25.05.2012 - 27.05.2012
Decided to leave the coast and head inland, our first stop after negotiating the notorious Peak Downs Highway was Clermont, this is a small town now supporting the ever increasing mining industry in the area. The first game of the State of Origin was being played and there was a party in the camp kitchen opposite our caravan, so being well outnumbered by Queenslanders we decided to venture out to a local pub for dinner. We both had to take 'doggy bags' home as the meals were so big. Kim ordered a rump steak, normally this would consist of one piece of meat, here there were two, add the 'all you could eat' veggie and salad bar, it was quite a meal.
We then went to Theresa Creek Dam, we planned on staying for a few days, but the heavy overnight rain changed that. We decided to move to around Emerald and ended up at Sapphire. Sapphire and the nearby town of Rubyvale is a gazetted fossicking area, the area has produced in excess of 90% of the worlds sapphires.
We didn't have a fossicking licence, so went along to one of the locals who will sell you a bucket of gravel and show you how to look for the sapphires. The photo below shows the gems that came out of our bucket, some are just show and tell, others can be polished and some cut.