We arrived in Alice Springs (AS), thongs and shorts on. We left AS, thongs off and trackie dacks back on, cause it was freezing!!
Something about the centre of Australia this time of year! It gets bloody cold. Not just Victorian cold, but Bloody cold! Below zero in some cases! So our brief encounter with the warmth lasted only a short time. Not to worry, we were off onto warmer climes anyways!
1st stop, Tropic of Capricorn! There is a marker just out of AS, and it is a roadside stop showing where and what the line is, which is the “Southern most point where the Sun can be directly overhead”. It moves every year apparently, so where it is now, is probably not where the marker was!! Dont matter! We stood there! Got the pics to prove it!
Next stop Barrow Creek. Now this is NOT Wolf Creek from the movie! It is however, the inspriration for John Jarretts brilliantly portrayed character Mick Taylor! (So is Ivan Milat to a certain extent, but you can look him up too! Needless to say, John Jarrett is Excellent in the movies. See them if you haven’t!)
If you dont know the history of Barrow Creek, then very briefly : a couple of English backpackers pulled over to “help” another driver in distress! Ended with said driver shooting the bloke, catching and tying up the girl, she then escapes and well, you can look up the rest!
There is no evidence of what transpired in or near this place. Was I disappointed in that? A little. But then, it is another morbid piece of Aussie folklore. Maybe it doesnt need a reminder.
The pub, or roadhouse, or servo, or whatever here is another interesting little piece of Aussie outback uniqueness! I love going into these places they make the trip in my opinion. For those of you who never think about doing it, I hope I inspire your curiousity enough to have a crack at at least one big Aussie drive!
The walls are covered in mementoes of peoples travelling through. Monetary notes with names signed on them, pictures, hats, stubbie holders all sorts of bits n bobs!! Awesome. You can spend hours in some of these places, but we dont have hours! We did however, add a 5 buck note to the collection! As you do!
So a quick beer, no glasses or schooners here, stubbies only mate! And nice and cold and refreshing! No stubby holders to buy here either, much to my disappointment, but the bloke behind the bar assures me “we might have some when you come back through mate! Hard to tell mate! Never sure what we’ll get out here mate!”
Next stop, and this wasnt a planned one, it was more a “driving past and WTF moment!” Wycliffe Well. Apparently Australias premium UFO spotting area! Not area 51 like the US! But they have certainly made the roadhouse here something to see! It was very amusing. We only had a quick look around here, as our time was limited, but I think this’ll be one to check out a bit more on the way home. I think I put some pics on facey?! Check em out!
Now up the road a bit from Wycliffe Well are some well known Aussie landmarks called “The Devils Marbles” or traditionally, “Karlu Karlu”. (When there’s lots of “things”, our traditional owners say it twice. More on that a bit later too.) Now Josh wasnt so excited to see these landmarks, reasons unknown! Until we got there! Oh WOW!
Sidenote here, it was a bit freaky actually, because we have had the iphone’s playlists on overload, mine for some reason every time it started played Steve Millers Abracadabra?! Go figure! But, and this is the clincher!! When we rocked into the Devils Marbles, guess what random, and they have been on random play the whole time, (Josh’s leaves a little to be desired, but oh well! He prolly thought the same of mine! Tough!) Anyways back to it….as we rock into the Devils Marbles, my iPhone starts to play The Rolling Stones Symphony For The Devil! We look at each other, this is just a bit creepy! We are only a few k’s from Australias premium UFO sighting centre, so maybe?! Who’ll know! I dont remember being abducted, but who knows?!
These “Marbles” are a sight to see. These are large, no, correct that, huge granitic rocks balanced on top of each other quite mysteriously! How they “hang” like they do is quite amazing. To the point where you think if you lean on them they have to roll off their perches!! Simply amazing and a sight to behold.
Now I mentioned Josh wasnt so interested in stopping here. Let me tell you he was amazed! They certainly were something to see. Very impressive. Especially in the middle of nowhere! We spent quite a bit of time here looking and checking out the “marbles”! Oh, and there was wifi out here too! Hahahaha!! Middle of BF nowhere, and there is a Wifi hotspot (maybe that’s the reason we stopped here for so long?! Hahahaha!!) Funny as! So we insta’d our pics and set off again! Still amazed at these Things in the middle of nowhere.
Next place we’re headed to is Tennant Creek for the night.
Arrving in Tennant Creek (TC), it is apparent on arrival that there is a fairly large indigenous population, this always keeps the kids amazed as they have never experienced our indigenous people so full on before. Well let me tell you TC does not let Josh down!
On arrival at the caravan park I am greeted by a very bubbly ex-sailor who is just delightful, if you get my drift! But a lovely bloke, who is more than happy to answer any questions I have about going to any of the “attractions” around town! Although he’s not too sure about my question when I say how about a pub to have a beer in?! This question is met with a look of “Really?! You want to drink in a pub here?! Fool!” But of course, I dont pick up on that do I?! Nope!
So Josh and I set up, and then head off on a lap of town. Doesn’t take too long, but a quick trip to the visitors centre, where we find out more info about the trip ahead than whats in TC, and then it’s into the main street for a hole in the wall bank, and then a beer in the Tennant Creek Hotel.
Now I can drink, as most of you know, and I can keep a pretty good pace if I need too. When we walked into the Tennant Creek Hotel, it became immediately apparent that we were in the wrong place. No, we weren’t the only white people in the pub, but we were the only “foreigners” in the pub. By foreigners I mean non local. There was another white dude in there, but he may as well have been black. (Lets face it, there is no other way to say it. And I am not being racist either. So from now on when required I will refer to our indigenous people as black if I see the need. It also makes a point about some of them. If you dont like it, PM me and we will debate the matter.)
And the barmaid, this was the ironic thing about it, she was a foreign white girl, small, young, attractive, blonde, with some kind of European accent, and she was treating us like we didn’t belong there! Now I’m not sure if we made her nervous, or whether idiot travellers like me have come to grief in here before, but she was noticably wary!
So we ordered a schooner, and a can of coke, and let me tell you thats the fastest schooner I have ever had in a pub in my life! Josh killed the can of coke too! (he was driving, thats why the coke and not beer!) And we were out of there! Claiming a beer at the Tennant Creek Hotel, but not a victory by any means! I would like to know whether there is “white” people time and “black” people time here, as there is in some other “shared” pubs, because this looked like a great pub to either a. drink in, or b. take a look at. As with most of these Outback pubs.
We killed a meal at the Tennant Creek “Memo”! The local Memorial club. Fantastic if you ever do go through that way and then spent a night in Tennant Creek caravan park which was entertaining too. With you being between town and the main settlement, lets just say there is lots of “traffic” up and down the street. And the locals certainly dont care about noise! But thats OK too.
BTW, Josh’s foot issues haven’t finished yet, theres more to come! Til next time, Happy travels, and keep on Pub crawling! I am! 😉