NT Rally - Day 4 - Coober Pedy
Category: H.O.G. Rides
It's only taken 4 days but I'm finally about to ride on roads untravelled. I have wanted to ride up the centre since seeing the turn off on my trip to Perth back in '09. Well, today was my day and the rain had cleared to reveal a perfect day. I'm still struggling mentally but these long days are really helping. After a few hours on the road the mess fades away and my peace returns, which can only be good.
Before leaving we noticed a dawn service being held across the road from the motel so some of us stood quietly and paid our respects. I haven't missed a dawn service for over 10 years and I'm pleased I was able to stand for one this morning.
It wasn't long after leaving Port Augusta that the city turned into the red centre. Quite surprisingly it was very green. I assume this is due to the large amount of recent rain and good rain for the last couple years. It was all simply stunning. We literally saw no wildlife at all, which was good because I'm told the big red Kangaroos can get enormous out here. A little further along we saw an incredible lake. It literally came out of nowhere.
The biggest change now is every servo is dirt and has room for lots of road trains. Also, the servo is the pub, the camp ground, the motel, the cafe and whatever else it needs to be as there is nothing for a couple hundred kilometres in each direction. Each fuel stop we started to see more and more bikes heading north, presumably for the rally.
We arrived at Coober Pedy mid-afternoon. At first I was a little taken aback by how much of a shanty town this place is. You could see all the mines on the way into town, which was pretty cool but man was this place a ghost town and not a blade of grass in sight!
I was super excited about checking into the motel here as it is literally underground. They cut the front off a hill off and drilled into it several stories down. It's quite remarkable to see. The rooms themselves are all sandstone with an air ventilation tunnel that goes up to the surface. No air conditioning required as the rooms reach a low of 21 degrees in winter and a high of 25 degrees in summer. All the while the ambient is anywhere from low single digits to high 40's!
After a few beers it was time for a walk down the local pizza joint where we all sat as a club and pigged in. The pizza was awesome as was chatting with everyone. Not long after it was time to hit the sack as I was up early for a bus tour around the place so it's goodnight for me.