The Wandering Tops

The Wandering Tops

31 August, 2014

Middleton, Qld (Hilton Hotel) & The Bilby Way

After having the Throttle body on the Tojo replaced ($$$) at Charter Towers we started heading west in the general direction of Boulia passing through Hughenden again and Winton.

The first overnight stop was at the town of Corfield about 83km North East of Winton.  Corfield was established in the late 19th century when the railway line between Hughenden and Winton was built. This line carried wool at least once a week during the shearing season and the towns population peaked at around 30 to 40 people.  Today the town has a sporting club and the population peaks when the Corfield Cup is run and punters come to experience the real "Corfield Cup".

The Corfield free camp, we finished up with about 10 cmpers this night

At 5 O'Clock the pub (community sporting club) is opened for drinks and a meal

We couldn't pass up on a beer and a $10 meal, "to support the locals"

The next morning we traveled to Winton - on arrival the engine warning light came on again bugger!!!. Being a Saturday the local mechanic "Butch" was open in the morning but couldn't do any repairs.  Fortunately he also had the appropriate instruments to hook up and diagnose the fault. Would recommend "Butch" at Central Motors Winton. The light indicated the same fault which was repaired previously.  During the diagnosis the light went off, so, was it all good again??  We did a test run 30km out of town and back all seemed great so a decision was made to press on rather than stay in Winton until Monday (we are now in Adelaide when writing this post and the light has not come back on!).

We eventually decided to press on towards Boulia with the intention of stopping at the "Hilton Hotel" Middleton about 120km west of Winton.

Middleton Qld, an oasis 

Last section of road and barren country side coming into Middleton

We pulled up at the Hilton Hotel, only camping available ....... no beer!!

Decision was made to cross the road to the Middleton Pub

For a beer on the veranda
 Even though the Middleton Pub had cold beer we decided not to stay at the "Hilton Hotel" camp that night but rather travel towards Hamilton Hotel ruins. This was a good decision, not only did we have less flies when travelling but the well established camping area had flushing toilets and shower - cold & extremely refreshing!
Hamilton Hotel ruins, 77km east of Boulia

Drove through many kms of yellow plains (Mitchell grass) to Boulia then onto Bedourie. Decided not to stay at Bedourie although people we have spoken to since had enjoyed their stay @ the Council Caravan Park.  We headed bush and found a lovely quiet spot on Kings Creek (approx 21kms from Bedourie). This waterhole on Kings Creek was a favourite overnight stop for Afgan cameleers travelling the track between Birdsville and Bedourie.  The natural stone causeway was also an excellent crossing point.

Waddi Trees (Acacia Puece) outside Boulia are a rare and ancient species from the days of dinosaurs - the needle leaf wattle takes over 100 years to reach 9-10 meters - the local Pitta Pitta people use the wood to make many items including weapons.

Our camp on the King River north of Birdsville nestled amoung the trees.
Cacoory Ruins 80km north of Birdsville - one of the first properties Sir Sydney Kidman purchased in 1899

Next stop Birdsville.

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