Weird Stuff #6 – Little Topar, New South Wales

Last Updated on September 15, 2014 by Red Nomad OZ

The 5 hour* drive between Broken Hill and Cobar in western New South Wales generally scores a pretty high ‘tedious’ rating.  Unrelieved except for the township of Wilcannia on the Darling river and a couple of roadhouses, the scenery is mainly dusty, dry and desolate, like this picture taken near Broken Hill about 13 years ago.

Near Silverton, Broken Hill NSW

But the wet spell that’s afflicted most of Australia hasn’t left the outback unscathed.  In the last couple of years, the drive has become downright fascinating with blooming wildflowers, new growth spurts and so much greenery it’s almost difficult to play ‘spot the feral goat’!

Then in October 2010, as we neared Little Topar, the last roadhouse before Broken Hill, we saw a lake where we’d never seen a lake before!

Lake in the desert at Little Topar

 Amazing – especially given our previous experience had been a hot and dusty 43 degrees (C) the year before.  But then, as we again drove past in April 2011, this body of water so far from the sea took a more sinister turn …

What’s in the water at Little Topar??

NOW the Little Toparians have a REAL tourist attraction!!   But is a white pointer this far inland a world first?  Or are the Little Toparians developing an entry into a future ‘101 uses for corrugated iron’ booklet??

YOU decide!!

*Less if you’re speeding!!

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  1. @Betty – don’t you just love the outback??!!
    @Lily – This was one of the wettest seasons in living memory! Sooner or later it will be as dry as the top pic again!!!

  2. OK, so there I was looking at the first photo and imagining aussie cowboys on horseback and then I see the shark in the desert. ha,ha Good one. Really nice photos, Great story and amazing to see so much water in the desert. Extreme from one to the other. Does it stay, or was this a rainy season, which just passed and will eventually dry up again. I love this story.
    Cheers, Lilly

  3. AAAhhh back on line courtesy of our friendly neighbour at the next campsite who charged up my laptop with his inverter!!
    @Manzanita – haha! Probably a bit of ‘magic water’ went into making the shark as well!
    @Magsx2 – and it shows no signs of going away either!!
    @Dianne – the name kind of makes the story, doesn’t it? I’m sure it wouldn’t be as good with a more mainstream name …
    @Windsmoke – I’m sure that’s a euphemism for something …!!
    @Sailor – yeah, just love outback ingenuity!

  4. @River – you tease! I’ll see your story eventually – but just about to run out of battery out here on the road …
    @Joan E – Yes, it’s most unexpected! Will be interesting to see if it’s still there when we go past again shortly!
    @PDP – it’s a great visual! But half the people going past wouldn’t even see it!
    @Alessandra – if it’s not one thing, it’s another downunder here in OZ!
    @Andrew – not Menindee lakes, although they’re now FULL (I am there as we speak). About to be cut off with low/no battery

  5. Can’t wait River. Your photo is kind of like we saw Broken Hill mid winter. A most unusual landscape. They’d be the Menindee? Lakes? So shallow, they evaporate quickly. They were completely dry when we were there.

  6. How amazing! what great photos Red, and the shark is such a good idea, can just imagine people driving past and doing a double take!!!

  7. We wer gobsmacked to find this water too when we were out that way last year. It wasn’t there when we went to Broken Hill and was there by the time we came home a few weeks later.

  8. I remember that road!! We drove it often on our way from…… aha!! see the rest of this story on my blog……

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