Enough shilly shallying, so we headed out west along Namatjira Drive to Standley Chasm and Simpsons Gap. Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough time to visit Ormiston Gorge after stocking up with supplies, maps and a coffee in Alice Springs. I lost a few of these photos to that wicked Ipad Delete button but was lucky to have these escape the carnage. Desert Magic, what a magnificent start to our trip!
The Main walk out to the Chasm takes about 40 minutes and it’s a wonderful place to be among the rocks, when it’s not full sun. There’s a crystal clear pool at the end to cool you down before you head back along the rock bed and path.
It’s only a short walk out to Simpsons Gap’s water hole. This is what they call a river in Central Australia. It’s just like the Todd River in Alice Springs, bone dry. There’s no problem of drowning, only sunburn. Luckily, I had my trusty hat!
Time to head back to Alice Springs for that embarassing fuel stop before heading out to Kings Canyon. Reality hit with a thump, only 453 km to go!
Passed the time listening to Bill Bryson’s Down Under for the first leg of our journey which was entertaining and reassured us that we weren’t that silly after all. Never driven at nearly 130 km an hour before but that’s the speed limit on some sections of the road here. At 273 km to go we changed over and it was time for some Rock and Roll and muesli bars. Funny, to be listening to Bon Jovi’s Living on a Prayer as we passed through some semblance of civilization and we were literally ‘half way there’. By the road we saw a few camels, horses and one kangaroo right in the middle of the road so we just waited for it to move on. They have no road sense. Glorious driving as the sun reflected the gold of the soft spinifex swaying gently as we passed by. Nerve wracking though to be on kangaroo watch at this time of day but fortunately we didn’t encounter any more. Strange how shadows and bushes look like kangaroos at times. Phew! Made it, right on sunset!!! Now where’s the bar?