Outback NSW hikes

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Outback NSW hikes

Postby Vern » Wed 15 Feb, 2012 6:28 pm

Does anyone know of any outback NSW multiday hikes?
I'm aware of hikes in and around Sydney, Kosciuszko and ACT but wanted something further west.
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby Pteropus » Thu 16 Feb, 2012 11:04 am

Hi Vern

In the semi-arid and arid outback regions there are not a lot of options for long hikes. Several years ago I went to Mungo NP, Kinchega NP, Mutawintji NP and Sturt Np. Due to their remoteness they are drive in locations where car camping is involved and have generally short walks. However, they are defiantly worth visiting for their cultural and natural histories. In particular, Mungo and Mutawintji NPs have very spectacular Aboriginal cultural histories. I imagine that the Menindee Lakes at Kinchega NP would be quite spectacular at the moment, due to all the water coming down the Darling River over the past three years. When I visited in 2006 the lakes were dry. Water is one of the limiting factors in multi-day walks in the western areas I guess. Water courses out west can be quite turbid and are generally ephemeral in nature.

West of the Great Dividing Range, but perhaps not what we think of as “Outback”, I believe there are bush camps in the Warrumbungles near Coonabarabran. Mt Kaputar NP, near Narrabri, might have walking camps too, but I can’t remember. This is about the limit of my knowledge of western New South Wales bush walks. You could also go to Queensland and try the Carnarvon Great Walk, something I have yet to do myself (despite spending considerable time in the region...).

Cheers
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby Nuts » Thu 16 Feb, 2012 1:54 pm

G'day Vern,

Iv'e done short/day walks from the places mentioned by Andrew on several trips but they really are widespread and accessed easiest by car, can't recall anything overnight. Mungo through the Walls of China has an interesting lanscape, maybe an overnighter into the walls :) wouldn't be very common i'd imagine. The river and lake systems Would be spectacular birdlife wise.

The Sturt/Tiboburra and further south towards Broken Hill area is interesting for its history as well as getting from gibber plains into the edge of the desert and red dune country with a few ranges thrown in. Perhaps something longer following one of the early explorer routes in the region (still... probably better sevrved by linked daywalks).
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby Pteropus » Thu 16 Feb, 2012 3:20 pm

Nuts wrote:...but they really are widespread and accessed easiest by car ...


Yes, as Nuts says, these parks are widespread over the west of the state, seperated by several 100 km. Still worth while though. I would like to go back sometime soon too.

Great Walls of China,  Lake Mungo.jpg
Great Walls of China


Lake Cawndilla, Kinchega National Park.jpg
Lake Cawndilla, Kinchega NP
Lake Cawndilla, Kinchega National Park.jpg (125.31 KiB) Viewed 7678 times


Mutawintji National Park.jpg
Mutawintji NP


Sturt NP.jpg
Gibber plains, Sturt NP
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby WarrenH » Wed 22 Feb, 2012 3:14 pm

Vern, G'day.

Have you considered walking on the unformed roads of one of the Travelling Stock Routes out west? Maybe like one of the big routes along the Darling or along the Great Darling Anabranch. You could catch a train to Menindee, walk south on the Western Darling TSR, cross the river when you're ready (or had enough) and then return north on the Eastern Darling TSR back to Menindee. Or take the train further to Broken Hill, then a coach to Wilcannia and then from Wilcannia follow the TSR along the Darling to Menindee.

I suggested these two routes, because of the water. Other wise when you leave the rivers you're after/finding stock watering points for your supply.

If you run into a copy of The Long Paddock, A Directory of the Travelling Stock Routes and Reserves of New South Wales ... all the maps and watering point details are in it.

The NSW Department of Primary Industries Bookshop ... http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/aboutus/resou ... ng-paddock

I purchased my copy from the Goulburn LHPA Office. It is a substantial publication, far too heavy to take walking. I take photocopies of the maps with me. If you do decide to camp on a TSR being a long distance traveller you need to ring the Livestock Health and Protection Agency (LHPA) Regional Office for that TSR and notify the Ranger ... http://www.lhpa.org.au/districts

I'm a big fan of using the TSRs.

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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby Hallu » Fri 28 Sep, 2012 11:44 am

I did Mutawintji and Paroo-Darling a couple of weeks ago, and there aren't any multi-day designated tracks, but you could do one yourself in the bush, provided you have good navigation skills. We followed an unofficial track at Mutawintji Gorge by accident (went right instead of left) and you can follow a nice dried river bed. We stopped after about 4 km, but I think you can go pretty far that way, and it wouldn't be hard to go back. Lots of red kangaroos, emus and unfortunately goats.

