Can you see the resemblance of Springsure's Virgin Rock to the Virgin Mary holding her baby?
Can you see the resemblance of Springsure's Virgin Rock to the Virgin Mary holding her baby? Alan Betteridge

Fridge decides to become a cupboard on outback odyssey

OPINION: After a relaxing stay at Ilfracombe we set off on our outback odyssey fully refreshed.

The Capricorn Hwy from Ilfracombe is largely straight and flat offering little in the way of scenery until you reach the Drummond Range, 30km east of Alpha, but we still managed to stop on a number of occasions just to take in the peace of the surrounding countryside and of course we stopped at each little town to have a wander around.

We arrived in Emerald at around 1pm and Christine just had to check out the new shopping centre - just in case there was a shop selling something that she just couldn't live without.

As planned, we turned off the Capricorn Hwy and headed for our next overnight stop at Springsure, 66km south of Emerald.

After having a quick look around we found a small caravan park just outside of town, set up the van and sat back for a quiet afternoon.

What we didn't realise was the van park was directly opposite a truck stop - something I came to regret.

It seemed as if the entire central Queensland fleet of road trains and B-doubles had descended on Springsure during the night and were using that truck stop for their annual meeting place.

As I'm sure all of the truckies would know, they tend to leave the engines running while they walk around their rigs and it appeared that as one would leave another two would take their place.

This went on all night but when I mentioned it to Christine the next morning she look at me and simply said: "What trucks, I didn't hear a thing, I slept really well, in fact I would like to stay another night to have a really good look around the district."

As any man who has been married for any length of time will tell you, there is no point in arguing so another night it would be.

During the day we visited Virgin Rock so named because you can see that part of the formation bears a resemblance to the Virgin Mary holding a child.

Many years ago, it was very distinct but time and the weather have made it somewhat difficult to make out.

Strangely that night there didn't seem to be as many trucks coming and going so it was somewhat more peaceful.

The next morning, Christine made the discovery that the caravan fridge had decided to become just a cupboard and had stopped working.

This occurrence was made worse by the fact that the fridge was only eight months old.

I tried it on gas but to no avail.

Luckily, we had a 45-litre three-way cooler with us and it would have to be pressed into service to keep the perishables cold.

Unfortunately, by the time we discovered the fridge had failed all of the frozen meat and chicken had thawed out and we had no choice but to throw the lot out.

We set the fridge to run on 12 volts but, not really expecting it to work, we headed off to our next stop which would be the Dawson River Rest Area, 7km west of Moura.

I checked the fridge when we arrived to find it had been working on 12 volts and was quite cold.

So I fired it up on gas and waited to see how it went.

It ran perfectly so it may be a difficult problem for the repairer to find when we get back home next week.

Maryborough couple Alan and Christine Betteridge are touring western Queensland with their caravan in tow and keeping us entertained with their travel tales.


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