We all got a lovely surprise in the morning. Andy & Jenny arrived. We thought we wouldn’t see them again on this trip after they left Broken Hill. They’d meandered from Broken Hill and had been camping for a couple of nights on the Lachlan River at Willanthry. Exactly the spot we’d camped at on our way to Broken Hill. They’d only planned to stay there one night but it was such a lovely spot they stayed for two.
They got such a surprise to find the four of us camped at Frogs Hollow in Lake Cargelligo and we were pleased when they said they would camp for one night there too. So now we were six again!
The huge lake is a fabulous sight to see as your drive into the small country town of Lake Cargelligo. The Main Street is perpendicular to the lake and as you come into town from the north you turn left into the Main Street. You get a glimpse of the lake at the end of the street then the closer you get, more of the lake appears until you reach the end of the road and you get the full vista. The lake is huge.
Lake Cargelligo is a natural lake that Aboriginal people have been living around for thousands of years. The abundance of fish and other wildlife made it an ideal area to live. Thousands of years of Aboriginal habitation of the area is evidenced by the shellfish mddens that have been found on the lakeshore. The middens contain the remains of thousands of shellfish meals.
The lake has an abundance of bird life and is a popular spot for birdwatchers. Boating, fishing and water skiing help contribute to the town’s tourism.
Gold was discovered in the area in 1873 bye a Mrs Charlotte Foster, who was a cook at a burr cutters camp. Her husband and the population of the small village of Cudgellico caught gold fever and the town was inundated with prospectors. A gold mine was commenced in 1877. Water in the underground shafts and the poor veins of gold needed mining in the town however shafts remain under some shops and houses in the town to this day.
The town name was changed officially to Lake Cargelligo in 1917 when the railway arrived in town. The town has a population of approximately 1,500 people.
There are a few lovely old buildings in the Main Street including a couple of banks and the Art Deco Civic Theatre.
Frogs Hollow is a free camp provided by the town along the edge of the lake. It has a couple of toilets, rubbish bins and plenty of flat spots to park up. There is a donation box for those who wish to help the council maintain this great spot. It is a short walk to the Main Street along a paved pathway. The paved pathway goes around the lake all the way to another free camp at Deadman’s Point. During our stay we saw lots of people using the pathway.
The Visitors Centre is at the lake end of the Main Street and has a lovely garden full of gorgeous roses. Many of the gardens around the town also had beautiful roses blooming. Roses love the hot dry climate.
Unfortunately it was too windy to go for another paddle, there were whitecaps out on the lake but we did enjoy being six around the little fire again.
The next day we all packed up and headed off in our various directions. We set off towards home and it was only a 2 hour drive and we were driving in our own driveway. We’d enjoyed this short meander very much. Where to next?
I spent the next day cleaning the motorhome, doing minor repairs and getting it ready for it’s next adventure.