RVs held up in car­a­van stopover

Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS - Jack Lawrie jack.lawrie@cnbtimes.com.au

A GROUP of trav­ellers stop­ping over in Monto found them­selves stay­ing for longer than they bar­gained for.

About 20 mo­torhomes from Mo­torhomes Aus­tralia ar­rived at the Monto RV stop over in the mid­dle of a tag-along tour of re­gional Queens­land.

How­ever, their ar­rival co­in­cided with the tor­rent of rain which came as a re­sult of ex-Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Deb­bie, caus­ing road clo­sures that ef­fec­tively trapped them in town.

As the group had orig­i­nally only planned to stay two nights, Monto RV stopover care­taker Paul Bowerman said they didn’t charge them for the ex­tra night’s stay.

“It’s just not fair for them to pay while they can’t get home,” Mr Bowerman said.

On the second day, a num­ber of them had to move from the stopover to the car­a­van park to recharge power.

Group founder Robert James said be­fore the flood warn­ings they hoped the rain wouldn’t in­ter­fere too much with the plan.

“One rea­son we wanted to stay here two nights was to give peo­ple the op­por­tu­nity to check out Ca­nia Gorge,” Mr James said.

“Some peo­ple talked about cut­ting it shorter or go­ing a dif­fer­ent route, but I think wher­ever they go they were go­ing to get rain any­way.

“Monto fit­ted into the loop nicely, we like the area and all of them spend money in the towns.”

They started in Bris­bane and trav­elled up through Be­narkin, Kin­garoy, Monto and even­tu­ally planned to end at Theodore, stop­ping over at a num­ber of small towns along the way.

Mr Bowerman said it was the big­gest group of trav­ellers they’d had at the stopover in nearly a year, the second-high­est over­all.

“They love the place, and a lot of them have been here in the past through the years, sup­port­ing lo­cal busi­nesses,” Mr Bowerman said.

They were able to leave Satur­day morn­ing when the roads re-opened, cut­ting the trip to Theodore and head­ing back to Bris­bane.

Mr Bowerman said the group had spent $4500 in town, based on the re­ceipts they’d left at the tourist kiosk.

“If it wasn’t for the RV stopover, we wouldn’t have got that,” he said.

Mo­torhomes Aus­tralia’s Face­book group con­sists of trav­ellers, grey no­mads and mo­torhome en­thu­si­asts from all across Aus­tralia.

Mr James started the group to cre­ate a cen­tralised hub for mo­torhome trav­ellers in Aus­tralia.

“Most of them are el­derly, not all are re­tired and a lot of them live full-time on the road,” he said.

“Some of them spend their whole life just trav­el­ling, all the time, oth­ers have got houses and will go back home and then back on the road.”


CLEAR SKIES: Mem­bers of the group the day af­ter the storm, wait­ing for road clo­sures to end so they could re­turn home.

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