Laurie Ford's Outback Australia

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Googs Track and beyond - Sept/October 2008

Having spent some of the winter in the USA (their summer) and doing some fairly quiet kayaking, Elli and I were having Outback withdrawal symptons. A look at the maps showed a track straight north from Ceduna, across the sand dunes - supposed to be very like the Simpson Desert, but quite a bit shorter. We haven't done a lot of desert driving so thought this would be a good test out.
The plan was to go up Googs Track, across through Olympic Dam to Marree, up the Birdsville track, and back down the Strzelecki track to Cameron Corner, and down through Menindie to Balranald and home. Incidentally I came across this brilliant poem by John Russell about the Outback at Windorah Visitors Centre.

Hobart to Googs      Kingoonya to Dig Tree      Innaminka to Murray River

Alice Springs back to Hobart, August 2007 (with young Mitchell Tappan)

Elli and her grandson Mitchell flew into Alice Springs after a walking trip along the Great Wall of China (with World Expeditions). The idea was to show Mitchell a little of the Australian Outback before he returned to the USA. He is no stranger to camping, having camped with us on kayaking trips on the coast of Maine. I'd brought along our small hiking tent for him to use, when we weren't staying in motels etc.

Alice to Boggy Hole    Boggy Hole to Ayers Rock     Ayers Rock to Dalhousie      Dalhousie to Coober Pedy
Coober Pedy to Parachilna Gorge  Parachilna to Echuca     Echuca to Tasmania

West Australia - Sept, October, November - 2006

Our route wandered about a bit. After the Veterans Hockey Championships in Perth we headed out to Hyden and then up the Holland Track to Kalgoorlie, north to Menzies, then cross very back roads, west, to Mt Magnet, Murchison, and Gascoyne Junction. After that it was east to Meekathara, Sandstone, Leinster, Lake Wells, Carnegie Station. Then west again to Wiluna, a short excursion up the Canning Stock Route, then south to Leonora - ready to head off along the Anne Beadell Track (Highway?) to Coober Pedy. Every part of the trip was a highlight, and we bought a great painting at the Tjukurba Art Gallery at Wiluna - this is really worth visiting (in the lovely old restored Shire Complex).

Kennedy Range.    Gassy Dash.      A few camp spots.     Some different sights along the way.   70km of the Canning Stock Route    Anne Beadell Highway

Some of the roads/tracks.   A little of the Flora.    A few general pictures.     Some lightning from one of the many storms.

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