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Birdsville Track

The Birdsville Track is a notable outback road in the center of Australia. The 517 kilometres (321 mi) track runs between Birdsville (S-W Queensland) and Marree (South Australia). It traverses three deserts along the route, the Strzelecki Desert, Sturt Stony Desert and Tirari Desert. The track was opened in the 1860s to walk cattle from northern Queensland and the Northern Territory to the nearest railhead in Port Augusta which was later moved to Marree. Once it was of poor quality but it is now a graded dirt-gravel road. It is used by cattle trucks to carry live stock. The track passes through one of the driest parts of Australia. The area is barren, dry and isolated, and one should carry water and supplies in case of emergencies.


Birdsville Track map. This 500km+ track have no mobile reception anywhere. At Birdsville Telstra have coverage while at the other end Marree, only Optus works (the real Optus only - no piggy back).
The recovery vehicle at Birdsville Service station. In case of vehicle breakdown, need to ring them to get you out. That means need to carry Sat phone which can be hired at Service Station and dropped at next stop if not coming back.


Aborginal Story Place in Birdsville. We found it closed.


A signboard outside Birdsville. We are going towards Mungeranie.

Sat 26th May

After fuel topup at Birdsville's only service station, we turned south on to Birdsville track. A short run on tar and we were on well graded gravel road (hard clay). We could easily cruise at 80 without the noise of that we hear on bitumen. This section was well over 100km long.


At 115km we passed by left turn towards Innamincka and then another 80km down we come to right turn which goes to Simpson Desert via K1 line. We continued straight towards Mungeranie.

There is mixture of colorfuls tracks from yellow, grey and white. It can be corrugated or just very level. Have this feeling that normally near the creeks or uphills, the tracks are rough, stony and corrugated.

Close to mid-morning and we stopped for a cuppa under the shade of a tree. Next tree had a big bird nest.


The bird nest on the tree but didn't see any activity.


We come across where we couldn't see anything between us and the horizon - a bleak emptiness all around. Looks like a photo from Mars lander (except some small arid bush). It was very silent and nothing moves.


Yet at another stop, nothing around as far as horizon.


Further down and the clouds had some interesting formations.


Mungeranie Hotel - about 300km after Birdsville and 200km before Marree. It is a motel and have a no frill campground with a pool fed by artesian water.


Mungeranie Hotel.


A McDonalds signboard states it is opening soon here. When? And not sure how long it was there but a feeling this track is going to be popular!!


After passing dry Derwent River bed we stopped for lunch beside the main track.


Few hills after Mungeranie.


And the track turns to yellow color - once again. Some parts are corrugated and stoney but largley flat hard dirt road.


Another cuppa break in the afternoon to enjoy this desolate and silent land.


After crossing long section of dry sandy Cooper Creek bed, we come across the rest area signboard.


We stayed here for the night at this area with only one another vehicle further down from us.


A well stocked flushing toilet in the middle of nowhere. Not sure who comes here to stock/clean it - but thanks very much.

Sun 27th May 2018 :- start driving towards Marree and could see some dark clouds in distance. It must be raining there. And it was wet when we reached Marree around mid-day. As planned we met here our friends Neil & Pauline in Frankie (an ex-army Mitsubishi Canter) coming from Tassie. We had to stay there overnight (just another story for later). We had some rain later in the night.


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