KIM – Hello once again!
We are getting ready to depart Longreach and the desk manager has kindly lent me her computer to post my comments as there isn’t any general internet access.
We left Alice springs and flew to Boulia – pop. 300 +/- and ran into the beginnings of the humidity. Nice little town but not the atmosphere of Birdsville. The pub for dinner in about 35 c. and 100% humidity! I think I just sweated out the dinner – fried, fried and fried! One of the townladies had here birthday party that night & it got pretty lively. As we walked out there were 3 crosscountry motorbikes, 3 horses and inumerable SUVs with snorkles parked out front. Course the camera batteries packed it in half an hour before!
We only stayed the one night in Boulia & flew onto Longreach – more humidity. Very pretty town, looks very much like the prairies with lots of tall grasses. We had a lovely river cruise – yes I did say river and dinner on the banks complete with a bush poet and balladeer. It is coming into breeding season for the raptors and there is a large colony of some 40 or 50 birds on the banks – got some fabulous pictures. Some of us got up at 5:30 to walk in the grasslands and saw our Kangaroos finally! We were accompanied by Scotty our poet from the night before and his dogs Tia and Missy. Tia is a strawberry coloured cattle dog and most affectionate ; Missy is a German Shephard and shy. Scotty worked for something like the Ministery of Natural Resources for 40 years and really knew his stuff about the plants, birds and animals on our walk.
The rest of the day was spent touring the Stockmans Museum – really a history of the development of the Outback and fascinating. The Qantas Aviation Museum also fascinating and lunch in another pub which has a 100+ year history of being dismantled and moved by bullock train to new railway sites as the tracks were advanced across the interior. We then had cocktails at the Qantas Museum by their original DC3 to watch the sunset. All very civilised and pukka pukka.
Now we get to the problem – as suspected the weather east of us is not clearing – getting worse if anything and as we leave here we are likely to have to divert elsewhere. Boss Graham is about tearing his hair out coming out with atlernatives and setting up the appropriate flight Plans. Clare our fearless leader is trying to find accommodations at the various possible end points – not that easy for 13 people I think!
Anyway we SHOULD be back in Brisbane on the 21/22 and I’ll be able to post more thoroughly and add pictures finally. Wish us luck!
Longreach – 19-02-08
KIM – Hello once again!