Friday, July 24, 2015

Melbourne to Alice Springs Roadtrip: Day 2 Murray Bridge to Wilpena via Burra

This post continues the series on our two week roadtrip from Melbourne to Alice Springs and back during the July school holidays.

Depart Murray Bridge 7:36am

Toilet stop Gawler: 8:37-9:42am; 94km
The winding Barossa Roads upset the kids tummies so a bit of fresh air and a toilet stop was in order. The toilets at the information centre were shut but we had a win using the toilet finder app.

Morning Tea and Lunch at Burra: 10:28am-2:40pm; 206km.
Copper was found in the Burra area in 1845. The mine became the largest in South Australia before falling copper prices and exhaustion of the the famously high grade ore saw the mine close in 1877. A self-drive historic trail leads you around a large number of historic sights and buildings around the town. If you have time you can purchase a passport at the information centre in town which gives access to the key to enter the sights. We only had a few hours but we were able to view all the sights from outside, the mine site is open to foot traffic and the museums can be entered by paying individual fees.

Chimney at Burra Copper Mine

We visited the excellent museum in Morphett’s Pumphouse at the mine site.

The lady in charge gave a short talk on the history of the mine and in particular the workings of the pumping engine which was well worth the entry fee.

Other sites include the Redruth Goal
Redruth Goal

and the miner's homes dug out in the creek bed.

The drive to the Flinders Ranges was particularly scenic with an increasingly number of road side lookouts the closer we got.

Elder range Lokout

Leaving one stop we had our first glimpse of kangaroos, the number steadily increasing as dusk approached.

Wilpena: 4:30pm
For some reason we had booked our accommodation at Wilpena Pound Resort for the wrong dates but luckily there was a two bedroom apartment available and we didn’t need to find alternate accommodation as there is none. After checking-in we had a drink in the bar and watched the walkers arriving back through the trees while the kids played Monopoly deal.

Total distance travelled: 510km.

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