Australia
Barcaldine

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    • Day74

      Pump Waterhole, Muttaburra

      October 10, 2019 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

      Probably this was one of the waterholes that was used to pump water to the town. Later an artesian bore was sunk and still provides all the water needs of the town.

      The creek is home to many bird species that were quite noisy this morningRead more

    • Day12

      Barcaldine

      August 20, 2021 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 25 °C

      Barcaldine is our next stop and on the way we came across the Alice River Botanical Walk. This was a bicentennial project to help educate everyone about the native environment. Many of the trees on the walk through the bushland are labelled and it gives a real appreciation of how diverse the landscape really is. Sadly it has fallen into some disrepair but still good exercise.
      We stopped at the Homestead Caravan Park in Barcaldine. This is the first paid park we have stayed at since we left Canungra almost 2 weeks ago. A nice quiet park with grassy sites.
      Time to strip the bed, wash the sheets and the mats and the towels and all the marginally dirty clothes. A full machine in their laundry for $3, pretty good value.
      The park also provides billy tea and damper every afternoon for the guests. We went for a wander around the town which is just a short walk from the van park. So sad to see the Tree of Knowledge now although the monument they have replaced it with is excellent. Glad we got to see the original so many years ago.
      One thing we have learned about these outback towns is to not assume something will be open. We've been caught twice now, this last time with the local IGA closing at 2:00pm Saturday. Of course we got there at 2:10. :(
      Had the chance to go for a couple of early morning walks around the town and down by the lagoon. Long hours in the car take their toll.
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    • Day11

      Blackall - Douglas Ponds

      August 19, 2021 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

      Into Blackall this morning and the weather is still being kind. It is gradually warming up both during the day and the nights. We have long wanted to be out west in these open camps to see if we can really experience the stars in perfect weather. The only problem we have had so far is the moon. It is so bright it dims many of the stars. We live in hope.
      The morning was frustratingly spent on the phone to Dell PC Support to try to sort out my laptop issues. It has been randomly blue screening for a couple of months now, becoming unusable for days at a time and then seeming to rectify itself. Hopefully the hour and a half I spent on the phone with Sinesh (who insisted on calling me Mr Stephen) has sorted the problem.
      A quick walk around town and a visit to the Information Centre. I asked about the Woolscour and we were told the last tour of the day started at 1:00pm. It was 12:50. A quick drive about 4 kms out of town and we arrived just as the tour started. What an interesting place and it's a great credit to the locals who fought and worked so hard to preserve it. To see it in action makes it a lot clearer about how it all worked.
      We continued north and stopped at Douglas Ponds free camp. As Faye said it is a "bit creepy" because there was no-one else there. Nice new and clean toilet facilities available. A beautiful sunset topped the day off.
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    • Day20

      Left Blackall

      June 21 in Australia ⋅ ☁️ 21 °C

      We left the Blackall Caravan Park last Saturday within a few minutes of the others. Kotzy was first off, he had to fuel up. We had all agreed to meet by the Blackall EXIT SIGN northern end of town, before continuing our little convoy a km or so apart the 200 kms to Longreach.
      We were 2nd to leave, as I am finally getting the hang of packing and unpacking the van. A few minutes to spare I asked BB to drive in the ‘opposite direction’ to the Southern entrance 3 kms out of town, so I could take a picture of the Blackall Town Sign which is quite unique. Little did I know it was not going to be one of my better ideas.
      As we neared the sign I told BB to ‘keep driving’ I needed distance from the sign to take a good shot.. At that very moment, there was no other option as a Road Train had decided to overtake us!
      So we kept going, and going and going the kms ticked past, there was absolutely nowhere on that narrow road to do a U-Turn with a van on the back. It seemed like forever but it was around 5km before we could turn back. I did take a photo, BB was not as happy as when we started out so I was quick to jump back in the just in case, then my mobile rings, and it is Polly.
      “Car 54 Where are You” ??
      “We are all waiting for you at the town exit” (we are no longer Big Bear and Honey Bear on the 2 Way, we were ‘renamed car 54’ in Cunnamulla due to misread of a map or short cut that went wrong). Our 2 Way has a range of 5km and we were at least 10-15 kms in the opposite direction hence the phone call. “We are stuck behind a slow caravan and were now on our way ” I replied! I stayed quiet in our car for the next 45 minutes or so, looking out the window and I unwrapped more lollies than usual. Next message from Polly was very sympathetic Mad Dog, Silverfox and Goatee were slowing up to give us time to catch up, even then they were all still 2 or 3 kms ahead of us, okey dokey! The 2 way was charged up and on, then we overheard caravanners heading in the opposite direction talking about a big mob of cattle over the next rise. So over the hill we went and true to their word there was Cattle everywhere on both sides of the road. So what do you do if you are not a farmer? you stop the car and Maureen jumps out and starts taking pictures. The cattle now have right of way and suddenly they are ALL moving across the road in front of us. We were not going anywhere Just in case the others thought we were lost we quickly get on the 2 Way hoping they would hear (no mobile service) we are now at a complete standstill and waiting for the 600 or 700 head of cattle, 6 horses and Stockmen to cross the road (those numbers were confirmed to Kotzy later in Barcaldine).
      We were happily sitting there no other caravan in sight, watching as it was an awesome sight then Kotzy gets on the Radio and tells us “no no you shouldn’t have stopped, get the car going drive slowly, move through the Cattle they will give way to you” so though unsure, we drove through the big White Brahma’s and we were on our way again. We are now at Longreach and apparently ‘lucky’ to get 4 sites in the Tourist Park. Caravan Parks in Qld are hit and miss with a lot of miss. You may get toilet paper, but then you might end up with a cold shower, or you score a bit of grass but the water stinks, or you get uneven and muddy sites but then bonus the water is hot, but your shower head leaks. This Park looked good driving in, apart from the big pot holes at the entrance, and we had a cement slab to park up next to! Woopydoo! My broom gets a rest, no red dirt for a few days. But hey the word lucky kept coming up during our happy hour, wow 283 sites and we got such a ‘great location within the park’ and it is peak tourist season!
      At 6.00am the next morning we were all woken by a really loud jet noise, we were in the direct flight path of the Longreach Airport. Just 500m away.
      So here we are 2000km in the middle of Australia, and all the planes leaving and landing at that airport have to fly over our vans on the edge of the park closest to the Airport.
      This morning it was a 5.00am flight roaring overhead, then 6.00am, only 2 more early mornings left now. Apart from that we have been up and down their Main Street numerous times, had coffee’s, visited the RSL, tourist office, checked out the Bowling Club, went to the Longreach Races for 3 hrs on Sunday arvo. I have washed everyday BB has set up a nice line for me, and we have had a happy hour each day one happy hour was a ‘very happy one’ Yesterday we went on the Cobb & Co. StageCoach experience. When they called for volunteers to ride up top, my arm went up and I grabbed BB’s as well. I did not realise how hard we would have to hang on when the horses were put into a gallop! It was a really fun and enjoyable day. We are going down the street in the morning to take photo’s as it was near impossible to take shots while they were galloping. In the Caravan Pk the ‘boys’ seem to get a lot of enjoyment watching caravans pulling in and then backing onto their site, commenting Oooh thats a nice looking van, he shouldn’t be towing with that, that has to be overweight, they are good mirrors all that stuff that men gossip about. Yesterday theyning we were all standing about admiring a ‘neighbors’ brand new, Range Rover as it was being backed onto the tow ball. It was more about such a short man with such a big van, the boys of course got talking to the owner, who was on his way to Townsville. . Subject came up where was his wife and he replied he was on his own as his 1st wife had died and his 2nd wife would not die you get to meet such characters on the road ha ha. I hope everyone likes the pictures, especially the one of the Blackall Sign although I wish BB had agreed to wait for the car to move out the way as it did spoil my picture! It took a lot of effort to take that shot and one I won’t forget on this trip.
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    • Day210

