11th May 2012 - 13th May 2012 Left Cairns with our hitchhikers in tow, our friends Conor and Jade who we took down to Townsville, they are looking for farm work and Cairns wasn't kind to them, just like it wasn't for us last year. We dropped them off and then we carried on driving, leaving the east coast behind us and travelled to Charter Towers. Within our first 15 minutes we had seen umpteen road trains which are huge and we also ran over an alive snake, it crunched as we rolled over it. It freaked us both out but hopefully that's the last of the snakes we come across.
Charters had free village wifi which was amazing, had a good sleep at the road side and in the morning we left the one time huge mining town and headed a whopping 770km to Mt Isa. We took turns of driving and the views of endless plains were lovely to look at for a while at least. We stopped of at Hughenden for a pie and took a photo of a dinosaur and that's where Australia's first (and maybe last) dinosaur bones were found. Then we headed on and on through small places of not much significance and more of the barren landscape. We also drove through Cloncurry where the 'flying doctor' was first set up but we arrived after the museum had closed.
It took us 10 and a half hours to get to Mt Isa, and we seen the orange glow of chimneys as we arrived. Mt Isa is the largest city in the world- on land mass, it is however a small town feel due to middle of no where existence (closest place of interest 700km in either direction). Mt Isa sits on a wealth of zinc, silver, lead and copper. Commercial mining has been set up since 1925 and the smell of sulphur can be found lingering in the air. We went to The Buffallo Club, known as Buffs for a schooner then made some dinner in the van before getting a nice cool nights sleep.
Left Mt Isa early to embark on another long journey of 635km to Threeways, crossing into the Northern Territory. Not much to say as there was nothing along the way apart from more land and alot of dead kangaroos. Threeways is appropriately named as its on the cross roads, right to Darwin, left to Alice Springs and back where we came from. We decided to treat ourselves for the first time and booked into a tourist park where we had hot showers and toilets, also as the land is so barren, we couldn't really just park on the side of the road and sleep. We arrived late afternoon and sat out in our chairs having a cold stubby from the eskie. Cooked a nice bolognaise for dinner then got settled with a movie.