A Travellerspoint blog

June 2013

Day Two in Longreach

Day 31 - Monday 10 June 2013

Forecast for today was 14 to 28 degrees with sun. After breakfast we went for a walk around the town centre of Longreach but being a public holiday most shops were closed. We called into the Kinnon and Co Station Store and bought a few small souvenirs, then decided to book for the afternoon Cobb and Co stage coach ride. We then headed off for a follow up visit to the Stockman's Hall of Fame with our pass-outs from yesterday.

Interior of Stockman's Hall of Fame 1

Interior of Stockman's Hall of Fame 1

Interior of the Stockman's Hall of fame 2

Interior of the Stockman's Hall of fame 2

After finishing our tour of the Stockman's Hall of Fame we returned to the caravan park for lunch, before returning to Kinnon and Co Station Store for our stage coach ride. Our coach was pulled by a team of 4 grey horses, and prior to boarding the coach we were briefed on the dangers of travelling in a stage coach at speed. We were also advised that a large part of the cost of our tickets was to pay for the public liability insurance premium. The coach ride took us out of town on sealed roads before moving on to dirt tracks and ending up on the original trail of the Cobb and Co coaches from Longreach to Muttaburra. After travelling down the track to a 400 year old coolabah tree the team was turned around before a gallop back to town. A good fun afternoon!

Kinnon and Co Whippet with trailer

Kinnon and Co Whippet with trailer

Cobb and Co coach setting out for a run

Cobb and Co coach setting out for a run

Turning the team on the track

Turning the team on the track

400 year old coolabah tree

400 year old coolabah tree

Posted by TwoAces 03:07 Comments (0)

Day One in Longreach

Day 30 - Sunday 9 June 2013

A bit cloudy today - forecast is 15 to 25 degrees - yesterday it got to 28 degrees. We started the day with eggs and bacon for breakfast, and plan to go to the Qantas Founders Museum and the Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame today. While we are booked in for three nights in Longreach we are contemplating another night as there is a long list of things to do in Longreach. After breakfast a brolga wandered past our van - there are quite a few of them wandering around the park.

A Brolga wandering through the caravan park

A Brolga wandering through the caravan park

We started the day's tourist activities with a visit to the Qantas Founder's Museum which was established on the site of the original Qantas hanger at Longreach Airport. In 1919 Hudson Fysh and Paul McGuinness surveyed an air route through northern Australia from Longreach to Darwin in a 1919 Model T Ford Ute. This venture gave them the idea of forming an airline and they established Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services (QANTAS) in 1920. While Mcguinness parted company with the airline in 1922, Fysh was appointed manager in 1923 and went on to be Chief Executive and later chairman of Qantas until his retirement in 1966.

Qantas Founders Museum at Longreach

Qantas Founders Museum at Longreach

Original Qantas hanger at Longreach

Original Qantas hanger at Longreach

1919 Model T Ford Ute

1919 Model T Ford Ute

During the 1920s Qantas built 8 De Havilland DH 50 aircraft under licence and became the only airline to build its own aircraft.

Avro 504K bi-plane circa 1920

Avro 504K bi-plane circa 1920

DeHavilland DH50 Iris bi-plane

DeHavilland DH50 Iris bi-plane

DeHavilland DH61 Apollo bi-plane

DeHavilland DH61 Apollo bi-plane

Qantas Longreach airport transfer

Qantas Longreach airport transfer

Qantas Douglas DC3

Qantas Douglas DC3

Rolls Royce jet engine

Rolls Royce jet engine

Qantas Boeing 747 Jumbo

Qantas Boeing 747 Jumbo

After our visit the Qantas Museum we returned to the caravan park for lunch and a chance to put our feet up. Then it was off to the Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame was opened in 1988 and is dedicated to the pioneers of the outback.

Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame

Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame

Merchants wagon

Merchants wagon

Bullock dray

Bullock dray

Furphy's water cart

Furphy's water cart

Replica slab hut

Replica slab hut

Slab hut interior 1

Slab hut interior 1

Slab hut interior 2

Slab hut interior 2

As we had only seen about half of the displays we got pass outs as we left and will be back tomorrow to see the rest of the displays. We finished the day with dinner at the Woolshed Restaurant at the caravan park. Being roast night the choice was roast beef or roast pork with roast potatoes and vegies, followed by choc chip bread and butter pudding or lemon sauced pudding. The entertainment at dinner was a country and western singer.

