After completing the exploration at Home of Bullion, Dick and Chook decided to stay in the Northern Territory. With a new field crew I hired in Alice Springs, I headed north on the Stuart Highway to the Barkly Highway junction and turned east, toward Mount Isa. The Stuart Highway had a single lane of asphalt, with wide shoulders for meeting traffic. The Barkly Highway was a well-formed dirt road.
Mary Kathleen, about 30 miles east of Mount Isa, was a uranium mine and company town under care and maintenance. The mine had been shut down because the market for uranium had virtually disappeared. The town and mine were under company care and maintenance In hopes that the demand for uranium would return at prices high enough to return the mine to production.
The town was well kept but most of the houses were empty. about 20 or 30 families remained, to keep the mine and town ready to resume operations and house the mine personnel.
The houses were simple and constructed with their long sides at right angles to prevailing winds, with many louvered windows on both sides. The houses were not air conditioned, so they had to take advantage of every breeze.
We stayed in one of these houses while we were exploring near Mary Kathleen.