After 5 months of being in Australia (Jan-16 to Jun-16) and nearly 2 months (minus 5 days) of being in WA, we crossed the border into the Northern Territory. If we thought that WA was sparsely populated and remote, Northern Territory is even more so. This large area isn’t even designated as a state and only has a territory-wide population of 200,000. We had no cell reception, except in the small towns that infrequently dotted the Victoria Highway. We were greeted with a 130 km/h speed (80+ mph) sign, a first for us since arriving in AUS. Jonathan commemorated the event by going the speed limit for a bit, which reminded us why don’t do so. The van takes a lot of energy to get to that speed.
To break up the ride the following day, we made a few stops, including going on a hike in a massive national park through which the highway goes.
The next day, we arrived in Katherine, a fairly large town by NT standards, and got caught up with the rest of the world’s news. Katherine is popular for its gorge and national park, so we decided to hit that up the next day. We had been planning on canoeing or kayaking down the gorge (apparently that is the thing to do), but they hadn’t finished their crocodile survey yet (conducted every year after the wet season), and therefore, weren’t letting anyone in the water. Instead, we chose to hike up to a few lookouts over the gorges.
When we went to the visitor centre, it was apparent that there were small fruit bats all along the trees by the river. There were thousands of them. All along the banks as far as you could see! These Little Red Flying Foxes were smaller than the ones we saw in Karijini.
The rocks along the gorge were really precariously perched. Jonathan managed to send several cascading down the cliffs. Not much holding them on.
This wallaby was snacking in front of the van when we got back. Judging by the bulge on its belly, it could have a joey in its pouch.
This was taken a few days after the walk, so the redness had calmed down a bit.