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Cattle Pool, Mt Augustus National Park: those No Camping signs only refer to caravans, right?

16 September 2011 | 31 km | zzOz total: 4,648 km

My friends will not be surprised that I’ve become a grouch out here and don’t, for the moment, want to talk to, or even see, anybody else. What’s changed? might be the question.

I’ll start being social again in civilisation, ie, Meekatharra, (you may not appreciate that little joke), or, with any single woman travelling out here, which ever comes first.

Day 8 since I left Exmouth and my shirts are a little grubby, the water has a salty tinge and the road is just a little sandy to be a complete pleasure to trundle along.

Other than that I’m quite enjoying the isolation and solitude.

Can’t really complain about the people, two cars went by yesterday, early morning, leaving me in the dust and my only human contact for the day was rolling into Cobra Station, it’s right on the road and has a licensed pub, where two off-road campers had set up camp. I went and spoke to the bloke about staying the night, he was slightly grubbier than me, ie, almost shambolic, and he looked me up and down, probably heard of the cyclist heading his way, before giving me a curt “$15”. I guess I’ll be on my way then, I replied, I couldn’t come up with a reason to stay, other than a shower, and noise of a generator humming away, and conversation with undoubtedly nice people.

For a host of reasons I just hopped back on my bike, it was almost 4pm and my favourite hour of riding time, the sun’s down not long after 6pm, and chugged off.

An hour later I pulled off the road at one of the only rock free zones I’d spotted and put the tent up. Instead of conversation about my means of transportation I watched as the sun went down and Mt Augustus, now only 25km away, slowly changed colour.

Very quiet, just what was looking for.

I’m not ready to share my thoughts on this area yet.

I haven’t managed comprehension of the vastness, the emptiness and the beauty of it all.