20-Apr-2004 -- This confluence, our first in our home state of New South Wales, is located just south of the Queensland border, as surveyed in the 1860s. The actual state border falls somewhere between the 29th parallel and the “Dingo (native Australian dog) Proof Fence”, (at 5,530km, the world’s longest fence) on a 90 metre strip of no-man's land. It was only later that we had found out that it’s no longer permissible to drive along the fence due to the supposedly high amount of vehicular accidents on the red sandy dunes.
The point is easy enough to get to, however, just quite a long way from any major (or even minor) towns. The closest is Hungerford, population about 30, right on the New South Wales / Queensland border, made famous by the nineteenth century Australian poet and writer, Henry Lawson. He wrote of the hardships of the place during a terrible drought and of the fence that divides the town right down the middle. That fence remains today as part of the Dingo Proof Fence, and travellers have to open a big metal gate to travel from one side of the town to the other. To get to this confluence point we had to open a few public gates and some private ones located on sheep and cattle properties. We didn’t see much livestock as this drought of the twenty-first century is proving to be as devastating as that one in the late nineteenth century.
The land is flat red sandy soil. Vegetation is mostly mulga (short native trees well adapted to the arid environment). The temperature was was a mild but very dry 26° (April is the middle of autumn / fall in Australia) but can reach 45° in summer. Wildlife would include lizards, dingos (hopefully not on both sides of the fence!), wedge tailed eagles, emus, kangaroos (both the big reds and smaller greys), bilbies (a very cute but rare rabbit looking marsupial), camels (introduced by Afghan workers in the 1860s) and many types of parrots including Galahs and Major Mitchell Cockatoos.
With the trusty Garmin GPS it took us just a few minutes walk from the car to locate this confluence, one of the last to be claimed on New South Wales soil.