On The QT

Aussie Adventure Day 10

Day 10 – Deeper Into The Bush – July 11th

I woke first, the stars have gone in. It is 6AM and -3 degrees. It was very cold during the night and I could feel the cold coming through my canvas and some dampness got near the head end of my sleeping bad. I imagine that I did not close the swag correctly last night. First job is to get the fire going and put on the kettle(Billycan) and saucepan of water to wash the dishes. The hot coals from the night before are used to start the fire. Tyres are checked for air pressure. Swags are opened to dry sleeping bags after the frost. By 8.30 we are off. The scrub is very severe. Rob and I lead. The scrub continues to be extremely high and we are thrown about in the jeep.  One can feel a slight stomach upset but being a man you can not even think about getting sick. We reach our destination which was set for last night by 10.30.

We need to cross the creek which is 100ft at its widest. We set out on a walking exhibition to find the best crossing spot. It is even more difficult as one of our vehicles has slim tyres and it may get stuck in the soft sand. The river bed is totally dry and it is difficult to walk on. Two suitable crossings are found and we trek back to our vehicles. We decide to have coffee and fruit cake before we cross. 15 minutes later we set out. One does not want to get bogged down in the middle of the river and as we were still not happy with the crossing, we decided to do a second walkabout. Using our hand held GPS systems which we can put coordinates into the car when we return and then the vehicles will lead us directly to the crossing. I have not seen any animals today so far but I was woken this morning to wild donkeys roaring. This means there must be some water locally as a donkey needs to drink regularly. Wild cats as big as dogs are evident here from there marks on the soil and sand. They kill lizards to survive and were introduced to Australia many years ago as pets but when parted from there owners they became wild. They cause a lot of damage here. We cross the creek, all three vehicles without any difficulty. Tyre pressure is readjusted to 40lbs now as the roughness of the terraine is behind us.

 We now heading to Diebil Spring after lunch. Last of the bananas are used as they are getting overripe. We drive about 5km and it is a much better countryside for driving. We pass a dried up lake and go around the side of it and stop about 3km later in another dried lake to check our bearing. We go back to go around the sand dunes to get on the correct path. We travel between sand dunes which can be 20/30km long and then we change to another sand dune. The bush is quite high and we knock and go over 4 to 5 ft hugh bushes without any difficulty.

2.55 we hit a engine problem with our discovery, it sounds like a mechanical issue. The engine sounds louder. We have to drive on. It sounds like tappits. On we go. Within 5km, the noise is gone. It becomes real bush wacking country. We come across 5 camels, male, female and 3 smaller smaller calves, it looks like a family. We often follow camel tracks which means that one of our wheels are protected. We find a camp site and had to collect wood with our jeep as it was scarce for the fire and we settled in for the night.

Stay tuned tomorrow for more outback adventures


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