on his bike leg and then watching him limp through the run leg.  His old football knee injury, although painless, inhibits him greatly in running however he just keeps going.
Philip on the cycle leg

And on the run leg

By the time the run leg had started the temperature was up to 36 degrees

Philip came third in his age group and was very pleased with his times.  Love that man!
After the triathlon it was a quick shower and change and on with the glad rags to head over to the Turf Club for the race meeting.  We had pre-booked a luncheon ticket and along with 9 others friends we sat back and enjoyed the day.  The food and drinks flowed along with the chatter and the afternoon passed very quickly.  No betting for me and it seems that no-one we spoke to had much luck at all. Saturday night we once again hit the sack early, knowing that we had a long drive in front of us the next day.
Sunday we woke to a windy day and Philip was thanking his lucky stars that it was Sunday and not Saturday.  It took very little time for us to pack down the camper and make our way to Eureka Waterhole where Philips mum had asked that her ashes be spread.  Kurt's ashes are also at Eureka as it is a place where we have so many great memories.  Eureka Waterhole borders both Caleewa and Lands End Stations and it was a place where we spent many hours swimming, fishing and water-skiing with the Beach family.
Goodbye Dallas
Sunday we drove until the temperature dropped and ended up pulling over at a gravel pit along the Hann Highway halfway between Hughenden and the Lynd Junction.  It was a lovely spot to stay and very quiet.  The occasional road train passed us and tooted their horn as we waved to them.  We played a couple of games of Backgammon and were once again in bed quiet early.

Monday we woke to a very foggy and erringly beautiful morning.  We cooked up a substantial breakfast and then started on the remainder of our journey.  It started raining around about Mt. Garnet and didn't stop all the way home.  What a great welcome home.

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