This trip has confirmed our certainty that our lives are not our own. We plan carefully, set off in a particular direction with a specific destination in mind, but circumstances lead us on a tangent — resulting in challenges, new friendships and a growing trust in the One who holds us in the palm of His hand.

Driving north from Mitchell, we headed for the Mount Moffat section of Carnarvon National Park. On the way, we stopped to play at another section of the Maranoa River.

Driving north from Mitchell, approaching the Carnarvon National Park
The sky was spectacular during our slow drive north.

As we approached the border of the park (well, that’s relative — we were still 150 kilometres away!), we noticed that we were low on fuel and decided to stop at a farmhouse to enquire if we could buy diesel from them. We knew that many remote properties kept their own supplies of fuel in tanks, and if we met the right person, they’d be willing to let us fill up from their tanks.

After we pulled into the yard of Womblebank, we noticed that the tow-bar below the truck was sagging, and if we had kept going, we could have lost the trailer! The rough dirt roads we had been driving on had created a lot of stress on the connection under the truck.

Broken towbar, November 2010
The weight of the towbar had started to tear apart the c-section metal under the truck.

David unhitched the trailer and drove the truck into town to see if he could find someone to weld it up for him, while I stayed at the property “Womblebank” with the four girls. Our hostess, Sally, offered us drinks and gave the girls ice-blocks.

Playing at Womblebank, November 2010
The girls soon found some toys to play with around the property at Womblebank.

Calista, November 2010
As long as she's got her Pink, Calista is happy where ever we end up.

After hearing how we had enjoyed the mulberries in Mitchell, the kids took our girls into their chook-pen, where their mulberry tree is growing. All three girls enjoyed another mulberry feast while the chooks watched with envy.

Calista picking mulberries, November 2010
Reaching up for some fruit.

Picking mulberries at Womblebank, November 2010
Brioni was ecstatic to get to taste some more of her "favourite fruit".

In the yard, the girls played imaginatively with the toys that were lying around. Aisha learned how to hit a ball with a bat off a tee, and Brioni enjoyed swinging from the tyre swing.

Aisha playing with a tee-ball, November 2010
It took a little while for Aisha to work out her coordination, but she did get the knack of hitting the ball off the tee. I'm thankful for the opportunity for the girls to play with other kids' toys and develop new skills.

When David came back from town, it wasn’t with good news. He hadn’t been able to get a welder to fix the truck for him, and as it was approaching evening, he thought he’d better reunite with the family.

Soon after David returned, Sally’s husband Angus turned up on the motorbike. After some discussion, David discovered that Angus already had the necessary welder in his shed that David needed in order to fix the crack himself!

The truck at Womblebank, November 2010
It was almost dark when David backed the truck up to the shed at Womblebank.

David ready to weld at Womblebank, November 2010
Angus very kindly lent David the necessary tools to fix the truck.

Having dinner and putting the girls to bed wasn’t much different than camping in the bush. The only differences were that we had 240v power and were in the front yard of one of the highest cattle properties in Queensland!

Our campsite at Womblebank, November 2010
During the night, the trailer and truck were separated from each other.

We woke to a cloudy, windy day at the top of Queensland. Womblebank is one of the highest cattle ranches in the state, and it certainly felt like we were on top of the world.

David at Womblebank, November 2010
David dressed for more welding work in the morning.

As David continued to work on the back of the truck, grinding and welding, the girls played impromptu games, including digging in the sand in the front circular driveway of the property.

Playing at Womblebank, November 2010
The girls used their digging toys to make dry sand castles.

Calista at Womblebank, November 2010
I'm continually amazed at how well the girls adapt to whatever situations we find ourselves in.

I used the time to finish trimming Misty’s hair. We like to cut her back every summer, and it certainly makes her appear to be slimmer.

When David was finished, we began our slow drive the 130 kilometres to Mount Moffat. We stopped once for a late lunch at an eroded creek-bed. Heavy water flows had left the creek bed appearing like a mini-Grand-Canyon. Aisha was delighted to see the effects of erosion, saying that she had wanted to look at something like this. I’m enjoying the anticipation of her delight when we finally can explore the Mount Moffat landforms.

Travelling to Mount Moffat, November 2010
The road to Mount Moffat passed through natural forest areas owned by cattle properties.

Later in the afternoon, we stopped for the night at Charlie’s Creek. The owners came by on their way home, and they were very friendly to us although it appeared that we had set up camp in their driveway. They had fifteen more kilometres to go before they reached their home, and we have about 60 more before we reach Mount Moffat.

Charlie's Creek, November 2010
We chose to stop at Charlie's Creek because of the water, although we didn't venture into it.

We’re just taking a slow pace in the truck, enjoying the scenery and the kangaroos. If we were in a hurry, the road may be a hardship, but we’re just enjoying the drive. David says it’s the most economical way of driving because we may end up driving for four days on one tank of fuel!