The Snail Trail

Travelling with my home on my back and in no hurry to get anywhere

Longreach to the Channel Country- so much to see and do!

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I thought I’d spend a couple of days in Longreach, but I drove straight through and went to Ilfracombe and stayed in the Ilfracombe Caravan Park. What a great night! They have a fantastic Happy Hour Shed and the night I was there they did a Sausage Sizzle in aid of the Royal Flying Doctor Service. It was a great way to meet even more wonderful people.

Their regular entertainers were away at the Yellowbelly Classic in Longreach so we entertained ourselves with  jokes and bush poetry from the crowd. I plucked up the courage to tell my Green Frog poem, which went over really well.

I started back to Longreach late the next morning, making the most of the power to charge my lantern, computer and phone – and to catch up on some blogging.

I arrived at the Longreach Stockman’s Hall of Fame and paid my money to see the museum.

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I have to say I was disappointed in the museum. Although filled with an amazing amount of information it was very sterile, I found the displays quite dark and hard to see the artifacts, and if you aren’t a reader you would miss so much – there is a lot of reading!

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I had missed the live stockman display in the arena out the back as I got there after 11am, so that was disappointing, too. Perhaps I just wasn’t ‘in the zone’ for Longreach  so I definitely have to go back and give it a fair go. I would like to visit the Qantas museum and also do the river cruise or wagon trip which I have been told by other travellers are both fantastic experiences. Next time.

After filling up with petrol and refilling my gas bottle I headed south to Stonehenge, 151kms away. I was entering the Channel Country in the Barcoo Shire.

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 If you want to get an idea of the size of this shire, think approximately the size of Tasmania – 61,974 square kms. It takes in the townships of Stonehenge, Jundah and Windorah.

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The little caravan park at Stonehenge offered showers, water and power for a $10 per night in the honesty box. The Community Centre opposite is also the Information Centre and a very friendly lady was more than happy to fill me in on what to see in the area.

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The same facilities can be found in Jundah and Windorah for the same price. Each of these little towns also has a dump point.

I stayed 2 nights at Stonehenge and whacked the lantern on charge again to make sure I had plenty of light for the free camps I would be staying at over the next few days. You can get too comfortable when you are ‘plugged in’!

Jundah had a lovely looking free camp on the banks of the Thompson River but I decided to keep going to Windorah, where I stayed at the free camp at Coopers Creek. Coopers Creek is formed by the joining of the Thomson and Barcoo Rivers and when in flood it fills multi channels and flood plains that stretch outwards from its banks for up to 100kms as the water commences its journey to Lake Eyre.

Windorah has a solar farm that provides most of its energy requirements and looks so out of place in this little country town.

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The free camp is just out of Windorah on Coopers Creek. The best spots were taken when I got there but I found some shade, set up camp and not long after was joined by another person, Derek, who it turned out was from Swansea in Tasmania, a town close to where my sister lives. By the time he left I had to get out my lantern to see what I was cooking. Bugger me dead – it didn’t work! All this time I’d been charging it for a night just like this and it was the globe that was gone, not the charge!

Out with the trusty head lamp, which I hadn’t used until now, and looking like an alien I cooked my dinner and then read by the same lamp until sleep time. I LOVE this little lamp. It’s hands free, throws a great light – and it cost next to nothing. I think Laurance convinced me to buy it at Crazy Clarks when he was in Mt Isa – thank you!

There are soooo many places I want to go to out here. You could spend months, if not years, travelling around Queensland visiting the most amazing little towns with incredible history. I have to keep telling myself ‘you can’t see everything’……but I’m hungry for it. I feel like a little kid stamping her foot saying ‘but I want to!’

Tomorrow I’m going to Quilpie – but I’m missing Toompine, Eromanga and Adavale. I have to come back!

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