|Camp ground at Middleton.|
After leaving Winton we headed out the Min Min Way a very narrow road but sealed.First stop was Middleton just on dark so we camped opposite the Middleton Hotel in the campground called “The Hilton” all that remains of Middleton is the Hotel which is 134 years old and the old Hall.
Next day we spent with Val and Lester owners of the Hotel ,top people and real outback characters.Val showed the kids Petrified wood, opal and fossils and also made sure they left with a bag full of it all.We sat on the veranda and listened to all their interesting yarns including Lester’s recent sighting of The Min Min Lights a couple of weeks ago while loading cattle and also his appearance in a few documentaries including Animal Kingdom, in a episode about the Western Taipan that’s found on the flood plains in this area.Val then took us out the back where they have two camels that we fed ,these two were used to cart the old Cobb and Co Coach into Winton not that long ago, it took about two weeks,this coach sits out the front of the Hotel.
|Cawnpore Hills Lookout!|
Once we said our goodbyes we left for our next stop Cawnpore Hills Lookout where we climbed a Mesa top and enjoyed the views as the sun was setting.
Another 50k’s or so up the up the road was The Min Min Light Hotel site turnoff which is a gravel road and a bit rough in the bus, we couldn’t find the site in the dark so we just pulled up and camped.The kids went out having ago at trying to catch one of the many bush rats hanging around our door they came close but couldn’t get one.We then grabbed a few torches and went looking for the grave yard which was at the back of the Hotel and mentioned as being the place where they hid any evidence.This Hotel burnt down around 1917 and was apparently a undesirable Hotel,known to be the worst one in the region where allot of villains and cattle thieves hung out!
|The site of The Min Min Hotel, just a pile of glass|
While Pete had gone back to the bus to grab another torch the kids and I found a unmarked grave and a huge pile of glass from broken bottles shinning in the moonlight where the Hotel once stood,we looked around the area until the wind had picked up and became freezing.On our trek back to the bus Nadeine & Beaudine spotted a reddish looking light in the sky moving up and down and then disappearing we don’t think a Min Min Light (unless they also come in a red colour.)but enough for them to want to get back to the bus quicker.It was at this moment I turned around to look behind me and found a bright light coming for me ,I screamed out what is that not realising the light was from Beaudine who had stopped to get a prickle out, she was running with her torch to catch up! she thought I was screaming about something behind her so she also started screaming.That was the quickest run back to the bus I have ever seen from the girls.
The next day we stayed at the site and looked around the rubble and also went for a walk along the Min Min creek.