Sunday, March 17, 2013

Camping at Charlie Moreland

I've really been wanting to get away from things lately. With all the rain recently we've been pretty well housebound and as it was forcast for a fine weekend, I decided that we'd go away.
The only problem was hubby was working for the full weekend and I'd never been camping on my own with the kids.  Time to bite the bullet and give it a go on my own.
Charlie Moreland camp ground is in the Imbil State Forest near Kenilworth and only an hours drive from our house so I decided that it would be a great place to go to test out camping with the kids on my own.  We often go over for picnics but hadn't camped there before.
As soon as we arrived it was time to set the tent up.  I wasn't bringing the camper trailer for one night, mainly because I can't hook it onto the ute and also it's just too big for me to put up on my own.
The tent it was and I had a couple of little helpers wanting to do the fun things like bang the pegs in. (Lucky I took two hammers with me).

After setting the tent up we headed down to the creek to do some exploring.  The kids were really keen for a swim and came so close to going in with their clothes on but I talked them into having lunch first then swim afterwards.

Back to camp it was for some lunch then blowing up the air beds which was a challenge.  We don't use the airbeds when we go away with the camper trailer so these hadn't been used for awhile. 
They also weren't in their usual spot in the house with the good pump and after much searching I found them tossed on the ground at the back of the shed minus the good pump.  I searched everywhere through our very cluttered shed and no good pump was to be found, only a little crappy one which was better than nothing.
Unfortunately the little crappy one was very crappy as it took forever to pump the beds up.  Little Miss R's bed also needs a different attachment which my good pump has so she ended up sharing my double mattress.

Anyway, the afternoon was hot (well into the 30 degrees celcius and quite humid) so it was back to the creek for a swim.
It was FREEZING but that didn't stop the kids and plenty of other campers from going in.

The camp ground has only been open for not quite two weeks after the recent rain.  You can see in the next picture some almost horizontal trees coming out of the rocks on the other side of the creek.  That's from where the water rushed through when it was flooded.

I took my chair and book down to the beach next to the creek to watch the kids swim and play and listened to the sounds of the bell birds in the trees.  They had so much fun, especially as there were a heap of other kids there for them to play with as well.

After a couple of hours down at the swimming hole it was back to camp and time to say hello to some visitors.

There are plenty of goanna's around the camp ground so it's advisable to keep your tent closed at all times, you certainly don't want one of these fellas in with you!
Goanna's aren't the only animals though as there's plenty of scrub turkeys and pademelon wallabies around the place.

After an afternoon snack we decided to go for a walk as there a a few bush walks around the area.  Unfortunately after the recent rains you can't get to the other side of the creek where the walks are so we just explored along another stretch of the creek.

The camp ground down near the creek was a lot busier than up the back where we were.  I liked our spot better, not only was it on top of the hill but we were pretty well on our own which suits us.

This part of the creek was full of trees and debris which came down in the foods and has ended up making a mess of the creek.  That's mother nature for you.

We found a great spot to spend some time at.  I sat on a log and watched the water flow around the rocks.

As you can see from the next picture, this is where you usually cross to the walks on the other side but it's impossible to get there.  We stayed around this spot as there was plenty to keep the kids occupied (sticks and rocks!)

I did some more water watching.

The kidlettes did plenty of rock throwing.

..and all three of us collected some sticks to see how far they could go down the creek and the rapids.  Most got caught in the debris but some did float further down.

Back at camp I tried to get a fire going but I'm not really that great at fire making. 

It did go for a good while though and the kids were happy with that.

After a cool and uncomfortable night (my airbed has a hole in it so Little Miss R and I spent the night flat on the hard ground), it was lovely to wake to the sounds of the bell birds.  (click on the link to hear what they sound like).

After breaky and much needed cups of tea we decided it was going to be another beautiful day so the kids wanted to go back to the creek. 

We half packed up the camp before heading down to the causeway where some other kids were hunting for yabbies.

My kids joined in the search before having another swim then heading back to the camp to finish packing up.

It had it's moments but I proved that I could go away camping with the kids on my own and stay sane as well as enjoying myself.
Charlie Moorland camp site is run by the National Parks and wildlife and here in Queensland you need to pre-book your camp site through the National Parks website or via phone.
It really is a beautiful spot and at only $5.45 per person it's certainly a bargain. 
On the way home we called into the awesome playground in Kenilworth.

There's so many fun things for big kids and little kids and is always a popular place.

Now I've just got to finish unpacking all the camp stuff and start thinking about where we're going next.  I think hubby is a bit jealous that we went without him so I might have to think about where we can go when he's home for a full weekend next.  It may be somewhere near a beach so he can do some fishing...
xx Susan

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