Outback Water Supply

Submitted: Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 20:52
ThreadID: 12435 Views:1748 Replies:9 FollowUps:6
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We are planning a big trip in Sep04. (Melb, Coober Peady,Uluru,Kings Canyon etc..,Alice,Chambers Pillar,Mt Dare,Dalhoiusie,SD,Birdsville,Innamincka,Broken Hill,Melb.)

Does anyone have any comments regarding the best places to refill water tanks along the way with good clean fresh water.

Thanks in advance

Gaz.
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Reply By: Member - Bob - Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 21:35

Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 21:35
Gaz
you can get bore water at most of the places you mention but it is generally not the best for drinking. You can either take a couple of special jerries of drinking water, or buy plastic containers of drinking water at most outback stores for a few dollars. Just use the bore water for washing/emergency drinking. Best to try and be self sufficient and have enough water on hand to not drain scarce resources from remote communities.
AnswerID: 56280

Reply By: duncs - Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 21:40

Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 21:40
Gaz,

Did a trip similar to that in Oct last yar. The place to fill your water storage is Coober Peady. The water there is the best tasting you will get in the Centre. Out of a tap or otherwise. They have higher water usage charges there so it might be nice to check with the owner of the tap if you are going to use heaps, but it is the best.
Water in most of the other places is safe to drink but the taste does vary. Maybe fill drinking water in CP and carry general use water from somwhere else. Mt Dare is on a tank as are most of the other places you mention. Alice seems to have plenty of water and it tastes OK. I would fill tanks before leaving Alice and only top after that. At Kings Canyon the water was a light but distinct pink colour but it tasted OK. I live in Broken Hill and most of the locals are buying bottled water or water filtered by reverse osmosis for drinking.

As for the other places you mention I did not notice what the water was like so it can't have been bad. I did not use local water from Mt Dare or Dalhousie, can't remember Birdsville may have used my own supply as I had heaps and I used my own supply in Inamincka and only drank coffee in Tib.

Hope this helps. Wish I could come with you
Duncs
AnswerID: 56282

Reply By: Member - Jiarna (SA) - Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 21:47

Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 21:47
You can get rainwater in Oodnadatta from the Pink Roadhouse, but have to pay for it. The money raised is used to support the RFDS and the Oodnadatta Hospital.

Cheers
John
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AnswerID: 56285

Reply By: Eric Experience. - Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 22:16

Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 22:16
Gary.
I have done the same trip and managed to get water at most places. The water from puddles or small dams can be cleaned up by floculation, that is a process where the suspended matter in the water is drawn together into clusters heavy enough to sink. You can read about it in any chemistry book. The procedure is to heat a contianer of water with a pinch of epsom salts in it, leave it for several hours to cool then sypon of the top without bumping the contianer. You will find the water very pleasant to drink with a slight smoke taste from the fire. Try it at home so you can be confident of the process. Eric.
AnswerID: 56299

Reply By: Willem - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 08:09

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 08:09
You can get drinking water anywhere in this country....it is just the taste that varies. Apart from NOT drinking water out of rivers with green algae, stagnant billabongs or unprocessed from the Murray River, all water is good. We have no known waterborne diseases here which are harmful to humans, as far as I am aware. Comments on preparing water in this thread are correct. If you are unsure about water quality you must boil it before drinking. Many artesian waters have a high sulphur content but if you fill a container with this water and let it stand overnight the sulphur gases evaporate and any harder chemicals settle on the bottom of the container making the water potable.(This is the case in the Matilda Carvan Park in Winton as an example).

When travelling I regularly refill my two 20 litre water containers even if it is only a few litres of water that is needed. I have been critisized on this forum for only carrying 40 litres of water but then there is normally only two of us tyravelling. When I have the trailer in tow I carry an extra 40 litres.

The main emphasis about water in the outback and remote places is not to waste it on showers, washing your vehicle or other dubious practices. Carry at least 5 litrres per person per day when doing remote travel.

Cheers
AnswerID: 56330

Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 18:24

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 18:24
Willem , you haven't traveled with Lex, no shower heaven forbid. it's taken me 27yrs to get her to go 2 days with out one.
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FollowupID: 318158

Follow Up By: Willem - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 18:51

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 18:51
I wonder what sort of phobia that is.....everyone has something quirky about them and that is obviously one of Lex's nuances.

Me, I don't shower any more. Too much stuffing about. I have a good soap and a wash in about 1 litre of water every evening....no worries, I am clean.

Regards
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FollowupID: 318162

Follow Up By: Member - Ruth D (QLD) - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 20:40

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 20:40
Hey Bob and why should Lex have to go without her shower - even if it's only a bath in a billycan. You blokes, honestly.
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FollowupID: 318179

Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Thursday, Apr 29, 2004 at 15:57

Thursday, Apr 29, 2004 at 15:57
If she did she would smell like the rest of us & not complain :):)
Hopefully i'll see you in June now unless something else goes wrong, unfortunatly Lex can't get hols again so only me this time but I will get her out there sooner or later so she can experience the beauty as well.
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FollowupID: 318327

Reply By: Member - Ruth D (QLD) - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 08:11

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 08:11
Biresville has some of the best water (and plenty of it) - doesn't smell or taste like bore water. Free here.
AnswerID: 56331

Follow Up By: tessa_51 - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 08:34

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 08:34
You beat me to the punch Ruth. We reckon Birdsville water is the best we have found in the outback!

Tessa
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FollowupID: 318069

Follow Up By: Member - Ruth D (QLD) - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 20:41

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 20:41
Just as well that we like it - all we've got here - the 0.6mm of rain today didn't count.
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FollowupID: 318180

Reply By: TonyT - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 10:44

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 10:44
Did this trip with 3 teenagers- (never again)- no water problems- took 60 liters of Melbourne water- topped up here and there when refuelling etc.
AnswerID: 56364

Reply By: D-Jack - Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 12:01

Wednesday, Apr 28, 2004 at 12:01
Tie plastic bags around tree foliage for a tasty treat of fresh water in the morning.
AnswerID: 56377

Reply By: GaryW - Friday, Apr 30, 2004 at 21:31

Friday, Apr 30, 2004 at 21:31
Thanks everyone - Coober Pedy, Alice & Birdsville it is. 140 Ltrs 4 People at 5 Ltrs p/person p/day lasts 6 days.

Gaz
AnswerID: 56777

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