Days on the Road 12

Our second day in Alice Springs (Saturday, August 5). A town I read about as a child, and later in Neville Shute’s A Town Like Alice (and the original movie of 1956 starring Peter Finch). It is a diverse town, multicultural, and with a strong indigenous presence, smack in the middle of nowhere. Yet there’s a lot going on. Today was a day to soak up history and nature. This morning we went out to see the National Road Transport Hall of Fame and Geoff got to see a truck he’d worked with from Western Australia. 8 acres of Australian vehicle history, which included the weird and the strange. We went over to see the Old Ghan Railway engines (we paid to get into the Hall of Fame, then discovered it was a seperate fee to get into the Ghan Museum).

I took this from the gate, a stream engine in preservation originally used on the old Ghan line.

At noon we headed to Desert Park, a native fauna and flora park well worth a return visit. We thoroughly enjoyed several themed sections, desert sands, woodlands, river, nocturnal. We also took in a live raptor and native bird display and talk. Desert Park is one of the best places I’ve been to learn about and enjoy our native fauna and flora.

This shot is of a male Australian Bustard. It is not on the endangered list yet, but will probably end up there. It is a shy bird and not often seen in the wild. I was privileged to see a small flock near Cascades in 2008, and managed to film them taking flight.

After a day of tramping around we had and an early dinner, and began the sad process of preparing to say goodbye to out dear friends and travelling companions Geoff and Su. Tomorrow we go our separate ways, Lyn and I head to Coober Pedy and Geoff and Sue east of Alice.

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