Overcome the challenges. Repeat. ad infinitum. Yes, the building process certainly teaches patience, both on our part and that of the wonderful guests, waiting for the opening of Nightfall’s Gold Coast Hinterland luxury camping experience. It’s great to hear you’re excited because we are too!
We’ve faced a number of challenges in the past few weeks, the first being just how to get two 2500L galvanised water header-tanks to their position on the hill, high above the camp’s luxury tent accommodation. With the steep and slippery access track finally dry enough, plan 1 was to carry each tank up with the help of Nightfall’s excavator. Fail. Plan 2: make a cradle for the tank and then do what we do best at Nightfall – use people power to get the job done. After a little welding and a couple of phone calls we were ready. Our wonderful neighbours arrived and with four people on the front and five on the back the adrenaline kicked in. Determination combined with brute force to place the tanks on their high platform.
Nightfall will be self-sufficient when it comes to water. Rainfall from our creekside shed roof will be collected in a 5000G galvanised tank, then pumped-up to the header storage tanks on the hill and gravity-fed to each tent. UV-treatment will ensure the water is safe for drinking.
The other major challenge this week was rain, complete with an impressive show of thunder and lightening over our Gold Coast Hinterland region. The 41-mm which fell returned our final tent site to mud, so it’s back to doing odd jobs while we wait for the ground to dry once again. If all goes to plan we should be able to drill the post holes next week and the camp’s plumbing trenches will go in the following week. With the final piece of critical infrastructure in place we’ll at last feel confident enough to name an opening date. Fingers crossed we don’t get more than a few showers before then.
If you’ve read our blog before you’ll know international Wwoofer volunteers play a big part in the building of Nightfall. We’ve got a great crew on board at the moment. Etienne Mclaughlin has become Steve’s right-hand-man, helping weld tent frames, cut fire wood, clear the creek-crossing causeway, build rock-walls and more. Half French, half Scottish, with an Irish surname and born in Barcelona, Spain, Etienne is proficient in four languages. His English is spoken with a fascinating blended accent which keeps most new visitors to Nightfall guessing about his heritage.
The UK’s Kirsty Phillips has also been at Nightfall a few weeks now. Her marketing background and creative thinking has been refreshing, as we dream-up an opening special and revamp the website to reflect Nightfall’s evolving identity. She’s a whiz at weeding bindi-thorns from the grass, so we can all walk barefoot; a dab-hand helping to sew canvas walls for Nightfall’s luxury tents, and to top it off she shares our passion for the natural treasures which surround us. A while ago we used pebbles from Nightfall’s creek to craft a prototype doormat for the entry to each tent. Kirsty’s been hard at work collecting suitable stones for the real thing. While fossicking on Nightfall’s Christmas Creek ‘beach’, she also created a stunning collection of small coloured stones, shown in the photo at the top of this blog post.