Day 5 - Idninha Creek to Arkaroola
We back tracked to Yadinna in the morning as an old track out to Old Illinawortina ruins starts out the back of the buildings. Once up a fairly rocky and rutted slope it was across the hills to the site of the ruin.
On the track to Old Illinawortina
Old Illinawortina ruin
The tenacity of those who tried to eke out a living in this rather isolated part of the Flinders is quite remarkable. From the ruin we followed a track that ultimately traced its way along the bed of Illinawortina Creek which still had some water in it.
The plan was to find a nice campsite in the Gammons and then head on into Arkaroola for a shower and feed that night.
So off through the creekbed we headed
Until we found a pleasant spot near some gums
After setting up camp we then had a somewhat bumpy ride over the creek boulders until we emerged at the old Bolla Bollana smelter which is about 7km from the Arkaroola Village. Having gone bush to choose our camp site the trick would be getting back to camp in the dark after maybe a beer (or 2). Isn’t that what a GPS is for?
Bolla Bollana Smelter
Paul and I have been visiting Arkaroola since the late 1970’s when we used to burn around on these things (notice the safety gear in vogue then?)
(here’s the same bike after some restoration 30+ years on!)
and we made ourselves famous at the place after a little mishap back in 1985 with Paul’s 40 series Landcruiser…
Since then we always make a habit of spending some time with the Doug Sprigg when he’s around (who has run the place with his sister Marg for many years since the passing of his parents). It’s interesting to note that amongst their many achievements the Sprigg family were the first people to make a motorised crossing of the Simpson Desert back in 1962 in a G60 Nissan Patrol when Doug was just a kid.
As is often the way, one story leads to another and the beers start sliding down very easily.
Just don’t try this at home (and yes Paul is a diabetic!)
After a few close calls we eventually made it back to camp in the dark.
Back at last! (not sure if Paul’s fallen asleep or the insulin has yet to kick in!)