Day 397 | Jardine River again: no hurry when the shops are closed

rest day

I spent some considerable time contemplating the old Jardine River crossing after wandering around this morning. It’s the biggest flow of water by a considerable margin on the trip north.

If it wasn’t for those marauding reptiles I’d be heading straight through and save on the ferry plus 50 km or so of dirt, some sand.

Someone staying last night said they’d seen a Youtube clip of a couple of 4WDs ploughing through easily enough but then an impromptu notice nailed to a tree on site recounted the tale of another less satisfied with their attempt, both happened last year, and, well, if you have issues, you can really have issues.

The crossing is about 150 m in mostly thigh deep water over sand, kinda like Nolan Brook on steroids, but then the last 30 m is through a water lily area and I’d been told by someone else that was the hard part: much deeper and through black silt.

So tomorrow there’ll be more pedalling the first 2 km across the sandpit then 11 km out to the main road and another 25 km to the ferry.

When I got back to camp there was an ex-Telstra worker who had helped survey in the microwave towers in 1985 and then worked on the rollout of the fibre optic cable 5 years ago. They used a directional bore to drill under the rivers and creeks then used a massive bulldozer to lay the cable 1200 mm down, each roll of cable 12 km long, I’ve been following the bright yellow markers on the Telegraph.

For once it was me who had the opportunity for a brief interrogation.