We hit Charters Towers the next day, the town was once said to be one square mile of gold. Once the gold was discovered it wasn’t long before the small town of calico and bark buildings gave way to timber then on to brick. Tents seemed to built into mansions over night. In its hay day Charters Towers was know by the locals as ‘The World’ simply because it had everything a person could want for. By 1890 charters Towers was the largest goldfield in Australia.
It wasn’t all glamour, it was a mining town after all. There were many mining accidents and the poor sanitation condition lead to just as many deaths. The drinks flowed well from the many hotels and brothels (the main street boasted 33 hotels along it). If you weren’t drinking to your success you were drowning your sorrows.
There is an information room in the tourist center, well worth the look. We spent the morning in there reading. Charters Towers still holds on to some of the glamor of old with some of the original building still standing.
We grabbed some lunch and continued on without having a good look at the town. Adrian wasn’t up to much walking so it was hobble to the nearest café then back to the car. Maybe next time we will see more of the town and the surrounding area.
We had been looking for an overnight stop for about 100ks. Everything looked dry and uninviting. We had pulled into two areas for a better look before pulling out again. They either seemed too small or were too close to the road. I was beginning to think we were being too fussy.
We finally found a spot were there was a track leading off and away from the road. It is always a worry when you drive up dirt roads not knowing where it will end. This one came to a dead end quickly. Luckily there was enough clean area for me to back the van up a bit to turn it around. Once turned, we parked up for the night.
This was the first time we had been alone on a site since crossing the Nullarbor. It was really quiet. To prove it we went to bed at the normal time and didn’t wake up until 8.45. What! The day was half over.