As we have travelled around we have been told again and again we should stop at Longreach. The camp was massive. Probably one of the largest ones we have been in.
We were told it is one large dust bowl but you just have to go there. Longreach is the home of the Qantas Museum and the Stockman’s Hall of Fame. We had seen the Stockman’s Hall of Fame advertised again and again. The more it was advertised the more I lost interested in going to it. A little over kill I think but Adrian still wanted to go.
The Longreach bush camp was a large area but being the school holidays we had been warned it would be packed out. We arrived early in the morning. Very early for us, it was about 10am. Good timing as those who were going had gone and those who were coming were only just arriving like us. We found a spot easily and set up camp.
We hadn’t been there very long before the Brolgas arrived. We had been told the birds were happy to walk around the camp. When I first saw them I raced out with my camera. I was amazing with how comfortable they were with the vanners. They seemed so graceful as they walked around almost like ballerinas.
We hadn’t expected them to make themselves quite at home with us. We have a large green dust mat, which we don’t often use as well as a smaller green square we use all the time. The birds took particular interest in both and were happy to come and rest in our shade. Our everyday mat now has peck marks in it. Thinking that they may be hungry I offered them some shredded coconut and when that failed offed them some Chinese cabbage (the only green leafy thing I had in the fridge.) They weren’t interested in either. Yes I do know you shouldn’t feed the wild life.
Our first stop in the town was the information centre. We bought a group ticket, which gave us entry to the Qantas Museum and the Stockman’s Hall of Fame as well as a boat cruise with dinner and entertainment. There are lots of different packages on offer. We did find everything expensive and we did wonder how a family would cope with the cost of everything.
We took a walk around Longreach, stopping at our usual first stop, the information centre. We paid for our bush camp spot. It is only $3 a night or $15 for a week. We weren’t sure how long we would stay for so we paid for the week. The young lady at the centre gave us a sticker to place on our door. Adrian asked when would the ranger come and check? We were told they didn’t. Not enough money to pay him in the kitty for that. Most people don’t pay she told us. Sad. It is only $15 for a week.
The local C.W.A. offers some rest rooms at the back of the tourist centre. You can grab a shower for a donation. Nice idea. Next to the council offices there is a chainsaw carved tree we were told it is must see. It was impressive but I wouldn’t have called it a ‘must see.’
Chickens ran freely around the camp. The joke was that the chickens had been released by the people who ran the local caravan park. Most people took their photos then ignored them and others fed them. Not a good idea. If you feed them they come back. Early in the morning they let everyone know they were awake. It is the last thing you want is to have a rooster sitting on you towbar crowing first thing in the morning. Roasted chicken started to look good after the second morning.
We took a drive out to the Lilly Lagoon. It was advertised as a lovely water hole with Lillies everywhere. There was a bush camp next to the waters edge so people could take in the wonder of the place. It did cross our minds to stop for a day or two after we left Longreach. It wasn’t far from out camp so we went for a look.
Not a drop of water.