Red Centre - Erldunda and Uluru April 10 - 11 2018
  Another day. The exit from the geographic middle of Australia.
  Westwards towards Kulgera and the Stuart Highway.
  Through ever changing landscape.
  Across the new Ghan Railway.

What a change from the old.

Some ballast, some concrete sleepers, some welded track, and some nice fittings to hold rail to sleepers to replace the pegs that littered the road to Finke.


A granite outcrop between the rail line and the highway.


We turn north to Erldunda.

  We'll turn west at Erldunda, towards Uluru.

When we started Darwin was 3434 km north west of Brisbane. Now its only 1772 km north of us.

By the time we camp to the west of Uluru we will have driven 3,700 km. Average 280 km/day.

We will be slower from there on.

  In 1978 a depression like this was flooded after rain. We were driving in convoy with someone who looked like he knew what he was doing.

Somewhere in the bottom there was a huge pool of mud and water. And a couple of landcruisers that had tried to drive around it and were bogged.

We drove through the middle in our ex Sydney Taxi two speed automatic Holden.

Feeling very proud of ourselves, and thanks to the experienced guy we were following.

  We camped just off the road near Erldunda. After filling a diesel tank.

Mobile internet. A couple of phone calls about permits. More later ....

  Next morning, a bit of rain.

Enough to tell me I would have to crimp the new wiper blades to stop them sliding out of their fittings, a little bit at a time, a bit every wave.

  Past Mt Connor.

We've been this way previously.

  We stopped short of the entrance to Uluru National Park.

Mobile phone and internet and lunch.

Brilliant help from Permit Officers.

We already had permit for Northern Territory bits. Now we have permit for Ngaanyatjarra Land in WA to just past Jupiter Well on the Gary Junction Road. Also permit for remainder of Gary Junction Road with access at the end to the Pilbara through the Martu Native Title Area.

In the meantime we admired this UK registered (if I've read the tail number correctly) airship. Presumably used for tours.

Made by Lindstrand Technologies Ltd in Oswestry, UK. Registered in 2016 as a balloon with no engines. I guess its tethered. Like an upside down lift.

  The entrance to Uluru National Park.

We presented our permit, agreed we were "going straight through" and off we set. No entry fee.

  We tried closing our eyes. But the camera didn't understand.
  We opened eyes for long enough to find the turn off to the Olgas.
  And a left turn, westwards towards the Western Australia border.
  Once outside the park we stopped for the night. And looked back at the Olgas.
  Then set up the chairs to watch the changing light.
  The sun was behind a cloud, until the last minutes, when it emerged to turn the mountains red. Just like in the brochures.
  Even after the sun has dipped below the horizon there is light.

The mountains are 16 km away from us.

And as a bonus we have a mobile signal for internet from Yulara, 40 km due west.

We won't have any internet for the next couple of weeks. Just occasional use of satphone to send sms (hopefully not sos) with our position.

After 3,700 km we are about to begin.

Our route to the Pilbara (Newman) is Great Central Road -> Sandy Blight Road -> Gary Junction Road with a few fiddly bits at the end through Karlamilyi National Park.

Hopefully less than 100 km/day average rather than the 280 km/day average so far.

Western Deserts - Kaltukatjara and Bungabiddy April 12 - 13 2018

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