Climb Every Mountain, Ford Every Stream...
Trip Start Unknown
23Trip End Mar 08, 2013
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Enough of these beaches, we thought, let's head for the hills! So we headed North West, through the endless golden-brown fields, back to the Eyre Highway to visit Murphy’s Haystacks – granite inselbergs – and Tcharkulda Rock, a huge granite outcrop which in the early settlement days was a supplier of nearby Minnipa’s water, using a gutter built around the rock which led to a reservoir. Very inventive! A wonderful view from the top of these outcrops – the country around is pretty flat. Each little settlement we passed had huge grain silos and the railtrack ran alongside the highway to take the grain away
We were at Port Augusta for New Years Eve but there were no big celebrations – we chatted to a couple who were on their way to an Elvis convention! Port Augusta had the best interpretation centre we’ve seen, charting the changes in Australian Outback from 'the beginning of time’. Geology, palaeontology, geography and history rolled into one (even symbiology – if you need to know what that is see Sarah’s blog: http://symbiology.wordpress.com ). It was so good and took so long we missed going to see the Hobbit! (We’ve been now though). Also at Port Augusta was the lovely Arid Lands Botanical Gardens.
We needed more National Parks so we headed off to the Flinders Ranges. Now we were in the heatwave affecting much of Australia. The country between Port Augusta and the Flinders was quite shockingly barren with abandoned homesteads and dusty willy willies. We camped at Wilpena Pound; a rock amphitheatre with only 2 entrances so much like ‘the lost world’
From the Flinders we drove down to the Murray River. Did you know The Murray is the third longest navigable river in the world, after the Amazon and Nile, and spans three states? We saw a tiny bit beginning at Morgan, a major paddle steamer port in the 1800’s, also home to a pipeline taking water to Whyalla, 360 km away, to develop the steel and shipyard industries
Then we just happened to stumble upon the Barossa Valley, hic, home to many, many vineyards. Jacob’s Creek has a Visitors Centre as well as the Cellar Door tasting. There is a creek and it is called Jacob’s after the chap who used to own the land. It’s a very, very big concern and their vineyards were spread throughout the valley, using the differing soils etc. for the different varieties of grape.
And so to Adelaide… Looking for the rainbow and following the dream!
(Apologies to Rodgers and Hammerstein)