British Atomic Bomb Testing – Totem 1 and 2

The British tested atomic bombs with the assistance of the Australian government in the 1950’s. These include Totem 1 and Totem 2 sites at Emu field in South Australia. Additional tests were performed in Maralinga and a further 3 tests were performed at Monte Bello Islands off the coast of Western Australia. A Web site well worth checking out is There are some great historical photos there.

Image on Geoff Goodalls Excellent site on Aviation History


18 June 2016

Awoke to overcast sky and low cloud at our little camp at Vokers Corner. Going outside it was cold, this must be a good day for driving. It was a later start today as we waited for canvas to dry on a couple of the campers.

Stopped to remember Coyley, a friend of Ross and Ailsa who sadly passed away, with toast on the side of the Anne Beadell Highway.

The Anne Beadell Highway started into the dunes in a proper way today. The track was sandy, but firm and the going was good.


Saw a group of camels today which had been walking for many kilometres along the highway.


Visited Totem 1 and 2, the sites of the British atomic bomb testing in 1953. This has always been a bucket list item for me and it was amazing to be able to tick this one off.

Totem-1-Obelisk 4WDAUS-at-Totem-2

Totem_I_Totem_II_Emu-10 Totem_I_Totem_II_Emu-9  Totem_I_Totem_II_Emu-2 Totem_I_Totem_II_Emu-3

Don’t you just love Australian humour. POW!


Drove down the Emu airstrip before a Shower closed in on our location.


Camped at Emu for the night. Here we had a great sunset to start the evening off with.

19 June 2016

Low cloud greeted us this morning. First stop was the airstrip. As we had a controlled environment, it was time to face the 2 Amesz trucks. Ross and Ailsa were declared the winners with 4WDaus a close second.


After a little fun it was off west, the track deteriorating from the excellent roads to emu from Coober Pedy.


After a long day we camped at vokes hill.

Spinifex-Garden Spinifex-Ring

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