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The Nullarbor Plains

Happy Birthday to Me!

It was many years ago when I crossed the Nullarbor Plains and all I remember was the corrugated road and the dust. We travelled with a caravan and I had just got my licence, so my parents let me help with the driving. Not too much to see from what I remember. It was a long and dusty journey and no bitumen most of the way.

Null-arbor is a latin word meaning 'no trees'. This was far from the truth. Again semi-arid country with bushes/trees/plants/flowers that survive very well in this climate. Even though it was a 1200 kms journey (from Norseman to Ceduna), it was interesting and very unique. Lots of eucalypt trees as well and a lot of dead ones also. See map at end of blog.
dead eucalypt trees

dead eucalypt trees


The only part that had no trees was over the SA border where there is a small section of plains with just grass and scrub.
start of the long journey over the Nullarbor

start of the long journey over the Nullarbor


There are stops every 200-250 kms for fuel and caravan parks at the back of a roadhouse. Our first roadhouse, Balladonia, had a small museum with piece of space junk from the NASA Skylab that fell out of the sky onto this guys property. President Carter even phoned the guy to apologise for this. Also a tribute to the camels/Afghanis who brought them to our country.
space junk from NASA skylab

space junk from NASA skylab

museum honouring the camels and Afghans used for transport in the Nullarbor

museum honouring the camels and Afghans used for transport in the Nullarbor


On the long road every now and then we came across this sign and the road becomes a 'runway'.
one of the many Royal Flying Doctor Service landing strips on the hwy

one of the many Royal Flying Doctor Service landing strips on the hwy

Royal Flying Doctor landing strip - on our road!

Royal Flying Doctor landing strip - on our road!


Thank you everyone for the birthday wishes. For my birthday we stayed at a roadhouse called Caiguna. I cooked dinner on the promise that I would get a meal the next day. It was windy and cold and I loved it. What was more interesting was the farmer that had called in to the roadhouse to buy some fuel. $1400 later he left - check out his mode of transport.
farmer taking off in a museum relic??

farmer taking off in a museum relic??


The caravan park became one big dust bowl as a result. Most of these places only have about 5-10 people staying in the park (if that). Sunset was beautiful out in the middle of nowhere and lots of stars under a very clear sky.
sunset at Caiguna

sunset at Caiguna

Caiguna roadhouse/caravan park

Caiguna roadhouse/caravan park


The sign on the toilet door was also very interesting. Needless to say I was very watchful and wore my crocs most of the time. The floor of the ablution block didn't help to detect these unwanted reptiles!
what a sign to the loo

what a sign to the loo

could you see a snake on this floor?

could you see a snake on this floor?


My birthday meal was spent at Caiguna also. This sign says it all. I believe it is a tribe that is lost - preceded by the words 'where the ..'
what tribe was that?

what tribe was that?


Mmm, my favourite meal of the day!
happy birthday to me breakfast

happy birthday to me breakfast


The signs were also interesting and of course there was a lot of road kill to remind us. All we saw were the kangaroos. Was hoping to see a camel.

signs in WA

signs in WA


We also pulled into another roadhouse for fuel and this is what happened to a poor unfortunate driver after hitting a kangaroo. What would the towing bill have cost? Hope they had insurance.
car being towed after hitting a kangaroo

car being towed after hitting a kangaroo


We also had lunch with a beautiful view of the plains from an escarpment.
view of the Nullarbor from the escarpment

view of the Nullarbor from the escarpment

Nullarbor Plains - lunch stop

Nullarbor Plains - lunch stop


Along the way we also saw the most unusual trees. Unfortunately we couldn't stop for them all. There were also bras/panties trees, glove trees, Christmas trees and big fluffy toys trees.
shoe tree

shoe tree

shoes tree

shoes tree

pots/pans/bottles and junk tree

pots/pans/bottles and junk tree

underpants tree

underpants tree

toys tree

toys tree


It was a long road but all bitumen. Most of the users of the Eyre Highway are nomads like ourselves and huge semis transporting goods. It is not a lonely highway at all.
Eyre Highway - the long road to SA

Eyre Highway - the long road to SA

our lonely motorhome

our lonely motorhome

are we there yet?

are we there yet?

