Simpson Day 18

Thursday, Aug 01, 2013 at 21:44

Dusty Hat

2013-07-31 Day 18, Muloorina to Flinders Ranges via Lake Eyre North

Corrugations, and more corrugations, on the road to Lake Eyre North. Once there the view was great and we walked some distance onto the lake, noting the interesting changing surface conditions. How I wish people would not drive on or ride their motor bikes on the lake surface; it spoils the otherwise relatively pristine environment. From there we turned around and headed back over the corrugations to Marree, stopping to view the neck which joins Lake Eyre North and Lake Eyre South.

Morning tea was in Marree. The stop was longer than intended, however I am coming to realise we should be stopping for a good look around these towns rather than driving straight through. One of the Kruse mail trucks is on display at the old railway siding, but even more interesting is the Marree Hotel (no longer on the main road). It is very ordinary on the outside, not worth a second look, but inside it is very inviting with lots of character. There is also an extensive display of Tom Kruse the mail-man memorabilia inside.

On the way into Marree (from the north) the first obvious building is the Lake Eyre Yacht Club. It is usually closed but there had been a recent regatta at Lake Hope and was open today (and tomorrow). After that the hosts (from Belgrave Heights, near where we live) head back home. They come up three times a year.

Further down the road we stopped at Farina for lunch, an old township and significant railway siding which was all but forgotten. However, recently some dedicated volunteers and enthusiasts have begun preserving what is left and have providing documentation and significant facts display boards for tourists stopping by. The township occupied a significant area and the nearly two hours we spent there is nowhere enough time to take in everything there. The current main road goes around the township but the numerous ruins are easily visible from the road; do go in and enjoy.

Stephen temporarily dropped out of convoy to visit some family friends who were camped at Copley—on their way north. They contacted him as we approached Copley—they had been following up via our Spot tracking device.

The Leigh Creek mining area is visually significantly different since we were last here 18 months ago. We refuelled in Leigh Creek, the town, where I saw a notice explaining the recent closure of the mine viewing area—because of significant and regular abuse of the viewing restrictions (visitors climbing over fences, climbing on top of large exhibits). The actions of an irresponsible few spoil it for everyone.

From there is was quick trip down the highway then into the Flinders Ranges, setting up camp at Teamster camp site in Brachina George just before dark. A nice site but not great for camping.

Les made it to Woomera yesterday, as planned. There he investigated an increasing noise in the Brumby which turned out to be a rear differential bearing, he “fixed” the problem for now by removing the rear drive shafts and leaving it in two wheel drive. He is planning on making it to Burra tonight.
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