6 wk outback trip

Submitted: Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 15:25
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hi,
we are going to do a 6 wk trip in septmber 06 and are wanting to know where to go what not to do what to see and how!!
we are going through nsw (orange,cobar,broken hill etc) to sa (wilpena pound-any good??thought we'd stay here after broken hill) up the oodnadatta track then keep heading north through dalhousie ,finke etc to alice(not sure of the order of the stations etc) then the typical alice - simpons gap,palm valley,kings canyon,uluru.....yada yada yada....up to tennant creek (haven't decided whether to stay a day or 2 or not) then to kakadu,maybe darwin....then over to camooweal mt isa,longreach,charleville then to surfers to see in-laws..and home again.....
we are going to be travelling by ourselves in an 80 prob with camper trailer...with 2 very young girls.....
do you think we can do all this in 6 wks and not push it cos we dont wanna turn the girls off being in the car!!!!
is there any secret places to stay or see that aren't really touristy??
we love not being in caravanparks just bushin' it hey!!!!
anyone else going this way that time of year????
laura
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Reply By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 15:46

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 15:46
Flora ,

I did a trip with my two boys when they were about 12 and 14 years old . We did Sydney , Flinders Ranges , The Rock and environs and the East and West McDonalds , Harts Range then up to Katherine Gorge , Mataranka , Kakadont , Litchfield and Darwin .

That took 4 weeks . then I put my wife and kids on a plane back to Sydney and I drove back in three days .

That was a fairly rushed trip and we wre only able to doit all because I flew them home . To much time in the car kills it for the kids .

Cheers ,

Willie .
AnswerID: 149621

Follow Up By: flora - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 15:57

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 15:57
how much time did you spend at each place?where thinking <1 wk to get to alice,1wk west mcD ranges etc....not sure about the rest just depends on time and what we like to see....where is the hart ranges?havent seen that one on a map...laura
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Follow Up By: Vince NSW - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:10

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:10
A week to get to Alice can be done, but you won't see much on the way.
A day & a bit to B Hill,
another day to the Flinders,
2 days there
2 days via Maree William creek to Delhousie
2 days to Alice
Day for Eastern Mc D randges, 2 for the West Mc D.
Thats about 10 days. Others will tell you you can do it faster, but you miss too much.
My thoughts
Vince
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:46

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:46
Laura ,

One of the things we did to save time , was to have a huge driving day first up .

We left home at 5.00am and got to Broken Hill that night about 6-7 pm .We stayed at a motel we had booked on that first night . This broke the back of the travelling and from then on we took it easy . There is bugger all to see between Sydney and Broken Hill , and if there is , you can do it on a shorter trip later .

Harts Range is just NE of Alice Springs . We took the boys there to fossick for garnets . We found some and they had a good time there at Gemtree .

I cannot remember how long we spent at each place - sorry .

Willie .
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Reply By: Notso - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 15:58

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 15:58
It's a big trip in 6 weeks.

A good itinerary. We did much the same in 2004. Only a couple of Oldies though.

We took from 20 April at a Burke and Wills camp Site a free camp near Menindee
To May 27 at Devils marbles to this part of the trip. Now we are a couple of "Older Aussies" so we would travel a bit slower and stay a bit longer at spots.

Great camps sites. Burke and wills near Menindee. The stars are that bright out there you don't need lights at night.

Alpana Station Near Blinman was just starting out with camping when we were there but it was a beaut spot.

on the Oodnadatta Track

Farina Ruins was great.

Coward Springs nice spot to soak your bones.

Have to stay at the Pink Roadhouse

Kings Creek Station is a good spot to camp for a look at Kings Canyon

Great camping in Palm Valley

Banka Banka station on the way up to katherine is a nice spot.

Some of these you pay others not.

Enjoy
AnswerID: 149625

Follow Up By: Shaker - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:30

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:30
Quote: Have to stay at the Pink Roadhouse

You gotta be kidding! What a run down dive, it's little better than 3rd world!
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Follow Up By: Notso - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:39

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:39
The experience mate, the experience
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:54

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:54
We did 8000kms through the Outback in 2004, the Pink Roadhouse was in fact ... the lowlight!
We did the Simpson last year & gave it a wide berth!
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Follow Up By: Notso - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:02

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:02
Actually we stayed 3 nights and thought it was "an experience" we met some nice people there. Used it as a base to have a look at the painted desert.

