All sailors know that leaving port on a Friday is not a good idea, so to leave on a five month camping adventure on Friday 13th was always going to be asking for trouble. Fortunately for us, trouble just came in the form of some wild weather.
Travelling in convoy with Rosalie, Pam and Judy to Kimba for the Eyre Peninsula Camera Club Associations annual competition and exhibition, we had stops at Tumby Bay and Cleve to visit the Bakeries – well worth a stop. As we left Tumby Bay the wind started to pick up. At the board walk at Arno Bay there was not a bird in sight and it was blowing a gale. Arriving in Kimba the sky had turned dirt brown with dust blowing from farms that had not seen rain for many months.
We were lucky to find shelter for our camper behind a large shed at the Kimba Recreation Reserve, a fabulous free camp (donations are gratefully accepted, and why wouldn’t you). Opting against putting out the awning we tied down anything that might flap and went off to enjoy the weekends activities.
Kimba Silo Art
Bazz was pretty chuffed to pick up Champion Print for his photograph of the yacht Secret Men’s Business “Racing at Dawn”. Fran was awarded most points for the exhibition overall and we both did very well across a range of categories including landscape, black and white, portrait and creative to name a few.
Bazz with his winning print
The weekend was just fabulous as it always is in Kimba, drizzling rain at least cleared the dust and we were able to visit the local Historical Society, Kelly Hall, Whites Knob Lookout and a picnic area at Mosley Knobs.
Sculptures of Eyre and his companion
Exhibit at the Kimba Historical Society
Leaving Kimba on Monday morning we opted for the dirt road through to Kingoonya travelling through the scenic station country of the Gawler Ranges. Euro’s, Western Grey Kangaroos and Emu soon gave way to goats, sheep and cattle. The first part of the road through Thurlga to the junction with the Hiltaba Road was good but when the two roads merged the corrugations were very bad. We camped the night amongst the native pines and had a lovely bush camp and fire to our selves.
Goats are bring better prices than sheep
In the morning we travelled through gibber plains and across sand dunes past Kingoonya. Kingoonya was slightly less deserted than last time we passed but still looking very worse for wear. The pub is open but we didn’t venture in. A horse wandered unrestrained along the main street but there was no human presence visible.
Once on the bitumen just north of Glendamboo the scenery is much less interesting. The occasional roadside stop is generally littered with rubbish despite the bins. I think the Ravens are partly to blame as they get into the bins and spread the rubbish around. The moral of the story is take your rubbish with you.
We did see quite a few birds of prey feasting on the road kill. Mostly Wedge Tailed Eagles but an occasional Whistling Kite. At one stop with a tank there were hundreds of Zebra Finches that kept us entertained during a coffee break.
Wedge Tailed Eagle
Just north of Coober Pedy we stopped to visit the Breakaways and wished we were there at a better time of day. Had there been camping allowed it would have been tempting to stay for sunset.
Interestingly once we hit the Northern Territory Boarder the roadside parks were significantly cleaner. There were toilets every few stops, smaller bins that are obviously tended more often and generally a much nicer journey. Come on South Australia, time to take a look at our facilities.