Townsville to Hughenden

Hughenden Travel Blog

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Another Darryl Smith and his animals
As we left Townsville to start our travel toward the centre of Australia, Trish read out a few interesting facts written by Lonely Planet, first, we were likely to encounter a few Kangaroos and Emus on this part of our trip (not), and that this highway, if described as scenic would have to be the most boring ever (not). The only kangaroos we saw were dead ones and as for scenery, I found it bearable and even interesting as the scenery does change. We passed through patches consisting of the reddest dirt you’ve ever seen, then patches with almost pure white sand like dirt, then there were eucalypt forests and even part of the Great Dividing Range, through a national park called White Mountains National Park. To me it passed as interesting so far, so tomorrow we’ll continue along this highway and see what else I can find that is not boring.
Burdekin River

We stopped about 2 hours into the trip at a small place called Balfes Creek (population about 2), which had a pub/service station/motel all in one. They had a couple of animals out the back which Reagan took a liking too instantly, she even got to pat them as the owner, John Smith (the most common English name known), fed them. Amongst these animals were a horse, cow, goat, camel and an ostrich. After this we sat down for a cold drink and John asked where we were from, a hard question for our family especially as we don’t have a home at present. I explained the Trish was from Holland etc and I was from Rockhampton, but originally from Moranbah. Coincidently John had also lived in Moranbah and asked who my Dad was, I said, Darrell Smith, he said… “oh Darrell Smith the Electrician, you look like him, but with more hair.

Dinosaur
” Small world isn’t it.

Another thing which we encountered was the infamous Australian Road Train, now in a way you have to see one of these things to appreciate it. Essentially it is a semi-trailer hauling goods or livestock, but it has not one trailer but three, so they would be about 50 metres long. Today as one of these came toward me on a narrow stretch of road, I could see the rear trailer wander onto the dusty embankment of the side of the road as the driver steered close to the edge of the road to allow me to pass by him. I though it wise at this stage to slow my car and drive with two wheels off the bitumen to allow this truck the adequate room I felt necessary for my family to survive this encounter. Just another hazard of driving in outback Australia.

Royal Hotel Resort... looks can be deceiving

Hughenden itself was small, dry and hot. The population is 1500 and there must be about 5 pubs. The ‘Resort’ we stayed at was motel rooms out the back of a pub with nice palm tree shrubbery surrounds. The pool resembled something from the deep Amazon, with green slimy ‘stuff’ floating and lining the sides. Reagan was very keen on having a swim, but it didn’t take too much discouragement once I showed her what the green stuff was. Everything was expensive but this was to be imagined. Tomorrow we travel to Mt Isa on one of our longest trips of the journey, just over 500 kilometres, I hope the kids behave and I hope the roads stay reasonable.

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Another Darryl Smith and his anima…
Another Darryl Smith and his anim…
Burdekin River
Burdekin River
Dinosaur
Dinosaur
Royal Hotel Resort... looks can be…
Royal Hotel Resort... looks can b…
Osterich
Osterich
Cattle Train
Cattle Train
White mountain
White mountain
Windmill
Windmill
Hughenden
photo by: Biedjee