Some places we've been and some places we're going.

Archive for August 27, 2021

Day 69 Coober Pedy to Woomera

As promised our neighbour-of-the-loud-voice left the Caravan Park at 7:30 along with a few others but we weren’t in a rush and it was about 9:00 before we left. The Stuart Highway doesn’t appeal to us because of the boring road and fairly constant traffic. There are no corrugations, potholes or patches of bulldust to keep you occupied. We did come across one long stretch of roadworks with a variety of vehicles in action and a little further on a couple of 4 metre wide loads came towards us meaning we had to get off the road.

We had a wee stop at Bon Bon Rest area then continued on to Glendambo where we were able to get some Dim Sims and hot chips. The place seemed much quieter than when we’ve been there in the past and the entire eating area was roped off but they were able to cook the usual Roadhouse fare. It was so windy that sitting outside was unpleasant so we went back to the car and continued on.

Our next stop was at Kokatha or Lake Hart, there’s a picnic area with information boards but no toilets. Several caravans were already set up for a stay and more were coming in when we left. The wind was blasting off the dry salt lake, it would be a spectacular spot on a still day especially if there was some water in the lake.

Between Lake Hart and Woomera we noticed a very long freight train.

Woomera Travellers Village and Caravan Park is our spot for the night and I’m glad we’re reading the reviews after we’re here. That may sound weird but the manager is so controlling and pedantic we found him laughable. Even though we fitted perfectly on our site he insisted Alex had to swap the positions of the camper and the car. He also said I told him we had a caravan not a camper trailer but in reality he assumed we had a caravan and when he asked me how long it was I said 21′. I thought the length was the issue not the material it was made from. Anyway we’ve had a few laughs at his expense but if I’d read the reviews we might have driven on.

Woomera is a town administered by the Department of Defence, when I was young it was generally known as the Woomera Rocket Range and in about 1964 I was invited to a Ball to be held in the lowly ranked men’s mess. To stay on the base we had to be billeted with a family but now it’s all changed. Most of the accommodation blocks seem to be unused and the former Officers’ Mess is now the Eldo Hotel. Two more accommodation blocks are used by the Travellers’ Village.

Instead of a lively town it felt today like a ghost town, we saw two Primary School aged children and one of High School age as well as two workmen. Tomorrow we intend to go in again before we leave to see if it makes any difference being a weekend. There are houses obviously lived in, so the people must be somewhere.

There is a lot of rocket and other Defence Force material to be seen around the town.

It feels strange having to wear a mask when entering any shop etc. for us, that has only been necessary when we passed through Alice Springs on our way north. I guess it’s something that will become second nature before long.