Attention Boobook and Bonz

Submitted: Thursday, Jan 25, 2018 at 21:24
ThreadID: 136153 Views:1287 Replies:8 FollowUps:19
This Thread has been Archived
Hi Tony and Bonz



Sorry for not putting this up sooner, but I have rushed through another Blog for you to ponder over.

I have just put some more detailed information about our Extreme Simpson Trip here.

If you open the above link, it will give you details about the hardest Simpson Desert Trip that can still be undertaken today, with no other Simpson trip being able to be compared to this trip. Unlike the Madigan Line that is now an easy, well defined track to follow, the above trip is still as raw now as when we did it 12 years ago.

I must also point out that this trip should never be attempted to be undertake by novice four wheel drivers and should only be undertaken by fully experienced desert travellers at can read a GPS and know how to navigate purely from a GPS.

Fuel usage will be high and the trip will be impossible to do in reverse, for the only fast that there are many virgin dunes out in the northern Simpson that will make Big Red look small.

The only bonus now, is there are countless searches on the internet for Georsurveys Hill, compared no nothing 12 years ago.

Please feel free to ask as many questions as you like, as the key to a safe trip like this is to hear first hand information from someone that has driven a trip like this, rather that being sold incorrect facts from a third party.




Cheers







Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

Back Expand Un-Read 7 Moderator

Reply By: Duncanm - Thursday, Jan 25, 2018 at 23:04

Thursday, Jan 25, 2018 at 23:04
Wow, what an excellent write up Stephen and outstanding photos. Read the whole lot. Must have been an amazing trip traveling through that part of the Simpson.
Great work and thanks.
Regards Duncan.
AnswerID: 616356

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Thursday, Jan 25, 2018 at 23:12

Thursday, Jan 25, 2018 at 23:12
Hi Duncan

Thanks for that and yes it was a very special trip that we will never forget.

The good thing about seeing the Simpson the way we saw it, it will still be the same today with no tracks to follow.

Cheers

Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 887717

Reply By: rob c - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 01:30

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 01:30
An amazing journey, thanks for sharing, its somewhere that I would love to travel but alas too late for me .
AnswerID: 616357

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 07:00

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 07:00
Hi Rob

It sure was one very special Simson trip, and looking back in time, it only seems like we did it yesterday.

It is never too late, as the country out there still remains in that pristine state and providing you are an experienced outback traveller, and are prepared for a very slow drive, you to can put your names in the visitors book at Geosurveys Hill and the Geographical Centre of the Simpson.



Cheers




Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 887719

Reply By: Malcom M - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 06:37

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 06:37
Love your write ups Stephen.
Another excellent read.
AnswerID: 616360

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 07:02

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 07:02
Hi Malcolm


Thanks for that and good to hear you enjoyed the blog.



Cheers



Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 887720

Reply By: Member - Boobook - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 08:08

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 08:08
Wow Stephen, that is very generous of you to dedicate the time to a wonderful Blog.

I notice you said that you started with 6 new Coopers and finished with 4 "not so new" ones. Did you kill the other two, or did they survive intact? Also was the Hale river the biggest problem area for punctures, or was it constant?

How long was the whole section from Old Andado to Poeppel Corner? It looks like about 11 - 12 days.

What an adventure.

Thank you very much. I intend to read it aver again a few times.

Nice.


Tony
200 with 2012 Tvan Canning.
Happiness >= your perception of the events in your life minus your expectation of how life should be.

Member
My Profile  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 616364

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 09:42

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 09:42
Hi Tony

Thanks for that.

Yes 6 brand new tyres at the very start of the trip. The two that survived was the spare tyre on a rim that was not needed on the roof and one front tyre that for some very lucky reason, never suffered a puncture.

The other 4 tyres all suffered multiple sidewall punctures, with one tyre claiming a total of 5. I must also point out that the puncture count, were my punctures alone, and did not include the other 4 vehicles in the group. I suffered the most as I was the lead vehicle and to be honest, the only vehicle that did not suffer one single puncture was tail end Charlie, Bill in his well set up custom built Toyota that he built for such trips.

To keep our impact on the desert as minimal as possible, the vehicles behind me all followed my tracks as best as possible, and by doing so, we found in most cases the first 3 vehicle cleared the track of small puncture sticks, giving the last two an easier run through.

I can now hear many people saying 5 reckless vehicles cutting up the pristine Simpson Desert, scaring the desert for ever. People that think this are the ones that live in glass houses and have never ventured out of their own front yard. I can say that with spite, as it is so true and they have no idea, what so ever on just how resilient the Simpson Desert is.

How do I know this after we left our imprint out there? One great friend at the time was the late Ian Stabler, who many Simpson travellers may have encountered at Mount Dare. Ian followed our trip with great interest and I can not tell you how many phone calls and emails we had prior and after the trip.

