June 27, 2013

Distance today = 52.05 km; Total distance = 22,206.57 km; Location = Fraser Range (27 km east of) – 32 04.545’ S, 123 04.398′ E; Start time = 0755, Finish time = 1601



Sorry about yesterday’s missing blog, but that’s par for the course in these parts. We are currently on a 150 km strip of road with no phone reception and no internet, and have been completely out of contact since yesterday morning. I only just found out the State of Origin result, and that we have new Prime Minister.

We’re staying tonight on a sheep station that provides camping and accommodation, and the manager has kindly allowed me to use the farm’s computer to do my work. Unfortunately, there may be other times in the future when you will find no daily report, but it is usually impossible for me to know where this might be ahead of time. The lack of phone reception also means the tracker is not updating at the moment.

The past two days have seen more of the same, with lots of trees and no signs of civilization along the road at all – no towns, no petrol stations, no shops, no houses. The roads are mind-numbingly straight for long stretches, and the traffic is relatively sparse – now down to about one vehicle every three minutes on average.

There was a minor drama today. Carmel has been doing food and drink drops along the course, and I pick these up as I reach the designated locations. This allows her to do various other things during the day, instead of just sitting by the side of the road. It has worked well so far. However, today I reached a spot, only to find that some animal had attacked both the food and drink. Carmel had poured the drink into a zip-lock plastic bag, so that I didn’t have to carry an empty bottle when I’d finished it (I never discard any rubbish, other than in official garbage bins, and the plastic bag can be folded up and placed in my pouch). The animal – and I suspect it was a large bird – had clawed and gnawed through two plastic zip-locks, and had also ripped through the wrapper of a yoghurt-topped muesli bar and consumed the lot. I later found out that a similar thing had happened to a drink Carmel had left a few kilometres back. We might have to put hidden cameras out to catch the culprits.

About the only other excitement for the day was when a brand new Winnebago drove past, the size of a bus, towing a matching trailer that was as big as a caravan. I can only imagine how much that cost. As I said, there’s not much happening along the road.