Sunday 6 September
Set up camp at Curtin Springs roadhouse Saturday night. Unfortunately as we started to set up a 30 knot wind came out of the desert. The camper almost took off!
I rigged extra guy lines to the car but until it died down just after sunset it was very uncomfortable. You can see the curve in the tent and also the extra lines running to the front bull bar. Vicki is sheltering at the back of the car. Once the wind died down it was a comfortable night. Winds like this in the desert are not uncommon and this is one of the reasons I think this camper may not suit us in the long term.
In the morning Vicki made friends with one of the resident emu’s. Very tame and goes from camp to camp looking for scraps.
On the road again we headed for Kings Canyon Resort. Not to see the canyon again but to get a permit for the Mereenie Loop Rd. As this goes through aboriginal land a permit is required. This loop takes you to Alice Springs between the James Ranges to the south and the Macdonnell ranges to the north. After about 20 kilometres the road winds up until you can look back south towards Kings Canyon. you then enter the valley between the two ranges and the country becomes green with a rock escarpment to the south. You can quiet literally see Albert Namajira’s paintings jump out of the scenery towards you. We did pass his house before we reached Hermannsburg.
These are two fairly unique speed signs we saw on the road!
The road was corrugated in places but not nearly as bad as the Plenty Highway.
It was about 5:00PM when we reached the turn off to Palm Valley so we headed the 3 kilometres to Hermannsburg instead. Saw the local police and they assured us we wouldn’t have any problems negotiating the 4WD track into the valley.
The camp ground is surrounded by a high barbed wire fence and is kept locked at all times. You pay and are given a key at the supermarket. You then lock yourself in. I don’t think they get a lot of campers which is a pity because the council has gone to a lot of trouble to make this a really nice camping area. It is probably the best we have been in. There is only one other lot of campers here.
This is like the wild west, we will probably spend most of the night wondering if the Indians are coming over the fence. Perhaps we should circle the wagons. Will publish this now in case the defences are breached!