It was lovely seeing our gorgeous granddaughters again, it was a shame the weather was so miserable, the whole two weeks we were home it was cold & wet. We did get to take Millana & Ruby out a couple of times and they enjoyed it as much as we did. We caught up with some friends but generally we just hung around and shared our time with family.
Back in Adelaide we stayed 2 nights at our Daughter Erin's place and re-stocked with provisions and got the van ready and headed off to the Flinders Ranges. We had not been through these parts before and we enjoyed it a lot. We paid the $8 park admission fee and choose to camp out in the bush for a further $10 per night, as expensive as some Caravan Parks but the scenery was worth it, we did some lovely walks and i explored some caves, the views were spectacular from atop some of the hills. We spent 3 nights in the Flinders and could easily have stayed longer, we will definately come back and stay a couple of weeks.
But not but not being sure of how long we would be on the Oodnadatta Track and having booked an airflight from Alice to Adelaide so Vickie could fly back for her eye treatment we left the Flinders and headed onto the 'Oody', From reading reports from other Bushtracker owners i had a rough idea of what to expect in regards to the track conditions, before leaving Maree i lowered the tyre pressures on the van and the truck by 10psi.
Compared to many other tracks we have driven i would class the Oodnadatta as good, from Maree to William Creek it was a well graded dirt road with a small amount of rock in places, from William Creek to Oodnadatta it became more corrugated with the wheel tracks becoming deeper with more stone and rock, from Oodnadatta to Marla the track become very dusty, visibility behind us was nil, at times when looking in the mirrors all i could see behind me for a long distance was the fine dust hanging in the air.
We stopped at many of the ruins of the siding stations of the Old Ghan Railway, i took photo's whilst Vickie scoured the rubbish dumps looking through all the broken glass, she found a couple of old medicine bottles as souveneirs. We had plenty of firewood for the evening campfire with tons of old railway sleepers scattered about. We refilled the water tanks at Curdimurka Siding with fresh clean water for showering.
The F250 & Bushtracker traversed the track with no problems other than the flush mechanism of the Thetford toilet refusing to work, this was no problem as we were able to use the shower to flush the loo. At Alice Springs we managed to get into Heritage Caravan Park after trying 3 others which all were booked, we didn't know it but Peter the former Electrician at Bushtracker factory was working here and he gave me some pointers on what to check and between the both of us we determined one of the micro switches had failed, $63 for another switch and all is working again.
Fuel at William Creek & Oodnadatta was $1.89 per litre for diesel, at Maree i think it was $1.59.
We will stay in Alice 3 nights, catch up with Vickie's brother who works at the Pine Gap base and go to the Camel Races today, Monday we will head off to the West McDonnell Ranges and check out the attractions out that way for 8-10 days before coming back into town so Vickie can fly down to Adelaide for another eye treatment.
More photo's can be found here NIKNOFF