Ian intended to try and make a perminant safe passage out of the Simpson for future visitors to the Geo Centre and just 4 months after we were in the Simpson, Ian tried as best as possible to follow our exact tracks. ( I had given Ian all my complete track files, for that very reason soon after our trip ) Like us he suffered punctures and lots of fun on those virgin dunes and when he rang me about his drive, Ian said he could not believe that there were only a couple of dunes were he could just make out what was left of our tracks, with all other signs that we had past through the area completely covered over, and as he said, if it was not for my track files and photos he would never believe that we were ever out there. He then went on to say that within a few more months, what was left would be completely covered over and no one would ever know we were ever there. Sadly Ian died on his way back to Mount Dare in July the next year when his vehicle rolled, and so ended Ian's dream of creating a permanent track out of the desert.

The Hale River area is only shortly lived on hard compact sand and we did not suffer any punctures there, with the majority after we left the Colson Track and started the long haul out to Geosurveys Hill and beyond.

That Simpson trip was our longest ever stay out there, as it was 15 Days from when we first entered the Simpson via the Warburton Track until we drove into Birdsville.

We did see some unreal country and in some areas of the Virgin Gidgee country, the park like appearances made it so inviting and we could have spent a lot of time there.

Another thing that I have never said before was that I was also trying to locate some of the Aboriginal Native wells that David Lindsay first discovered in the 1800's and only after the trip and finding out more information, I was indeed on track and at the point where I lost my brakes and had to change my departure plans, was only 800 metres from where I thought one well would be and now kick myself for not getting there, as that particular well also has the remains of a number of whirlies.

The trip is a swag or tent only trip, with towing totally out of the question. I think the ultimate vehicle for such a trip is a tray top vehicle, as the extra clearance and less body work to be damaged making it the perfect vehicle setup, as was demonstrated by Ken and Bill's Toyota's.



Cheers


Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

2
FollowupID: 887723

Reply By: Member - Racey - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 10:14

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 10:14
Have to agree with the other comments, great trip and excellent story.
AnswerID: 616368

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 10:29

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 10:29
Hi Racey

Thanks for that and for anyone that loves the Simpson and are experiences outback traveller, this would have to be the ultimate Simpson challenge that anyone can experience.



Cheers and have a great Australia Day.



Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 887724

Reply By: Les - PK Ranger - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 11:17

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 11:17
Posted a comment over there Stephen, thanks for the great read.
It won't be rough and untamed for long . . . this will be like a new route people will go and undertake, as you say not much challenge left in Madigan now.

We could see faint tracks here and there from Colson turnoff to the fuel bases and Geo Hill, nothing you could follow, but soon it will be like Madigan half a decade back, and a nice track to follow, reasonably free of stakes :)
AnswerID: 616371

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 11:57

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 11:57
Hi Les

We knew about the track down from Madigans, but a couple of people that I spoke to said that was the cheats way.

Also going that way, you miss out on those old fuel dumps and the old Geosurveys Base A old camp.

When I go back and think about the trip and what I now know, there is just some much more history out there that is recorded. There were a few special places that my then untrained eyes noticed lots of traces of Aboriginal history. I know now that if I went back out there, I could spend a lot of time finding more such places and more evidence their past visits through the area.

O, what a joy it would be to travel through that area puncture free, just like a normal Simpson drive. Also the lonely camp were the birds made their visit, knowing that there must be an unknown Aboriginal well in the very close area, as we were hundreds of kilomtres from the last known perminant water supplies.



Cheers



Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 887727

Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 13:58

Friday, Jan 26, 2018 at 13:58
Yes, a special place Stephen, but still very isolated and a much tougher drive than many anticipate.
These posts will attract more people to do the Geos, hopefully they won't try and follow the route on the trip map, especially in the east - west direction, it simply does not exist any longer in reasonably driveable form east of geo centre.
Eg. in 2005, we managed sometimes only 50km or so a day, and they were full driving days !!
That ate up so much fuel.

What I meant re Madigan was Madigan Line itself is no longer a challenge as it used to be.
Have not done that either way from Madigan to centre area on the two geos trips, but we came down it 100m or so when doing that in 2016, just to see what cond it was in . . . was very poor, so not even many using that too often.

It's not permissible to go down to the hill or centre now anyway on the 2016 onwards Madigan permit.

Personally I think that the Colson - Hill section will soon have some followable tracks here and there, from the hill to centre will be a bit less of this as ou can go so many more direct drives, from the centre the normal escape will be down the French Line, as it is a very nicely formed track in places, with the odd bit of course finding between dune minglings.
2
FollowupID: 887728

Reply By: Member - McLaren3030 - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 12:49

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 12:49
Stephen,

Great post. My brother-in-law & I have wanted to do the Simpson Centre & Geosurveys Hill trip for a few years now. Will will definitely study your trek notes and put it on our bucket list for the future. Thanks again.

