Our journey from Winton to Boulia was one of changes in landscape and vast horizons. This country we live in truly is amazing.
It was Tuesday and the temperatures were already climbing as we left Winton, around 10am, it had reached 28 degrees. Around 80kms from Winton we came across some kangaroos who decided to cross in front of us so we slowed for them to cross but then one decided to come at us from the other side. BANG!! He hit the tub of the rear driver’s side wheel, bounced off, rolled for ages got up and took off. Bugger! Our first dent on Nev Navara. We pulled into a rest stop to check the car out and take photos. This place was lovely, beautiful views all around. Poddy Creek rest area is 90kms West of Winton, worth an overnight stop with clean toilets. There were some interesting grasses here, pretty blue greens so I decided to have a feel because they looked so soft. Ouch!! These things were sharp as. Murray was taking a photo and nearly fell over backwards laughing at my reaction. Vehicle check done and a couple of happy snaps then back on the road.
Twenty minutes down the road and we had a new noise at the rear of the car. Looking at each other we both said, “Did you hear that?”Murray looks in mirrors can’t see anything unusual. I’m thinking the worst, that our wheels were going to drop off or the trailer had been hit by roo and had unseen damage. Stopped again. Took a look. Couldn’t see or feel anything unusual so we moved on. Five minutes later the noise became louder and more regular. Pulling over again to take a better look Murray discovered that the roo damage had caused the tub to rub on the body of the cabin, rubbing through the paint and rubber protective coating causing a metal on metal noise. He then had to bend the bodywork away from the car and all was good again. 😃 big smiles all round.
Photos will tell the story here of what we saw along the way. We came across Little House on the Prairie, I half expected to see Laura Ingall running across the rocks. Middleton Hotel and freecamp away next. Then we took a walk up Cawnpore Lookout which was recommended by Murray’s sister, Nerida to take a look at the surrounding vista. Once again we are in awe of this country. The rocks formations are brilliant. Vehicle access to the top is now blocked off due to erosion.
Just up the road from the lookout we came across a group of three wedge tailed Eagles enjoying some roadkill. These majestic birds of prey don’t move for anyone. They stare you down. I am fascinated by them with their enormous stature and their long brown underwear down their muscular legs, such a powerful bird. When they spread wings they create quite a shadow over the land.
Boulia was a quiet little town. We took a swim at the aquatic centre, a look around the information centre and booked into the caravan park on the Burke River. It was so peaceful. Happy hour was spent watching all the birdlife along the river banks and dinner was fish and salad under the stars. It had been a long day on the road, we were weary and as I had hurt my back that morning it was nice to get into bed and relax.
The next day, Wednesday, was much the same with more changes in the landscape, becoming drier and more barren with temperatures rising slightly. We were now travelling on the Donohue Highway which was more like a dirt track at times. We saw one car, three road trains and only a little wildlife over the 467kms we travelled that day. The road from Boulia to Tobermorey, where we had lunch, wasn’t too bad on the Queensland side but once we crossed the border to the Northern Territory it was a whole different story for the first hundred kilometres. It was hard, rocky, corrugated and dusty.
Our night was spent on the banks of the Marshall River with only two other campers sharing it with us. They were friendly fellows but we didn’t exchange names, so I call them ‘One Eye’, as this fellow had only one, and the other guy ‘Trying To Find Reception’ as, although signs we had previously read on the road said “No reception between Boulia and Alice Springs”, he was still trying to find reception. These two gentlmen were alone, which makes me wonder when I meet people travelling like this, why? What are their pasts and who do they have? I don’t ask of course but it just makes me question in my head. I digress. Back to our camp for the night, it was the most awesome setting. We had the best sky with soooo many stars, the Milky Way was perfectly clear and went on forever. Hard to capture in a photo though for Murray. We sat with our heads tilted upwards and our mouths agape. It truly was amazing. We had discovered a leak from our water tank as a plastic fitting had cracked on the outlet pipe. Murray quickly got onto it with his silicon emergency tape supplied by his major sponsor, Supercheap. Lol.
For those concerned about the remote areas we are going to and the fact we regularly have no reception, I know you’re worried Jan, we have a Personal Locator Beacon now, each place we go through gives a copy of all the UHF/CB numbers for different stations and we do get some coverage but some remote places are limited. We are okay and always keep the boys up to date when we can and if they need us urgently someone only just has to ring the police with our car rego number which is BWK84K.
Thursday we moved on again to Gem Tree part of Hart’s Range, where we hoped to fossick and relax for a few days. This is another post though.
Cheers from us. Xo