Saturday, July 08, 2006

Camel trekking in Australia's Red Center

A brilliant green parrot zips through the crisp air, lighting in a eucalyptus tree. A kangaroo bounces up the nearby ridge, his fur tawny against Gatorade-colored sandstone. The sky shimmers with a cloudless watercolor blue. Beneath me: Chamois, my ride on a three-day camel trek in Australia’s Red Center.

Our crew: camel driver Neil Waters of Camels Australia in Stuarts Well, an hour south of the Outback commercial hub of Alice Springs. Along for the ride are a family of four, children ages 10 and 13; a mother-daughter team from Canada; two Australian nurses; and a string of 11 dromedaries.

This is no posh adventure trip: We’ll sleep beneath the stars in swags – camp beds of foam mattresses, topped by a pair of sleeping bags all wrapped in oil cloth. We have no tents; it’s not the Outback way.

Nobody seems to care.

“It’s such a privilege to ride through this country on these animals. It’s so beautiful,’’ says Marjorie, the mom from Calgary, Canada.


Laura Boyd said...

Hi, Jane.
Then I guess deodorant doesn't matter on this trip?
Hope you are having fun....although that might not be the correct word. Are you using computer? How are you getting these stories out so timely?
Keep on!

Wishful Thinking Ranch said...

Great articles. Wish we were there with you. The way you write, it is almost like we are.

Jane said...

Thanks guys. Be glad you can't smell my socks!