Posted by TwoAces 16:06 Comments (0)

Blackall to Longreach

Day 29 - Saturday 8 June 2013

It was an easy pack-up this morning as we had stayed hitched up last night. We got away from the Blackall Caravan Park and headed for the dump point at the showgrounds. After emptying our holding tanks we were finally on our way at about 9:30 am for a relatively short run of 215 kms to Longreach via Barcaldine.

There was little traffic on the roads but quite a lot of major road works with long detours with 80 kph speed limits. We arrived at Barcaldine at about 11:30 am and parked the van on the edge of town and walked back to the shops. One of the attractions at Barcaldine is the "Tree of Knowledge" where it is said that in 1891 a group of protesting sheep shearers founded the Australian Labor Party under the tree. In an act of vandalism, the tree was poisoned with glyphosate (a main ingredient in the herbicide RoundUp) in 2006.

Di at the Tree of Knowledge

Di at the Tree of Knowledge

Barcaldine main street

Barcaldine main street

Windmill at the Information Centre

Windmill at the Information Centre

After a visit to the newsagent for papers - not arrived yet - we stopped at a local coffee bar for coffees with scones and jam and cream - very nice! We made a quick visit to the local IGA for a few supplies and we were on our way again just after 12 noon.

Still more road-works between Barcaldine and Longreach and we eventually arrived in Longreach at about 1:00 pm. We made a quick visit to the newsagent for the Weekend Australian and the Weekend Financial Review before checking into the Longreach Tourist Park for 3 nights. The caravan park is a very large Top Tourist Park with about 300 sites and its own restaurant. We have booked in for the Sunday Roast tomorrow night.

Posted by TwoAces 04:20 Comments (0)

Charleville to Blackall

Day 28 - Friday 7 June 2013

We were up early this morning as we had a full pack up to do before our trip from Charleville to Blackall - about 300 kms. The forecast for Charleville was 12 to 25 degrees, and would you believe it - little cloud and lots of sun. We were on our way at 9:15 am after being told by a fellow traveller to take our seasick pills as the road around Tambo is so rough and bouncy.

Once again we found little traffic on the road and assisted one road train to pass just north of Charleville. Our route took us past Augathella which we did not see as it is a couple of kms off the highway, and through Tambo where we stopped for a few supplies at the local Foodworks and lunch beside a park in the middle of town.

There were a lot of road-works between Charleville and Blackall, one where we were held up for 10-15 minutes waiting for traffic coming the other way past the road works, and another section about 15 kms long with a 80 kph speed limit around road works. The highway is so rough and bouncy and it is clear that there is much more to be done.

When we arrived in Blackall we filled up with fuel - a good day today doing 300 kms at 17.3 litres/100kms - due mainly to lower speeds, flat roads and no wind at all. We checked into the Blackall Caravan Park at about 1:30 pm and were allocated a drive through site so that we could stay hitched-up for the night. After connecting the power and water we walked into the town for a look around. Blackall has a number of sculptures on the main street including one of Jack Howe, a gun shearer who shore 321 sheep with blade shears in 1892 on Alice Downs Station in 7 hours and 40 minutes. This record has never been broken with blade shears.

Blackall Main Street

Blackall Main Street

Jack Howe - gun shearer

Jack Howe - gun shearer

Posted by TwoAces 03:07 Comments (0)

A Second Day in Charleville

Day 27 - Thursday 6 June 2013

The forecast for today was 12 to 24 degrees with some cloud - not too much we hope as we are booked into the Cosmos Observatory for the 9:00 pm session after the cancellation of the 7:30 pm session last night because of heavy cloud. At the moment things are not looking good with lots of cloud and no sun at all.

As the national papers usually come in at about 10:00 am we waited for half an hour then went into town to get a batch of scripts filled at the chemist, while we read the papers and had a coffee and toasted banana bread at the bakery. When we got to the newsagent they had a sign out that the papers were delayed because of State of Origin - perhaps the world had wobbled on its axis and delayed the papers when Queensland lost last nights State of Origin game to NSW.

We spent a quiet afternoon reading the papers and planning our itinerary through to the end of the Queensland School Holidays so that we could make some bookings for Wonga Beach, Cairns and Townsville. Later in the evening we got a phone call from the Cosmos Observatory to say that the observation session had been cancelled because of heavy cloud cover. We think that it is a plot to bring us back to Charleville another day.

No photos today.

Posted by TwoAces 02:19 Comments (0)

(Entries 21 - 25 of 30) Previous « Page 1 2 3 4 [5] 6 » Next