Pompey’s 2024 Plenty Highway Trip

Day 5 and the first time we aren’t heading off to a new location.

I headed off to the Stockman’s Hall of Fame. Dedicated to the stockmen who pioneered the country, the sheer scale and difficulties involved makes you wonder how they achieved such remarkable results.

Cattle stations the size of countries. Stock routes as long as interstate highways where bores had to be dug along the way for the cattle,horses and men to survive. Remote communities that required a flying doctor service that has been going for over 90 years and started out with homesteads using pedal powered radios. It’s staggering that such a large country could within a hundred years of being settled had one of the highest living standards in the world, and so much of that was because of these stockmen and those around them.

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Day 6 and we wandered into town. We visited the Powerhouse Museum and just checked out the town. We really didn’t do much. Tonight is our last night in Longreach, and we had yet another brilliant sunset. Tomorrow we’re off to Winton for some free camping next to a billabong outside of the town. The plan is to be there for 3 nights.
 
Thank you for the steady stream of updates. You're giving us folks in the US (and elsewhere I suppose) insights into a part of the world I at least have just sort of overlooked beyond nature shows and pop culture movies. I'm really enjoying every post.
 
Thank you for the steady stream of updates. You're giving us folks in the US (and elsewhere I suppose) insights into a part of the world I at least have just sort of overlooked beyond nature shows and pop culture movies. I'm really enjoying every post.
Thanks, it is nice to know people are enjoying this.

The other night there was actually a concert held here. Because it was an opera I wasn’t interested. Yet, out here on this large cattle station over 500 people travelled from as far as Brisbane, Sydney and I think even Melbourne to attend. Apparently there are other similar venues that hold these concerts like a travelling bunch of concert goers. If nothing else, it’s a great way of getting city people to visit rural communities who otherwise wouldn’t. I was surprised to learn that this concert actually made the news in Brisbane!
 
We drove to Winton this morning and arrived around lunchtime. Quite a lot of roadkill in places it was like driving through a slalom. We are camped just out of town and there are quite a few others. Some heading east, some heading west like we will be doing. One is heading north to do the cape. He had a chopped and lengthened 200 series Landcruiser with a Ute tray and canopy on the back.

He had an F truck before but sold it for the 200 because it was narrower on the bush tracks on the cape.

Having crossed the Tropic of Capricorn we are now in the tropics, but the landscape is hardly what people imagine when they think of the tropics. If we were on the coast, yes. But that’s on my next trip.



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Great stuff! Keep the updates coming. This would be an interesting idea for TOTM contest: best drone shot 😄
 
This is an awesome thread makes me feel like I am there. What was all the road kill ?
 
Winton is a real outback town and has history going back a long time. Tens of millions of years worth. You’ll see in the photos a re-creation of the dinosaur stampede- the only evidence in the world of it happening. It’s extraordinary, to say the least, that it has lasted over 60 million years.

The town itself has struggled through drought like all outback towns. Tourism helps towns like Winton survive, and I’m more than happy to do my bit. Life is very tough in the world’s driest inhabited continent. Water is life and yet somehow towns like Winton and many other places we will visit on this trip survive thanks to the Great Artesian Basin and very tough people.

I was directed to where I could get drinking water. It’s bore water and smells strongly of sulphur. It’s when you go and have a shower and smell worse than before you had it.

I particularly enjoying chatting to the locals- this is how I get a better understanding of the unique characteristics of each town.

The North Gregory Hotel is also the location where the great Australian song Waltzing Matilda was first played. You’d have to be an Aussie to understand the significance of this song. The words of the song are cut into the footpath on the Main Street.

Winton is where Qantas airways begun- now the second oldest airline still running in the world. Aircraft and trucks are a big thing in the outback. Road trains are everywhere here- they are more common than any other heavy vehicle. So it makes sense to find a truck and machinery museum here. I even found a mid 70’s F350 and a Ford road train prime mover.

I admire the locals. I love their town and are amazed by what they have achieved. I also know I couldn’t do it.
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Qantas!? Qantas!?

