Desert Parks Bulletin
Know before you go

Desert Parks Bulletin

Before visiting parks in the Flinders and Outback region check the latest Desert Parks Bulletin and road condition report for information about access, closures, campgrounds and roads.

No. 705 | Updated: 13 October 2021

ALERT: COVID-19 travel and border restrictions

A Cross Border Travel Registration is required for all travellers wishing to enter South Australia.

People traveling from Hi Community-Transmission Zones and Prohibited Locations have further restrictions on travel. Check SA COVID-19 restrictions before you travel.

Trip preparation

It is important that campers and other park visitors are self-sufficient, and carry their own cooking, cleaning and personal hygiene products with them.

Please respect other campers and park visitors by keeping a safe distance and practicing good hygiene.

For more about visiting parks during COVID-19.

Safety in the Outback

  • ALERT: Water across tracks has resulted in electrical faults being reported in a number of vehicles. High clearance 4WD’s recommended and extra care is required when navigating these areas.

If you are travelling in the Outback, you should bring appropriate clothing, ensure your vehicles are properly prepared and equipped for outback travel and any emergencies or delays. Take extra water, food and fuel supplies. Ensure good communications equipment, either HF Radio or Satellite Phone and an EPIRB or PLB. Ensure you notify a responsible person, such as a family member, of your plans prior to travelling into remote areas, and seek local advice.

If you attempt driving in sandy conditions and get bogged, do not attempt to get the vehicle out without ensuring 4WD and hubs are engaged, tyre pressures are decreased and sand is removed from the path of the tyres. If you become stuck, do not leave your vehicles to walk for assistance as this can have fatal consequences.

Speed limits

Check road and weather bulletins and local conditions before travelling into the Outback. Speed limits of 40km per hour apply within all parks. For up to date public road information outside of National Parks, please call the Transport SA Road Condition Hotline on 1300 361 033 or visit Transport SA.

Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre National Park

  • ALERT: It is important that campers and other park visitors are self-sufficient, and carry their own cooking, cleaning and personal hygiene products with them.

Halligan Bay Point Public Access Route – Open to 4WD - It is a bush track, not a road. Drive with caution along the entire track as the landscape is fragile and the track will deteriorate with the number of vehicles using it. Please drive to track conditions. Driving on the Lake surface is an offence and dangerous. Trailers and caravans are not recommended.

Level Post Bay Public Access Route – closed due to public safety.

Tallaringa Conservation Park

Online park bookings or a Desert Parks Pass is required, as well as a tourist access permit to access this area from the Department of Defence.

Innamincka Regional Reserve and Malkumba-Coongie Lakes National Park

  • ALERT: It is important that campers and other park visitors are self-sufficient, and carry their own firewood, drinking water cooking, cleaning and personal hygiene products with them.
  • ALERT: Please remain on tracks, the surrounding ground can be wet, boggy and treacherous.

Extreme caution at ponded water, washouts and corrugations, plus rutted sections from visitors driving on wet tracks.

Please note that chainsaws and fire wood collection is prohibited in Innamincka Regional Reserve and Malkumba-Coongie Lakes National Park, with no wood fires permitted at Malkumba-Coongie Lakes National Park. Bring firewood with you and take your waste material home or deposit it at the Innamincka township refuse site.

  • Coongie Track to Kudremitchie – Open to 4WD
  • Coongie Track Kudremitchie to Malkumba-Coongie Lakes National Park – Open to 4WD, not suitable for large caravans due to ponded water
  • 15 Mile Track– Open to 4WD
  • Merninie Loop – Open to 4WD
  • Cullyamurra Waterhole – Open to 4WD
  • Burke’s Grave – Open to 4WD
  • Queerbidie – Open to 4WD
  • Policemans – Open to 4WD
  • Kings Marker – Open to 4WD
  • Ski Beach Campground – Open to 4WD
  • Wills Grave – Close due to rain
  • Minke Waterhole Campground – Open to 4WD
  • Old Strzelecki Track (on Innamincka Regional Reserve only) – Open to 4WD
  • Bore Track North – Open to 4WD
  • Bore Track South – Closed until further notice
  • Walker Crossing Public Access Route – Open to 4WD

Extreme caution at ponded water, washouts and corrugations.

