Gladstone? Where the hell is that?
Turns out it is in Queensland, which is the state of Australia which covers the whole north-east of the country. Gladstone is on the coast at the edge of the great barrier reef. Has a few different industries mostly related to processing mining materials, such as an aluminum smelter, coal port, and magnesium processing plant. Basically, it is a blue collar town.
Getting to Gladstone involves getting on a puddle hopper for a flight to the local airport. The airplane was small, loud, and didn't handle turbulence well. Below is a picture of the plane we flew on. The airport at Gladstone did have a paved runway, so at least that was a step up from what it could have been. And the airport's terminal did have room for two of these airplanes, just in case both planes that flew here decided to fly up at the same time…
Stretched my culinary experience while here. Had some more kangaroo, some emu (a big bird, but the meat tasted more like beef), some ostrich (an even bigger bird), and some crocodile (tasted like chewy chicken).
Actually got to see some native Australia critters here (besides what we ate). Was told that there are lots of wallabees (small kangaroos) once you got outside of town, but that they were only out at evening or morning and slept during the day. Didn't see any during the day, which matched what we were told. But I did get out for a run on Friday morning. Chose to run to an area where I was told I might see some wallabees (and the sign above would support that they'd be there). Got there, and saw some bouncing away and got some photos from a distance. Quite cool.
After the run, I talked with the Aussie who was with us. He had said that Wallabees where the small ones. These guys I saw were large to me - almost as tall as I was. I told him that if these were the small guys, I sure didn't want to see the full sized ones. He asked me for a description and it turned out that I actually saw kangaroos, not wallabees. Grey kangaroos, to be specific. They can be as tall as a person. Not the largest in Australia - those are the red kangaroos - but they sure seemed very large to me.
Gladstone is on the edge of the Great Barrier Reef. An hours boat ride from here would get you to some great diving areas. If I had known this before coming here, I would have allowed some more time here to get a few dives in. I guess I will have to finagle a trip back in the future. Until then, I am of to New Zealand tomorrow…Previous Post - Back to Menu - Next Post