Thursday, September 1, 2016

Hughenden and Prairie

Hughenden is the second town we are staying at along the Dinosaur Trail. With a population of around 1200 people it is quite a nice little town. But as with most of these outback towns there are a lot of shops closed down. One example is the Grand Hotel which in its heyday would have been a beautiful building but now it sadly sits derelict. Oh the stories this pub could tell!
Grand Hotel
Hughenden was established back in the 1860's and was originally known as sheep country. For some reason these days there are very few sheep only cattle. As with Richmond, Hughenden sits on the banks of the very dry (at the moment) Flinders River which is Queensland's longest river. I would love to see it flowing in the wet season. The towns water supply as with so many outback towns is drawn by bores from the Great Artesian Basin. While on a drive we came across this whistling bore. It was funny driving along the road in the middle of nowhere and coming across a turnstile. This bore is approx. 500 feet deep.  Why it whistles is said to be a bit of a mystery. But one possible explanation is that a cave in somewhere in the shaft of the bore has created a wind tunnel. 
The Whistling Bore

A turnstile in the middle of nowhere - weird!
The Flinders Discovery Centre is the home to an extensive fossil collect from around the world and the local area. "Hughie" is the star attraction; a life size skeletal replica of a Muttaburrasaurus. 
Hughie
The township also is home to many impressive dinosaur themed sculptures and statues.

Darby the Dinosaur

Mutt - Full Bodied Fibreglass replica of Muttaburrasaurus Dinosaur

I loved how the setting sun glowed on this Windmill
One of our days we decided to head out to the tiny settlement of Prairie to check out the Prairie Hotel. Prairie was originally established as one of the main horse change centres for Cobb and Co. Coaches. It is now a tiny settlement of 50 with a primary school that has on an average eight students. The pub is filled with a huge collection of stock and hat, other historical memorabilia and also some pretty weird stuff. Such as the two female mannequins sitting just inside the front door and the dentist chair being used as one of the bar stools!!
The Prairie Hotel

These mannequins were a bit weird

Didn't want to sit in this chair

Lots of very loved hats