The beautiful desert landscape.
The long red road.
I’d forgotten just how much those flies can drive you crazy in the Outback. But it didn’t take long to remember how persistently annoying they are. As soon as I stepped outside the car, flies by the million would be trying to work their way into my nose, ears, eyes, mouth and wherever else they could find an entry point. Those persistent pests were relentlessly landing on the new scab on my leg, digging at it, making me want to yell in frustration.
So I broke down and got one of those crazy tourist fly nets to put over my hat. I felt ridiculous. But I was so happy to not be battling the flies on my face at least. It may now be my most favorite Outback accessory.
As much as the flies make me nuts, I love the Outback. It’s become a bit of a tradition for Robert and I to spend some time in the middle of nowhere while we are in Australia and this trip was no exception. This time, we flew into Alice Springs, hired a 4WD truck and hit the dirt roads. As we’ve been to Uluru before, we wanted to go somewhere different and get off the usual tourist track. Taking the Ernest Giles Road from Kings Canyon to the Stuart Highway fit the bill perfectly.
The road is 100 kilometers of some of the reddest dirt and sand dunes I’ve ever seen. We did not pass or see one other car, but we kicked up our own cloud of dust as we traversed this often very rough and corrugated road. We did see a few camels, and my hands got sweaty more than once as we made our way across the rutted and often sandy road. It was just what we were looking for in terms of getting away from it all.
Watch out for camels, gravel and the slippery road.
The best tourist souvenir ever?