I wanted to do a blog purely on camping out. Mainly because we usually use the freecamps, National Parks and Forestry’s when we can and this is the true and traditional Aussie camping out experience. This is a choice of ours and a clear preference of many, although we do have a holiday every now and then in a holiday park… or caravan park, like everyone else who uses occasionally or actually prefer these ‘plug in’ settings every now and then.
It’s the beginning of the Dry in the Top End, it’s the edge of winter and the weather is divine. Litchfield is gunna be crowded! Knowing this is the season for the tourist in the Top End, knowing already that people are out and about, and knowing that Litchfield is a short 100 klm from Darwin and a renown tropical savannah of considerable fame, we were expecting crowds. We however had a plan.
Certainly there were crowds. The primary tourist camp in Litchfield is Wangi Falls and it is a lovely well serviced camp but it is not the experience we are looking for. Walkers Creek, also a popular camp and exceptionally pretty, is designed for walkers and back packers… you carry your gear to your camp but the beauty of the water and surroundings is exceptional. Florence Falls are also lovey with a spectacular waterfall and plunge pool that is much loved.
The Savannah Way is made up of many alternative routes, from the tame tar to the corrugated tracks. It has many pitfalls, from crocodile infested rivers to deep bull dust holes hidden in the track and the endless trial of corrugated roads on the Development roads. The Way stretches from Cairns to Broome but the later part in WA has been tamed mostly to tar as has the stretch from Cairns to Chillagoe… in between remains the dusty Development roads for which the Savannah Way gained its reputation.
We have travelled vast distances in the last few days, across The Top End, headed to a pre-arranged rendezvous. We are travelling fast, sleeping under the stars in the swag at night and settling up for longer breaks in the tough little camper trailer. In places we are revelling spotlighting for croc’s, enjoying the birdlife, the dancing brolga’s and breathtakingly majestic eagles feasting on varied offerings of varied road-kill on these dusty Outback roads of the Channel Country in the Carpentaria’s Gulf. We have been enjoying the wildlife along the dusty tracks, the wallabies, emu and so many others along with the fattened cattle healthy from the lingering Wet season… the Stations are preparing to muster.
In a landscape that sits quiet and still within the vastness of a singular horizon, when you come across such a striking natural feature as the Devils Marbles it is no wonder that the old Aboriginal tribal people as well as Aussies today, found much to be amazed with. In the Central desert and vast savannah country of the Northern Territory in the red heart of Australia, you find a truly wonderful landscape. The photo is deceptive… there a hundreds if not thousands of these clusters of marbles scattered within the bowl of their creation.
We are camped up near Tenant Creek in the Northern Territory having crossed the border along the ‘Overlanders Way’, a long and lonely stretch of tar that is the world of the vast grasslands and savannah of the Australian Outback or otherwise known as The Top End. We took a left at the Three Ways, coming in from Queensland and here you either turn left into the heart of the country onto Alice Springs and Adelaide, or right into Kakadu on the way to Katherine and Darwin. The roads are good and as a local has said… “So they should be. NT only has two.” Continue reading
But there are other bits to crocodiles à la carte such as feet, claws intact. Having given it some consideration I decided on pickling them along with some vegies and spices. I hate to waste anything! If a lizard has given up its life to me … then the least I can do is show it the utmost respect and eat the lot.
People of the rock, the Mimi are a spirit people of Australian Aboriginal Lore. They bought to Man the knowledge of painting as well as cooking and showed man how to harness fire. Fire is a purely physical need. It is the need for warmth and an instrument of physical comfort and survival. I first heard of the Mimi in childhood legends and was fascinated at the tales that could be found only in campfire Lore.
While trying to uncover the secrets of the Mimi People in my research there were things, which I had to understand that were intrinsic to their natures. Firstly they dwelt where many men can’t go and they were a mischievous people. It is said they live in the rocks, or between the rocks, as they are a tall and fragile people who are so fine in appearance that they ‘waver in the wind’.
Travelling into croc’ country has its advantages, amongst these is rather than the croc’ eating you, you get to make a meal of him. Having recently returned from Far North Queensland where crocodiles abound the souvenir I came back with was a croc’ … One perfectly dead and frozen in my hand luggage.
Now I know to some of you this may sound a tad weird but I was so hoping the search and destroy guy at the security check-in was gunna search. It didn’t happen but the frozen croc did last the two-hour flight, this after it had been dissected within an inch of its life and processed to eatable portions.