Had dinner at the pub. A mate had one of his tyres on the roof of his disco explode. Not sure whether it was the heat or the fact that it was made in Thailand.

Anyhow it had a shower and toilet so we didn't complain too much.

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Follow Up By: flora - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:07

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:07
the les the better!!!!good at doing bush wee's by now anyway!!!!laura
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:35

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:35
I have to agree with Shaker . The Pink Roadhouse is a nightmare dump - definitely "an experience " , a bad one .
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Follow Up By: Richard Kovac - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 01:41

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 01:41
Notso
I would have to agree with you "the experience" thats why we go bush
to slum it.

It was the best shower we had after leaving Perth up the GC hwy, then again it was the first

Richard
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Follow Up By: flora - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 10:17

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 10:17
where abouts is menindee,and blinman?how far up in farina ruins - it sounds familiar!heard of Banka Banka - have to keep an eye out for it...the rest we'll be doin for sure..wish we could travel slower....just want to see heaps in 6 wks but just need to weigh up what is worth seeing......im secretly on the lookout for somwhere to live.....the further from civilisation the better....just dont he hubby know!!!! laura
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Follow Up By: Notso - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 11:01

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 11:01
Menindee is about 110kilometres East of Broken Hill. It's probably not on your track from Cobar but a great place. All bitumen from Broken Hill

if you have a GPS S32°24.086' E142°25.013'

Blinman is about 65 Kilometres north of Wilpena Pound It is signposted from Wilpena Pound. Alpana Station is south of Blinman if I recall correctly they have signs on the road. Anyhow it would be a very short trip for the day and you may want to go further. If you turn left near Blinman it takes you out onto the road to Leigh Creek. If you are planning to stop near there then go on to Copley which is just North of Leigh Creek. You have to try the Tucker at the Bakery at Copley. If it's still open?

Farina is about 25 Kilometres north of Lyndhurst between Leigh Creek and Marree. It is also signposted. We have the HEMA Maps Aust Road Atlas and it is shown on it.

We have just moved out of the Big Smoke ( Canberra) to live in Forbes.
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Follow Up By: Al & Mrs Al (Vic) - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 11:28

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 11:28
Laura,

The Pink Roadhouse is an experience...and I guess it's what you make of it that matters, my kids loved it...lol...could have been the colour though, there was a camping spot just south of Oodnadatta at the Alkabarinka [spelling isprobably out on that one] which looked nice, William Creek is also an experience and the pub was great,

Banka Banka Station is FANTASTIC, it's cheap, clean, the showers sensational, the kids will love the emus who visit, they have happy hour there and also evening talks about the history of the station - well worth the stop..

cheers

Lyn
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Follow Up By: flora - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 12:12

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 12:12
ill have to get that Hema map if my 4wd book doesnt have it which it should..its by Ron and Viv Moon...ill let ya know if that place is still there!!!! I know that pubs are 18yrs+ but what do ya do with the littlies????do ya take them in anyway???
thanks heaps for all that info...its wonderful!!
laura
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Follow Up By: Al & Mrs Al (Vic) - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 12:15

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 12:15
Just take them in Laura, everyone does, the kids love it, my two love to watch the guys play pool, the Daly Waters Pub is another great place to visit
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Reply By: Member - Coyote (SA) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:02

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:02
If you want to get away a little bit around Wilpena Pound try Rawnsley Park Station. You can set up amongst the other caravaners, or move away from the powered sights and there is a huge area for bush camping within reach of the van park where there is alittle general store, water toilets etc.. just note that Wilpena Pound campsite itself is very commercial, pretty much bitumen right up to the campsites. Rawnsley Park is just outsdie the NP boundary and frommenory only 15 mins to the step off pt for the Wilpena Pound foot track into the Pound itself. Good luck and have a ball you lucky buger
AnswerID: 149626

Follow Up By: Member - Coyote (SA) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:24

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:24
damn... I need a spell checker or stop and read my typing b4 clicking the submit button..
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Follow Up By: flora - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:09

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:09
lucky...you bet....we live in Gods country mate...we passing up saving for a house deposit so we can go!!!!already spent half our deposit buying our 80 but we own it...no loans!!....bring it on!!!!
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Reply By: Member - JohnR (Vic)&Moses - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:36

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:36
Laura, sounds good actually. make sure you don't go too late though as you say a 6 week trip in September - my calendar says 4 weeks and 2 days so start it early as it will be getting warmer up the North into October. Plenty of flies for you too.

