Simpson Desert - 2013 - No more camp fires

Submitted: Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 10:37
ThreadID: 98011 Views:4057 Replies:4 FollowUps:12
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I received this in our Desert Parks Pass handout. No collection of wood this year and no fires for 2013.

I gather that this is a result of so many visitors ripping down trees and if it was also banned in the past collecting wood inside the park. And don't forget those who couldn't be bothered making sure their fire was both safe and extinguished FULLY before driving off.

Simple selfish actions that have stuffed a good thing.

Yes. I am more than cheesed off.

At least we had a good time. And before you accuse us of collecting wood in the desert note the white bags of timber from Bunnings on the front of the roof rack that were carried from home.


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Reply By: Jack - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 11:34

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 11:34
The fire ban only applies to Witjira National Park (Dalhousie / Mt Dare etc.) - Not the Simpson Desert Proper.
AnswerID: 494857

Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 11:50

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 11:50
Whoops. I am having a bad day. Jack is correct. But I wonder if it could "migrate" to the Simpson.

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Reply By: braggy - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 14:00

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 14:00
That maybe Bunnings wood on the roof,
but it does not look like it in the fire.

Just joking Ken
AnswerID: 494870

Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 14:13

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 14:13
We used some that was already half burnt in the same hole.

Try this one.

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Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 19:48

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 19:48
Don't let it worry you.
Simpson Desert is a tourist desert and the fire ban has been coming for a while - been too many people passing through for campfires to be sustainable. We rarely camp at Dalhousie or Purnie - prefer to spend most of our camping with the wonderful Gidgee firewood over the western half of the desert and our preference is to camp either side of Dahousie away from the madening crowds. We prefer a dip in the middle of the day anyway.

Passed through there last month and was surprised by how few travellers were out there - certainly a lot less than we usually see. This year has been a qiet year for tourists passing through the deserts.
AnswerID: 494903

Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:24

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:24
My sense of direction is haywire - I meant the Gidgee firewood over the eastern half!!!
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:34

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:34
It just bugs me for a while then I have a cuppa. Life's too short to worry about it.

We loved the lack of traffic. Saw only one car in the first two days.

Going back next year. And still taking the wood from hume. It is so much easier and a lot better to burn and get good coals for the roasted rack of lamb. Who said camping is roughing it.


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Follow Up By: Crackles - Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 19:10

Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 19:10
(Bunnings wood)"a lot better to burn and get good coals for the roasted rack of lamb"
Surely you jest PJ. Slow growing desert wood is unbeatable for the camp oven.
Cheers Craig................
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 20:13

Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 20:13
I cannot argue with that because I have not burnt any "slow growing desert wood". The only "desert wood that I have burnt was junk left at the camp area or some trash left by the last camper. Not in the habit of collecting wood. We just throw a few bags on the roof rack at home before we go. Less chance of getting a car full of ants. And I have seen that and don't want it. One bag will usually do us three nights.



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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 13:26

Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 13:26
Theres no simple or ideal answer.
Bringing in firewood from elsewhere brings in weeds and pests from other parts of the country, which is a bigger threat than wood depletion.

My preference is to collect wood during the day from well outside common campsites where there is plenty of firewood. And if they ban fires in an area, I simply put up or bypass it.
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 15:26

Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 15:26
We are certainly not greenies but we take home what we do not use.

Thats only common sense. Thats how stuuff like Ruby Flock and the rest get spread. Nah Take it from home and take out what you take in.

And how many do not do what they preach. That makes my just as annoyed as those mongrels on the TV.

And thats all I will say on both subjects.