In Paroo-Darling, they're starting to create some tracks, maybe you can call the Visitor Centre at White Cliffs and see if there's the possibility of a multi-day hike somewhere. Unlike Mutawintji which is gorges, rocky ranges and waterholes, Paroo-Darling is mostly dried bushes and lakes, like Kinchega.

In Mungo, I think it would be impossible to do a multi-day hike, or if you try it, don't time it after rains, mosquitoes are really fierce then, even worse than in the Top End...
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby Vern » Fri 28 Sep, 2012 2:32 pm

Thanks for the info. I'm still keen to get out there and have a look around. It's so different from anywhere I've hiked before and getting away from the more popular National Parks sort of appeals to me. The stock routes sounds like a good idea as well out along the rivers. Take my rod and try my luck! The pictures have definately caught my attention. Each have their own appeal and I hope to get there sooner rather than later!
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby Hallu » Fri 28 Sep, 2012 3:06 pm

By the way I followed the Long Paddock, since I drove between White Cliffs and Melbourne through Wilcania, Ivanhoe and Hay, the road is nice, but it's flat terrain (not much to see), and between Ivanhoe and Hay, there were a lot of flooded parts adjacent to the road, so short of walking on the road itself I'm not sure how you could organize a hike there. The Darling River Run is probably a safer bet. There's a brochure for the river run at the Broken Hill Information Centre, maybe you can ask them for it, otherwise have a look here : http://www.exploroz.com/TrekNotes/Outba ... r_Run.aspx .

The problem with NSW is that their National Parks service isn't as developed as its Victorian counterpart. On the Victorian website, you have a fact-sheet for every national park, and even every state park, listing flora/fauna, walks, maps etc... In NSW, you're lucky when there's one, and even when there is, it's usually pretty well hidden on their website (the Mutawintji one for example : http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/resou ... tjiMap.pdf ).

Hmm now that I have the Mutawintji map under my eyes again, I think you could probably do a one way hike between the Old Coach Road Drive carpark (n°8 on the map) and Mutawintji Gorge (n°6). I think it would be about 15 km one way, and then you could walk back on the road. You would need good navigation skills, as there are no tracks here, and would need to clear you itinerary with the ranger, as the Historical Site is off limits. You should also inquire about any river crossing, and if some ranges are passable or not (they aren't very high so it should be ok though). Good luck.

To get there, a 2WD is enough from Broken Hill, but from Mutawintji to White Cliffs, it's a very corrugated road, it took me and my friends 3 hours to do this part with our van...

Here are a couple of photos :
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby goanna » Sat 29 Sep, 2012 5:54 am

Vern,

There is sufficient water in Kaputar for multiday walks. I have also done a 2 day walk in Gundabooka (before it was a NP). Highlight was being able to see the curvature of the earth (and Mt Oxley), needed to carry water. Also 3 days in the Weddin Mtns but needed water dumps.
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby DaveM » Wed 03 Oct, 2012 1:08 pm

The Warrumbungles near Coonabarabran are a wonderful walking destination. Several large circuits plus plenty of other shorter walks. All have simply stunning views and the formations are absolutely unique. Well worth a few days. Water though will need to be carried in the bungles. I have walked many many miles around there and never is it boring or disappointing always just awesome.

Kaputar in the Nandewar ranges near Narrabri also has plenty of scope for circuits or just do many of the shorter walks. Again like the bungles, it's all rugged volcanic peaks with massive elevation changes and far reaching views.
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby peregrinator » Fri 26 May, 2017 10:54 am

Reviving this topic to ask about Weddin Mountains NP and Cocoparra NP. Has anyone done much walking in either of these? As there are generally only short walks listed on the NPWS website (especially in Cocoparra), I'm wondering about the possibilities for off-track walks, perhaps linking up with existing tracks.
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby wallwombat » Sat 03 Jun, 2017 8:27 pm

I've done plenty of walking in the Weddin N.P. , as I live nearby.

There is potential for overnight walks along the range but the main problem is water - there isn't any, except after a period of heavy rain and even then it would be pretty hard to find.

You could easily link the Weddin Gap to Black Spring trail with a part traverse of the range by heading up Black Spring trail and continuing along the crest of the range , rather than continuing the loop walk. You could walk to the Ben Hall's Cave campground on the west side of the mountain or to the Holy Camp Campground on the east side. I'd say 2-3 days at the most but as I mentioned, you'd have to carry water.

Have a look at Google Earth or SIX Maps. You'll get an idea of what I'm talking about.
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Re: Outback NSW hikes

Postby peregrinator » Mon 05 Jun, 2017 9:25 pm

Thanks for the information, wallwombat. I will check the map re the details you mention. From a few glimpses of the vegetation I've seen online, I'm assuming that walking off-track would be fairly easy. Carrying sufficient water doesn't worry me.
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