I have a trip in September to (at the moment) as far as Port Augusta; tossing up whether I should make a return to Coober Pedy and thence, The Breakaways. What troubled us on the last trip was we arrived just in time to witness a group of aboriginal residents glassing each other on the steps of Centrelink in CP. Meanwhile, 200m up the street, glittering gemstones and guys in Zegna suits plied their precious trinkets. Woe betide you if you step inside to a halogen-flashed wonderland of sparkling colour and beauty and — bang! You're hooked on the lure of opals! CP was running out of water on our visit and artesian bores were hurriedly being dropped. The caravan park was roamed by town youths who smashed beer bottles on the paths. After two nights, we'd had enough of this frightening stuff. The jury is still out what type of town Coober Pedy is (rough and dusty it definitely is), apart from one where fortunes are obviously won (and won a lot!) and equally lost in the outback heat and haze. Skipping over the town to the relative solitude and stark, restless beauty The Breakaways though sounds good indeed. I wish it was possible to camp there, at the major viewing area at the top. Can't remember now if I did see campers...