It never occurred to me to go cruising on the Murray River in a houseboat – until I did it. Now I’m scheming about how I can manage to do it again. We spent an hour and a bit one afternoon on a late-autumn day that felt like summer.
Our boat was one of Wilkadene Outback Star, luxuriuous. Three double bedrooms, huge deck on top, with a bar. Someone had thoughtfully stocked it with beers from Wilkadene Brewery. The river can be crowded with houseboats and water skiers in the summer, but we had it to almost all to ourselves, if you don’t count the pelicans.
The river is different colours at different times of the year, and this gorgeous milky jade is due to an algae – not a bad one.
The boat reaches max speed at a stately four kilometres an hour, so the river remains still, the wake rippling behind us like a breeze over silk.