Old ghost towns, historic ruins, remnants of telegraph poles, a lonely grave; all in a pristine eastern goldfields woodlands, gives the traveller many opportunities to tune into days gone by, to marvel at the hardships endured by our early prospectors and telegraph line workers and enjoy the natural beauty of the bush.
This trek follows a section of the Overland Telegraph line between Dundas
and the Balladonia telegraph station. Most of the telegraph poles and wire have disappeared, although some have been used on local stations for fencing etc. Here and there, the odd telegraph pole or at least the base of telegraph poles can still be seen. The service track is clearly visible and provides access to the sites of various linesmen camps, granite rocks and salt lakes.
Interactive Route Map
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Dundas to Balladonia Telegraph Track From:
This trek supports moving map, to take a virtual tour click on the Play button.
Permits are not required. Although as a courtesy you should phone Balladonia Station on: (08) 9039 3278 to ensure travel on the section of track from the Balladonia Mt. Ragged Road to the old Balladonia Telegraph Station
is ok and isn’t going to interfere with stock, etc.
Things to See & Do
Although it may seem you are close to civilisation, with the town of Norseman
and Balladonia Road House not far away, you will in all - probability not see any other vehicle on this trek. So be thoroughly prepared and self-sufficient.
Ensure you have adequate recovery gear including at least a snatch strap, two rated shackles, a towrope and a long handled shovel. Have a HF Radio
or Satellite Phone
for emergencies. The use of either 27MHz or UHF radios is only suitable for vehicle convoy work. They will not transmit to emergency services
if you strike any problems.
Ensure you have enough fuel to travel a minimum of 250 kms. Then allow a sufficient margin of at least 20% on top of that for potential detours and if you happen to be bogged.
Fuel Supplies & Usage
||Diesel||4cyl 36 litres
||ULP||4cyl 41 litres
||LPG||4cyl 51 litres|
|6cyl 39 litres||6cyl 46 litres||6cyl 45 litres|
|8cyl 39 litres||8cyl 42 litres|
Services & Supplies
The following locations have various services and supplies: Norseman
Camp Sites & Accommodation
The Dundas Norseman
end of this trek is in Salmon Gum and Gimlet country i.e. typical WA goldfields woodlands. Many scenic salt lakes and granite rocks are passed on this trek, providing interesting vistas and opportunities to get out of your vehicle and walk around.
This branch of the overland telegraph line was built in 1896 to provide additional telegraph services
as a result of the WA’s gold rushes in the 1890's. This line ran off from the Coolgardie
telegraph line at Dundas
and went across to Balladonia and then Eucla
. The line was in use until 1927 when another line, with greater capacity, was built following the Trans Australian Railway. Norseman
was named by Lawrence S. Sinclair in July 1894 after his horse Norseman
. Legend has it that a nugget became trapped in his horse’s shoe, resulting in the gold strike. Dundas
is an abandoned goldfields townsite some 21 km south of Norseman
. It was gazetted in 24th May 1895. The name was taken from the nearby Dundas
Hills named by Surveyor General J S Roe in 1848 after Captain Dundas
of the Royal Navy ship HMS Tagus.
Balladonia is the name of a rock at the site. It was originally named Ballajuinya on 8th August 1879 by John & Stephen Ponton; this was corrupted to Balladungea and later Balladonia.