BlogThe Dinosaurs of Outback Queensland

Did the Dinosaurs stampede at Lark Quarry? Or did they take the train?

It’s hard to imagine Outback Queensland as an inland sea surrounded by lush steamy forests of Cycads, Ferns and oversized Lichens. It’s equally hard to imagine giant lumbering dinosaurs herding across the landscape with vicious carnivorous Theropods hot on their heels and seas teaming with strange primitive sharks and monstrous Kronosaurs, 10-metre long killers, unique to the region.

The ancient history of Queensland is even more surreal as you wander the chiselled dry, dusty weather worn landscape that greets you today.

We are very fortunate to have an incredible moment in time preserved at Lark Quarry, Queensland. Around 95 million years ago, during the Cretaceous period, a large dinosaur ran through a flock of 180 bird-sized carnivorous Theropods and herbivorous Ornithopods. The smaller dinosaurs fled the larger dinosaur, leaving thousands of footprints impressed on the Earth’s muddy surface. Over time the footprints filled with sand and became preserved beneath a lake. As the lake dried up, the footprints turned to rock.

The footprints remained, covered by sediment in the now dry landscape, until the 1960s, when a man named Glen Seymour came across what he believed were fossilised bird tracks while searching for opals. The real makers of the tracks were not confirmed as dinosaurs until scientists studied them in 1971. The footprints have been completely uncovered and are now enclosed in the Dinosaur Stampede National Monument.

Despite only their footprints remaining, scientists have garnered a surprising amount of information about the dinosaurs involved in the stampede. The small Theropods would have been fast-running, chicken-sized carnivores called Skartopus who ate insects, frogs and reptiles. The herbivorous Ornithopod would have been a Wintonopus, about the size of an emu. The larger dinosaur that caused the skirmish left behind huge 50cm footprints which gave scientists a good indication of its size – about eight metres long.

Our special themed adventure from Brisbane to the Dinosaur country in the heart of the state and back to the Coral Coast at Townsville offers a variety of experiences, combining highlights from our other Queensland tours with new destinations and a swag of interesting experiences. From the striking new museums such as the wonderful ‘Age of Dinosaurs’ at Winton and the Lark Quarry, the largest dinosaur run in the world, to the story of the Great Barrier Reef and Magnetic Island and the rural and mining heritage of places like Longreach, Winton and Charters Towers.

While you’ll be entranced by the unique palaeontology you will also delight in the variety to be had on this special adventure by classic overnight sleeper train, to Australia’s inland sea and crystal coast.

A Railway Adventures tour is more than just a holiday, it is a unique way to experience the world. By train you are completely immersed in culture and adventure, exploring the most scenic corners of the world in the comfort of a luxury train. Whether you are an experienced traveller or just beginning to explore this wonderful world, Railway Adventures has something for everyone. Transform your holiday into the most unforgettable adventure of a lifetime with Railway Adventures.

Dinosaur Country – An Outback, rail, heritage and palaeontology adventure.

25 May – 05 June 2021

 Call 1300 800 977 now for a brochure, more information or to reserve your place.

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Scott McGregor

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