Macca.
Macca.

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 616397

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 13:40

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 13:40
Hi Macca

It is a very unique trip that is still today, the true ultimate Simson trip to undertake to experience the Simpson in its true raw state.

Like any trip, it will and does change over the years, from when we did it after the desert had been ravished from summer wild fires, and then when you look at Maurace's images, back to its usual state.

It s one trip that can not be rushed and is definitely a west to east crossing purely by the nature of the dunes.

Keep planning and please feel free to ask any questions.



Cheers



Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 887744

Follow Up By: Member - McLaren3030 - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 14:09

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 14:09
Thanks Stephen,

We are actually crossing the Simpson this year in late April with a few of my brother-in-laws mates. Crossing East to West on the QAA & French lines.

The Geosurveys Hill run will have to wait.

Macca.
Macca.

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Position  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 887745

Reply By: Idler Chris - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 15:36

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 15:36
Hi Stephen,

Got to Geosurvey Hill July 2014. Your blog was a great reminder of the fun we also had. When we left Geosurvey Hill we got on the track to the Geographical Centre of the Simpson instead of heading to the Madigan Line, the computer froze at the wrong time. When we realised our error we had travelled 7 kilometres in about 20 minutes. It took us 7 hours to return to Geosurveys Hill, the eastern side of the dunes where very steep and we had to make our own path back over the dunes as the track we had travelled was just too steep to follow.

12 years to write a blog, I suppose thats because you are still working. Maybe the blogs will come thick and fast when you retire.

It is my understanding that permits are no longer issued for travel to Geosurvey Hill, has anyone been able to get a permit in the last year?

If that is the case then this is yet another place I have been too that is no longer open to others.
What other people think of me is none of my business.
Do unto others what you would have them do unto you.

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 616400

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 15:55

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 15:55
Hi Chris

First of all, Happy New Year, as I do not think we have spoken since then.

You sure would have had fun Chris, and how on hell did you get over those east facing dunes?

With no run up, moguls on the dune face, soft sand and the cane grass, it sure would have fun, and it sounds like the lead vehicle must have had a winch?

As for permits, it was all Crown Land when we did it and we did not come in the easy way from the Colson Track. According to Les's reply above, it still looks like Crown Land, so permits should not be needed, as you are well clear of the Colson

Hope your planning is going well for your travels this year.



Cheers


Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 887748

Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 16:15

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 16:15
It's all crown land if coming to the hill from Colson, geo centre, or up from French Line (DPP required) . . . you would still be on all crown land to the centre if you came from Poeppel Cnr or Hay River Tk if you were REALLY keen and fully prepared, but that is a slog as we found in '15.

The only place that is what I'd call easy travel to the geos is from Madigan Line, since 2016 ruled out specifically on permits . . . they locals don't want people going to the hill and this is the only way they can have an effect in stopping transit, as they have around 12km or so south of Madigan.
So just limit going off Madigan Line for camping (can't recall, maybe 50m or 100m), this effectively limits travel south from Madigan, or indeed the other way.

The hill itself apparently holds significance to the indigenous people, it is probably one of the only sources near with anything like stone for tools etc.
There are more significant claypans in the area too, finding one ourselves with stones placed in significant patterns . . . we avoided driving any claypans and drove well around that one.
1
FollowupID: 887750

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 16:28

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 16:28
Hi Les

Do you have a track file from Ozi for your Geosurveys Hill drive?

I would love to compare it alongside my file.

Did you see the photos of the rock covered flat area that we came across north east of the Hill? To a few in the group, including Ken, we think it must have been a stone tool factory over thousands of years, as it was so out of place in the middle of those red dunes.


Cheers



Stephen


Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 887753

Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 17:00

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 17:00
Very red claypan, rocks also very red, distinct lines laid out.
Other claypans usually clear, so this was obviously some significant site.
We read a University field trip doc about these, and wanted to have a look very discreetly, and with great care.

2015 or 2017 logs Stephen ?
I did daily Mapout track logs, and have them saved, just they are so big.
I'm not expert like you to convert / compress etc, but can see daily ones aren't too sizable.

I still have your gpx from 2006 trip, overlaid that for the '15 trip on one mapping programme.
0
FollowupID: 887756

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:09

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:09
Hi Les

The track file where you made it to Geosurveys Hill and the aboriginal stone arrangements.

Like I said, back in 2004 when I started to plan our Geo trip, there was nothing on the internet relating to the hill or any aboriginal history. I have been doing further research and if I was ever to go back, I feel that I have a very good idea where they are, after a field trip there and report from 2014.

I know one thing, when those guys went back, they would not have been aware of the small Clsypan were were found a grinding stone and lots of chippings.

If you could snd it to me via email, I will have a gues where it was in relation to your track file and will let me know, to see if I am on the money....lol.


