Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Cup Day in Nagambie (and Murchison)

As is customary for cup day in my household we took off to the country for the day. This year we ended up at Nagambie in the Goulburn Valley.

The grassy lake front at Nagambie.

The drive up was fast, only taking about 1.5hrs, I was surprised to see that the 2 lane Goulburn Valley Highway has been replaced by freeway all the way from the turnoff near Seymour to just outside Nagambie. First stop was a small cafe by the lake front lunch. As they had sold out of pies we opted for home made hamburgers with the lot. These were pretty good and very filling.

Yep, that's the lake, big isn't it?
Oh and check out the Simpson's clouds

Absolute waterfront property, something of a rarity in Victoria.

The iconic water tower in Nagambie sits
proudly in the median strip of the main street

After stretching our legs a bit on the grassy lake shore we decided to keep going, our last minute ultimate destination was the small town of Murchison on the banks of the Goulburn River. Yet more new freeway was found on the other side of Nagambie, and according to the Vicroads Directory continues nearly all the way to Shepparton, with proposed by-passes for both Nagambie and Shepparton. As a result of the freeway, Murchison is now well off the beaten track, even more than it was when the highway passed through Murchison East.

Goulburn River at Murchison.

Murchison itself is a tiny town, and one of the oldest in the district. It's origins go back to it being the site of a river crossing on the route between the Bendigo and Beechworth diggings way back in the gold rush era. There's not much there, just a few shops and a pub, and a bit out of the town is a small caravan park on the banks of the river. At Murchison we parked at the park in the main street and listened to the Melbourne Cup on the car radio. I was surprised that we could still receive AM radio from Melbourne there.

After the race we had a bit of a wander around the main street, and the park.

Murchison, Main Street

I wanted a photo of the sign and this church just happened to walk past.
err, well actually...

Murchison, smarter than the average bear.


There were a few fiberglass cows which were interesting.

Don't have a cow man!

How now red swirly cow?


Take the bull by the horns...

...for world peace?

Also in the park was the local historical (hysterical?) society, who had this contraption proudly in place outside. I think it's a pump.

Pump it baby!

Of interest was this sign seen in several locations in both Murchison and Nagambie. I guess they do have a whopping great lake with heaps of water in it to draw from, but stage 1 water restrictions? I thought most country towns were on stage 3 or 4? (Goulburn Valley Water Agree) The lucky people get to water their gardens (the green lawns in these towns are a dead give away) and wash cars the old fashioned way.

What the?

After a quick drive around town we drove back towards Nagambie.

Back in Nagambie, it was ice cream time. Sitting at a small table on the footpath outside one of the many take away stores in the main street it became obvious why the locals want a bypass (there were several notices in the shop windows about meetings to debate the idea) as the number of trucks that pass through the town is amazing. Many of these I would guess had come from as far away as Brisbane via the Newell Highway (the continuation of the Goulburn Valley Highway in NSW), and were nearly all B doubles. They are noisy, smelly and make the ground shake, not a nice environment at all.

I took over the driving for the return portion of the trip and we arrived home shortly after 6:30pm. All in all a good days outing really.


Andrew said...

Nagambie is very nice. S'pose you went to the same cafe we used to always go to.

The church was the one that was hit by a truck a few years ago?

I don't remember the trucks in the main street and all of the freeways are a surprise to me.

Ben said...

Most probably, the cafe on the end of the shops right next to the lake, right? I've stopped there before too.

No the church in the photo is in Murchison. The one in Nagambie that was hit by the truck is no longer there, and is now holiday apartments or something, as was pointed out to me when we were there. I don't recall the incident though.

Andrew said...

That's the cafe. I thought the church was still there, just along the grass from the cafe? Maybe I have it all wrong.