All but Patrick were up early to watch the sunrise over marbles; Tom disappeared off taking photos…
… so Sam, Ben and I took our own.
Today we did another long drive (just over 400km) south on the Stuart, this time with a couple of little stops. Wycliffe Well was a super quick one; there have been many UFO sightings here. It is said to be on a cross section of ley, or energy lines meaning any UFOs flying around will pass over here. I think it is because there is nothing around here that people are so bored they need to make stuff up to attract people here, but from what I can see even that has not worked. But then again we stopped…. but not for long.
The next stop was much better, Barrow Creek Overland Telegraph Station. The site was chosen in 1871, and is located midway between the towns of Alice Springs and Tennant Creek. It was one of twelve original repeater stations between Adelaide and Port Darwin. The Overland Telegraph Line opened in 1872, and appears to be the reason many of the towns along the Stuart Highway were first established.
The Barrow Creek Station operated relatively unchanged until 1935 after that date it played various other roles in communication until in 1980 the microwave telecommunications link replaced the telephone carrier wave system making the Barrow Creek Telegraph Station redundant.
We passed the Tropic of Capricorn so are now officially out of the tropics. It really is not as exciting as standing on the equator. Stopping at a mango farm and vineyard, in the middle of Australia, was a bit more interesting. The farm gets water from the Great Australian Artesian basin.
In the mid afternoon we arrived in Alice Springs and fortunately the weather has improved and most of the rain has passed. At the caravan park everyone was drying tuff out, 40mm fell yesterday and we were told the temperature did not hit double figures. Needless to say, we are checking the forecast and radar regularly. We also found out that due to this rain a few of the roads that we want to drive on are closed. We do not need to for about a week so hopefully the forecasted hot weather comes and the rain stays away.
Our friends the Foxes have been here for a few days so we went around to say hello. No one home so we left a calling card by turning all their chairs upside down.
Music – We are choosing what to listen to by artists in alphabetical order and they have to be artists we have not listened to yet. A = Adele, B = Ben Folds Five, C = The Cure, D = Del Amitri, E = The Eagles, F = The Funky Lowlives, G = Groove Armada, H = Harry Connick Jr