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Tanami Track (part 1)

On our first night on the Tanami we stayed at Tilmouth Well, about 2 hours from Alice Springs on the Tanami Track. What a great little roadhouse this was, clean and good grounds right on the Napperby River (which is currently dry). We were surprised at how quiet it was there, only 3 other cars. We decided to have dinner and a beer in their restaurant and Shelly had a breakfast wrap the next day aswell, all of the food was great. Highly recommend a stop at this place if anyone is in the area, the owners are really friendly and helpful too.

There was also a little Staffy staying with one of the other guys, so she came over for a visit with us yesterday morning, what a cute little girl she was! So tiny compared to Gelly, but with just as much excitement, strength and cheekiness!

Speaking of cheeky puppies, the other night we checked our surveillance cameras at home and saw Charli sitting in the herb garden, after rewinding the footage we saw her break open the back gate and jump in the garden staring at the back door – willing it to open! This went on for at least 1/2 hour. How can one dog be so loveable, but so incredibly naughty! At least our housesitter said she doesn’t appear to be fretting too much this time ……. Of course Gelly couldnt care, as long as someone feeds her and gives her pats and tickles, she’s happy!

So yesterday and today saw us travelling along the Tanami Track. This road is basically a shortcut from the southern states to the Kimberley region of WA, rather than having to drive up via Katherine in NT. The road goes through some of the least populated country in Australia. It travels through the Tanami Desert and it’s very remote with nothing around. We’ve passed a few road trains and the odd 4WD, but we are going hours without seeing anyone.

The whole track from start to end is 1046km and there is one roadhouse (Tilmouth Well) at the beginning of the track on NT side. Other than that there is no camping areas (just need to find a spot off the side of the road) and no facilities (except the odd aboriginal community off the track that ‘may or may not’ have fuel and ‘may or may not’ be open!). So basically you need to ensure that you carry enough fuel and supplies to cover the distance.

Last night we camped on the side of the road. We found a fairly large area far enough off the road and we had the area to ourselves. We arrived at 4.30 pm and had no cars go past until 6pm. I think there would have been about 5 cars and a truck or two the whole time we were there, it’s certainly remote.

eating ice blocks at camp

George cooked us dinner last night on the Webber, we watched an awesome sunset and relaxed in the quietness.

The stars last night were unbelievable, they felt like they were raining down on us, like we could literally reach up and touch them. The Milky Way was so bright, a trillion little tiny stars. We’ve done a fair bit of outback travel and this is the biggest and brightest we’ve seen the stars …. I thought the night sky at Mutawintji was good, but this was so much better.

The video above is our campsite in the Tanami, so quiet and secluded.

Started off towards Halls Creek today, crossed the WA border and gained 1 1/2 hours! Roads are a lot more corrugated towards the WA end of the track, nowhere near as smooth as yesterday. Again, lots more rolled and/or burnt out cars and 4Wds on the side of the road … apparently this is where cars go to die!

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