STRIP 07 Geographical WEB

An extended visit to properties in the Brisbane Valley offered a truly memorable opportunity to tread - almost literally - in the footsteps of the 19th Century explorer, across lands he walked 170 years before.

The  Woodford monuments to Leichhardt and his hosts, the Archer brothers, at Durundur station had been officially unveiled in Bicentenary Year 2013, and the images on this website suddenly became very real indeed. That was but a foretaste of the experience which awaited at Bodo and Robyn Muche's property, above the banks of Emu Creek.

Beneath the shadows cast by both Mount Glenhowden and the steps of his ancestor, with the kookaburras having a final evening laugh in the twilight, our guest spoke by telephone to delegates at the 9th Leichhardt Conference in Cottbus, Germany, on the exact day of his great-great-grand-uncle's birthday.

A visit to nearby property Cressbrook Station - still in the same family hands as it was in the 1840s - enabled our guest to see the very rooms in which his forebear stayed. You would surely agree it doesn't get much better than that!

1.1.1a THUMB MT-6010 Woodford-Cruice-Park-memorials 2310   1.1.2a THUMB MT-6008 Woodford Cruice-Park-view-Archer Hstead 2310
The Durundur monument in Cruice Park at Woodford; the Leichhardt memorial plaque is on the inside of the portal and block walls. (Foto: MT)   The 'doorway' stands in direct line-of-sight to the distant hoop pine beyond the treeline, which stands today on the site of Durundur homestead. (Foto: MT)
1.2.1a THUMB-SQUARE MT-6011 Woodford Cruice-Park-LL 2310   1.2.2a THUMB-SQUARE MT-6012 Woodford Cruice-Park-gum 2310
The 21st Century Ludwig pauses in the 'Durundur doorway'  to reflect on his ancestor's extensive travels across this very land. (Foto: MT)     This magnificent gum tree, too tall and vast to capture in a single image, was perhaps standing as a sapling when the original Leichhardt passed by. (Foto: MT)
1.3.1a THUMB MT-6026 BNE-Valley-scenery-GHRd-north   1.3.2a THUMB MT-6028 BNE-Valley-Mt-Glenhowden-west
Dry rolling countryside in the upper Brisbane Valley has less timber cover but is otherwise largely unchanged from the 1840s. (Foto: MT)   Mt Glenhowden and surrounding hills, exactly as Leichhardt would have seen them in 1843, with Emu Creek nestled behind the nearer ridge. (Foto: MT)
1.4.1a THUMB RM-6534 BM-LL-ANU-map-review   1.4.2a THUMB RM-6511 LL-BM-MT-archives--review
Sculptor Bodo Muche (L) and Ludwig reviewing details of the ANU's magnificent 1844-45 expedition map. (Foto: Robyn Muche)   Bodo shows Ludwig and Matt Tesch a part of his extensive collection of Leichhardt research materials over a dust-cleansing Radeberger. (Foto: MT)
1.5.1a THUMB MT-6020 BM-2-LLs   1.5.2a THUMB RM-6522 MT-LL-BM Dawson-water-handover 2310
Bodo's latest project - and Ludwig comes face-to-face with a 3D interpretation of his famous ancestor.
(Foto: MT)
  Matt Tesch about to return to Brisbane with the Dawson River water collected by Bodo and Robyn for the Qantas 737 naming. (Foto: Robyn Muche)
1.6.1a THUMB RM-hist BM-LL-macquette   1.6.2a THUMB RM-6581 LL-real-pose-aka-maquette
Bodo's 30cm-high bronze 'maquette' of Ludwig Leichhardt, which he hopes to have cast as a larger-than-life statue. (Foto: Robyn Muche)   Little did Bodo think that his artistic interpretation would one day be matched in such a realistic way!(Foto: Robyn Muche)

STRIP 07 Geographical WEB

2.1.1a THUMB RM-6569 LL-Emu-Creek   2.1.2a THUMB LL-DSCN0248 MtGlenhowden-bushscape
A late afternoon walk by Ludwig to the banks of Emu Creek, very much as his ancestor would have done
170 years before. (Foto: Robyn Muche)
  View from the summit of Mount Glenhowden across the rolling ridges to the southwest - country almost unchanged in 170 years. (Foto: Robyn Muche)
2.2.1a THUMB RM-6547 LL-bushman   2.2.2a THUMB RM-6559 LL-flora-MtGH
The 21st Century Leichhardt on the summit of Mount Glenhowden appears as at home in the bush as his illustrious forebear. (Foto: Robyn Muche)  

If we had displayed this image in black-and-white, the uncanny resemblance would have undoubtedly caused a second double-take! (Foto: Robyn Muche)

2.3.1a THUMB RM-6662 CressB-CMcC LL-ancestors-doorway   2.3.2a THUMB RM-6661 CresB-main-building
Two descendants of the original families meet at Cressbrook: Christopher McConnel (R) explains that Ludwig stands where his ancestor did. (Foto: RM)
  Solar panels notwithstanding (and surely the original Leichhardt would approve!) Cressbrook's homestead is little changed from 1843. (Foto: Robyn Muche)
2.4.1a THUMB RM-6666 CressB view-out-verandah   2.4.2a THUMB RM-6672 CressB-view-to-LL-hills
A gathering of Leichhardt aficionados at Cressbrook, as pages from the original journal are used to orientate the view from the verandah. (Foto: Robyn Muche)   Landscape around Cressbrook looks much as it did 170 years ago, and which was sketched by Leichhardt in his journals. (Foto: Robyn Muche)
2.5.1a THUMB-SQUARE RM-6619 CressB view-out-LLs-accomm-door   2.5.2a THUMB-SQUARE RM-6728 CressB Orig McConnels Copyright
The photographer's view is from the room where the 19th Century Leichhardt stayed, with the history spilling out onto the grass. (Foto: Robyn Muche)   Portraits of the original McConnels. David and Mary, who hosted the explorer Ludwig during his travels in the 1840s. (Foto: Cressbrook)
2.6.1a THUMB RM-6724 Orig-homestead-illn Copyright   2.6.2a THUMB RM-6754 Cressbrook LL-CMcC
Illustration of Cressbrook homestead as Leichhardt would have known it during his stay in the 19th Century. (Foto: Cressbrook)   Ludwig with Christopher McConnel, and the buildings of Cressbrook Station in the background. 
(Foto: Robyn Muche)

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