I felt like an explorer today. Sure, I did it in 21st century comfort, I had no need for a boat to cross the inland sea and a dirt road helped guide me to the spot I was heading. However I still remember the tales of early Australian explorers especially Burke and Wills as well as Sturt from my days at school. Those explorers wandered around the part of Australia affectionately now known as corner country. In the middle of Australia lies the corners to the states of NSW, SA, Qld, NT and there is another one much further west for WA, NT and SA.
Tibooburra is a long way from just about anywhere. However just this year they finished sealing the main road from Broken Hill to Tibooburra. There is not much along the road, but the Packsaddle roadhouse made for an enjoyable lunch stop. The quality of the food out here has been good. Variety has been somewhat limited, but what I’ve been served has been rather tasty. Arriving into Tibooburra I came across one of three rather cool signs the town has installed on each of the main roads into town. In many ways I felt like Tibooburra has gone to more effort to lure tourists in than Broken Hill had done.
But Tibooburra isn’t the end of the line. There was still anoth 140kms of dirt roads to reach the far Northwest of the state, where the borders of NSW, Qld and SA all meet at Cameron Corner. The locals said the road was fine after heavy rains a few weeks earlier and they were mostly right. The first 50kms out of town was an easy drive that progressively got slower and bumpier. The last 20kms was done at 60 km/h but when I arrived I felt like I’d just discovered something much like an explorer.
I had to first cross into SA where the car parking and access to the marker was possible to take a few pictures. It is nothing remarkable but these kinds of things rarely are. I then had to drive into the “Coronavirus Quarantine Zone” also know as Qld. Fortunately for me, common sense has prevailed here and the Cameron Corner Store is allowed to serve customers but also advise I cannot go any further into Qld. I grabbed some lunch, a drink and a few souvenirs from this remote spot in Australia and headed back into town.
The isolation out here is just amazing, yet as I’ve discovered all over the world, people can live in some of the most remote places in the world. I find visiting these places interesting, but not sure I could live out here. The weather today was pleasant, but the first time I ever heard the name Tibooburra was on the weather when they forecast a 50C day and that was 30 odd years ago.
Gee, times are changing – when I was last at Cameron’s Corner (1976) there was nary a sign of civilization, much less a “corner store”! The dog fence still looks well maintained. Happy motoring Justin.