Disappointment in the Desert

On March 19 last, I wrote in this blog (see Fun in the Desert) about a chap called John Howe who on that very day had started on an attempt to break the record for running across the Simpson Desert from Alka Seltzer Bore along the French Line to Poeppel Corner, and then on to Birdsville. The record for the 379 kms (including up and over some 1100 sand dunes) stood at 3 days, 8 hours and 37 minutes, and was set by Pat Farmer in 1998.

After covering 125 kms in 20½ hours, and ahead of schedule to break the record, John started to experience acute chest pain, and had to abandon his run. He was taken by 4WD to Birdsville, where he recovered.

He may not have broken the record, but I dips me lid to anyone who can run up and down sand dunes for 20 hours! Even 20 minutes would be beyond my capabilities.


The picture shows the author resting on the corner marker at Poeppel Corner about nine years ago, after walking about 20 metres from the car.


About dazzlerplus

Writing about the things that interest me helps me to discover what I think. One of my loves is the Australian Outback, and I travel out there often, and when possible take friends with me.
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2 Responses to Disappointment in the Desert

  1. Mandy says:

    My biggest disappointment in the desert was when I drove from the edge of the Great Sandy Desert (where I was working) to Port Hedland for a Jimmy Barnes concert. Jimmy sang two songs and then walked off with a throat infection. Shattered.

    • dazzlerplus says:

      Mandy, this was after all a post about running across the Simpson Desert. You seem to have become fixated on this Barnesy incident. Do you feel that your life has been a sort of compromise ever since that evening in Port H? I don’t think that Jimmy had it in for you personally. And as a true fan, I hope you felt a bit of sympathy for Jimmy who’d probably been shouting his guts out for the previous six or seven nights in a row. Now if you’d been running non-stop across the Great Sandy for 60 or 70 hours to get there, you’d have had reason to feel a tad shattered, if not totally gutted. I hope you can just find it in you to put this Barnesy thing behind you and try to get on with the rest of your life. I hope this helps.

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