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Weekend Magazine – Carnarvon Gorge and the Fighting Highlanders (1982)


The Carnarvon Gorge in northern Queensland has been gazetted as a national park since 1932 but this is the first time a route has been opened up so that tourists can appreciate its extraordinary beauty at first hand. The second half of the program is devoted to an equally pristine wilderness in Tasmania, where expert fly fishermen make their way through the terrain to experience the fishing trip of a lifetime.

Curator’s notes

Weekend Magazine was one of the first programs on television to teach people about the environment and how it should be cherished and protected. The Carnarvon Gorge was just being opened up to tourists when this program was produced, while the wilds of Tasmania were still unknown to all but a select few. By showing city Australians some of the beauty spots out there in outback Australia, the program contributed enormously to a greater understanding of our own country. A Big Country, with its half-hour documentaries, was another way that the ABC bridged the gap between the city and the bush. It’s interesting to note that a decade after the demise of Weekend Magazine, the ABC’s news and current affairs department began another documentary series, Australian Story. Executive producer Deb Flemming was one of the journalists who contributed to Weekend Magazine, and Australian Story programs have regularly won awards for the quality of their stories and images.