Simpson Desert crossing & Permits

Afternoon all. I have recently been talking to a chap at Department of Environment and Natural Resources SA with respect to the Desert Park Pass for our planned Simpson Desert crossing next year. I asked the question whether the pass only covered the SA section or all of the tracks, in particular Northern Territory to go to Poepple Corner or Mirranponga Pongunna Lake & Qeensland to take the QAA line into Birdsville.

He advised that I'd need to contact the appropriate authorities in each of the other States and get a permit from them. Is this so?

My understanding has always been that to do the section of the desert that I've eluded too only the SA Desert Park pass is required.


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Reply By: Robin Miller - Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 15:40

Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 15:40
Really a non-issue as long as you have a dessert parks pass Duncan.

All you need to cross via French / Qaa and a couple of others is that pass
The Qld section via QAA line doesn't require a permit.

There are a number of side tracks/roads and other parts allowed as well - key is you are supposed to stay or existing tracks and you will be ok if you do.

There are also a number of bypass tracks that get used depending on conditions - these are usually signposted and also ok.

E.G. One bypass goes north of Poeppel into NT and also Hay river track goes off there.

No permits required.

If you continue north, say up Hay river track (or along much of the Madigan line) you do come to aboriginal territory which requires permits these days.

Strictly speaking, in the S.A. part of the crossing you are supposed to camp within 50 meters of the track, this is quite impractical mostly and camps are usually a hundred plus meters off the track and clearly visible.
When in QLD part its a more practical 500m.
Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: Member - Duncan W (WA) - Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 18:56

Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 18:56
Thanks Robin appreciate the advice.



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Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 18:04

Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 18:04
He gave you the politically correct answer. Practically speaking you only need a SA desert parks pass for the common Dalhousie to Birdsville crossing.

As you head west from Birdsville, you are on private property (Adria Downs Station. If you wish to travel off the QAA Line you need permission from David Brooks who owns the station and is based in Birdsville. The Eyre Creek Bypass and track up past Annandale Station is on his property and requires his permission. He runs Organic certified beef on his property and doesn't want his certification threatened by tourists travelling without permission.

The Simpson Desert National Park on the Qld side of the border used to require a camping permit obtainable from the Birdsville Office but it's a long time since anyone bothered getting one.

The small section on the main track in NT doesn't require a permit. But if you venture north from the main track, you are then on land which is now administered by the Central Land Council. This land used to be crown land but was handed back to the traditional owners recently. Permits come from the CLC but a phone call to Jol Fleming in Alice Springs will let you know the permit situation if you plan on doing any sort of decent trip north of the NT border.

The desert parks pass covers the SA section. The Pedirka track from Witjira to Hamilton Station is a "Public Access Route" so you are free to travel it - it's on a pastoral lease but the "maintenance" of the track is undertaken with Govt assistance to allow tourists to use it. The PAR system in SA is good - has opened up a lot of tracks in outback areas that would otherwise be closed and was one of the very good achievements where 4wdSA have negotiated with pastoralists and Government. Other roads are public roads.
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Follow Up By: Member - Duncan W (WA) - Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 19:00

Monday, Aug 26, 2013 at 19:00
Phil, thanks for the comprehensive reply. Lot of info there for me and for others reading this as well to digest.

At this stage it's still 11short months away so plans can and no doubt will change but being fore warned is being fore armed.

thanks agin

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Reply By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Wednesday, Aug 28, 2013 at 10:05

Wednesday, Aug 28, 2013 at 10:05
We were driving around the Karunji Track which circumnavigates the Cockburn Range in the Kimberley. The owner had dug a ditch across the track for some irrigation pipes. Just the perfect size to accommodate the two front wheels. We hit it at about 40KPH but we sure bounced out of it. According to the blokes in the next paddock we weren't the first. If our lower wishbone arms had not been reinforced we would have lost both front wheels.

And a shock absorber upgrade to Bilsteins certainly makes for a comfortable drive on corrugations. You can sit a cuppa on the console and it wont spill.

That's why I am happy that we have had a good mechanic looking after us with our suspension upgrade. Not a lot. No 6" lift. Just a bit for safety, reliability and a small 2" lift to give a little more clearance for the rear.

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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Wednesday, Aug 28, 2013 at 10:07

Wednesday, Aug 28, 2013 at 10:07
That post was supposed to be in the thread about suspension upgrades.

Can the moderators please delete it.

Sorry guys. No idea how that happened.

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