Coober Pedy to Woomera South Australia
26 Dec 2006
In the morning we undertook the chores of packing up the van, and whilst Jeff emptied the 'grey water' tank I went to say goodbye to Bob and Sandra. They were the couple on the morning trip with us and are circumnavigating Australia in the opposite direction to us. We had shared experiences the day before over a glass of wine.
We called at the Back Packers Hostel to use the internet and found Kieron was also on line, so we had a quick chat across the globe, curtsey of Microsoft messenger. Then it was off once more on our travels.
Our journey to Woomera was back down the Stuart Highway retracing our steps from a few days ago. The scenery was the same except we were looking at it from a different direction. The temperatures were also much the same but at least we had the air conditioning going and we also put on some Christmas music to see if singing 'I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas' cooled us down. We passed many road trains, the drivers of whom don't wave, cars, who might wave and motor homes who give us a big wave. Too much excitement is not good for us.
We broke the journey at the rest areas provided and when we called in at the road houses for fuel. On the way up we stopped at the Glendambo Road house for fuel and a coffee. The RAAC man was in doing his paper work and had ordered a big dish of chips. When he disappeared I thought I might just go over and pinch some as they looked nice but the lady behind the counter said he had gone home to collect his phone, just in case he got a call out. She told us that it was very humid today because of the cloud cover. When we looked at the sky we saw two small clouds in a mass of deep blue, so now I know what the weather man means when he talks of cloud cover.
We called at the same Road House on the way back to find the RAAC man still there, minus chips this time, must be his office. The lady remembered us and commented that it had been so cold the evening before she had put a jumper on. She was just about to put up the Christmas tree as we were leaving.
Our journey was relieved by the sighting of five wedged tailed eagles. The first one we saw was sitting near a road kill, obviously protecting his food. We were passed it before we realised so had to turn around to come back, as we got nearer it just took of. We sat a little way back hoping it would return but it just soared higher and higher until we could barely see it. A few miles further along the road one took off from the side as we were approaching, we were so busy watching it we nearly failed to see the other three remaining eagles sitting at the side by the road kill. We got a good view of them and once more turned the van around to get photographs but like the last one wedged tailed eagles seem to be camera shy as these three did exactly the same, flew off and soared away into the distance. Sorry no pictures to show you.
We arrived at Woomera and found a camp site for the night. It was a very large one with lots of cabins on it and plenty of spaces for vans and tents, so it seemed strange to be one of only 3 sites being used.
Woomera is the site where the U.K. Government joined with the Australian Government after the Second World War to develop and test rockets. We had been recommended to call in here by Andrew (our friend from the Clare Valley) as the museum was well worth looking at, so that was to be our next days activity. Tonight we needed to undertake some serious house work and clean the van. That was only because we had an accident on the way down when the fridge door opened and a pot of olives in olive oil broke on the floor. The smell was a little strong to say the least. All of you out there think we lead the life of riley here but it is really hard work sometimes, well at least half an hour or so.