Updated: Oct 31, 2022
Hughenden, in northwestern Qld is pretty famous for the Dinosaur activity in the area millions of years ago, famous for the early explorers that passed through the area, the grazing land and surrounding NP’s.
But have you heard of their Basalt Byway track ?
Starting on the Northside of town, this 95 km loop back to town is a 4wd track that takes through several different areas, featuring rolling landscapes of basalt walls ( think ancient lava falls and flows - typically formed from the first lava to be blown out of a volcanic eruption ), and creating deep meandering valleys from years of weathering.
The soil in the Vally is highly nutritious and classed in this area as prime grazing land. Spinifex and silver leaf Acacia trees cover much of the area.
The track crosses the mighty Flinders River ( altho pretty dry atm in mid spring ) it's one of Qld’s longest rivers that flows into the Gulf of Carpentaria. In the wet times, there are plenty of water holes to soak in, but today, while waiting for rain, it's a huge dry inland river of sand.
There was plenty of wildlife on the drive with Emu’s, a few Australian Bustard birds, hawks and roos. Passing through several stations, there’s plenty of livestock to dodge and gates to contend with.
Altho I didn’t see any this time of the year, down in the lower area valley areas the Flinders Poppy creates a sea of red flowers in the drier hotter months just before the rains.
The Basalt Byway was one of those unexpected finds while checking out Hughenden. The drive doesn’t take too long as the roads were in pretty good nick with some sealed sections in with the unsealed.