I set off for Tibooburra some 332 KM north from Broken Hill after sunrise to hopefully avoid any road crossing roos. The road consists of a mix of both stretches of sealed and generally good unsealed roads with very little traffic but some construction work underway.
Unfortunately for Tibooburra, I found it’s tourist attractions listed as the arid landscape and the remarkable granite rock outcrops (the town is named after the aboriginal word for heap of boulders). On face value these features are not going to draw huge crowds.
However, Tibooburra is also regarded as the capital of ‘Corner Country’ and this, along with the local town of Milparinka make the region a worthwhile destination for tourists. Corner Country is so named because the juncture of New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia is nearby, known as Cameron Corner. With a bit of careful positioning, its possible to hit a golfball across all three states!
The village itself is a dusty affair like most outback towns. It’s tidy enough but quiet with few people or cars in sight. I call into the local garage come general store and continue to be impressed by the broad range of stock so typical of an outback shop. I then drove into town to see what was on offer. The main features that revealed themselves were the Tibooburra Outback School of the Air, which provides eduction to local children on the premises and through technology located on various homesteads in the region, and the Tibooburra Hotel.
After exploring the village I decide to head back 42 KM south and stop by Milparinka. Milparinka was the base for a nearby gold mine at Mount Browne and has a number of derelict buildings, together with information plaques revealing more of the towns history. I could not resist a detour of 18Km to the Mount Browne goldfields along a basic dirt track. Sadly I was only rewarded with sight of a few remnants from the gold digging days and this did not involve any gold! A lone chap on the hillside to the mining area had a metal detector and may have been more successful than me.
With the lack of gold in my pocket I head back along the Silver Highway to Broken Hill for a good nights sleep before heading off towards the penultimate destination for this whole adventure – Oodnadatta.