Simpson Desert trip----a run down

Tuesday, Jul 22, 2008 at 20:30

Member - William B (The Shire)

Hello, back from the BIG trip.
Had a hell of a good time, great views, great drive, great company and nearly a faultless journey.
Left Engadine on the 5/7/08, late as usual. A pretty uneventual trip to our usual morning tea stop, but because of our late start it was a lunch time stop at the Shell servo at Lithgow.
Then onto our overnight stay at the Mulga creek pub and caravan park in a donga at Byrock. Can recommended this spot.
Still not quite into the swing of up early and on the road early, another late start saw us head off to Bourke.
From Bourke went along to Wanaaring, the road was a bit rough but a lot better than some of the other roads we were to travel along.
Lunch at Wanaaring, the store is run by a nice couple.
Into Tibooburra for that night, lunch at the Family Inn/Pub.
Saw a sign at the servo stating that there was no diesel at Cameron Corner, so filled up my two jerry cans.
Had a nice easy drive into Camerons Corner to meet my father and step mother.
Set up camp and while having a bit of relax 3 single engine Cessna's landed and gave us a bit of enterntainment while securing the planes.
Had tea at the store that night and met EO member John T and another young fellow and his family driving a Delicia. (sorry forgot your name) who had read my earlier blog entry.
Next day with Dad cracking the whip managed a fairly early start.
Off to the Strez. track via Merty Merty to Lyndhurst and overnighted at Farina. A good bush camping spot with toilets, but the showers need you to fire up the donkey boiler to have a hot shower, so we gave it a miss.
Next stop Marree where I tried to fix the Uniden UHF/GPS combo that refused to fire up. While there Dad had a natter to Pat from the forum.
Couldnt find any thing wrong with the radio so stuck it back in and the bloody thing started working a hour later, a trip to mr uniden for you my boy.
A purchase of a hot water bottle at the store would come in very handy later when the English Rose, Anita came down with a bad cold and the little Princess, Emma got an ear infection after a frolic in the water at Dalhousie Springs.
Lunch at Curdimurka rail siding was very pleasant.
A side trip into Coward Springs, (very nice, marked down as a future camp spot) and the Mound Springs and an over night stop at William Creek.
Lunch at the Pink road house at Oodnadatta was very nice.
We then travelled off to Mount Dare, finally leaving the Old Ghan rail line behind.
Had a very nice bush camp at Eringa, lunch at Mt dare then onto Dalhousie Springs where we spent the rest of the day and the next re-energising ourselves. Dad had a puncture along the way and we changed his tyre at Dalhousie.
While there met up with a mate from Engadine who was on a motor bike guided tour.
He had ridden from Airley Beach in Queensland and was finishing up in Perth.
The poor buggers got behind schedule and camped 70 k,s from the springs and didnt even get to see the springs, let alone have a good soak.
Saw a dingo trot through the camp ground while we were there.
So our Desert trip starts.
We travelled along the French line then turned off onto the Rig rd.
We last saw any other party at Purni bore and did not see any one else for two days.
It was great to pull over for lunch or for the evening when ever we wanted to, build a fire boil the billy or cook the evening meal.
I found the Rig rd a good first experience at romote desert travell, Anita was hesitant about this part of the trip fearing the Jackaroo was not up to the challenge, not being a proper 4WD in her eyes.
I'm glad to say she is impressed at what the Jack is capable of, even had to snatch Dad in his Prado 5 times out of bogs. ( too high tyre pressures and side steps didnt help).
Finally got to Poeppel corner after having tried and rained off 3 years ago, lunch time at the corner then onto what i thought would be an easy run into Birdsville.
How wrong was that, we decided to push on into Birdsville for the night.
After a long day came to Big red at about 6pm and decided that discretion was the better part of valour and took the easy way out. I hadnt travelled that far to get bogged and we still had to get home.
Surprisingly Anita said, "is that Big Red, doesnt look that hard".
Booked our site at Birdsville then off to the pub for tea and a couple of beers.
Left late the next day and travelled to Cadelga and Cordillo Downs, bush camped at Marrianna creek.
Went across to Arraburry and travelled down to The Adventure way, came across 9 camels across the road, Anita got out to take some photos and soon got the feeling the camels were showing too much interest in her and bolted back to the car.
After lunch on the road we travelled to Thargomindah and onto family friends property just to the North where dad had left his caravan.
A rest day the next day where I started to teach the little Princess how to drive.
Off home through Cunnamula, stayed overnight at the camp ground at the Mulga creek hotel, tea at the pub and the best shower I have had for a long time.
A pretty uneventual trip home from there.
The highlights of the trip was the whole trip.
No down sides other the the English Rose having a cold and the Little Princess having an ear infection.
Best bit of gear brought for the trip goes jointly to the Bushman fridge, the Black Wolf Turbo tent and the vacuum sealing machine.
What would I do differently next time?
New shock absorbers and a lift.
Once again the BFG's didnt let me down, 20000 ks of outback trips and still no flats.
Misshaps?
Dad had 1 flat and the weld on his bull bar for his HF radio bracket broke.
We lost a battery tie down bolt and a cover from our Narva driving lights.
Also developed a exhaust leak which I suspect was from the pipe getting a bashing from the dunes and stones.
Would I do it again?
You bloody bet, Anita is even talking about the canning stock route.
It was fantastic the way Dad managed this trip at 78 years of age and after a couple of strokes.
This was our first Simpson desert trip and probably will not be our last.
William




Always planning the next trip. VKS-737 mobile 1619
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