My record for longest travel to take a photo went out a little a few weeks ago. I now no longer measure the journey in hours, I measure it in days. A thousand kilometres and 11 hours on day one, 110km on day two. Well that was the plan anyway.
The outback isn't the safest place to drive at night and especially bang on dawn. I knew this but the desire to get to Menindee Lakes before the sun had me in my hire car at that time. The road I was taking was the location for Mad Max 2 (The Road Warrior). I knew the road and I was being careful. I was driving well below the speed limit and keeping my eyes open. Unfortunately the kangaroos weren't so careful. 20km passed the spot where Max rolled the interceptor, I felt a violent thud on the front left side. All I saw was kangaroo parts mixed with plastic flying through the air as the front left headlight fixture exploded. But there didn't seem to be any damage to the engine or any moving parts bar the headlight. Sure there was a gaping hole in the front of the car but mechanically we were ok. So I drove on.
I saw the second one. It tried to get across in front of the car but didn't make it. The kangaroo hit the car in the front right panel and wrapped its body along the side of the car all the way to the back. The thud wasn't as bad as the first and the damage to the car was superficial. No mechanical damage again.
I rang the hire company but with the car mechanically sound and the nearest depot 1300km away in Sydney, I was going to have to carry on with a huge hole in the front of the car, but a cool story to tell. It's not often multiple kangaroos "attack" your car on the road where Mad Max fought off the Beserker's in my favourite movie from my teenage years.
That night I was at Lake Panamaroo again. The sky was bald but that lake was amazing and a light show followed anyway. I'd never seen a rainbow sunset. My jaw hung low as the sky exploded with technically every colour in the rainbow and reproduced it across the water.
I decided to stay the night and see what the sunrise could offer. Hopefully no more bloody kangaroos