Hebel (July 2023)

Thursday 27 July 2023: Brisbane to Lake Broadwater 260 km

After seeing the ABC Back Roads show about the 130 year old Hebel Hotel we decided to celebrate Pam’s 70th birthday there. Hebel is on the NSW border 650 km west of Brisbane and this time we hired a new Hitop Ultra from Apollo for our 5th campervan trip in Queensland. Here is the map.

Lake Broadwater is the only large, naturally-occurring freshwater lake on the Darling Downs
There’s great camping spots between River Red Gums along the Lake
Lake Broadwater in the morning
Three corellas lit by the rising sun
Bark peeling on a gum tree
A pair of galahs watch us walk by

Friday 28 July 2023: Lake Broadwater to Nindigully 330 km

This was our 4th night we’d camped at the Nindigully Pub, established in 1864 and the oldest in Queensland
We’ve had the 1.5 kg Gully Steak sandwich twice before (not this time though, we went for a modest Classic Beef Burger)

Saturday 29 July 2023: Nindigully to Hebel via St George 220 km

Pam wanted to do the St George parkrun on her 70th birthday
It’s a very nice parkrun path along the Balonne River
The warning sign at Dirranbandi is not correct, it’s only 65 km to Hebel!
Hebel Hotel, originally a Cobb & Co stopover, opened in 1894
The pub was closed for a year during COVID depriving Hebel’s 16 residents and 62 people living in the district of their meeting place until 3rd generation local grazier Frank Deshon bought both the hotel and the store and reopened the pub
As the day cools and the sun sets, locals gather outside the pub
Hebel General Store, established in 1897 as a dance hall
You get your drinks at the pub and walk across the wide road to the General Store for dinner
Good old fashioned rissoles with mash and veggies
Hebel Post Office opened in 1889 and closed in 1989, the General Store handles the mail now
Emus on the Hebel Golf Course green
Better not bring rabbits into Queensland!

Sunday 30 July 2023: Hebel to Collarenebri 240 km

John Murray Art Gallery in Lightning Ridge – quirky bird and animal characters with an outback theme
Stanley the Emu, 18 meters high, was crafted by local artist John Murray using old VW Beetle bonnets and doors, placed atop steel girders
Walgett Water Tower Mural features Jimmy Little, a celebrated Australian Aboriginal musician – Artists: Jenny McCracken & Frank Wright (2020)
Collarenebri Aboriginal Cemetery – decoration of the graves is highly unusual, generally adorned with shattered glass and objects relevant to the lives and interests of the persons remembered there

Monday 31 July 2023: Collarenebri to Warialda 240 km

Bridge over the Barwon River at Collarenebri
Aboriginal fish trap near Collarenebri is still used
Carved trees on Collymongle station, cut down in the 1940s
These trees, some 800 years old, are of immense cultural significance the local people who are trying to have them returned to country from museums (there’s one in Switzerland)
Bank Art Museum Moree housed in a beautiful 1911 Federation era bank building, one of 14 early 20th century heritage buildings in Moree
We camped at Cranky Rock Nature Reserve about 8km East of Warialda
Cranky Rock, named for an old “Cranky Chinaman” who jumped to his death from the rock after being accused of some wrong doing
Superb fairywren on the pool rocks
Cranky Rock lookout
From the lookout in the morning

Tuesday 01 August 2023: Warialda to Foxbar Falls 240 km

Warialda Post Office opened in 1848 making it one of the oldest in Australia – the present building from 1880
Warialda was one of the earliest towns settled west of the Great Dividing Range with European settlement around 1837
Warialda Court House, 1882
Yetman Post Office and Shop – Artist: John Murray (2020)
Texas Water Tank: “Turning Things Around” – Artists: Brightsiders (2021)
Foxbar Falls camping
Lake Edith, Foxbar Falls
Great white heron catches a yabbie in the Lake
Lamb Roast with veggies in the camp oven
Kookaburra has his eye on our roast
Full moon rising reflected in Lake Edith, Foxbar Falls

Wednesday 02 August 2023: Foxbar Falls to Brisbane 240 km

Can’t go past Stanthorpe without getting a Suttons Apple Pie