You don't say how young your girls are but if they study geography at school there is plenty to bring the lessons alive in the Flinders and get the imagination going. It is one of my favourite places around the Wilpena area. Take a flight though to see it from above and get the perspective and as you say 'very young' even they would love that. Round Burra on the way too, near Willem.
Cheers,
Who?
John

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AnswerID: 149632

Follow Up By: flora - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:04

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:04
not sure of dates when leaving yet....ive been thinking last wk in august,spend 4-5 wks in nt then the rest goin home through outback qld....then nsw....no chance of girls studying!!they will be 3 and 1!!!! we can handle heat we pretty climatised to dry heat!! but thanks for the warning,wasnt sure when wet season kicks in thought it would have been about then........laura
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Reply By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:37

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:37
G'day Flora,

You didn't say you were going off road but - a little late in the year to chance any off road up north I would have thought. There is the possibility of rain as you head into November.

Kind regards
AnswerID: 149633

Follow Up By: flora - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:06

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:06
we should be out of nt by wk 5 at the absolute latest...maybe leaving last wk of august...not sure....should be home(south coast nsw) by mid oct
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Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:17

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:17
Probably not a worry but we were in centrqal Oz in late Sept last year - it was hot and there were flies, lots of flies. Apparently they get worse as the season progresses, take a fly veil.

Kind regard
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Follow Up By: Member - Wayne M (WA) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 21:46

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 21:46
If you are definite about going to the NT I’d suggest going their first and coming home via the Alice and SA. Camping in the north during Sept and Oct is not very pleasant and you’ll have the added advantage, that it might be a little warmer in the south
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Reply By: Gossy - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:40

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 16:40
Wilpena is too commercialized. As mentioned, try Rawnsley Park. Parachillna Gorge is also very nice (no facilities but a pub only 5kms away). Arkaroola (nth flinders) has great 4wding.
A very good spot also is Warraweena (need to book though as they book out the whole camping spot for just you so you feel very isolated and peaceful). Excellent 4wding there also but I would suggest leaving the camper at the camp spot if going there.
Doing a search on the internet will bring up the above mentioned places for more info.

have a great trip.
AnswerID: 149635

Follow Up By: flora - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:06

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 17:06
cheers,sounds good.....laura
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Reply By: Member - Crazy Dog (QLD) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 18:38

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 18:38
Yo Flora,

My wife and I are doing the same trip in reverse out of Cairns about the same time (once the tax cheque gets back) 6-8 weeks from Cairns - Charters -Isa- 3 Ways -Alice -Pt Aug - Broken Hill - Murray areas - Melb and the back to Rocky to C the son and daughter IL then home. Keep in contact and we may meet somewhere. As far as rain goes you should be fine up here in the northern areas up until about late Nov.
AnswerID: 149651

Follow Up By: flora - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 08:53

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 08:53
going backwards has its pro's i think!!we have always planned on going up not down.....lots of people say it gets hot n that.....im not an actual member on this........ahhh hang it....ill do it....membership here i come!!
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Reply By: Member - Trevor R (QLD) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 19:15

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 19:15
Hi Laura,

Sounds like a great route. One spot I would definately go to if you get close enough is Lawn Hill ( N/E of Cammoweal or N/W of the Isa). Plenty of other people will give great must see destinations so I'll leave the rest for them.

