Longreach, Mount Isa and everywhere inbetween...
We headed off from Rocky on our first ever journey into the real Australian Outback. And we weren't disappointed. This would have to be the highlight of the trip so far. We arrived in Longreach late on Sunday, just in time to catch a beautiful outback sunset. One of the best features of the outback would have to be the night sky. Its easy to forget how beautiful and vast the cosmos is when you live in amongst the town and city lights. I was pleased to get a reasonable shot of the moon, which Ill seek to improve when it becomes full later in our journey.
On our way to Longreach we stopped at another little town called Barcaldine and checked out the "Tree of Knowledge" which commemorates the beginnings of the Australian Labour Party. Here I was thinking that the Tree of Knowledge was involved in the fall of mankind at Creation.....I wont make any Labour party comparisons, Ill be nice hehe. There was also a chair that operated as a xylophone which Izaak had fun with.
We pulled up at the Longreach caravan park and realised we were truly entering the heart of the country. The caravan park in itself was a beautiful setting, with great views of the sky, lots of shade and a true outback feel. It also featured spa's with a cave and waterfall, though the water was cold so we didnt spend too much time in them. Izaak was pleased to get to ride a pedal kart, which were $4 cheaper than the park in Rockhampton.
The town was an interesting place too, with lots of Australian heritage and history. Apparently half a century ago it was a wealthy booming business centre and its not dead now by any means but must be a lot quieter than in its heyday. Longreach has lots of tourist attractions including Stockmans Hall of Fame, Qantas Museum and Cobb & Co. stores with rides etc, however we were content just to soak in the country atmoshphere, do a bit of shopping, post some mail and have a coffee. The weather was a beautiful 27-29 degrees while we were there.
After 2 nights we headed off from Longreach to Mount Isa, the mining capital of Queensland. Mount Isa was also spectacularly beautiful with an interesting contrast of nature and industrialisation. On the outskirts of Mt Isa is Cloncurry, which holds the record for the hottest temperature ever recorded in Australia at 53.1 degrees in 1889. Mount Isa was fairly warm while we were there too. On the way in it was raining and we were treated to a beautiful rainbow over the mountains.
The caravan park at Mt Isa was again lush, tropical and beautiful, albeit some niosy neighbours behind us but we slept well none the less. It was lovely waking through the night to the sound of heavy tropical rain on the tent roof! Nothing like it
Spent most of the time at Mt Isa in town doing required tasks such as printing, scanning, emailling and purchasing equipment and food.
The highlight was definately catching the sunset over the town from the lookout on the last night, capturing that amazing contrast of the absolutely massive mines against the town and surrounding tropical mountainous views. There were also a couple of large crosses on top of mountains at both the entry and centrepoint of town on the way out. It was a beautiful reminder of God being with us, both going ahead of us and having our back xx