This morning I woke in a state of panic… on the roof I could hear what sounded like rain… the skies were clear last night surely this cannot be rain. After trying to kick start my brain into a functional capacity and listening carefully, I confirmed it was indeed rain, very scattered, very spasmodic but rain none the less.

The thought of slick mud tracks, heavy rain and knowing that we were about 15km from the main thoroughfare road had me worried. After an amazingly quick pack up we were on the move, the rain had obviously just started as the track was still dry and dusty, but the heavy looking clouds felt ominous.

Dark skies on the road to BirsdvilleAs we returned to the Dig Tree turnoff we were faced with a decision – turn right, continue onto Birdsville (some 450km further) and hope the rain does not get in our way – or turn left head back to Innamincka (around 70km) and wait it out. We looked at each other, looked at the sky. Dark clouds lay ahead of us, but they where moving quickly… Birdsville or bust was the choice.

So heading north we continued passing the Cordillo Downs Rd entry near Arrabury station, a track we might have considered as it was a much shorter route (some 200km) had of the weather been more favourable.

Road gives way to tacky mudTacky mud roadThe rain had been a little heavier around here with some still very tacky floodways, one in particular looked like any other bit of road, until the crusty surface was broken giving way to thick clay like mud. Thankfully I was maintaining a little momentum (probably too much in hindsight) that pushed us through, made the reflexes twitch a bit though.

Further on we found another road crew doing some more road building. Past which we where presented with quite a few floodways that contained a reasonable amount of water. Since this section of road had been recently rebuilt they did not pose a problem.Floodway

We headed into Haddon Corner and found a couple of sand dunes to conquer. As far as sand dunes go these two where quite timid, but add a 20ft caravan into the mix and things get interesting. First attempt lacked enough momentum, so I backed the van back down the dune for a longer approach. Second attempt was successful traversing the dune with ease. When we reached the marker the area was flooded, but I did manage to cross the puddles and sign the visitors book.

Old windmill camp area at BirdsvilleFrom Haddon Corner we headed for Birdsville via the Birdsville Developmental Road. After a quick lap of the town we settled for the night at the old windmill just down the from the Birdsville Racecourse.