17-Nov-2001 -- N of Tyercumbuggerema, NSW.
Continued from 35°S 145°E.
We had to negotiate about 50 km of dirt roads of varying quality to get ourselves just outside Conargo, from where we took Carrathool Road in a north-easterly direction and turned right on Mabins Well Road after crossing Delta Creek. Continuing to head east, the road became McLennons Bore Road that we took to its end where it hits the Kidman Highway.
The aerial photo that I obtained before the trip showed a lovely patch-work of crops (mainly rice I think) being grown in this heavily irrigated area, so I was expecting to be able to get quite close to this confluence as there are lots of service roads around the irrigation channels.
We drove south on the Kidman Highway for a short distance and then turned left on Gilbert Road. We basically stayed on that road and followed the GPS right to a point within about 600 metres of the confluence where we parked the car.
Having missed out on the first two confluences for the day, the kids desperately wanted to walk with me to this confluence point so we put on their gumboots, hats and sunscreen lotion and walked over to the fence, but it was going to be too hard to get the kids through it as it was electrified, had horizontal and vertical wires and had two rows of barbed wire at the top (which was above chest height for me). So, reluctantly, the kids stayed behind and I crawled under the fence.
The walk was going quite well until it became evident that I was going to have to cross another fence. It took me a while to find a point of the fence with a big enough gap at the bottom to squeeze under, but eventually I succeeded. I then had to wade through an irrigation channel and climb up onto a ridge to reach the confluence.
Right in front of me was a rice paddy surrounded by an abundance of a purple weed called “Patterson’s Curse”.
The closest town to the confluence is a place called Tyarcumbuggerema. Presumably the name is of Aboriginal origin, like many other place names in this part of the world.
So we now had all three of the planned confluence visits in the Riverina under our respective belts and it was only just after 12:00 noon! We headed back towards Melbourne to the first of our two planned re-visits – 36°S 146°E.