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The River News, Wednesday, December 24, 2014 - 5
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Waiting for a ﬂood
FOR the past year or so my
paddle wheeler, the Dromedary,
has been moored at Nelia Garri
Station on the Darling River,
halfway between Menindee
On Anzac Day last year it
was lifted by crane around the
Menindee weir and put back
into the river above the weir.
While the river was high, we
managed to get to Wilcannia,
cutting a lot of timber to do so.
The whole town turned out,
as there hadn't been a paddle
wheeler there for over 70 years.
We just managed to get back
to Nelia Garri on a quickly
falling river, losing the use of
one rudder and getting a hole
in the hull on the way.
I have had great help and
hospitality from Darling River
people, particularly when
moored for long periods. Greg
and Lily Martin at Nelia Garri
have been excellent.
Since then, I have been able
to travel on 130km of navigable
water -- from Christmas Rocks,
near Barraba Station, down
to the weir. This water is
always there, where it backs
up against the weir.
We travelled more than
900km on this stretch of water,
over a few trips, without
meeting another boat --- not
even a tinny.
There are not many places
in the world (can't think of
any) where this could happen
on navigable water.
The only people we saw
were at the few stations along
the river, along with the rare
Travelling on this river is
never boring. We often see
emus swimming across the
river in front of the boat, like
a collection of periscopes, and
sometimes kangaroos and
On a number of occasions
we have pulled out bogged
sheep, and also goats that don't
often get bogged.
Birdlife is ever present, and
a constant source of attention,
with a pair of magnificent
white-bellied sea eagles nesting
down in the wetlands (Lake
Weatherill) near the weir.
Though it looks unlikely,
I am hoping for a large flood
down the Darling River this
If that happens, we will
attempt to reach Bourke. With
the experience we have had
getting this far, and with a bit
of luck, it is possible.
If that water isn't
forthcoming, we will transport
the 'pw Dromedary' back to the
Murray River, which will be a
bit tame by comparison.
Rex's outback books
(eight titles) are available
online. Visit: www.safarico.
Financial boost for common room
THE Waikerie community
shed common room rebuild has
had a $17,000 financial boost and
in-kind support to help complete
Water treatment company River-
land Water, a joint venture between
Trility and AMP Capital, recently
donated $6000 from its annual char-
ity golf day.
Each year the company gives the
day's proceeds to local community
groups and projects.
This year's charity golf day was
held at the Waikerie Golf and Coun-
try club and raised $3000.
Riverland Water added an extra
$3000 to donate to the Waikerie com-
The shed is home to the local
Men's Shed, Rotary and Apex clubs
and has a common room for all
groups and others in the community
The funds will be used to com-
plete the room, which is receiving
upgrades including airconditioning
Trility's head of communications
Caroline Kerkhof said it was a privi-
lege to give back to the Riverland
"We employ local people, and it's
great to be able to donate money to
this community," she said.
The Rotary Club of Waikerie has
matched the $6000 donated by Riv-
erland Water for the common room.
Club president Trevor Quast said
the common room would benefit the
three groups sharing the shed, along
with the wider community.
"When the room is completed it
will be a great community asset,"
"It is totally unique to the River-
"The Rotary club is pleased to be
a part of the build of the room, and
this donation has brought our total
contributions to community groups,
projects and sporting clubs for the
calendar year up to $81,000."
The Apex club also donated $5000
towards the project, while Men's
Shed members helped with the
works, including the construction of
the ceiling and lining the walls.
TRILITY head of communications Caroline Kerkhof presents Loxton Waikerie Mayor Leon Stasinowsky with
a cheque for $6000, which Riverland Water raised at its annual golf day.
PHOTO: Jayme Koch
Boys walk 405km
for cancer charity
A 16-YEAR-OLD boy and 14 of his
friends walked from Mildura to Glenelg,
passing through Waikerie, to help raise
$60,000 for the cancer charity that is
helping his terminally ill mother.
St Joseph's College Mildura student Tim
Hill and his friends made the 405km trek
from Mildura to Glenelg to help support the
John Logan Cancer Treatment Foundation
The Walk for the Hills group stopped at
New Land Bakery, on the Sturt Highway at
Waikerie, before arriving at Blanchetown
Tim's mother Kerrie was diagnosed with
pancreatic cancer about one year ago.
At the time, doctors gave her just weeks to
live, but with support from the John Logan
Cancer Treatment Foundation and others,
she was provided with the expensive but
life-extending drug Abraxane free of charge.
This has enabled her to enjoy extra time
with her three sons.
The walk began in Mildura at 5.30am
on Tuesday, December 16, and the group
visited towns including Renmark, Barmera,
Waikerie and Blanchetown before arriving
in Glenelg on Saturday.
The John Logan Cancer Treatment
Foundation began in 2010.
Since its inception it has helped more than
230 patients at a cost of more than $650,000.
A GROUP of St Joseph's College students from Mildura
walked 405km from their hometown to Glenelg to help
raise $60,000 for the The John Logan Cancer Treatment
Foundation. INSET: St Joseph's College students Jacob
Lonsdale, 16, and Kaleb Grant, 15, walking between
Waikerie and Blanchetown on Thursday as part of
a fundraiser for The John Logan Cancer Treatment
PHOTOS: Jayme Koch
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