Which river is the longest in Australia?
Which river is the longest in Australia?
- h9904343Lv 61 decade agoFavorite Answer
The Darling River is the longest river in Australia, flowing 2,739km from northern New South Wales to its confluence with the Murray River at Wentworth, New South Wales. (Some geographers treat the Darling and the lower Murray as a single river, 3,000km long. This is largely a matter of semantics). Officially the Darling begins near Bourke at the confluence of the Culgoa and Barwon rivers, streams which rise in the ranges of southern Queensland. The whole Murray-Darling river system, one of the largest in the world, drains all of New South Wales west of the Great Dividing Range, much of northern Victoria and southern Queensland and parts of South Australia.Source(s): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darling_River
- 1 decade ago
THE DARLING — which is either a muddy gutter or a second Mississippi — is about six times as long as the distance, in a straight line, from its head to its mouth. The state of the river is vaguely but generally understood to depend on some distant and foreign phenomena to which bushmen refer in an off-hand tone of voice as “the Queenslan’ rains”, which seem to be held responsible, in a general way, for most of the out-back trouble.
It takes less than a year to go up stream by boat to Walgett or Bourke in a dry season; but after the first three months the passengers generally go ashore and walk. They get sick of being stuck in the same sort of place, in the same old way; they grow weary of seeing the same old “whaler” drop his swag on the bank opposite whenever the boat ties up for wood; they get tired of lending him tobacco, and listening to his ideas, which are limited in number and narrow in conception.
The Darling River in Flood at Bourke
The Murray-Darling River system has been of extreme importance to Aboriginal people through almost the entire period of their habitation of Australia. There are at least 10,000 known Aboriginal sites in the Basin, from all phases of their occupation, with the rivers and flood plains being of particular importance. Many are of great scientific value and many are of considerable significance to Aboriginal peoples as symbols of the richness and antiquity of their culture (Jones 1988).
The rivers were of great importance to the Aboriginal peoples, especially as sources of food, as illustrated by the fish traps of the Ngemba in the Barwon River at Brewarrina. The Gunderbooka Range, south of Bourke, contains a large number of sites, including rock art over 5,000 years old, of great significance to the Ngemba people, the traditional owners.
The Murray-Darling Basin contains much of importance in Australia's European heritage, from the earliest days of European exploration to the present. As with the Aboriginal peoples, the rivers played an important part in the exploration and settlement. Hume and Hovell made the first European sightings of the Murray in 1824 and the Darling in 1829. The use of the rivers for transportation made a major contribution to the settlement of the Basin and the development of the pastoral industry, especially from the 1850s. Paddle steamers reached as far as Albury in 1855, Gundagai in 1858, and Walgett in 1861. The boats supplied the towns and stations with their needs and carried wool and other products to markets. When Mungindi, on the Queensland border, was reached in 1893, 6,700 kilometres of the Murray-Darling river system had been navigated. As indicated below, such places as Goolwa, Morgan, Echuca and Bourke were major river ports, many features of which remain, as well as shipwrecks and other sites along the rivers.
The rivers had quickly become busy, and by the mid 1850s numerous paddle-steamers were carrying supplies, stores and passengers inland and returning to port laden with wool. River front empires grew at phenomenal speed; some were 2-3 million acres, shearing millions of sheep. The river port of Bourke was shipping world record amounts of wool away to Europe.
The river trade expanded and by 1870 about 100 steamers and barges worked between ports, the majority of which had been made locally at riverside towns. Legends were made along the Darling. Literary myths were created by Henry Lawson, Will Ogilvie and Breaker Morant and today Bourke has park tributes to these Australian giants.
Kidman, Tyson and McCaughey created pastoral kingdoms of unparalled proportions. It took men and women of great technical skill to harness the river and the land and bring prosperity to the region.Source(s): http://www.outbackonline.net/RiverLife.htm