- Left – 10.30am
- 14th July 2015
- Miles rode – 135 (216km)
An easy start to the day with a hike into Katherine Gorge, easy walk and great views. I then rode south to the thermal pools at Mataranka and had a great few hours relaxing in the oasis. Back on the bike again and at about 3.45 (perfect timing) I arrived at Larrimah and pulled into the ‘Pink Panther camp site’. I thought I had arrived in hell but what transpired was wonderland. A New Zealand couple suggested I camp near them and after my initial trepidation about why they beckoned me towards them I calmed down and set up camp for the night.
The following 7 or 8 hours turned out to be great and the very reason I love travel.
So, the couple from New Zealand turned out to be really lovely people who had a couple of backpackers travelling with them and were slightly odd but great with it. We drank beer in what was a traditional outback bar with the locals straight out of any stereotypical Oz movie, just back from wrestling crocodiles… So the beers flowed and a crowd gathered and me being me wasn’t in the mood to agree with idiots so when the conversation turned to aboriginals and the usual negative “why are the government paying them (aboriginals) money to buy beer and get drunk” I had to say what I thought and a lively conversation was the only way forward. I felt I made valid points but thought I may get punched as we were in the outback where men are men and I wondered if conversations are won by the fists more than reason…
I was really pleased that I stood my ground even though a few tough Aussie guys were loud and strong in making their points. I later found out from my new Kiwi friends that they thought they may have to ‘bail me out’ but we’re very impressed that I held my own with these big Aussie guys.
What I thought was going to be a very uneventful evening turned out to be a great evening and one I will remember. The great Aussie outback is all I and hoped it would be.