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I feel bad complaining I have to cut the glass or the guys doing the work on my house is taking to long. That is a rugged area but didn’t they have some nice Fords helping them. Praise God
 
This is such an awesome journey you are taking us on with you. So much history. I’m amazed by the resilience of the people that settled there. Thanks so much for sharing!😁
 
Today we visited the Age of Dinosaurs Museum.

I quite enjoyed it and learned more about this topic that has intruiged me for a very long time. When I first came through the Winton district, dinosaurs hadn’t really been discovered in this area. So this has been my first opportunity to come here. The museum is situated on a 75m high jump up, with views over what was once the Eromanga Sea. This sea once went from The Gulf of Capentaria to the Great Australian Bight. So it was pretty big.

One of the questions that intruiged me was the matter of the mass extinction 65 million years ago. I can understand how the massive dinosaurs died out. Yet only one family of dinosaurs survived- birds. The small non avian dinosaurs also died out. Yet mammals did not. What was it about mammals that allowed them to survive, but not the small dinosaurs?

The other thing I found fascinating was that of the evolution of dinosaurs. Australia, Antarctica and South America were separated from North America and Europe. Yet very similar dinosaurs evolved in the Jurassic. Winton in Queensland was back in those days where Tasmania is today. There were huge forests of 100m tall conifer trees at a time the world was far hotter than today. The geology fascinates me even more than the palaeontology.

One of the exhibits contains the only known evidence in the world of crocodiles eating dinosaurs. Along with other rare and very rare exhibits. They also moved into a building where large dinosaurs had left their footprints.

This is our last night in Winton. Tomorrow we head west to Boulia in far western Queensland. While we are still in the same time zone as Brisbane, it’s obvious the sun is rising and setting later. Since leaving home we have travelled nearly 1,300kms and we haven’t crossed a state border yet.
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Today we visited the Age of Dinosaurs Museum.

I quite enjoyed it and learned more about this topic that has intruiged me for a very long time. When I first came through the Winton district, dinosaurs hadn’t really been discovered in this area. So this has been my first opportunity to come here. The museum is situated on a 75m high jump up, with views over what was once the Eromanga Sea. This sea once went from The Gulf of Capentaria to the Great Australian Bight. So it was pretty big.

One of the questions that intruiged me was the matter of the mass extinction 65 million years ago. I can understand how the massive dinosaurs died out. Yet only one family of dinosaurs survived- birds. The small non avian dinosaurs also died out. Yet mammals did not. What was it about mammals that allowed them to survive, but not the small dinosaurs?

The other thing I found fascinating was that of the evolution of dinosaurs. Australia, Antarctica and South America were separated from North America and Europe. Yet very similar dinosaurs evolved in the Jurassic. Winton in Queensland was back in those days where Tasmania is today. There were huge forests of 100m tall conifer trees at a time the world was far hotter than today. The geology fascinates me even more than the palaeontology.

One of the exhibits contains the only known evidence in the world of crocodiles eating dinosaurs. Along with other rare and very rare exhibits. They also moved into a building where large dinosaurs had left their footprints.

This is our last night in Winton. Tomorrow we head west to Boulia in far western Queensland. While we are still in the same time zone as Brisbane, it’s obvious the sun is rising and setting later. Since leaving home we have travelled nearly 1,300kms and we haven’t crossed a state border yet.View attachment 157278View attachment 157279View attachment 157280View attachment 157281View attachment 157282View attachment 157283View attachment 157284View attachment 157285View attachment 157286View attachment 157287View attachment 157288View attachment 157289View attachment 157290View attachment 157291View attachment 157292
Thank you for this. I now know where the Dinobots seek refuge as Grimlock faces some questions. I appreciate this information fellow Tremorite.
 
Looks a lot like northern Arizona,
 
Today we visited the Age of Dinosaurs Museum.

