Friday, August 7, 2015

August 5th

An early start because we have a couple of long days ahead to ensure we reach Ceduna by midday on Friday 7th.

Grey arid bushes and straggly trees are on either side of the very rough limestone track. Gradually the track became a little better as we approached Cook. Along the way we stopped at a huge tank shed which actually had water available. Further on we stopped to look at Muckera Rockholes. Only one of the three Gnamma holes had dirty water in it. A flock of finches were flying around waiting for us to depart so they could come down for a drink. The birds were so shy and quick that we were unable to identify them.

Salt bush is plentiful as we travel south onto the Nullarbor Plain which is FLAT FLAT FLAT with only a scattering of trees, at this point, and some low dried grass. I mean FLAT as in no hills not FLAT as in tyre without air!

We sat on the railway platform at Cook, and ate our lunch. There was a freight train stopped at the station. There are houses at Cook but we did not see people...a sparsely populated railway town. Rain is in the air so we hope it does not fall as we head east on the Old Caravan Road. This is a two wheel track but not so rough with rocks. We travelled 80km on this 'cross country' road before we stopped to camp. We  were lucky to find a sheltered spot near a rare thicket of trees. It is surprising how many flowers are growing in this harsh dry country..daisies of mauve white and yellow, carpets of goodenias, a single Sturt’s Desert Pea and several Desert roses. Near our camp there are Pittosterum trees growing with lovely orange berries hanging on the branches. I can understand why their common name is Desert Apricot.

Track across the Nullarbor Plains

Sunset on the Nullarbor

We had watched the clouds throughout the day with virgo often part of the picture. The pre-dinner sunset was brilliant as virgo was lit up in the orange colour from the setting sun. 

After dinner we had a visit from several dingoes. They can probably smell food. I cannot imagine what they live on out here.

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