to Charters Towers
About 250 km north of Mackay,
Bowen is just off the Bruce Highway. We briefly dropped in to visit Flagstaff
Hill Lookout and Interpretive Centre, which overlooks the coast and provides
sweeping views out to Gloucester Island. The road up to the lookout was
steep and caravans were not allowed so Rod and I had to hoof it to the
top...invigourating exercise that we needed after a day on the road.
We decided to head out of Bowen,
inland again...about 70 km towards the Collinsville coal mine, where we
turned off the main road and ventured about 20 km down the Strathalbyn
Road (rough dirt) where we camped for the night near a dry river bed...not
another sole to be seen anywhere....especially with a caravan in tow.
Along the way we saw a dingo, a feral pig and lots of 'bos indicus'cattle
with floppy drooping ears.
morning we backtracked and continued about 30 km along the Colinsville
road before branching off to take the scenic route to the Burdekin Falls
Dam (Lake Dalrymple)....rough dirt road of about 120km, with corrugations
by the score...and floodways and dips at every corner. The trip took the
best part of a full day to negotiate but was fun.
The country was fairly hilly
and savannah-like, but its remoteness was a welcome respite from the highway
clogged with fellow nomads.
Quite a few of the stations
we drove through had signs on their gates prohibiting shooting, camping
etc but this one, just west of Bowen River Hotel, amused us the most.