Back to the desert

Apologies for the brief interruption of my Australian travels, let me take you back to the opal filled desert around Coober Pedy. It is also home to a number of stunning rock formations, the things that make think perhaps I should study geology.

In Aboriginal languages, the formations are named after animals, a common way the original inhabitants of Australia described their landscape. Europeans called these salt and pepper pots to reflect the similarity in shape but difference in colour of this connected hill.

As is so often the case when I am in this kind of landscape I get mesmerised by the sheet size of desert. That size hasn’t stopped people from exploring and travelling through it, and not far from the breakaways, there is the one of the longest fences I’ve ever encountered. The Dog Fence runs for a total of 5,300km through South Australia, Queensland and New South Wales and protects the grazing sheep from attacks from dingoes. It is maintained by the owners of the land through which is passes, all of whom have an interest in ensuring the dingoes stay out.

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