places of residence at Lightning Ridge

A few of the dwellings and living quarters around Lightning Ridge.

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escape to Lightning Ridge

Lightning Ridge is in north western New South Wales, around 740kms from Sydney.  Its population is anyone’s guess, but perhaps around 2600.

It is a hot dry and dusty town in the summer and cooler, but still dusty in the winter.  It is a place of character, contrast and mystiqiue.  Black opals and the prospect of richness from the ground has lured many to the ‘Ridge over the years.

They even have their ‘how to vote’ in the current federal election signage out in the opal fields.

Dwellings are varied as is the transport.  The town boasts though one of the best aquatic centres any city would be proud of.  Just a  part of the character and contradiction of this town.

This is the first in several blogs on Lightning Ridge.  You certainly see another side of Australian life at the ‘Ridge.

30 minutes at Mylestom

In just thirty minutes on a mid winter July morning the sunrise and the morning light was a treat for the photographer.  The warm ocean and the cold air conjured up a mystical fog.  The light danced and weaved its way through the 30 minutes I strolled along Mylestom Beach.

Mylestom is a tiny hamlet on the North Coast of New South Wales Australia.  It rests just on the edge of a great expanse of beautiful pristine Pacific Ocean beach.

the Hebel Hotel

The Hebel Hotel exudes the essence of outback Australia.  The hotel is full of character and humour.  As can be seen from the images it is also home to some talented artists.

You may well ask, where the hell is the Hebel Hotel?

In Hebel of course!  Well, it is just inside the Queensland border from New South Wales by 4 kilometres.  However, it is 660kms from Brisbane (8 hours of driving) and 800kms from Sydney (9+ hours of driving).  It is a hamlet of around 150 people and it proudly boasts this wonderful hotel.

The hotel was built in 1894 and was a part of the Cobb & Co staging network. The town was thought to be named after a German immigrant.

We were too early to have a beer, but one can only imagine on a hot, dry and dusty day the beer here would always taste sensational.  

a visit to Begonia

Begonia is a 14000 acre beef producing property on the Maranoa River in south western Queensland.  It is around 75 kilometres from St George on the road to Mitchell. Begonia was one of the earliest properties settled in the area with the historic and gracious homestead being over 100 years old.

It is a tough and sometimes cruel country out there.  The landscape, climate and the Maranoa can be your friend or your foe.

After 10 long years of drought, the rains filled the Maranoa to its highest recorded level on the property in 2012. The historic Begonia Homestead was  inundated for the first time in its 100 years.  Eighteen months on, there are just a few pools of water remaining in the Maranoa and rain is desperately needed.  Such are challenges of living and farming in the south west of Queensland.

It is also a beautiful country.  The skies are big at Begonia with bold bright sunrises and sunsets.  Wildlife is active by day and night. The 800 or so cattle (and wild goats too) are about but are spread far and wide across the 14000 acres.

Take a long late afternoon walk, build a campfire or go bird watching by the Maranoa. You will come away rested after breathing in fresh air and exploring a working farm dappled with relics of the past.

a home in the hills

There is such beauty in the Sunshine Coast hinterland with room to move and all for $40 a week!

purple velvet in winter

The richness of pansy colour makes a winter garden glow._MG_1102

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Natalie Breuer

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