17 March

17th March 2010  Wednesday

Mt Canobolas. NSW.

Awoke to a fresh morning, birds singing, and kangaroos grazing the camp site.

Acknowledged as Wiradjuri camp site, this place is truly lovely. I can fully understand why this was a popular spot- tucked into a small valley, quite near the top of Mt Canobolas, the highest peak westward, before South Africa.

Great views from the top: now adorned with multitudes of telecommunications towers.

Re-packed car and van, too much equipment. Am I over-prepared for this journey?

Cup of tea with 4 Indian boys, travelling from Sydney.

Left from camping site at Mt Canobolas, and proceeded to Prince of Orange Vineyard at Borenore, to speak with Harald and Coral, who are also very interested in all things Mitchell.

As well as sharing ideas, maps, etc. Harald informed me that the town of Orange was named by Mitchell, in honor of his old friend from the Peninsula Wars, Willem Prince of Orange of the Netherlands.- and thus, the name of their vineyard. They have been working hard with local council and Surveyors Society of NSW, to give adequate recognition to Mitchell, his Expeditions and achievements. They also believe he is overlooked, perhaps because he didn’t die on the journey!

Then travelled on to Boree Cabonne, the magnificent mansion which now occupies the site where Mitchell and his Party assembled and prepared for the Expeditions in both 1835 and 1836.

The original house of Capt Raine is gone, but the two sequential houses stand. Boree Cabonne, built 1897 is a registered National Trust House, of extraordinary proportions. Tina very kindly showed me throughout. Stunning! Still filled with the original furniture,fittings, paintings, etc, of that salubrious time. With wonderful views of the local area, including Mt Canobolas to the south east, and Medicine Mountain to the North.

Spent the rest of the day travelling throughout the area, amazed at the beauty of the countryside, Rolling hills and dales, lush and green from the best season of rain in many years. Even the creeks are flowing, unlike 1836 when Mitchell travelled through.

Camped the night at Nangar National Park. Arriving on dusk, the scenery was spectacular!