Alice Springs - Tennant Creek
Feb 6, 2007
|Run Seb run...
Pure driving day with the only real seightseeing stop at the Devil's Marbles.
We had another early start to finally leave the red centre to head towards the Top End. The Stuart Highway takes you through another big plain of bushland and as soon as you leave Alice Springs small strange looking mountains appear at the road looking like plenty of penises aligned along the highway.
A few kilometres north of Alice the "Red Centre Mango Farm" is worth a stop. In the advertised "Chato Mango" they didn't actually sell the desired fruit but very delicious and refreshing Mango icecream instead.
At Barrow Creek, an old telegraph station that is converted into a roadhouse we stopped to refill our almost empty petrol tank. The roadhouse has a scary, dodgy "let's get out of here" look. Unfortunately the store was busy selling alcohol to the local Aborigines and seemed to have forgotten to reorder fuel; no refill until approximitly 8 pm. The great news and the outlook to spent a night at this lovely place caused Maribel to go Troppo even before arriving at the Top End.
Going Troppo is our favorite Aussie English term and refers to the slow process of going mad when living at Australia's tropical Top End with the combination of heat, humidity and beer. Maribel only needed Barrow Creek.
However, after some intense discussion and careful calculation we decided to go on to the next roadhouse and luckily suceeded after sweating and praying for 80 km. A 80 km purely economical drive with steady speed of 80 km/h and turned off aircon...
The next roadhouse offered fuel but also an owner who seemed to have gone troppo long time ago. Even though an American secret military base is more than 400 km away, he decided that his roadhouse is based in the Australian Area 51. The car park displays some Mars inhabitants, an UFO and plenty of other science fiction relicts. In the roadhouse you can choose between 130 different beers from all over the world. We guess this is the only way to entertain yourself while waiting for the next UFO. The place is called "UFO Capital of Australia".
The only real seightseeing stop of the day were the Devil's Marbles. Weathering has reshaped a former sandstone rock into several huge boulders of different shape and size. According to the Aborigines dreamtime story the unusual and odd rock formations are eggs of the rainbow serpent.
During our travel we inherited a tradition from Sebastian's dad to take timed pictures of ourselves in special places. You'll find a few of these on our website. For Sebastian, however, this means pure exercise! Sprinting, climbing and getting into position on time. The obligatory Devil's Marbles picture took three tries, including a 50m sprint at around 40 degrees before suceeding; leaving an exhausted photographer...
We ended our day in the "Outback Campground" in Tennant Creek. A lovely, almost desterted, campground with plenty of shadow. Somewhere nearby was an Aboriginal ceremony or party, accompanying our tries to sleep with mystical sounds of singing and dancing. To us it sounded like a party of some cannibals after finally having caught Tarzan in the African jungle - a bit scary.