Aishah and I are in Gatton Queensland this weekend to attend a friend’s wedding. Last time I was here was in 2010 when the Lockyer Valley was inundated by floodwater. Today, the landscape couldn’t appear more different. A prominent agricultural area, the Lockyer Valley is the pre-eminent food bowl of Queensland, but outside the irrigated producing fields, the area is almost as dry as one could possibly imagine.
In the small community of Blenheim, a 20 minute drive from Gatton, we passed a large dam that was almost bone dry. The thought of this dam really stayed with me and on the morning of our departure, we made a special trip back to the area o make a photograph of it before flying out.
The current drought is disastrous, and even though we did see healthy fields of beetroot and other vegetables being harvested, farmers are having to rely on bore water which I was told has a higher salt content that rain water, and thus has an effect on the end product.
There are a lot of stories in this part of the country. I’m going to have to figure out a way to get back.