Nullarbor Links – Second nine holes.

An hour further on from Cocklebiddy we reached Madura Roadhouse. We checked in and set up the caravan on a bit of a slope. Light was fading but I figured it was better to complete the golf hole here now so we could set off quickly in the morning. This hole was named after the stock horses used on the original property. It was a par 3 so I took out my five iron and took a swing. It sounded good but neither Karen nor I could actually see it in the air it was so gloomy. Trusting in the fact that I thought it was straight we walked up towards the hole. I was pleased to see my ball on the fake grass green about 3 metres from the hole. I was clearly ‘nearest to the pin’ for the day.I putted and it went straight but just fell short. It’s hard to know how hard to putt when there’s a layer of sand on the fake grass. Anyway a rare birdie opportunity had eluded me. However my next little putt went straight in the hole. I had finally scored a par on the Nullarbor Links after ten holes!

Next morning after breakfast we set off. It took about an hour to reach Mundrabilla Roadhouse, where the next hole was located. It was named Watering Hole, and was another par 3 so I considered using my five iron again but with a head wind I changed my mind and took out a wood. Even with that I found myself well short of the green for my second hit.I did make it onto the green but ended up taking two putts for a bogey 4.Back in the Hilux we continued our drive east towards the border town of Eucla, just over an hour further on. The hole here was named Nullarbor Nymph, after a made up story of a naked girl living in the nearby desert back in the early 1970s. Even though it was a hoax, journalists from Britain’s BBC came out to investigate at the time much to the amusement of the locals. The tee was on a raised platform.By now I thought I was adjusting to the almost impossible conditions on some of the holes. (Thank goodness teeing up on every shot, except putts, was recommended.) However it still took me three shots to make it to the green.A further two putts left me with another bogey however. Our drive to the next hole was only ten minutes. The Border Village is just inside the border in South Australia. One of numerous ‘big’ attractions in Australia can be found here. It’s a big red kangaroo, and of course he’s holding a big jar of Vegemite spread.It was no surprise to see the name of this holebut it was a surprise to see the attached sign warning us of a snake sighting! Anyway I quickly teed up and hit my ball. It needed to be a straight hit as you can see the shrubs were infringing quite a bit on the direct route to the hole.My first hit landed me in a tricky spot but at least I had a clear approach to the green next.As I landed on the edge of the green it took me two putts to finish the hole for a double bogey 5. I’m please to report no snakes were sighted by us!

As we wanted to spend some time along the Great Australian Bight we elected to stop at Border Village’s little caravan park for the night. The next day after spotting one whale swimming along the Bight we continued on to the Nullarbor Roadhouse where the next hole was sited. We parked at the roadhouse carpark and after grabbing my clubs walked out to the tee for the hole which was named Dingo’s Den. It was quite a walk as the hole itself was 538 metres long and we had to walk over the airfield for the Royal Flying Doctor Service first. This is the view from the tee.Sadly my first shot landed in some of the dense low lying scrub and let me just say that from there things didn’t improve. It took me seven shots to be within range of the green.The only good thing was it took me only one putt. After having felt I had adjusted better to the conditions, a nine on my scorecard looked bad.

About an hour and a half down the road we came to Nundroo Roadhouse, where the next hole is located. Again we had to walk over half a kilometre to the tee. This hole was known as Wombat Hole.As you can see it’s a long way to the green. In fact at first we couldn’t see the green so I just hit and hoped.Even being permitted to tee up for every hit made little difference in the scrubby, rocky ground. Now we didn’t see any wombats but we were quite excited to spot these two stumpy tail lizards along the way, which did take my mind off a bad hit or two.I finally reached the green after six hits and proceeded to take a further two putts for a very inglorious score of eight. Not sure why I’m smiling in this photo after putting in.Back at the roadhouse we put away my clubs and continued the drive. About an hour later we reached Penong. We had pre-determined we would stop here for the night as we had heard the caravan park here was a good one. After checking in and setting up the caravan we walked across the road to the final hole for the day, named Windmills.From the tee you could see some of the aforementioned windmills and at the end of the hole there was quite a display of windmills to be admired.Between the tee and the green there were quite a few obstacles (trees and shrubs) to be passed. With a mixture of good hitting and luck I managed to reach the green after three hits and took two putts to finish with a creditable bogey 5. As the sunlight was dwindling we were able to take some lovely silhouette photos at the display of iconic Australian windmills adjacent to the end of the golf hole.After a good night’s sleep we headed of to Ceduna. The last two holes of the Nullarbor Links are at Ceduna Golf Course. It was a very straightforward drive and we were there within an hour. The first hole was named Oyster Beds. Oyster farming is a relatively new, but rapidly developing local industry. I teed off and we were soon walking down an actual grassed fairway for the first time since Kalgoorlie. However teeing up on every shot was obviously no longer permitted. This in itself presented me with a new challenge, adapting back to hitting off grass. Sadly I mishit a couple of shots and it took me six shots to reach the green. The green presented another challenge. It was a sand scrape green. After raking a pathway I putted firmly and just missed so had to tap it in, making an awful 8 overall. The next hole was a par 4 named Denial Bay after the first settlement in the area in the 1800s. The hole bordered the neighbouring football oval. Sadly my tee shot was a bit of a slice and I ended up over near the fence to the oval in the rough. My next hit stayed in the rough but eventually I was back on track and I reached the green after five hits. A short putt allowed me to finish with a six. I had now completed the World’s Longest Golf Course.

Here’s a copy of my scorecard.Obviously I would have liked to score under 100 but given the challenging conditions I was happy overall with my score of 107. I did improve by one shot on the second nine too. From the golf course we drove to the Tourist Information Centre in Ceduna. Here you have your scorecard verified and they print you a certificate of completion too, which is a nice souvenir.We chatted with the staff member who printed off my certificate. I was pleased to hear my score of 107 was quite a bit less than the average of 120 (as of August 2018). The best score is a one under par 71 scored by a young lady professional golfer. No man has beaten par up to the time I played (pre-Covid19) back in August 2018. The worst scores are in the 100s so clearly a lot of people do it just for fun and to break up the journey across the Nullarbor, just as I had done.

It’s only right that I thank my wife Karen for taking the photos and agreeing to take longer (six days) on a journey of about 1400kms that would normally take about three days towing a caravan. Would I recommend it – yes, if you want to take up a golfing challenge unlike any other in the world. Remember not every golfer manages to play the world’s longest golf course!

2 thoughts on “Nullarbor Links – Second nine holes.

  1. I’ve enjoyed these two posts of you playing golf on the longest golf course in the world … really nice photo’s (love the one of the windmills!)
    And the photo of the kangaroo holding the Vegemite, reminded me of the Australian pilgrims we’ve met in Spain on our hike – they carried their own bottles of Vegemite in their backpacks because, they’ve said, they cannot be without it for such a long time 😅.
    Well, I suppose it’s then in order to say congratulations for completing a round of golf that not many people have done (or will ever do) 👍🏻.
    Oh yes, and hats off to your wife – I know the feeling (I’m also the one taking photo’s and carrying the water bottles on the golf course 😉).

    Like

    1. Thanks for your kind feedback. I was really pleased with the silhouette effect on the photo of the windmills at sunset.
      We do also like Vegemite but never take it when travelling overseas as we think it’s good to try local fare.
      Karen also appreciated your comment.
      Cheers, Mark

      Liked by 1 person

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