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1 Marree is a town where three cultures have
grown together bound by transport and travel. It
has the most multi-cultural heritage of all outback
towns hosting Aboriginal, Muslim Cameleer and
European communities during the latter part of
the nineteenth century and much of the twentieth.
Teamsters, cameleers, stockmen, hawkers, railway
workers and explorers passed through here to
travel the Overland Telegraph line, the Oodnadatta
and Birdsville Tracks and the Ghan railway.
2 Lake Harry Homestead ruins are the
lingering reminders of the failed, labour-intensive
experimental plantation of 2,000 irrigated date
palms planted in the late 19th century.
3 The Dog Fence crosses the track here.
It was built to protect sheep
from wild dog attacks,
extends for more than
5,600km from Jimbour in
Queensland to the Great
Australian Bight and is the
longest man-made structure
in the world. In spite of the fence wild dog control
is still needed and occurs in many parts of South
Australia south of the fence to protect livestock.
4 Clayton spa and wetlands Here you
can enjoy a walk, a dip in the warm spa or bush
camp in the designated area.
5 Dulkaninna Wetlands Artificial artesian
bores flowing freely along creek lines supplement
surface water collected in waterholes after rains,
creating artificial wetlands. These provide a
permanent habitat for many bird species and are
a welcome surprise for travellers in this dry part
of the continent.
10 Mirra Mitta Bore was sunk in 1901
and is 1,076m deep. As you can see, the water
is HOT! You might see the endangered
Grey Falcon here.
11 Mount Gason Bore Look here for
Mt Gason Wattle, Australia’s rarest acacia.
12 Warburton Crossing Public Access
Route (PAR) 4WD This PAR leads to the
Simpson Desert and is closed in summer in line
with the summer closure of the Simpson Desert.
13 The Inside Track Monsoonal rains in
Queensland can bring floodwaters down the
Diamantina River and across Goyder Lagoon,
closing this track for weeks at a time. Here you can
see the shy elusive Grey Grass Wren hiding or
flying low, or running along the ground between
dense Lignum clumps or among Old Man saltbush.
Listen carefully, you may hear their soft calls – a
high pitched cricket or insect sounding ‘tsit-tsit’.
14 Walkers Crossing Public Access
Route (PAR) 4WD This track may be closed
due to sand drifts or flooding.
15 Birdsville The town with a well known
name and well known pub in the outback.
When Matthew Flynn established a depot there
to supply surveyors working in the Simpson
Desert and local pastoralists the settlement
was called Diamantina Crossing. In the 1890s
it became a major service centre for the pastoral
industry with a population of about 270 and was
6 Grave at Lake Killalpaninna Pastor
Vogelsang’s grave is one of the few remaining
reminders of the Lutheran Bethesda Mission, its
21 buildings and handsome mud brick Church
that once occupied this site. Although Vogelsang
tried to give the Mission a commercial backing to
help it survive by running sheep and cattle,
drought and wild dogs continually took their toll,
and by 1920 the Mission was effectively closed.
The Dieri Aboriginal people dispersed. Some went
to Marree, some to Hermannsburg and others
went to the mission at Finniss Springs established
by Francis Dunbar Warren to provide a refuge for
his family and other displaced Aboriginal people.
7 Dalgety & Co Ltd provided this punt to ferry
supplies and mail across the Cooper Creek when it
flooded in 1949. Now when the waters from
Queensland’s Channel Country reach the Cooper
Creek and cut the Birdsville Track, a detour leads
you to a ferry that operates during daylight hours.
8 Naterannie Sandhills The Tirari and
Strzelecki Deserts meet in this 10km stretch
of long and narrow sand dunes.
9 Mungerannie is where three deserts meet
the Tirari, the Strzelecki and southern reaches
of the Simpson Desert. Take a stroll around the
Derwent wetlands; the bird watching is good,
as is a dip in the local pool.
The BIRDSVILLE TRACK
Grey Grass Wren
The Warburton River
The Birdsville Track
Tom Brennan’s Ferry
Mirra Mitta Bore
Mt Gason Wattle
Grave at Bethesda Mission
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