Day 3 Mystery Box Rally – Getting There - Eucla to Streaky Bay 16 October 2018

Wednesday, Oct 17, 2018 at 05:00

Peter Beard (WA)

Blue sky in the west but unrelieved grey in the east greeted Pete and Ali in Eucla. An early start today given the time shift between WA and SA - two and a half hours takes a big chunk out of the day when there are 600km to traverse. At least it started on the back of a good night’s sleep. Ali booked two rooms far apart so the snoring caused by her head cold did not disturb Pete. Not sure about the neighbours either side, though. Hopefully the walls were thick enough to dull the impact.

A strong tail wind once again propelled Henry east, the brilliant deep blue ocean ruffled with soft white caps. Nullarbor Roadhouse loomed quickly, Pete and Ali stopped for a coffee and photo opportunity of Henry in front of the fibreglass whale then it was back on the road across the Nullarbor proper.

The treeless plain is fairly narrow at this southern end. It is about 270km between Nullarbor Roadhouse and Yalata and only about 200km of it is treeless. Further north the plain stretches wide. Nearer the coast the trees start again with the rolling hills not far out of Yalata. And what wonderful trees they are! Red bark, white trunks, straight limbed mallees scrabbling for survival in a harsh environment. They fill the valleys with their dark green foliage, a welcome sight after flat nothingness all the way from Norseman.

Not far out of Yalata the first farms appear, stretching as far as the eye can see along the famous Goyder Line.Nundroo is the first outpost, followed by Penong - where Pete filled up Henry - then Ceduna, the first real civilisation in 1,200km, and that’s civilisation in the loosest possible sense. Pete and Ali quickly passed through the fruit fly checkpoint and equally quickly passed through Ceduna, preferring to undertake the additional 100km stretch down to Streaky Bay, a veritable oasis on the Eyre Peninsular.

Happily ensconced in the front bar with a view of the ocean and jetty, Pete and Ali are catching up on social media, some well-deserved beers and a seafood themed dinner - oysters Kilpatrick followed by King George whiting. The three long haul days are over.

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