Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Outback; Back O'Bourke;

Last check ups...
...and we are...

up...looking down onto suburbia;

still climbing...
cruising comfortably over...

cultivated fields...

and over endless plains...


or fields as far as I can see..

sometimes an isolated homestead;

The Darling snakes its way through the plains...

The Darling River is the third longest river in Australia, measuring 1,472 kilometres (915 mi) from its source in northern New South Wales to its confluence with the Murray River at Wentworth, New South Wales. Including its longest contiguous tributaries it is 2,844 km (1,767 mi) long, making it the longest river system in Australia.[1]



Tumble weed, bleached and liberated by the ever blowing wind, comes to rest in a corner of the airport in Bourke.


Generations of Australians have talked about the “back of Bourke” as the edge of the great unknown. Visitors will be surprised to learn that Bourke itself is a fascinating and exciting inland town with a rich historical tradition. In the 1800s, the poet Henry Lawson wrote: “If you know Bourke, you know Australia”, and there’s still some truth to it.
Once a major late 19th-century river port, Bourke retains much of its heritage. Whether the Darling is at its lowest ebb or brimming with life, Bourke is a fascinating place to spend some time.

Charles Sturt passed through in 1824, followed by Thomas Mitchell in 1835. Mitchell constructed what he called a fort, which was little more than a shed constructed on logs, and called it Fort Bourke. Eventually, the township of Bourke developed about 13 km from this fortification.
For a couple of decades from the early 1860s, Bourke and other towns along the Darling River became important trading centers and transportation hubs.

Bourke is located in North West NSW on the banks of the Darling River. It's approximately 772km from Sydney, 1000km from Melbourne, 930km from Brisbane and 1130km from Adelaide.


This grand building was a former Bank. It is for sale! It would make a splendid home and perhaps a B and B; perhaps if I were "a bit younger"!


No roundabouts; no traffic lights....I wonder why? Can you guess?

Many interesting and beautiful houses from more prosperous times...



No traffic jams...

The Darling River;

Unfortunately, the Darling is in poor health, suffering from overuse of its waters, pollution from pesticide runoff and prolonged drought. In some years it barely flows at all. The river has a high salt content and declining water quality. To quote a Henry Lawson poem:
The skies are brass and the plains are bare,
Death and ruin are everywhere;
And all that is left of the last year's flood
Is a sickly stream on the grey-black mud;
The salt-springs bubble and the quagmires quiver,
And this is the dirge of the Darling River.
—Henry Lawson


Dark clouds...we are marooned in B o'B;

continued!

15 comments:

azplantlady said...

Thank you for sharing part of your trip with us and acquainting us with parts of Australia.

Stephanie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Stephanie said...

Yup that former bank building looks good enough for a B&B :-) Nice photos of Darling River. Thank you for the tour. Oh btw, that little plane ok for you? Usually small planes are not as comfy as the bigger ones...

cherry said...

what fun! I'm flying this morning .. Amazing shots I was going to say no cars but then I saw one! so tell us why no stop lights ? hugs, Cherry

easygardener said...

Has everybody moved away? It looks strangely quiet even for early morning :-)

Laura in Paris said...

Whe did you say you were inviting me over? Thank you for akll the interesting information you shared with us.

sweet bay said...

Great views from the plane. Why is it so quiet there, has everyone left Bourke?

Barbara said...

Herrlich wenn man aus dem Flugzeug, sozusagen aus der Vogelperspektive, so nahe über dem Boden fliegt und viele Details sehen kann. Haben sich die Leute in Bourke aus Angst vor Unwetter in die Häuser geflüchtet oder war es sooo heiss, dass alles wie ausgestorben aussieht? Vielleicht war auch ein Feiertag? Du wirst uns sicher die Lösung verraten, nicht wahr.
Herzliche Grüsse,
Barbara

Prospero said...

Great aerial views. I wish I knew Bourke, and by extension, Australia.

Janie said...

I enjoyed the plane ride and the tour of Bourke. I'm looking forward to the rest of your trip!

Kanak Hagjer said...

Fascinating views from above and below! Those houses are beautiful. The place looks so peaceful and quiet. It's interesting to read about the history of Bourke. And the sky shot is gorgeous!!

Lara said...

simply amazing!

kanishk said...

I was going to say no cars but then I saw one! so tell us why no stop lights Work From Home

Pia K said...

looks amazing! and, once again, very 'flying doctors'. that old bank for sale looks just splendid i agree, one of those things that makes one wish for a parallell universe to pop in and out from now and then...

the situation of the river is heartbreaking of course, one of those endless maulings and abuses of natural resources by mankind. sad.

Titania said...

Thank you for your interest and comments.
Bourke has lost a third of its inhabitants due to the drought. The town is so generously build it is a pleasure to drive a car there, not much traffic! People are very friendly and have time to spin a yarn! A very modern exhibition centre has been build and I think this will attract visitors in the future. Back O'Bourke is still very
much an outback town and of great interest for all.