Cheers



Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 887760

Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:24

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:24
The Hill is significant, this is why they have banned travel down form the Madigan, effectively making easier access out.
Many would drive down and back as a side trip when doing Madigan.

Some will still do this no doubt, even though specifically banned on permits.

Will send you a GR and a copy of this report "A Reinvestigation of the Archaeology of Geosurveys Hill, Northern Simpson Desert ", along with a special request on using it.
1
FollowupID: 887764

Follow Up By: maurice b - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 23:07

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 23:07
I feel strongly that the Claypans locations mentioned above should not be posted on here or any public media . One of the reasons the Magidan permits have the restriction to travel to Geosurveys Hill is to try to protect the area. There a many travellers outside EO who have no respect for aboriginal culture and these stone arrangements, tool and artifacts would be destroyed or removed. In June of 2017 there were distinct eroded wheel mark where some idiots tried to climb as high as possible up Geosurveys Hill. One of my favourite area,s that I visited many times the Calvert Range ,Constanse Headland and beyond is a prime example of damage and desecration and closed off in 2008
1
FollowupID: 887777

Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 23:15

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 23:15
I agree, that would be my special request, not published or shared, for personal use only next time going through there, or to double check own log.

Thinking about it, I'm sure Stephen wouldn't mind not getting this, he seems to know where it is, and it was us that stumbled on it Joe on our trip, so need to respect other travel companions wishes too.
1
FollowupID: 887778

Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 10:56

Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 10:56
Hi Maurice

I was not asking Les to tell me where the claypans were, just asking for a copy of his track file, as I am entered to see the way he travelled.

As for some total idiots trying to drive up the face of Geosurveys Hill, all I can say is I hope that put a hole in their sump....bloody idiots and we all wonder why these special areas get closed to to everyone.

I like dozens of fellow viewers here on EO love to explore, inspect and respect special places of Aboriginal importance. Yes I love to photograph these very special places, but will never post the location so as to keep them safe.

Below are some of the places where we have visited and some of those very special Aboriginal places that only a hand full of people ever get to witness.....



The above tree is where an Aboriginal, using a stone axe cut this Woomera from a Black Oak in the Great Victoria Desert.



Just like we use road signs today when travelling, Aboriginal used these large flat stones around the size of a laptop point in the direction of travel to be taken to reach a special ceremonial site. This stone is in the Great Victoria Desert and we followed a number of them to reach a special site.





The above Stone is some form of special ceremonial Aboriginal Marker is is located in the Coober Pedy Area



It is no secret that I live in Clare, in the Mid North of South Australia and the above Aboriginal petroglyphs are on private property just over an hour away from where I live.



The above images are from the Riverland in South Australia near Renmark. There were 4 intact graves and at least 8 graves that had been exposed by wind and time. I contact the Berri Branch of the National Parks with 4 emails and 2 phones calls reporting the location. National Parks could not give a stuff about this site and never had the decency to return my emails or phone calls.

On the other hand, when I contacted the Aboriginal section of the Museum in Adelaide, I was put through immediately to the lady in charge and she wanted to know as much as possible about the site. Over one more phone call and two emails, she was thrilled about this site, as she was telling me that any more than 3 graves in any one location was classed as a site of signifiant value and needs recording.

All I can say about National Parks...well it is not worth repeating and will never waste my time with them again.



The Simpson desert still holds lots of places to show that it was a place where the local people called home, and lived out there in harmony with nature for thousands of years.



The above 2 sites are located in the Great Victoria Desert near the Great Central Road. We were the first ever private group to view this location, the first person was the person that located them and the second group was from the Museum in Perth.


There must still be hundreds of such sites all over Australia, just as they were made by the local Aboriginal people for special ceremonies and still have not been located by white people.



More Aboriginal art from another remote cave site in the Great Victoria Desert.



This special rock art site is found in the Kingoonya area of South Australia and is on a private station and the owners will only allow people to view the site that they can trust.

I can go on and on Maurice, but as you can see, you will not be able to locate these sites on the internet as they are not published, but can only view the images and trust that I am giving your the correct details.

The reason why I and other very few privileged people get to view these very special places is for one reason only - Trust.




Cheers



Stephen
Roxby Downs Special

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

3
FollowupID: 887787

Follow Up By: Candace S. - Friday, Feb 09, 2018 at 02:52

Friday, Feb 09, 2018 at 02:52
Stephen,

Those are indeed some amazing sites!

As for your experience with National Parks... Recently, someone shared with me a document detailing ~270 sites in Inyo County, California. These sites include rock art (petroglyphs/paintings), rock alignments, other artifacts, or a combination of these.

One of the sites happened to lie on land managed by the US National Park Service. Its description included this statement about the rock art panels at that site: "...some were pried off the wall within one week after being reported to Park Service."
0
FollowupID: 888212

Popular Content