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Reply By: Danna - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:33

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:33
Hi Phil

That wouldn’t be surprising in near future! Just about time the authorities managing Simpson Desert do that!
31. July 2011 we went all way from camp #1 & #1A(bush-bash, no track) up to camp #22 by Madigan Line to Birdsville. We have seen huge bushfires out of control around camp # 12; #13 & #14. We are solo drivers and we knew there is no one in front as. Print on track showed minimum two days no activity. There was at the time probably no one behind us since I called from top of many dunes on 60 & 80channel radios and on one answered. We were scanning on two radios for calls all the time.
It wasn’t very pleasant situation and we hoped fires not going to come any closer. Luckily our prays were answered….
We come to Mt. Dare 30 July 2011 by Rig Road and it was OK…..5days nobody! No fires but tough, very tough drive, only for highly modified rigs and experienced drivers. Dunes in some sections were higher than Big Red with sand blown on top of very broken clay base that was often un-drivable. I can’t imagine to be cached by bushfire there…..
Cheers Dana

AnswerID: 494910

Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:44

Friday, Sep 14, 2012 at 20:44
You can have the worry about fires. Did you try HF? Or was that the 60 channel radio. We only had the UHF and the satphone which was almost demanded by my doctor. I got the old ham HF sets out last week and may put them in for the Canning. I don't know yet.

We met a bunch at Mt Dare who were going up to the madigan line. Doing that solo would be a good trip. Someone told us the WAA line was the hardest. Well that was like ared flag to a bull. We went in at Purnie and slipped down to the WAA Line across to Lone Gum (and his mates) then up to exit via the QAA Line. It was a continuous run of heavily undulated and overgrown interdune tracks with quite a bit of build up on the dunes. But I wouldn't call it hard going. Just take it easy and you get a good drive and lots or arm workout on te way. It was kind of a let down as far as a "hard drive" was concerned. But don't get me wrong. We will be back.

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Follow Up By: Danna - Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 13:40

Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 13:40
Hi Phil
Yes, we have also Iridium satellite phone with SMS option, two 80 channels hand held UHF radio and one 60 channels built in with 1.8m whip antenna. Than we have Panasonic Toughbook CF 31 GPS connected and satellite broadband. So we are pretty good when it comes to calling for help. But when is comes to bushfires, they would be much quicker than any outside help. But at least our vehicle is diesel. We always double-up…second GPS we have VMS and we have also old Magellan Explorist (I hate this one, so we bought a proper thing).

Madigan Line is very hard on hands and that includes passengers…not only driver. If you can imagine, driving different hight of moguls in 4WD in stud of skiing them, that is closest description for most of track. You have to hold your self for days in seat.
We were quite shocked with those cameras on Purnie Bore….what’s next? I don’t thing we will go back to Simpson very soon….there are parts of Australia we haven’t seen yet, and places you just adore to go back like Sandy Blight Junction Road and it’s beautiful forests of desert and she oaks.
We went Canning some time ago and we could still legally see Calvert Range. It was very interesting. We are just wondering why, authorities closed Calvert Range to public? Is it because there are pre-aboriginal petroglyphs and aboriginal descriptions?, Why are these called art anyway, when so called arts are messages, teaching and learning tools and maps? Why are they called art, and we don’t call hieroglyphs art? Isn’t it strange? Is it because originally white people just assumed they only pictures that meant nothing?
These days in some parts of Canning is quite big traffic…but if you wonder to sidetracks such is beautiful Diebel Hills you are most probably on your own, and it is beautiful there.
Hoo Roo Dana
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 13:55

Saturday, Sep 15, 2012 at 13:55
Hi Dada

Re the satphone. It's ONLY for emergencies, not for idle chit chat, and to send the occasional GPS location back home. Apart from that it is switched off.

I just don't understand why people want to take, I should say irrefutably have to take the internet with them. Strange. It's as if their lives depend on it.

I don't even use the mobile at home so not interested in SMS, emails etc or any data (internet) comms. Just like the isolation. The kids are independant and if the house burns down there isn't anything I can do about it.

But we are all different. And OT so I will go.

Thanks for the words on the Canning. I hope that it will happen before my cancer gets the better of me and the doctors efforts. That's why the satphone.

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Follow Up By: Danna - Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 11:51

Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 11:51
Hi Phil,
Yes, you right about sat. phone…it is switched off, we have it also for possible emergency. Our satellite broadband is very useful for resent localized weather updates, conditions roads/tracks. Our family and friends don’t even know we have internet with us! We strongly value the isolation.
I hope you could do this for long time yet…good luck!
Hooroo Dana
FollowupID: 770667

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