Well, I hardly slept a wink. I guess a lot of people in my dorm were heading for the 4:45am airport bus as several alarms went off and the rustling of packing bags occurred around 4am. Just great. Especially as I had to be up at 6am to be collected by my tour bus.
As through the Outback, I was to be travelling with Adventure Tours Australia. Sat outside the Cathedral were a handful of other people who I’d get to know quite well over the next few days! Matt was to be our driver/guide for the trip and, as with all the ATA staff before him, made us all feel very welcome from the off.
Our first day was to involve a lot of driving. After a short stopoff for snacks and registration at the local office, we started the long ride to the west coast. We stopped off at the Mount Field National Park to look at some trees – tall ones. Very tall ones. And some wallabies that were a little nervous.
We stopped a few times more along the road for some spectacular views, waterfalls and suchlike. Our final stop before reaching “base camp” was Queenstown where we hoped to supply ourselves with cheap snacks and beer. Only the power was out to the entire town. We finally got some food, though, and drove the last short stretch to the Tullah Lakeside Chalet.
The accommodation was great with friendly staff, good food, hot showers and a resident stray dog that stuck to our group like glue. As in Queenstown, though, a thunderstorm caused a power cut so we ate our dinner by candlelight! I had two helpings, courtesy of a travelling companion who wasn’t hungry.