Cycling The Globe

A Cycle Touring Expedition Around The World

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Day 411 – 414: Raindrops over Uluru

Posted by Thomas Andersen Posted on Mar - 21 - 2012

It felt like I had just arrived in Alice Springs, but when I one day checked the calendar I realized I had been in town for 3 months. Time passes fast when you are working hard. After 3 months without leaving the city limits it was time to go explore the surroundings.

Together with Kay from Hong Kong and Josh from Colorado we had planned a road trip to Uluru some 500 km south (around the corner in Outback terms). We happened to know a guy in the car rental company, so even though we had payed for the smallest car available we got a free upgrade and drove away with this.

“Stay in the left side of the road and watch out for kangaroos, wild horses, and camels at night” were our friend’s last words before we headed out of town. Even though I have cycled more than 10000 km in the left side of the road I had never actually been driving a car in the “wrong” side. It turned out to be easier than I would have though. I still love cycling, but boy did it feel nice to be driving a car again after so long time.

Our camp site for the night was also a small zoo.

As Josh was about to leave Australia he decided to burn his Lonely Planet guide as a symbolic act. No, he didn’t like the country: “Australia is just like the United States but more racist” as he said. Personally I don’t agree. I love Australia.

Next morning we reached the famous Rock. “Mother Australia” might have been upset about the book burnings last night as the weather suddenly turned bad.

15°C and rain might seem quite normal for a November day in the Northern Hemisphere, but for central Australia that is very extreme. In the days leading up to our departure we had 40 degrees in Alice Springs and we hadn’t seen rain for the last two months.

On the positive side, not many people get to see Uluru in rain. After driving around the Rock we went to the Olgas. Pictures only capture so much. In reality this place felt out of this world.

Yes, we were freezing…

In the night the rain continued so we skipped putting up the tent and had a party in the car. Fun times! The next morning we were heading back to working life in Alice Springs. As we entered the city the usual clear blue color had returned to the sky and the temperature was climbing to 35°C.

Categories: Australia
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One Response so far.

  1. Wow. That weather just makes it even more surreal, in a way!