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Philip Game | profile | all galleries >> Outback Australia (8 galleries) >> Simpson Desert tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Tiwi Islands | Simpson Desert | Outback Queensland | Highlights of Central Australia | The MacDonnell Ranges | Around The Alice | Darwin and Australia's 'Top End' | Darling River Run, NSW

Simpson Desert

Snuggle up under the stars in Central Australia's Simpson Desert. Between Oodnadatta and Birdsville lies a wilderness of windblown dunes, running parallel for hundreds of kilometres. Traversing this tract of brick-red sand and salt lakes at the heart of Central Australia is an achievement in itself.

The Simpson Desert extends from northeast South Australia north into the Northern Territory and northeast into southwest Queensland's Channel Country. Our party followed the old Ghan railway line, skirting Lake Eyre to enter the Simpson at Dalhousie Springs. Routes across the desert are mainly survey lines set out by geophysicists some decades ago. Big Red, the last major wind-blown dune, lies just west of Birdsville, the last outpost in Queensland. From Birdsville, the way home followed the (in)famous Birdsville Track south to rejoin the old Ghan route at Marree.

Original images were 35mm Fujichrome or Ektachrome transparencies. Hi-res. scans are available for licensing. Please visit www.travelgame.org.

Flying over the parallel sand dunes
Flying over the parallel sand dunes
Traveller's advisory at William Creek, near Lake Eyre
Traveller's advisory at William Creek, near Lake Eyre
Outback campfire
Outback campfire
Free lunch for Aboriginal kids at the  Pink Roadhouse, Oodnadatta
Free lunch for Aboriginal kids at the Pink Roadhouse, Oodnadatta
Sandhill warning at the western approaches to the Simpson
Sandhill warning at the western approaches to the Simpson
Desert bathroom
Desert bathroom
Ruined stockyard at Dalhousie Springs
Ruined stockyard at Dalhousie Springs
Ruined stockyard (cattleyard) at Dalhousie Springs at the western edge of the Desert
Ruined stockyard (cattleyard) at Dalhousie Springs at the western edge of the Desert
Purnie Bore, the last surface water on the western edge of the Simpson
Purnie Bore, the last surface water on the western edge of the Simpson
Zebra finches congregate at Purnie Bore
Zebra finches congregate at Purnie Bore
Unofficial road sign at ‘Lynnie Junction’
Unofficial road sign at ‘Lynnie Junction’
Tackling the parallel dunes
Tackling the parallel dunes
Sand dunes
Sand dunes
Flowering bush in the   desert
Flowering bush in the desert
Through the windshield
Through the windshield
Crossing the dunes in the scorching heat of midday
Crossing the dunes in the scorching heat of midday
Track across the dunes
Track across the dunes
Gould's goanna
Gould's goanna
Gould's goanna
Gould's goanna
Saltpan at Poeppel Corner
Saltpan at Poeppel Corner
Poeppel Corner
Poeppel Corner
The Birdsville Hotel, founded 1884
The Birdsville Hotel, founded 1884
Birdsville Pub, founded 1884
Birdsville Pub, founded 1884
Birdsville Pub, founded 1884
Birdsville Pub, founded 1884
Folk museum proprietor, Birdsville, Qld
Folk museum proprietor, Birdsville, Qld
Channel Country, outside Birdsville
Channel Country, outside Birdsville
Cattle grazing beside the Birdsville Track
Cattle grazing beside the Birdsville Track
Mungerannie Bore on the Birdsville Track
Mungerannie Bore on the Birdsville Track