      Tambo & Blackall

      June 10, 2019 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

      Nice trip , stopped at a little town called Tambo for a coffee & snack, horses head of wood & full horse made of wood also. An old Chevrolet Tip truck . Then onto Blackall free camp along with a iron made eagle & next. Nice spot on the river with many more campers. Onward tomorrow to LongreachRead more

    • Aug26

      Longreach

      August 26, 2021 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

      A short stop at Longreach to top up the drinking water supply and shop for the next 3 weeks ahead.

      There will be no shops for the next part of the trip. After shopping we had coffee and lunch before heading south to Stonehenge.

      ** Main Photo **

      "I remember the various artworks at expo 88. It was a big deal and I had season tickets to visit any time during the 6 months it was running. Even with season tickets and over 60 visits, I did not see everything in detail. The street performers were memorable.

      Rob. "

      THE DROVERS JOHN UNDERWOOD

      **Text from plaque **
      "THE DROVERS", ALSO KNOWN AS "AROUND THE CAMP FIRE" IS ONE ARTWORK FROM A LARGER SERIES OF APPROXIMATELY 50 ARTWORKS TITLED "THE HUMAN FACTOR" THAT WERE COMMISSIONED FOR WORLD EXPO '88 IN BRISBANE, AN INTERNATIONAL SPECIALISED EXPOSITION HELD AS PART OF BICENTENNIAL CELEBRATIONS IN 1988.

      THE PIECE IS AN EARLY EXAMPLE OF CONTEMPORARY ACCESSIBLE PUBLIC ART AS OFFOSED TO FINE ART SCULPTURAL INSTALLATIONS. THESE RELATABLE, LIFELINE STATUES DELIGHTED MILLIONS OF PEOPLE WHO VISITED WORLD EXPO '88 AND SERVED AS A CONTRAST TO THE OTHER, MORE ABSTRACT PIECES COMMISSIONED FOR THE EVENT.

      FOLLOWING EXPO THE DROVERS WERE PURCHASED BY THE QUEENSLAND GOVERNMENT FOR AND DISPLAYED OUTSIDE THE PRIMARY INDUSTRIES BY THE TRIES BUILDING ON ANN STREET, BRISBANE. IT WAS FOLLOWING THE REDEVELOPMENT OF THAT SITE THAT THE PIECE WAS GIFTED TO LONGREACH REGIONAL COUNCIL FOR PERMANENT DISPLAY.
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    • Day44

      The Big Merino - Blackall

      July 3, 1991 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

      I know there is a "Big Merino" in NSW and that is really big, however we need to get some credit to the residents of Blackall. The Big Merino is part of the dedication residents have to sheep and also a memorial to Jackie Howe, apparently the best sheep shredder to ever walk the planet.

      The Big Merino is located at the northern end of town, on the Landsborough highway and next to the information centre
      Read more

    • Day11

      Muttaburra Caravan Park

      April 15, 2017 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

      $15 a night...pay 2 stay for 4. Washing...showers...flushing toilets. ..water and power...and other travelers to chat with.

      Living The Dream

      Bargain!

      4/17/17Reply
      2017 AusTravel

      I was wrong. .it was pay for 2 nights and get 3 more for free.

      4/17/17Reply
      Living The Dream

      Wow! 5 nights for $30 powered!

      4/17/17Reply
      2017 AusTravel

      With water, showers, and a town full of interesting sculptures.

      4/17/17Reply
       

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