Witjira National Park

  • ALERT: It is important that campers and other park visitors are self-sufficient, and carry their own firewood, drinking water cooking, cleaning and personal hygiene products with them.
  • Pedirka Public Access Route – Open to 4WD. Track conditions may vary as a result of weather and use, travellers are advised to drive to the road conditions.
  • Witjira National Park – Open to 4WD – Extreme caution at ponded water, washouts and corrugations, plus rutted sections from visitors driving on wet tracks.

Tracks in the park are graded in June.

Rubbish tips are located 3 kilometres east and west of the Dalhousie campground or at Birdsville for disposal of rubbish.

Check local conditions before travelling into this area. Visit National Parks for more information.

Wood fires are not permitted in Witjira, with the exception that wood fires are still permitted at Mt Dare. Wood can be carried through Witjira to be used in the Munga-Thirri–Simpson Desert reserves.

The Dalhousie airstrip: Closed to public use.

Binns Track: Open to 4WD

  • Pink Roadhouse (Ph: (61 8) 8670 7822) – Agent for the Desert Parks Pass. Provides diesel and unleaded fuel, accommodation, food and groceries, meals, minor repairs, tyres, travel supplies, and alcohol.
  • Mt Dare Hotel (Ph: (61 8) 8670 7835) – Agent for the Desert Parks Pass. Provides diesel and unleaded fuel, accommodation, meals, hot showers, minor repairs, camping, travel supplies, alcohol, and phone cards available for travellers. Satellite phones are available to hire from Mt Dare Hotel for trips across the Munga-Thirri–Simpson Desert.

Munga-Thirri – Simpson Desert

Open to 4WD Extreme caution at ponded water, washouts and corrugations, plus rutted sections from visitors driving on wet tracks.

  • Warburton Crossing Public Access Route – Open to 4WD
  • Colson Track – Open to 4WD Contact Central Land Council for permits on (61 8) 8951 6211 or 1800 003 640

Condition updates

As conditions change a further update bulletin will be issued. For further information on SA Desert Parks and Far Northern South Australian road and track access, please call Desert Parks on (61 8) 8648 5328 or the Transport SA Outback Roads hotline on 1300 361 033.

Alternatively contact local Police where applicable for condition updates. For travel communications, contact the Australian National 4WD Radio Network Inc on (61 8) 7325 2600.

Fight the Bite - a health warning from SA Health

Mosquitoes can be active around waterbodies in northern South Australia.

Mosquitoes are not only a nuisance but some can spread serious disease such as Ross River virus (RRv) and Barmah Forest virus (BFv) when they bite (symptoms of RRv and BFv can include joint pains, rash, fever, fatigue or muscle pain).

There is NO CURE and NO VACCINE to protect against these mosquito borne diseases. The only known and effective way to reduce risk of mosquito borne disease is to prevent mosquito bites.

If you are a visitor, or if you live in northern South Australia, it is important that you protect yourself, your family and friends against mosquito borne disease by Fighting the Bite. Key strategies include:

  • Covering up – wear long, light coloured, loose fitting clothing (mosquitoes can bite through tight clothes like jeans)
  • Apply personal insect repellent containing DEET or Picaridin (avoid using on babies and toddlers and ALWAYS read and follow instructions on the label first).
  • Ensure insect screens cover openings in holiday houses, boats, caravans or tents.
  • Cover sleeping areas or beds with mosquito nets if necessary.

For additional strategies and information about how to Fight the Bite and protect against mosquito borne disease visit SA Health.

Travis Gotch
District Ranger Outback
Flinders & Outback
DesertParks@sa.gov.au

While every attempt has been made to provide up to date information in this bulletin, all travellers are responsible for ensuring that they obtain accurate and detailed information and are properly equipped and prepared for all emergencies prior to travelling into remote outback areas.

Parks in the Flinders and Outback region: