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Heading South

Heading South

Author: Tim Richards

Publisher: Fremantle Press

Published: August 2021

Gulflander. Overland. Indian Pacific. Maps and timetables and clickety-clack rails. The traveller’s desire to see more and take longer doing it sits at a window seat in Tim Richard’s Heading South, a book that captures his 7,000 kilometre long railway journey from far north Queensland to the southwest of Western Australia.

Watching Australia’s landscape change apace, Richards encounters characters, history, and the whims of the weather as he follows the coastal perimeter of the nation.“Train travel is all about leaving things behind,” Richards writes as he switches off from modern distractions and tunes in to his surroundings.

There are shades of Paul Theroux’s rail travel classic Riding the Iron Rooster, though Richards is more forgiving and humorous about his fellow travellers, taking a keen interest in the lives he crosses while illuminating the places he encounters. It’s a book that will make anyone hunger for travel, relishing the journey not the destination.

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