Sunday, April 12, 2009

Day 44- Camooweal to Tennant Creek

Massive, MASSIVE day today.

But first, HAPPY EASTER! I was up early (Darcy always wakes around sunrise but i feed him back to sleep if i don't want him up! LOL!) to get some sunrise photos. It was not much of a sunrise but it was a lovely walk in the cool(ish) air.
Tim called out when Jordy woke up and discovered that the easter bunny had been and left BUNNY EGGS!!! :) We had hidden a few around the van for him to find and also given some to Mum and Dad to hide cos he has breakfast with them every morning. He was all excited finding them and it was a hell of an effort getting him to eat his weetbix. But he did! Then he could have an egg. But he held the different colours in a bowl and wanted to smell them. "Let's see what this blue one smells like." sniff sniff "Chocolate!!!"... "Let's see what this red one smells like." sniff sniff "Chocolate!!!" ... again and again. We then hid a few more around in the trees etc for him to find. He was rather funny looking for them. He'd stand and turn in circles and squat and get annoyed at not finding any. Darcy thought the eggs were funny and was pretty keen to try one but he was only allowed to look.
The excitment of the egg hunt over and everything packed up and the kids in the cars and off we go... NOT. Flat battery. Tim was not impressed. Took them another hour to get the batteries out of the van to add in series to boost the truck batteries (cos being 24V we could not use the battery charger/starter thingy) and then put the batteries all back in the van. So we had hot tired cranky kids before we even got on the road.

Not far to go though we were thinking. Just 12km down the road and the essential stop at the border for a photo. We are now in the Northern Territory. YAY!! I've never been before.
Totally bizarre but the minute we crossed the border we were hit with a massive storm of locusts that banged and bounced off the windscreen for 15min. The road quality dropped a notch and the speed limit increased to 130km (which made no difference to us cos we poke along around 90km/hr regardless.)

There are road side free camps all along the road to the Threeways and we had planned to camp overnight at Wunara Bore which is near enough to half way. We arrived there a little after 1pm and it was HOT HOT HOT and there were crazy flies and although there was as much shade as you could hope for out here (which is not much) and there was a picnic table it was just too hot and dusty to want to stop. We figured even though it is not much cooler in the truck (we don't use the air con) at least we'd be covering some miles. So a drink, a snack, a wander and a chat, and back in the truck. We put the DVD player on in the hopes that it would entertain the kids who had already slept for as long as we could hope for. We were not sure how much further we would get and when we drove past Barkly Homestead (where there is a basic van park) we agreed that if it turned pear-shaped and the kids cracked it then we'd just pull over and camp anywhere and fill the esky with water and give them a splash.

I spent the next leg of the trip constantly passing food and water over to the kids and singing songs and trying to keep them amused. We were starting to think that maybe, just maybe, we could achieve a miracle and make it all the way across the no-mans-land of the Barkly Highway and get to Tennant Creek.

Darcy got the shits about 20km out from 41mile Bore (which was over 350km since we left this morning!) so we decided to have a look at the free camp at the bore and if it was ok we'd stay the night, and if not i'd give him a feed, have a toilet break for us all, another wander, and use the jerry cans to top up our petrol.

41mile Bore was an ok camp, a bit more shade, but the flies would send you insane. If you were there later in the evening closer to the cool of night it would be fine but by this stage Tennant Creek was seeming enticingly close and i hoped that after a feed Darcy might sleep again. So before we all melted in the heat we climbed back into the truck and off we went.

We just counted down the miles until the Threeways and then we felt homefree. We pulled into the van park in town sometime around 5pm. An incredible 475km!! Which might be doable for some but with two little kids in this heat i think it is pretty great. They travelled like champions.

We are next to a lovely older couple in the park and our sites face each other so we sat and talked to them for ages about all sorts of things and where they have been and where they are headed and their families etc. Turns out they are related to the Turners at Warialda! Small world.

Coconut chicken and vegies on the weber and a lazy afternoon (what was left of it). Jordy was hyper all evening. Not sure if we can blame the three easter eggs he ate or the fact that he was confined to a carseat all day! But he ran around until far too late.

He would not eat his dinner though and afterwards he asked for another bunny egg. Tim said "No. No bunny eggs and no icecream. That's what happens when you don't eat your dinner." and you would not believe his reply! He muttered, "For *ucks sake!" Not sure who to blame for that.


  1. I had to laugh at Jordy's comment. I am glad I wasn't there I would have ended up laughing and encouraging him.
    No easter eggs for LaLa:-(

  2. Oh dear!! Well it happens, and yeah Nardia, it can be really hard not to laugh at them! lol. Who were the other couple? How are they related to the turners? I'm asking tim on msn now anyway. You know its not just uncle willie who is a turner. the turner name goes way back, it was mum's grandmothers maiden name too!!

  3. scarily enough Turner is also MY grandmothers maiden name..... the mind boggles.