heaps of semis on the highway

heaps of semis on the highway

fellow nomads sharing the road

fellow nomads sharing the road

We arrived and stayed the night at Eucla. Eucla is a small town near the WA border. The views were awesome - overlooking the plains and the ocean. You could also see the Eyre Hwy and the transport on it. The toilet facilities were very clean and we even got beautiful rainwater which made my hair look and feel really nice. Even the TV stations worked here. I also had some resident roosters and hens visiting our campsite.
are we on a farm - Eucla caravan park

are we on a farm - Eucla caravan park

rooster singing happy birthday to me

rooster singing happy birthday to me


We also got closer to the dunes and there was an old telegraph station there which has been covered by sand over the years.
old telegraph station covered in sand

old telegraph station covered in sand


You could see our campsite at the top of the escarpment. looking at the escarpment at our caravan park at Eucla

looking at the escarpment at our caravan park at Eucla


welcome to Eucla - check out the kms to Perth and Adelaide

welcome to Eucla - check out the kms to Perth and Adelaide

view from our caravan park at Eucla - Great Australian Bight

view from our caravan park at Eucla - Great Australian Bight

view from caravan park at Eucla

view from caravan park at Eucla

overlooking the Eyre Highway

overlooking the Eyre Highway


Finally we had reached the WA/SA border. We were required to toss out all our vegies and fruits. WA do this at their borders but SA were going to check our van at Ceduna which was about 480 kms away. We had to eat it up or throw it out. We also lost 2.5 hours at the crossing. SA have daylight saving. This now brings us half an hour ahead of Brisbane. The signs changed slightly - the emu is now a wombat!
farewell 3 months in WA

farewell 3 months in WA

welcome to SA

welcome to SA

changed signs - do the animals have wings here?

changed signs - do the animals have wings here?


At this stage the highway has changed from many years ago. It used to be further inland but now they have moved it closer to the ocean views. You can see the Great Australian Bight. The views were stunning as were the signs.
birthday girl

birthday girl

Great Australian Bight

Great Australian Bight


You are always thinking about a chunk of land breaking away - possibly the chunk you are standing on. There are certainly a lot of signs to remind you of the treacherous cliffs.
husband looking at views - is this where I think about pushing him over to claim insurance??

husband looking at views - is this where I think about pushing him over to claim insurance??

reminder sign

reminder sign

ominous sign

ominous sign

another ominous sign

another ominous sign


You can also free camp with these beautiful views.
free camping with beautiful view of Great Aust Bight

free camping with beautiful view of Great Aust Bight


There are still plenty of beautiful heathlands along the cliffs.
cliffs of the Great Australian Bight

cliffs of the Great Australian Bight

the dunes, heaths going to the ocean

the dunes, heaths going to the ocean

heathlands on the Nullarbor

heathlands on the Nullarbor


It is also possible to play golf on the Nullarbor. It is the longest golf course in the world - about 1400 kms. It starts at Kalgoorlie and finishes at Ceduna. The idea is that you play 1-2 holes at each stop/roadhouse.
golf course on the Nullarbor

golf course on the Nullarbor


I also found another unusual sign. Had they put the emu back into the picture!
emu legs

emu legs


Another interesting thing was transporting of the huge loaders - they would be going to the ' gold Superpit' at Kalgoorlie. They are worth 2.5 million dollars.
2.5 million loader!

2.5 million loader!


Perth to Adelaide including Nullarbor Plains (Eyre Hwy)

Perth to Adelaide including Nullarbor Plains (Eyre Hwy)

Eucla is on the border of WA, 12 kms from Border Village in SA.

And that was how I spent my birthday this year. Really exciting and loved every minute of it.

Posted by blondnomad 02:10 Archived in Australia Tagged roads

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Comments

Another brilliant blog entry! I almost feel as though I'm there with you. Except that it's snowing outside here in Birmingham UK! The white stuff on the cliff tops at your end of the world is not snow I'm sure.

HB2U! What is it? 21 now?

John Greenaway

by John Greenaway

Happy Birthday for the 19th Nicky. How beautiful is the view from the cliff tops overlooking the Great Australian Bight. I could almost feel the breeze on my face looking at that photo.

Marianne

by Marianne

Belated Happy Birthday. Your blogs have been so descriptive. Some good news. Signing the contract for the sale of the Country Property tomorrow, keep fingers crossed. Also get the new Disco from Sean on Wednesday. We have so enjoyed your blogs and We cannot wait to start travelling next year once the schools are back. Keep safe

by Mike and Marilyn

S.orry I have not been good with the correspondence. This bloody connection costs 75pounds for 250 minutes. Great to hear from you. Lovin' your blogs and photos

by Beryl Barrett

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