We have made it to Tumut. This is a neat little town and we are camped on the banks of the Tumut River a few hundred metres from the centre of town. Sort of too far to walk but not far enough to drive. So it depends what mood you are in and what you have to carry back of course! Allthego set off early one morning along the river walk, very pleasant stroll into town. The objective was to pick up a loaf of bread for breakfast from the local bakery, but what does one find at a bakery, all sorts of goodies. So back he came with some bacon and cheese topped buns and a custard tart, as well as the bread of course. Carting this stuff back resulted in the bread being a little crushed in order to save the rolls and the buns. The buns though were excellent along with some bacon and eggs for breakfast beside the shallow swift flowing river. This part of the world is now showing the full colours of the autumn transformation. The poplars, elms and liquid ambers are golden in colour with splahes of orange and red here and there. Fallen leaves cover the campsite.
Tumut is a very outdoors sort of place being in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains. The Tumut River is a tributary of the Murrumbigee River, Australia’s second longest river. The headwaters of the Tumut, as well as its tributaries, have been harnessed by the Snowy Scheme for hydro electricity production through a series of power stations. The water ultimately collects in Blowering Dam a few kilometres away from the town before being released downstream, past our caravan site, to ultimately join the Murrumbigee to supply irrigation waters for the Riverina agricultural region. The Murrumbigee River later joins the Murray at Boundary Bend, near Balranald.
We have had good weather to date. Sunny, dry and blue skies but the forcasters are pointing towards some rain. So we set off to look around the district with an afternoon trip to Blowering Dam and along the Snowy Mountains Highway for awhile towards Talbingo. Next day it was off to nearby Batlow to check out the apples and cider. We came back to Tumut via a loop road through Adelong, a small town famous for its gold mining heritage in the Adelong Gorge. Here, along the gorge banks are the remnant stone works of a major 19 th century gold mining enterprise. Quite an interesting site to view from the top looking down. It must have been a hive of activity a hundred and sixty years ago.
Have finally managed to get to that custard tart for morning tea after a walk around the camp ground. The custard was a nice deep yellow, maybe organic eggs? Plenty of nutmeg on top too for flavour. Quite stiff as well with a nice crusty pastry. A top custard tart from Tumut, superior to the one from Inglewood.
Have had lunch today at the Tumut River Brewing Company, an enterprising spot with a good range of craft beers and ciders. We enjoyed a meat lovers pizza to help with the liquids.
Next door is the Tumut Broom factory which has been making millet brooms since 1946. It is a bit of a cottage industry which now relies on the import of millet from Mexico. Back in the old days Australia produced a lot of millet but sadly our local production is quite small and can’t support this business. The brooms are distributed through hardware groups such as Mitre 10. It seems most people who stop by here leave with a broom! A bus load of grey nomads on tour was here when we arrived and many brooms left with them. Also with us, it will be very useful sweeping the mat outside the van. Got to find room for it somewhere though!
Our last day here in Tumut has been dampened by the onset of drizzle which is forecast to continue for a few days until late in the weekend when the sun returns. We leave in the morning and are not sure of where our next stop will be. We are hoping to time the weather so that we will be high in the mountains near the source of the Murray with some sunshine and blue skies.