Gibb River Road Trip – 3

William Creek is an interesting place.  It is listed as Australia’s smallest town, with a permanent population of 2.  This, however, has not led to a lack of facilities, with a pub, service station and caravan park run by the two and an airstrip catering for station personnel wanting a place for a quiet libation and tourists wishing to do the flight over Lake Eyre.

After a quiet night in the caravan park, we arose to the prospect of rain.  Having previously been caught by the weather in William Creek, where we had to make a very wet camp on the roadside for a couple of nights, we decided to take the Coober Pedy road instead of continuing on to Oodnadatta.  This had the added advantage of reducing the length of dirt road we needed to negotiate, and took us to the Stuart Highway, the main road from South Australia to Alice Springs and Darwin.

We stopped at Coober Pedy (the world’s largest opal mines) for lunch and to re-fuel before heading further North to Marla Roadhouse to stay the night.

The next morning, we set of for Alice Springs, which is about half way between Adelaide and Darwin.

After spending a couple of nights in “the Alice”, mainly to stock up on supplies, we again headed north towards the Devil’s Marbles and Tennant Creek.

The Devils Marbles represents an area of great aboriginal significance as well as an area of great beauty (in my opinion). We stopped there overnight so that we could enjoy the sunrise over the huge boulders next morning.  Then it was on to Tennant Creek, where we stayed for a couple of nights so that our friends, who had never been there before, could have a look at the old gold diggings and other points of interest.

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From here, we once again headed North to Dunmarra, a roadhouse/caravan park on the side of the Stuart Highway.  This was to be our last bit of bitumen before taking to the dirt the next day.(I should mention that, having stayed here a couple of times previously, we extolled its virtues to our traveling companions and , when we arrived, were very disappointed that the friendly service and great facilities previously on offer seem to have disappeared.  We will think twice before staying there again.)

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