Tent Camping - Longreach/Winton?

Submitted: Friday, May 19, 2017 at 20:43
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Just passing through longreach and winton early in july. Just wondering of some nice places i could pitch a tent for a couple of nights, in a tent friendly area. Don't mind if its free or paid or a caravan park. Some reviews arent the best of a lot of places in the area.

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Reply By: Motherhen - Friday, May 19, 2017 at 21:22

Friday, May 19, 2017 at 21:22
Not quite in your specified target area, but a little south or Barcaldine, Lara Wetlands (private campsite) sounds fantastic and get good recommendations Lara Wetlands

For caravan parks, one of the most recommended in Australia is the Ilfracombe Caravan Park, 29 kilometres east of Longreach. We went there just to see, and I scored it very high.

At Longreach we stayed at the Longreach Apex Riverside Park Campground.
Four kilometres west of Longreach near an old and now closed bridge across the Thomson River, $3 per night, pay at Visitor Centre.

Two kilometres south is Long Waterhole free camp (unserviced). 28 kilometres South of Winton there is Bladensburg National Park campground.


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Follow Up By: ManGoat - Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 20:36

Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 20:36
we did consider the apex camp area, but were unsure how suitable it wouldve been for tenting vs campertrailer/caravan.

thanks for all the options, we were looking at doing 1 night in longreach, and 1 in winton, before heading for richmond.

plans for this trip are: gympie to emerald, longreach, winton, richmond, charters towers, cairns. we will be in cairns in a hotel for a week, then heading down the coast to come home after that week over a 4 night period.

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Reply By: Motherhen - Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 20:41

Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 20:41
There were no tents when we stayed at the Longreach camp, but mostly on river floodplain clay, I don't see it would be a problem.

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Follow Up By: ManGoat - Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 21:16

Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 21:16
cheers :) i hope this is a good experience for myself, my wife and my 2 young children and hopefully there will be many more trips to come in the future, exploring this awsome country.

im 35 and never really seen that much of outback qld or much of australia apart from cities, so its all sorts of new for us all.

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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 21:20

Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 21:20
I hope will be for your family as well as you. Inland and outback are the best touring. We avoid cities and large towns.

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Follow Up By: Member - Robyn R4 - Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 21:50

Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 21:50
Ditto to Mother Hen.
Central and western Qld is also our favourite area to travel through. Your kids will love the dinosaur areas, no matter their ages!
My 50 year old "kid" did!!
Check out the amazing old planes in the Qantas museum in Longreach, enjoy the dinosaurs in Richmond, tuck into the burgers at FJ Holden's cafe in Hughendon, look out for emus along the road from Winton, check out the murals in Alpha, marvel at the landscape that they tried to teach you about at school but you never really understood...and now that you're looking at it, it all makes sense!
So this is channel country!
Be amazed at the tenacity of the first settlers.
Check out a few small outback cemeteries for a touch of history.
The Qld outback gets into your blood.
And then you'll discover that the next town along is just as quirky and fascinating and there's a whole new loop to be added to the route the next time you hit the road..!
One day go to Charleville and check out the bilbies and Cosmos Centre (I wish I could get every school child over there to see how amazing the moon looks from a $40,000+ telescope!!)
I just downloaded the Wikicamps app a few days ago on recommendation from a nice "regular" on this forum. I am cynical about most apps but oh, the Wikicamps! Can't imagine how I travelled without it before!!
Have a great trip!

Robyn :)
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Reply By: Member - Robyn R4 - Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 22:01

Saturday, May 20, 2017 at 22:01
Just looked at your dates again.
Early July.
Pack warm sleeping bags!
My dad and I first did the Qld outback in tents in July 2004. We fluked really nice nights for the entire 2 weeks. Very pleasant nights where we sat and yakked all night outside our tents.
My husband and I went through on our way to the Kimberley 2 years ago in July. We were in a camper trailer.
It was sooooooo cold.
The days are beautiful and it's the best time for outback travel but be prepared for cold nights-they can be minus on cloudless nights to maybe 10-15 degrees on cloudy nights.
But it makes those night time fires and marshmallows all the more yummy.
Robyn :)
PS: We've stayed at the caravan park in Winton 3 times now (I think there's only the one!). It's near the servo and trucks/road trains pull in at night but you really don't hear them (a big day of fascinating outback travel tends to cure most insomnia!) We have stayed there in the Easter, July and September holidays and have only had pleasant experiences.
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Follow Up By: ManGoat - Sunday, May 21, 2017 at 21:08

Sunday, May 21, 2017 at 21:08
thanks so much for all the information. we have decided to stay at the bladensburg NP site for 1 night. we will do a night in longreach as well. my 4yo girl is so excited about tenting it (never camped or slept in a van or anything apart from houses and motels). we have loads of sleeping bags and blankets to take. worst case, we will snuggle with the kids to share warmth if its unbareable. youve all made this trip seem like a rushed nightmare, but we just want to see what is out west on the trip to cairns, then hopefully yearly, we will venture to different areas, spending a few days in each, getting to know the beautiful lands around us.

maybe, if things go ok, we might look at a small van or camper if the kids seem to enjoy the getting out and about thing.
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Monday, May 22, 2017 at 06:17

Monday, May 22, 2017 at 06:17
Kids will love it, as long as they're comfy and warm sleeping in general (goes for the wife too :) . . .)

