what are the best maps for camping trips in WA?

Submitted: Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 16:07
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I am interested in self-sufficient 'bush camping' but don't know all the rules. I have the two little guides to free camp sites in north and south WA. Are there other resources that you would recommend to help us find places where it is OK to set up camp when travelling around? Is it Ok to camp anywhere that is obviously not someone's private home and that does not have a 'no camping' sign? Or do you have to stick to the places in the guides?
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Reply By: Flynnie - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 18:41

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 18:41
In NSW it is my understanding travellers can stay overnight in road related areas unless signage says otherwise. They cannot stay for extended times (several days) and can be given a direction to move on if they over stay. Possibly similar rules apply in WA.

It seems to make a bit of a difference when pulling off the road as to what you are driving. I often "scrub camp", that is, in an unfenced rural area will pull off the road 50 to 100 metres or so. I have had no problem doing that in a trayback. I would think it pushing the limits too far to try that with a caravan.

If the roads are fenced I stay at the official rest areas or camp grounds.

AnswerID: 426863

Reply By: Member - John and Val - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 19:01

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 19:01
Hi IdahOz,

Get hold of a copy of Camps Australia (from the EO shop and camping stores). It has good Hema maps and info and locations about free and low cost camps all over Oz. It will pay for itself very quickly. But because a lot of travellers use it you will sometimes find camp areas pretty full.

In more remote areas where there are no fences it is often possible to just find a good spot a bit away from the road and use that for an overnight stop. In NSW it is my understanding that camping is allowed in state forest (unless there is a sign, that is...)

Try to camp several kms away from a town or village and get well off the road and if possible out of site from the road. We have been free camping for many years and only once have felt the need to move on.


J and V
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Reply By: Motherhen - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 19:28

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 19:28
Not maps, but the best camping publications for WA are the Jan Holland Priceless Camp Sites and Rest Areas series (available at the EO bookshop). They are more comprehensive than Camps Australia Wide, but only cover WA (two booklets - north and south) and the NT. They are a few years old, so some places listed now no longer permit camping.

This link shows authorised overnight rest areas on major WA routes. Most of the overnight ones have a pit toilet and a few have a dump point. People readily stay at a number of others in remote areas.
WA Mains Roads Rest Areas

If you are just stopping overnight (and leave no trace) and leaving early, you are using the rest area for it's purpose the same as any other travellers stopping for lunch or a power nap during the day, so you shouldnt meet any opposition.

Favourites of ours are old gravel pits (flat, clean and usually in the bush) but in WA they have a habit of blocking the access. Old roads can be good, but again WA is mean about letting us onto these. Tracks alongside rivers and major water courses are opportunities to watch for. It is best to keep well away from towns.


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Reply By: Matt(WA) - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 21:36

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 21:36
Get this book; Roads and tracks of WA RaTOWA

Make sure that you get the spiral bound version.

Its got everything you need


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Reply By: Western_Jebs - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 23:22

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 23:22
We have the 2 books you mentioned and have used them quite often and found the great....you can camp at all the spots mentioned it says if it is free or if there is any charge .... we have just purchased the camps 5 book which is great also ....... as one day we might get a visa and cross the border to the East of us....lol
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