Friday, 15 July 2011

Day 3: Emerald to Longreach

Another early start, as I woke early.
My accomodation included a Continental breakfast, so I had a bowl of Coco Pops and left. Coco Pops, I love em!
My plan was to pop into the local Golden Arches and use their free WiFi to catch up on mail and other Internet info. Sadly their WiFi was broken and I wasted my time. On the plus side I was able to see a lovely sunrise, here it is looking over Emerald Racecourse.


It had rained overnight and the day was cool and the roads still damp. In fact the cool and wet stayed with me all day. The countryside to the west of Emerald was open fields and scrub, the roads straight and flat. During the trip this changed to undulating and then hills and small trees and scrub.

At one point I crossed the Great Dividing Range with a sign proclaiming my height as 444 metres above sea level and I was now in the catchment area of the Coopers Creek and Lake Eyre Basin.
My path led me through Jericho which being on the River Jordan has taken up the theme of Joshua fighting the battle of Jericho. "And the walls came tumbling down".
Barcaldine was a short rest stop and I had a beer in the oldest pub in Barcaldine. This town and area is a legend in the story of outback Australia. Maybe not the heart of pioneering Australians but well up there.
Moving on Ilfracombe has a hot spa based on the warm waters from an artesian bore hole. The water pours straight out of the ground via a pipe into a man made pool. I took a dip and lazed in the hot waters for about thirty minutes, because I was recoverng from the rigours of a long drive. Jericho is also about 1/3 of the distance on my long road trip.
And so into Longreach. Only a half day drive and I plan to stay here two nights.
In the afternoon I spent a few hours in the Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame. Interesting but possibly not the most exciting afternoon of my life. I think that if you have not lived in Australia and absorbed much of the history then this would be a great exhibition, however I covered most of this in history and geography at school and picked up later by experience. I did see a number of people reading the stories of the unsung heroes with obvious emotion, obviously some of these pioneers are still well remembered.
The Bludger is on holiday.

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