Alice Springs – Telegraph Station

Europeans first settled in Alice Springs when a repeater station for the Australian Overland Telegraph was built there. It linked Adelaide to Darwin, and then to Great Britain.

Previously, a message and response could take up to six months. Now it could be just an hour. Imagine the impact that made.

The telegraph was soon used for a variety of purposes, from weather reports to gossip!

There were a number of friendly wallabies on the site.

Behind the telegraph station buildings is Alice Springs itself.

Once away from the manicured and irrigated lawns, you can see just how hostile and forbidding the local terrain is.

Alice Springs – Flying Doctors’ Museum

As we had all watched the Australian TV series, ‘The Flying Doctors’, in our youth, a visit to the Flying Doctors’ Museum was a must.

It gave us all a greater appreciation of the amazing job they do. One of their services is to maintain medical chests. A GP will diagnose over the phone, and prescribe a numbered item.

The distance they cover is incredible. For example, there’s a cattle range in the Northern Territories that’s the size of Florida!

The service does have some government funding, but they have to find all the infrastructure costs themselves. In setup and it’s place in the national heart, it’s akin to the RNLI.

In order that people in the Outback could communicate during an emergency, Alf Traeger invented the pedal powered radio. It does beg the question how you’d use it if you were ‘crook’. However, a picture of a woman talking, while her daughter pedaled, answered that puzzle. Here is Harry trying it out.