Simpson Desert - NT

  National Parks,Reserves


DEG: -25.40653 137.244202
DMS: 25º 24' 23.51" S 137º 14' 39.13" E
UTM: 53 J 7188139mN 725748mE
Altitude: 91.94m


Place Type

Reserves - National Parks,Reserves


218.7kms West of Birdsville
268.88kms East of Finke (Aputula)
297.31kms NorthEast of Oodnadatta
386.93kms SouthWest of Boulia

Address & Contact

Simpson NT
Phone: 08-89518211
Email: N/A
Web: N/A


General Information:
The Simpson Desert occupies approximately 176 500 square kilometres of Central Australia. It is located within, and near the common boundaries of the Northern Territory, South Australia and Queensland states of Australia. It is bounded to the west by the Finke River and Mabel Range, to the north by Adam Range, to the east by the Georgina and Diamantina Rivers, with Lake Eyre to the south. Average annual rainfall is less than 200 mm.

The Simpson Desert is an erg which contains the world's longest parallel sand dunes. These north-south oriented dunes are static, held in position by vegetation. They vary in height from 3 metres in the west to around 30 metres on the eastern side. The most famous dune, Nappanerica, or, more popularly, Big Red (named by Simpson Desert traveller Dennis Bartell), is 40 metres in height.

Northern Territory:
In the Northern territory it extends to the west of the Old Ghan Railway to the Finke River, bounded to the north by the Adam Range, to the east by the Queensland border, and with the South Australian border to the south. Within that area are a number of reserves, Aboriginal lands, communities and private property.

Using the Hema Maps "Great Desert Tracks NE" sheet, you will see that the Simpson desert in the Northern Territory, is divided into a number of regions. To the north is Atnetye (North Simpson Desert). South of that is the largest area, The Simpson Desert Regional Reserve (NT), bordered by the QLD and SA borders. To the west of the Regional Reserve, is the Pmere Nyente (North West Simpson Desert), and the Pmer Ulperre Ingwemirne Arietnerre (Finke).

The remaining area, bounded to the north by Atnetye (North Simpson Desert) and the Rodinga Range, to the east by the Pmer Ulperre Ingwemirne Arietnerre (Finke), and to the west by the new Central Australia Railway and the Finke River, contains a large number of interesting tracks, historical sites, geographical features (e.g. Chambers Pillar), and interesting places to visit.

Obtain a copy of the 98 page booklet, "Explore the Northern Territory by 4WD" (available from Tourism NT) and have a look at the section titled "Simpson Region". This will give you a number of helpful suggestions on places to see and things to do in the "Simpson Region" of the NT. It covers things like: The Old Ghan Heritage Trail; Old Andado Track; Chambers Pillar; Rainbow Valley and what Tourism NT call the "Bookie Track". This track is more commonly known as the Hay River Track. See the Hay River Trek on this site for more information:
Look at Trek Notes for the Old Ghan Railway Track, Old Andado Track and for the Colson Track as well.

Go to for information on parks and reserves in the region.

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Closest Weather Station

Birdsville at 19/06:30am EST
Distance from Simpson Desert 217.6km E
TemperatureFeels LikeRel. HumidityDew PointPressureRainfallWind DirectionWind SpeedGusts

Closest Climatic Station

Birdsville Airport
Distance from Simpson Desert 217.6km E
Mean Max. °C40.
Mean Min. °C26.424.721.717.
Mean Rain mm20.933.

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