RAIN ON THE PLAIN: Flooded paddocks at David Counsell’s sheep and cattle farm, Dunblane Station, just outside Barcaldine on Sunday. Residents celebrated after storms dumped a record 150mm of rain on the drought-ravaged outback town and its surrounds but Bim Struss (inset) said many CQ graziers still missed out.
RAIN ON THE PLAIN: Flooded paddocks at David Counsell’s sheep and cattle farm, Dunblane Station, just outside Barcaldine on Sunday. Residents celebrated after storms dumped a record 150mm of rain on the drought-ravaged outback town and its surrounds but Bim Struss (inset) said many CQ graziers still missed out. SHARYN CHARITY

A glimmer of hope needed at Barcaldine despite rainfall

EVEN after getting some much-needed rain on his cattle property, Bim Struss gets emotional thinking of his friends who missed out.

After last week's patchy showers, which delivered some record-breaking falls around Barcaldine, the AgForce cattle president is hoping the follow-up rain predicted for today will do some good.

He said while it was hard to talk about the difficult conditions, it was important for people to watch out for each other.

"Friends of ours are just desperate for rain, we're bringing their cattle here to help them out," he said.

"It's hard… it's not because of their incapacity to manage drought, you'd never expect to manage a four-year drought.

"The drought takes a lot out of people, both physically and mentally."

Bim's property, north-west of Roma, went from three years of drought to a record-breaking flood in 2012 which destroyed infrastructure, before falling back into drought the next year.

He said by November 2014 they had almost no feed left and were getting desperate, but were lucky to get a bit more rain in December.

Today a surface level trough is expected to move across western and central Queensland, bringing showers.

That will continue to move closer to the coast tomorrow, with the possibility of rain again into the weekend.

While some areas experienced decent falls last weekend, most notably Barcaldine with 105mm, others got none.

"Sometimes these early breaks, whilst they're great for people that have got the rain, it is devastating for those missing out," Bim said.

"If everybody has got a drought people can become more resilient… then if it starts to rain, those people getting rain are jubilant.

"It's the ones missing out, they're not sharing it anymore… they're in a drought area and it is just devastating to them to know there has been good rain not far away from them."

Bim said it was great to see areas like Alpha, Barcaldine, Cloncurry and Julia Creek see some rain, but more was needed. "From the east ranges of Clermont and Emerald there hasn't been much rain, and there are a lot of dry areas that missed out."



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