Darwin or bust - a short drive up the road travel blog

Kuramba Point sunset

Our accommodation at Karumba Point

Enjoying a morning cuppa

Purple Pub at Normanton

Another grand old pub at Normanton

Crossing on a one lane bridge and Grae while driving manages to...

A four wagon road train

a three wagon road train

Mt Isa at dusk from the city lookout

This car is even older than ours!


Leaving the coast we headed back through Normanton where we refuelled at possibly one of the last remaining garages where the staff fill your tank for you. Petrol was $1.58 a litre and the cheapest in town.

We spent a night at Cloncurry and got up early to catch the longest blood moon of the century, only it was cloudy and a bit hit and miss. The explorers Burke and Wills came through these parts so we re-aquainted ourselves with their tragic tale of discovery. On a more positive note the Royal Flying Doctor Service was founded here and Dame Mary Gilmore (on our $10 note) also spent some time here. For anyone who's interested, Bob Katter was born in Cloncurry.

Mt Isa only exists because of the discovery of mineral deposits found in the area. The three Mt Isa mine stacks dominate the city of 22000 inhabitants. Due to the lead production in the city, Mount Isa has one of the most intensive air quality monitoring systems in Australia. We are only spending one night and trying not to breath in too deeply, just in case.

The view from the city lookout at sunset is very pretty with the mine and stacks lighting up. From the lookout we also had great overhead views of the road trains and boy are they long. While driving on the one lane outback roads we have pulled over many times onto the dirt shoulder to allow them to continue on, they certainly overshadow our little car.



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