The longer we have been on the road (over two months now) the more we have come to realise the benefits of finding a decent free camp to set up for a day or two. We use WikiCamps to help us discover what places are suitable then choose according to location and comments from other users.
This was the view from our ‘front door’ at one of the waterholes where we camped.
At a free-camp, you are also free to collect firewood for a campfire, and then cook yourself a meal in your camp oven. It doesn’t get much better than this!
While you are spending time relaxing at the free camp, you are also often surrounded by birds and other wildlife. These Brolgas were feeding at the waterhole mentioned above.
These honeyeaters often flocked around water sources, whether it was a waterhole or just a dish of water collected beneath a tap.
Black-winged Stilts in flight over the waterhole. I love their trailing pink legs.
This little Black Fronted Plover was feeding in the shallows.
I have learned to recognise quite a few new birds on this trip, but nothing in comparison to one of our travelling companions who has photographed and identified over 80 species he hadn’t previously seen. It definitely helps to have a bird identification book along on the trip.
Tablelands Highway stretches on for hundreds of kilometres through the Mitchell grass plains which was all very dry in this time of drought. These are some of the birds we spotted along the way:
Bustard, which is quite a big bird. Bigger than I had imagined.
Bustard in flight.
Wedgetail Eagle perched on roadkill. (From a long way away!)
Which also took off on our approach.
Brolgas in front of termite mounds. The young one doesn’t yet have the red on it’s head.
Windmill at a roadside rest area, to provide water from the artesian basin for travellers.
The water at the rest areas attracts lots of little birds, such as these honey eaters, in this arid area.