A neighbour told us last night about his day’s excursion to Muloorina and Lake Eyre north and we thought it sounded like a good place to visit. The turn off was just a short distance up the Oodnadatta Track then about 60 kms to the Muloorina Campground and waterhole. Running parallel to the station track for quite a way was the old telegraph line, looking at the “posts” makes you appreciate the effort that went into creating the line. It also made me think about the difference in communication now with no need for connecting wires when signals are bounced off satellites and communication towers. It doesn’t always work for everyone since we have no service at the moment.
Old telegraph poles
The Muloorina Campground looked the perfect place to set up camp for a week and just relax. There were so many places available that you could be completely private. The Frome River feeds water to a wetlands home to a variety of birds.
After leaving the Waterhole we drove 45 kms to Lake Eyre north. I naively expected to see water and birds since water is coming down the Cooper Creek after good rains in Queensland but we were too early and there was no water for us to see. I can appreciate Eyre’s disappointment on his arrival especially since we drove in on tracks using a comfortable vehicle unlike him.
When we came back to Marree we went looking for a couple of geocaches hidden in the town. I tried to find one of them yesterday but too many people were around and I had no luck. Today I found them both.
At 4:30 Cookie made our dinner, I’m going to make sure he takes his sunglasses off from now on so he doesn’t think it’s hours later than it really is! After dinner we walked out along the old Ghan Railway embankment, it’s littered with old rail spikes, broken insulators, shoe plates and fish plates. That’s what “The Fount of All Wisdom” says they are and he sounded convincing.
The Fount of All Knowledge walking along the old Ghan embankment
PS Discovered a spot in the Caravan Park where we could access their WiFi. 🙂
Day 3 – Marree
Doing any kind of home maintenance work always means at least three visits to the hardware shop, going camping seems to mean making daily excursions to a General Store for things you either left at home by mistake or didn’t know you needed until they became essential. Before leaving Hawker we made another visit to the Service Station/Camping Store/Information Centre. We didn’t find any grease but we did find silicone spray.
Galahs taking flight
Initially we travelled the same bit of road as yesterday but after the Brachina Gorge turnoff it was all new. The creek crossings would be terrifying after a big downpour but they don’t happen often as the scattered homestead ruins testify. We didn’t make any stops until Lyndhurst where we bought lunch at the roadhouse before setting off on the Oodnadatta Track. Only a short distance out of town are the stunning Ochre Pits.
Our next stop was Farina, a place we’ve visited a few times before and each time we see more changes. Volunteers have been working for years making buildings safe, constructing tracks, information boards, road signs and railway related structures. Work will continue for many years, I’m sure. It was once a thriving town with enough thirsty people to sustain six hotels.
The road was in good condition, there are even a couple of sections of bitumen one 5 km section brought us into Marree.
We investigated the town before going to the pub for dinner, soon we’ll be on to our dehydrated supplies!
When we were at Farina one of the volunteers proudly pointed out the new mobile phone repeater and we were able to use our mobiles there. Here at Marree, an actual town with several businesses, there is only ever sporadic coverage. Alex had to work out how to use a public phone box to make a call…. by torchlight!
No Telstra so no phone, no internet, no blog update..