We are off to the Birdsville Races.
Held at Birdsville of course which is in far western Queensland, near the border with South Australia and the Northern Territory. About 1600 km west of Brisbane. The races are held on the 31st August and 1st September. The population of Birdsville swells from around 120 to over 6000 for the event. The races are known as the ‘Melbourne Cup of the Outback’. More about the races when we get there!
The week before the Birdsville Races a race meeting is also held at Betoota. It is an uninhabited spot about 140 km short of Birdsville. But the ‘locals’ from far and wide put on a race day and bush dance. We are attending this event as a warm up for the main action in Birdsville. The week after the Birdsville Races, Bedourie to the north of Birdsville hold their race day. These three race events are called the ‘The Simpson Desert Racing Carnival’, in honour of said desert which lies a little further west of the towns. Rumour has it that the same horses run around at these three locations.
As usual we got away from Brisbane a bit late, around 12.30 instead of 8.00am. This delay put us behind schedule somewhat. But we have now arrived in Quilpie, 950 km west of Brisbane. Along the way we stopped for the night in free camps at Warra (near Chinchilla) and then at Morven. We have stopped at Morven before in the excellent free camp at the town’s Recreation Grounds, best hot showers in the west! $5 a night, great spot.
The country is pretty dry and dusty, drought is taking it’s toll.
It is about 20 years since we were last in Quilpie. We came through here on a road trip with two teenage daughters. They were not overly impressed my memory recalls. A lot may not have changed in Quilpie since then, we will find out! Allthego though is going to go for a plunge in the artesian water spar tubs in the campground, don’t recall these being here last time.