McElholum road trip - up the Centre 2012 travel blog

Dingo lurking around the camp in the morning. Just under 600km to Alice Springs today. Visited the historic Overland Telegraph Station, 4km north of town. Site of first European settlement in Central Australia in the 1870s as a relay station along the 3000km telegraph line from Adelaide to Darwin. Prior to this line communication in and outside Australia took months and relied on land and sea travel. Well restored buildings. The site continued as a welfare home for indigenous kids after the 1930s. We were privileged to meet and chat with one of the 'kids', now in his 80s and giving tours to the visitors. He gave us a detailed story of how he had been just moved from the station to a mission off the coast of Darwin, to observe Japanese bombers overhead. The 97 children aged between 12 and 4 all then had to walk back to Pine Creek from Darwin, 230 km, taking 55 days, with 4 missionaries to look after them.

Staying night at MacDonnell Range Holiday Park. Kids off to jumping pillow as we arrived, returned to tent for dinner, then we all went jumping till bed time. $70p/n!

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