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Small snake track on red sand

Justine’s snake bite scare

I learnt a valuable lesson last week! I was walking up to the Gnaraloo homestead to watch a movie before leaving for Night Survey at about 8 PM and suddenly I felt a severe pain shoot through my 2nd toe on my right foot. I walked into the homestead and said “I think I just got bitten by something”, no one seemed concerned until I asked Careena if it looked like a snake bite.  Snakes out at Gnaraloo are extremely poisonous and can kill you in an hour so when we suspected it was a snake bite everyone switched to panic mode.

Dani was first to kick into gear, grabbing some bandages and wrapping my entire leg, saying “I’d be fine because I have such long limbs”, but I could see she really was quite concerned. Paul rang the flying doctors but realized that due to the weather (Cyclone Narelle was due to pass Gnaraloo at 2 AM that morning), I was going to need to be raced by car to Carnarvon hospital.

Paul was my driver, speeding along the dirt roads, at one point I wasn’t sure if I was ill from the effects of the snake bite or Paul’s driving! We had reached the blow holes road in under 60 minutes then the car decided to nearly blow up! With the fuel pump needing to be drained, we kept driving though, as I needed to get to hospital. In the end, four blood tests over 15 hours concluded that there was no venom in my system and I could go home. Although it wasn’t confirmed a snake bite I still think it was! I’ve never felt such a searing, stinging pain before. Everyone at the homestead thought it was just a ploy so that I could spend a day in Carnarvon, but being poked and prodded with needles isn’t exactly the way I’d want to spend ANY day.


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