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!
|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)|
|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)|
|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)|
|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)|
|Bodo's latest project - and Ludwig comes face-to-face with a 3D interpretation of his famous ancestor.
|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)|
|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)|
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