Simpson Desert

We are hoping to cross the Simpson, probably next year, in the planning stage with friends. Advice needed.
What is the best time to go, best route to take, where to leave our camper.
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Reply By: Les - PK Ranger - Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 07:45

Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 07:45
The SA Parks section is generally open from mid March to end November.

For a normal SA desert crossing (French Line, WAA Line, or Rig Rd), any time early May though to say late Aug is fairly safe.

You can go outside this on what I call shoulder season, and strike it lucky with good weather and lower numbers of flies, but anything approaching uncomfortable heat will make a crossing a little bit less attractive to many people not used to the heat and flies.
You also need more water and contingency allowances due to more fluctuations in conditions.

Maybe avoid Queens Birthday long weekend (Finke Desert Races) in June, the Big Red Bash concert usually in July, and the Birdsville Races in Sept, unless they are of interest to combine, as the desert traffic can get very busy both before and after these events.
Also go outside school holidays if they can be avoided.

If first crossing, I'd recommend just do French Line, the most direct and popular route, but all of them have their advantages, WAA a little less undulating on sections, Rig faster, all depends on objective.

To assist with camper info, you'd need to advise where you're coming from / heading after.
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Reply By: Been-Everywhereman - Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 08:14

Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 08:14
Hi. We have crossed it around 10 times and my favourite is West to East.
Start with French then drop down to WAA and follow that until you reach the Knolls Track and go up and then you will find your way to QAA from there. Awesome.
Too many people on the French, too undulating.
Straight down to Rig Road is also as good as WAA but you can't go both ways at once hahaha.
AnswerID: 613435

Reply By: Scout - Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 08:22

Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 08:22
Thanks for the the comments. WE will be coming from the south. Considered leaving camper at Maree or William Creek, then driving to Birdsvilles, across to Dalhousie Springs.
Any other thoughts?
AnswerID: 613436

Follow Up By: Member - Wildmax - Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 10:48

Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 10:48
We left ours at Maree and then did a loop Oodnadatta-Simpson-Birdsville tracks. Great trip.
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 12:32

Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 12:32
Yep Marree the obvious place to leave the trailer.
You can do a great loop either direction.
Heaps to see / do especially on Oodnadatta Tk.
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Reply By: Member - Odog - Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 16:35

Friday, Sep 01, 2017 at 16:35
G'day Scout
Do it when it's not wet.. did it early September last year, the water laying around was like lakes. We made it across the salt/clay pans, the other two got stuck, found the diversions are not clearly marked. Put the whole trip to another level. Great trip, none the less, will do it again when work commitments allow.. it's great when you don't see another vehicle for a few days.. we took our time, did it in 5 days.. you will have a ball! Enjoy! Cheers Odog
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