Clayton Wetlands to Arkaroola

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July 13th 2006
Published: August 23rd 2006
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Sunrise in the morningSunrise in the morningSunrise in the morning

Shepherds Warning
Day 6 - Clayton Wetlands to Arkaroola

It was a bit windy when we made our camp the night before and there were the famous words from Luke "it will die down". Sadly it didn't, with the wind blowing a gale all night long. Luke and I were awake at 3am and were trying to wake Dad to pack up and go, however there was no budging him! We were up at 6, just as it was getting light to an amazing sunrise (although they do say red sky in the morning, shepherds warning).

There were a couple of sausages left of the BBQ overnight, in the morning they were encrusted with sand. We were in a sandstorm and sand was blowing everywhere. If you were to open your mouth you'd get a load of sand in the teeth. We packed up very quickly and headed over to the showers where we had the second shower of the trip before hurriedly moving off.

We drove to Maree where we filled up with diesel ($1.60 litre), as well as filling our stomachs.

Matt - 1 pie, $4
Dad - 1 karnsky and 1 pasty, $8
Esther - 1 pasty $4
Luke - 1 pie, 1 sausage roll, 1 pack of twisties and half of Dad’s pasty, $13.40

We then went to an old open cut coal mine near Leigh Creek and saw an old Titan mining truck, as well as the tyres they use. The one pictured broke a record for the type of tyre - managing to achieve 289,215 km in 17520 hours of service.

We made our way towards Leigh Creek where we stocked up at the supermarket (first one we’d seen since Broken Hill Adelaide Hills to Broken Hill). We heard over the radio that rain was forecast overnight so stopped in at the local petrol station to ask about the weather. They said that its quite windy so if it does rain it will soon dry up, and half the time they forecast rain and it never arrives. It hadn’t rained this year yet, so we took a punt and decided to travel to Arkaroola for the next day or two.

We made it to Arkaroola and soon went on the Mt Jacob four wheel drive track. Luke was at the wheel and loved every second of this track - it was great
Truck tyre at Leigh CreekTruck tyre at Leigh CreekTruck tyre at Leigh Creek

Bridgestone tyre at Leigh Creek open cut mine - the tyre did 289,215 km in 17520 hours of service - a record for this type of tyre.
4wd-ing with a few steep hills.

We found another track that had two “Road Closed” signs, however they had been knocked over & were strewn on the ground. We decided that the road must be open, but soon found ourselves tackling a hill that we got half way up, rounded a corner, saw the road had a big rut in it that the car wouldn’t cross and then had to reverse back down the hill.

We then visited the Bolla Bollana Springs just a few km out of Arkaroola. We saw a dead kangaroo and the springs were radioactive green and had a strong smell of sulphur. We then made our way back to Arkaroola when I felt the 4wd kept veering to the right. I’d let go of the wheel and we’d go straight away to the other side of the road! Luke was shouting abuse that I didn’t know how to drive a 4wd but we soon stopped and discovered we had a flat tyre. Before I knew what was happening the jack was out, front jacked up, spare tyre out, and the wheel swapped over. Luke loved it!

We went back along the Mt Jacob track and found the spot that Dad & Luke had camped at a couple of years earlier. There was plenty of firewood about and we had soon setup. We had (another!) BBQ and went to sleep knowing that there could be a light bit of rain overnight.

Distance today: 378 km
Total distance: 2576 km

Additional photos below
Photos: 10, Displayed: 10


Mt Jacob 4wd trackMt Jacob 4wd track
Mt Jacob 4wd track

The flat bits
Mt Jacob 4wd trackMt Jacob 4wd track
Mt Jacob 4wd track

The steep bits

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