03-Mar-2002 -- When Greg and I first heard about the Degree Confluence Project and that it had been going for a while we figured that all the “easy” ones close to us would have gone and that the rest would be difficult to get at. Greg checked the maps and we were surprised to find an unclaimed Confluence approximately four hours drive from home. There was a road less than 2 KM from the confluence and the country looked pretty flat when we checked the map – see picture # 2. Based on this homework we decided to make an attempt on Sunday 3 March.
We set off from Brisbane at 9.00AM and had planned a route via Kingaroy, Durong, and Allies Creek State Forest. A total distance of 370KM. We had morning tea at Kingaroy and from there went West to Durong and noted that we left farming country and were heading into cattle country. At approx 1.00PM we left the bitumen at the State Forest border and headed off on the dirt tracks. At this stage the Confluence was exactly 30 KM away as the crow flies. We could have stayed on the bitumen for longer but we knew that the State Forest route would be more interesting. Besides a lot of Ironbark trees we also noticed how much water was on the side of the road and also the amount of debris. We had been driving through showers all morning and we knew that it had been raining in the days before but did not realise how much rain.
Just before 2.00PM we left the State Forest and drove into the Monogorilby district which is also cattle grazing country. We parked the car at 2.00PM and got out the cameras and GPS gear and packed a light lunch for a celebration at the “spot”. The fence crossing was a bit dramatic, as we had noticed that it was bordered with an electric fence to keep the cattle in and neither of us wanted to be the one that confirmed that it was indeed active! – see picture # 3. From here we were 1.8 KM from our target and we headed off into medium density timber country. After a relatively easy (except for the odd spider’s web in the face – see picture #4) 40 minute walk we reached the spot and both GPSs confirmed that we had arrived at 26° South 151° East. Besides a few birds our only witness was a lone Eastern Grey Kangaroo which bolted before we could get a photograph. We took a few photos, had our lunch and headed back towards the car which we reached at about 2.00PM.
It had been an enjoyable day and we had been successful but only because we had planned the trip well and had completed a fair amount of preparation work. We are already planning Confluence 2 and this one looks a lot more difficult!!