Why would you go to Longreach?

Well, if you are not into dinosaurs or the history of Qantas or the origins of Waltzing Matilda, you may want to travel elsewhere for your short break.

Longreach is located on the Tropic of Capricon, 700km from the coast and is west of Rockhampton. It is described as being in Central, Western Queensland.

We are definitely inspired by the trip so far. Just today we were able to visit the Australian Stockman’s Outback Hall of Fame and the unique Qantas Founders Museum both situated close to the airport. Lunch was at the Cattlemen’s Grill at the Outback Hall of Fame, a restaurant open to the cool breeze on three sides with a fan above with blades that could come from a helicopter. A brilliantly designed venue for its environment. Locals use it for weddings then cross to the Qantas Founders Museum to have their photos taken on the wing of a Boeing 747 Jumbo jet.

The Australian Stockman’s Outback Hall of Fame is a grand design in the middle of nowhere with authentic exhibits showing how hard life was in the Queensland outback until recently, in fact probably until Qantas removed isolation as a problem by bringing in cheap air travel. So it is good to move from the Hall of Fame to the Qantas Museum where you learn that two ex WW1 fighter pilots got together and decided that outback Queensland needed and was ripe for the establishment of an airline and would soon realise its global potential. Qantas even started building its own aircraft in Longreach! How people actually dared go up in the aircraft at the time, I’ll never know. Both Museums are absolutely priceless. It’s just a shame that they are not situated in Sydney so more people could be inspired by them.

Of course they offer good employment to the people of Longreach and rightly so. They clearly need it. Longreach has come back from its heyday in the 1950’s when wool was bringing  “one pound per pound” and all the graziers drove Mercs. Mind you, good times may be returning because this is the third year water in the Channel Country has filled Lake Eyre about 600-700kms further south.  We have a booking to go on a short dinner cruise tomorrow night on the Thomson Creek which flows into the Cooper Creek which itself runs directly into Lake Eyre.

To be continued…

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