Day four. Alice Springs - Three Ways Road House, Tennant Creek, Northern Territory, Hum of the Earth Crackle of the Sky Tour.

Alice Springs -  Three Ways Road House, Tennant Creek, Northern Territory (550 km) via National Highway A87 (Sturt Highway)


It did reach freezing overnight and it was cold, but we stayed warm in our sleeping bags. The hot water bottles still retained heat too in the morning when we woke up. Very cozy. The desert is a fickle place in terms of temperatures! Freezing at night and yet, before long the sun warms the day into a shorts and t-shirt climate! This makes Alice Springs attractive as a winter destination. It is cool enough to enjoy the scenic desert wonders, which abound in the central Australian region. Summer time here, on the other hand is hot. Very hot!


We don’t dally in Alice Springs except to stock up on supplies. We plan to spend more time here on our return and so we depart heading north again.


There is a short steep rugged scenic climb on the way out of town before the road straightens and levels. To our surprise, and in true Australian road fashion and style we see a large steel globe on the side of the road pierced with what appears to be an arrow pointing into the sky. It is firmly set into a monolithic faded red painted concrete block with a picture of a goat on it. It marks the Line of Capricorn, which we are now crossing!  The line is named for the position of the sun at the December solstice some centuries ago, when it actually was in the Capricorn constellation. Now however due to precession, the sun is actually in Sagittarius at the December solstice! In any case, the line also represents a transition from temperate to tropical climates. Not only are we moving deeper into the Northern Territory, it is now becoming distinctly warmer and more tropical. In a few weeks, when we arrive in Exmouth, Western Australia to explore the Ningaloo coral reef we will find ourselves almost back on the Line of Capricorn, only some few thousand kilometres further west and on the far western coast of Australia! I miss a photo opportunity here to showcase my Silk Dreams Solaris prints as well as my Apollo Man silk dress shirts, which include a custom zodiac print in stunning cobalt blue with golden zodiac symbols emblazoned across it, including Capricorn, Scorpius and others! The lonely desert scrub setting on the side of the highway even if it is a significant astronomical point on the planet is not quite right for a photo shoot. On the other hand, the celestial beauty of a full moon, as well as a blood red total lunar eclipse on the tropical coast of the Kimberly’s in Western Australia may just be the perfect place for an exotic Kaliopi Eleni and Silk Dreams photo shoot opportunity! 


We drive on and pass the Devil’s Marbles also known as Karlu Karlu. A sacred site and very beautiful. We have been here before and so today do not stop. We are on a mission!


Before long we reach the gold mining town of Tenant Creek. Despite the tremendous wealth pulled from the earth over the years and, which continues today, you would not know it by the appearance of the buildings and streets. The town is almost a disgrace and I feel embarrassed to be Australian. Where has all the wealth gone, I wonder? It certainly does not appear to have been turned back into the local community. The Territory and Federal governments have work to do here, it seems obvious. It’s not the only mining town we experience the display of disparity in wealth in! For the outback is rich with minerals and fashionable jewels as we will soon discover!


There is no incentive for us to stay in Tennant Creek and so we drive a little further to the Three Ways Road House, no more scenic, but at least it’s quiet. The late afternoon sun is hot now, there is no concern about the night being cold at all! It’s amazing how quickly the climate and environment have changed in just a few hundred kilometres! We definitely feel the remoteness of the out back here! The road house is rustic, but it does have informative displays of the history of the region telling the story of settlement and the origins of the rich agricultural history of cattle grazing. We are now entering serious cattle country, famed for the cattle drover’s lifestyle and where many famous Australian stock routes criss-cross the arid outback regions. There is little mention of the Indigenous people here!


We make camp and what’s lacking in scenery during the day is more than made up for at night with another crackling star-studded vista stretched out before us. We sip wine and soak in the view before retiring to bed. Tomorrow we will attempt a bush short cut via the Buchanan Highway. Our first taste of an outback dirt track. We are not far now from the West Australian boarder, Kununurra and the Kimberly’s and we go to sleep in anticipation of tomorrow!


Kaliopi Eleni

Luxury Designer, Actor, Adventurer!

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published