AT THE POINT
DRAFT VERSION - More information to come
Location: Degree Confluence 23S 142E is deep in western Queensland, on the working property, 'Old Cork', after which the degree square is named. The closest settlement is Middleton, approximately 85 km to the north-west. While the confluence itself is unmarked, a GPS was used to find the exact location (accurate to within a few metres). There is no direct access to the point, and quad bikes were used for the last 4 km across country. The site was visited in the late afternoon by a party of RGSQ members travelling in four 4WD vehicles from Brisbane in June 2009.
Landscape: The view from the degree confluence shows flat terrain, with an elevation of approximately 140-145 m. A cleared shotline runs through the woodland 10 m to the north. Surface material is a combination of grass, with both sandy and clayey soil. The confluence is near the edge of a gidgee woodland, with trees to a height of 3-4 m. Cattle of the 'Old Cork' property were seen in paddocks near the site, along with kangaroos and spiders.
The geology of much of the surrounding country is Cainozoic Tertiary sandstone, claystone and limestone, except along nearby eroded creeks, which are instead characterised by Cainozoic Quaternary alluvium. The closest of these creeks to the confluence is Kell's Creek, approximately 3.3 km to the north, which soon joins the Diamantina River. Several bores are also found in nearby.
Point Photos By: Paul Feeney, Mary Comer
Point Information By: Paul Feeney, Jo Grant, Mary Nowill
IN THE DEGREE SQUARE
Climate: The closest weather station is at the Winton Post Office, which is approximately 125 km to the north-east of the degree confluence, and has an elevation of 182 m.
The highest temperature recorded was 46.8°C in December 2006, and the lowest was -1.7°C in both June 1971 and July 1968. The greatest rainfall recorded in a year was 1 171.1 mm in 2000, and the least was 52.6 mm just two years later in 2002. These and other climate statistics for Winton can be found at: Australian Bureau of Meteorology, http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/averages/tables/cw_037051_All.shtml.
Extremes of Nature: The area experiences extreme heat throughout much of the year, with Winton having an average of 138 days annually that have maximum temperatures equal to or over 35°C. The hottest months are November to March, all of which experience on average approximately 20 days or more with temperatures equal to or over 35°C. With a significantly low average rainfall and only 40 days a year with any rain, very dry conditions also typically prevail in the area.
Today: The population of this degree square at the 2011 national Census was probably less than 50.
Information: Ken Granger
Edited by: Hayley Freemantle
Geoscience Australia, NATMAP Raster
Geoscience Australia, Scanned 250 K Geology Maps