As Robyn pointed out, have decent rated (-5 to -10) sleeping bags, maybe the flannel PJs to bolster if needed.

Or take existing bags and a couple of old quilts from home, lay one out over the sleeping mats to sleep on top of, and have the other on standby to go over you all if it gets 'outback cold'.

Winter, Summer, anytime of year can be uncomfortably cold inland, have sometimes had to wear fleeces in full sun, desert locations during lunch stops, and I don't really feel the cold too much.

You'll all love the different aspects of the inland regions, just a different world entirely to metro you are used to.
Enjoy your trip, it could be the start of many similar journeys for the family.
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Follow Up By: Member - Robyn R4 - Monday, May 22, 2017 at 19:10

Monday, May 22, 2017 at 19:10
"Rushed nightmare?!
You'll see how easy it is doing that area.
If you forget something, a small town of some sort isn't far away.
If you're sick of camp food, there are some great pubs with great meals.
If the kids are getting a bit "toe-y", there'll be something interesting to stop and see that you never anticipated.
If you're not sure where you'll end up for the night, there is always a vacancy somewhere.
If something's not working out, the "holiday state of mind" will soon quietly steer you in the right direction.
If you aren't sure exactly what such-and-such is, there'll be another tourist to fill you in.
If you hear of something interesting that you didn't know of before, you'll get into "grey nomad" frame of mind and head down a different road.
Be prepared for the addiction of western Qld travel!
It's a lovely route you've chosen with a bit of variety for everyone.

:) Robyn

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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Monday, May 22, 2017 at 20:21

Monday, May 22, 2017 at 20:21

As you are coming to Winton it's worthwhile taking the children up to see the dinosaurs at Australian Age of Dinosaurs. The turnoff is about 13kms east of Winton, and then around 11kms in off the highway. They opened a new attraction at Easter, the Dinosaur Canyon, with "real dinosaurs" on site.

Lark Quarry is worth the drive to see the dinosaur trackways, about 107kms south of Winton.

And Winton has 3 van parks if you need a bed. Banjo's Cabins is another suitable place for families to stay.

Seen it all, Done it all.
Can't remember most of it.

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Follow Up By: Member - Robyn R4 - Friday, May 26, 2017 at 21:16

Friday, May 26, 2017 at 21:16
3, Bob?!
That's what happens when you stop at the first one in town and you're happy enough to not look further!! :)
Oops! My mistake!

Yeh, wasn't sure how far you were heading, but ditto to Bob (and he's a local!). Lark Quarry (wow), Age of Dinosaurs (wow)...
Winton might be little but hubby and I sure have a soft spot for it.
If you don't do it this time, go back another day.

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Reply By: Litlbalt - Sunday, Jun 18, 2017 at 15:39

Sunday, Jun 18, 2017 at 15:39
We did this trip last year in all the rain they were having. I couldn't recommend Ilfracombe highly enough we stayed there and just travelled into Longreach to visit the museums etc. The park owner went out of her way to help us as all our bedding was wet and offered to dry it in their dryers not just the general laundry ones for campers and also offered if we needed to borrow blankets if needed.

In Winton we stayed at the Matilda and wouldn't again was a pretty empty park and were given a spot next to one of the only other campers there and it poured with rain (not their fault obviously) we were floating from the water but then sinking in the mud the next morning in the light the whole other end of the park was nice grass wet but not muddy. We met people staying at the Pelican who said it was very wet too but nothing to what we had and a bit nicer amenities. In Winton we only got to see the Age of dinsosaurs as with the rain we didn't want to get stuck there and the road to Lark Quarry was closed we left but my girls still loved it and now there is even more to see.

If you have time Richmond is gorgeous great park looking over a man made lake.

We drove from here back to Hughenden and out to Porcupine gorge which is breathtaking both in sight and walking back out lol but def worth it. You can also camp out here.

If you are worried about the cold and sleeping with your kids we put a rubber back picnic blanket down and our girls are in swags they were only $70 I think from Goodwoods. They are 8 and 10 now and been in them since they were 3 and 5.
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Follow Up By: ManGoat - Sunday, Jun 18, 2017 at 20:16

Sunday, Jun 18, 2017 at 20:16
hi there.

pretty much got it planned for now. although, if we arrive at a park and its crap, we will move on :)

we are doing 2 nights in emerald to start, tenting worried me with the current weather, but we have a week and a half before we leave.

then off to longreach, didnt want to top out at ilfracombe, but would if we were doing a few nights. that might be next year.

doing a night in the national park outside winton, then off for a long drive to richmond, via like, julia creek or something.

from there, we cruise on to charters towers, then another LONG day to palm cove.

going to be a long drive, but i hope to see a bit, gather some info along the way, test the waters for a longer stay in a few places next year.

cheers for everyones help. helps with future travels.
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Reply By: 9900Eagle - Monday, Jun 19, 2017 at 05:24

Monday, Jun 19, 2017 at 05:24
You can camp a couple of K out of Winton. Drive out on the Winton Jundah Rd about 1.7k and take the first left to the long hole on the Western River. You can camp down by the river but it will be just about dry by now.
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