Have fun, regards Trevor.
AnswerID: 149659

Follow Up By: flora - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 10:02

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 10:02
thanks,never heard of this place b4,how far from camooweal is it and can you do a detour to mt isa from it??
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Follow Up By: Member - Trevor R (QLD) - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 12:34

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 12:34
Can't recall exactly how far off the Isa-Cammoweal rd it was (about 350km return I think). I do recall it was fairly corrogated but MORE than worth it in my opinion. I'd do that trip again if it was twice as far and twice as corrogated as when I drove it, it is that nice.
Have fun Trevor.
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Follow Up By: flora - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 14:52

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 14:52
I had a look for it on the map...if time lets us go then we will for sure,it definetely sounds nice especially evenif there was heaps more corrigation!!!
laura
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Reply By: Footloose - Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 22:55

Thursday, Jan 19, 2006 at 22:55
Laura, a tip. The road from Three Ways through Longreach etc is pretty much the Grey Nomad happy trail. One side effect is that most of the roadside stops are small towns by afternoon and there's no room at the inn. Likewise the towns. If you find this happening then it may be wise to book ahead. Unless you really need to, I wouldn't bother with Charleville. The roos on the Longreach to Augathella run are legendary, take care.
AnswerID: 149733

Follow Up By: flora - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 09:10

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 09:10
which way do you recommend then...we are campiong it...bushy style...no hotel/inn fors us..we'll go road side..dont care!!we need to go to charleville to get to surfers to visit IL's...dont wanna go coast road because in a few years we are goin to do cape york trip...we'll see that part then!!!!! is there another way in lan to get to surfers????
laura
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Follow Up By: Footloose - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 09:26

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 09:26
Coming down from Barcoldine, turn left at Auguthella and keep on the highway through to Toowoomba and Sufferers Paradise. You have to go out of your way to visit Charleville, its at the bottom of the triangle.
If bush camping try and avoid the crowds and stop relatively early. You'll also miss some of the wildlife on the road.
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Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 00:15

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 00:15
Laura,

What you are planning definitely sounds doable to me.

There is some valuable information under the Trip Planning / Treknotes section that may be of assistance to you.

Despite Wilpena Pound being "touristy" it is definitely worth a visit. You can camp in the extensive Camping Ground / Caravan Park or anywhere else in the general vicinity such as Rawnsley Park, or Willow Springs Station. (home of Skytrek)

There is a good and easy walk from the Resort into the Pound, plus so much other short trips throughout the region that you will only experience a few in the time you have.

Kings Canyon. One of the true highlights of our trip to the Top End.

Wherever you go, you will pick up advice as you travel and if some "attraction" or route is not possible due to prevailing weather conditions, then you simply modify your plan and do, or go, somewhere else.

Good luck on your planning and travels. You will have a ball I'm sure.
Bill


I'm diagonally parked in a parallel Universe!

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AnswerID: 149751

Reply By: Al & Mrs Al (Vic) - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 08:15

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 08:15
Hi Laura

We did a 6 week trip in 2004, towing a van and with two kids then aged 4 & 3, we went from Melbourne, to broken hill, across to Peterborough, up to Maree, along the Oodnadatta track up to Marla then along the Stuart Hwy to Alice, a couple of days there, then to Katherine, Litchfield NP, Darwin, Kakadu, back down to Katherine, then back to Alice, onto Uluru, Coober Pedy, Clare Valley SA, Robe, and home....kids didn't get bored or sick of being in the car, we set up a dvd for them to watch on long stretches, they had colouring books and a couple of toys with them as well, last year, when they were 5 & 4 we went up to the Gulf on a 4 week trip, same deal- dvds, books to read, colouring books, and they both had their toy computers to play some "eductional games", they have not developed an aversion to being in the car, and understand that by mid afternoon we'll be at our destination where they can run around and have a ball, it's a great learning time for kids and they're like sponges when it comes to wanting to experience new things.

If you'd like to get more info about how many stops we made etc in the time we had away or places to visit [I reccommend Litchfield NP it's GREAT] just click on my rig pic and my email addy is there.

cheers

Lyn
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Follow Up By: Ruth from Birdsville Caravan Park - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 08:45

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 08:45
Hi ya Mrs Al - was hoping you'd come in with news about your trip - please tell the tiddlies I now have 'Blue Heaven' milkshakes! xxooo
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Follow Up By: Al & Mrs Al (Vic) - Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 11:22

Friday, Jan 20, 2006 at 11:22
OMG Ruth, Blue Heaven milkshakes....I may have to charter a plane myself and fly up...haven't had it in years...

the kids talk about you often and can't wait to see you again and have milkshakes...or as callum so aptly puts it "I wanna see Ruth again, have a milkshake and watch some telly..." hahahah..

love to you and Ian

cheers

Lyn
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