I quite enjoyed it and learned more about this topic that has intruiged me for a very long time. When I first came through the Winton district, dinosaurs hadn’t really been discovered in this area. So this has been my first opportunity to come here. The museum is situated on a 75m high jump up, with views over what was once the Eromanga Sea. This sea once went from The Gulf of Capentaria to the Great Australian Bight. So it was pretty big.

One of the questions that intruiged me was the matter of the mass extinction 65 million years ago. I can understand how the massive dinosaurs died out. Yet only one family of dinosaurs survived- birds. The small non avian dinosaurs also died out. Yet mammals did not. What was it about mammals that allowed them to survive, but not the small dinosaurs?

The other thing I found fascinating was that of the evolution of dinosaurs. Australia, Antarctica and South America were separated from North America and Europe. Yet very similar dinosaurs evolved in the Jurassic. Winton in Queensland was back in those days where Tasmania is today. There were huge forests of 100m tall conifer trees at a time the world was far hotter than today. The geology fascinates me even more than the palaeontology.

One of the exhibits contains the only known evidence in the world of crocodiles eating dinosaurs. Along with other rare and very rare exhibits. They also moved into a building where large dinosaurs had left their footprints.

This is our last night in Winton. Tomorrow we head west to Boulia in far western Queensland. While we are still in the same time zone as Brisbane, it’s obvious the sun is rising and setting later. Since leaving home we have travelled nearly 1,300kms and we haven’t crossed a state border yet.View attachment 157278View attachment 157279View attachment 157280View attachment 157281View attachment 157282View attachment 157283View attachment 157284View attachment 157285View attachment 157286View attachment 157287View attachment 157288View attachment 157289View attachment 157290View attachment 157291View attachment 157292
Great stuff as usual @Pompey keep it coming!!
 
Day 1 and it’s been a long day. Up at 6, on the road at 750. We re-fuelled at Warwick and again at Dalby, as the prices were lower (I certainly won’t say anything over $1 a litre is cheap.) the roads just got worse and worse. We dropped the air pressure in the tyres which made a noticeable difference but nothing could negate the massive dips and rises that on one occasion nearly had us airborne. This on a major highway- the Warrego Highway.

At one stop we found that the Anderson plug that charges the van batteries off the truck had come off and had disappeared, leaving just the cables and the metal tongues. Fortunately I carried a spare and we got it all working again.

We are staying at a rural farm stay but the noise from passing traffic is matched only by some yobbo who rings up all these people and argues with everyone of them and is incapable of speaking quietly.

It might be a farm stay but the reality is it’s just like a caravan park with everyone parked next to one another, albeit a bit further apart.

It’s certainly warmer than home and I expect it will get warmer still over the next 2-3 weeks.



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Um….. might want to call Ford, I think they put your steering wheel on the wrong side of the truck. 🤣
 
The drive from Winton to Boulia is around 360km, and as soon as you turn on to the Kennedy Developmental you are left in no doubt that you are in the outback. I’ve not travelled this road before and I quite enjoyed it. It is sealed, and single lane almost the whole way. This meant that when road trains appeared, you pulled off to the side of the road and stop, until it has passed. It’s a bit intense at times, as there are dozens of blind jump ups and with grass growing all the way to the edge of the road half a metre high it’s not really viable to drop wheels off to the side as you approach the crest as you normally do.

There are times when you get plenty of time but not always, and when you pull off to the side of the road in the grass you just hope there is a firm base to drive on.

There were an amazing assortment of hills that I wasn’t expecting, often with rich red rocks and soil clearly visible. Then there were the massive flat plains that go from horizontal to horizontal 360 degrees. The enormity of this land, thankfully covered in grass following the summer rains takes some time to get your head around.

It’s called the channel country and the number of floodways you pass prove this. Some still have water from the cyclones further north back at the beginning of the year. Time passes very slowly out here. Compared to the congestion of the cities you might as well be on a different planet.

We are only spending a night in Boulia, before heading north to a dam that once fed the former mining town of Mary Kathleen. We will return to Boulia on the way back, staying 3 nights at the end of the Plenty Hwy.
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