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Blue Snoopy is a 2012 Nova Vita Caravan pulled by a 2012 Nissan Navara ST Dual Cab Ute.

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2 June 2016 – Roxby Downs SA

Today would be our final day at Roxby Downs.  This town is an absolute surprise.  It is modern, has good facilities and even a Woolworths.  The coffee at the visitor information centre is sensational.  The average age was said to be 29 and approximately 30% of the population move on each year.  All because of the BHP Billiton Olympic Dam mine.

But today we would leave Roxby Downs and head about 35k’s east to the opal mining town of Andamooka.

The country heading towards Andamooka was very flat and surprisingly void of wildlife.  We assumed that the absence of water in the area was the reason for the missing wildlife.

Just before we reached Andamooka we saw evidence of mining but it appears that this mining town is a lot smaller than the other opal mining centres we have visited.  That assumption was confirmed when we arrived in the town with the mining area not all that large.  There are several other mining areas within 15k’s of Andamooka.

We made arrangements for all of us to meet at the local café at 10:30am.

With an intention of looking at the town, we were distracted when one of our group indicated they were going to attempt to drive to Lake Torrens which is approximately 10k’s away.  We decided to join them.

We were in contact via CB radio but about 3k’s out of town, we started to wonder if we were both on the same road.  With the road getting rougher, we decided to abort the trip thinking we had taken the incorrect route.

With the overall weather conditions very stable and calm, “He” decided to fly the quad copter.  “He” had hoped that sufficient altitude could be achieved to view the distant Lake Torrens.  After climbing to a reasonable height, the quad provided a good distant view of Andamooka and the surrounding hills.  Lake Torrens could not be seen but what “He” did see was an approaching vehicle very similar to the one being driven by our friends.

Returning the quad to the ground, we realised how good this device is when exploring the country or looking for something.

We had been on the same road as our friends who informed us that the road had become too difficult to drive on and they had only travelled a couple of kilometres beyond the point we were standing at.

We all returned to Andamooka and meet the other couples at the “Andamooka Sailing Club”, a unique coffee shop that had been established by a young couple who had moved into the area.  The coffee was great.

We then headed to the noodling area where we were all able to find small pieces of opal.  Adjacent to the noodling area was a free camp that had recently opened.  There were toilet facilities and although you camped on dirt, the area looked great.  There were quite a few people camped there.

Before returning to Roxby Downs, we stopped at the cemetery and spent considerable time looking at and reading the head stone on the graves.  Many of the graves were decorated with opal and one wonders why they have not been vandalised over the years.  At least the vandals respect some areas and leave them alone.  We also stopped at a small mining display before leaving town.

As we had done on previous days, the remainder of the afternoon was spent playing disc bowls which continued through happy hour.

We cooked outside before retiring for the night.

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