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The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive is on the move again. Five hundred head of cattle. Three hundred and ninety kilometres of desert track. And a swag of adventure stories along one of the most evocative desert trails in Australia, the Oodnadatta Track.

You’ll be riding with some of Australia’s finest horsemen to re-live a very real part of Australian history, the droving of cattle through the Outback. And whether you’re an experienced rider, a happy hacker or someone who has never been in a saddle, you’ll be matched with a horse to suit your abilities.

As well as keeping the herd moving, you’ll soon find yourself part of a very remarkable landscape. From Oodnadatta to Marree, you’ll cross, haunting plains of stone and sand, passing ancient uplifts, bubbling springs and dazzling salt lakes. But you’ll also encounter the peoples of the Oodnadatta Track, past and present – the indigenous Arabunna peoples, the pioneers and the men and women who still make their living in this extraordinary environment.

Each evening you’ll return to a village of superior tent accommodation. Excellent facilities will include a bar, a library, hot showers and flushing toilets, superb catering and most importantly the roaring campfire beneath a canopy of desert stars – the place to retell your adventures of the day.

You can join the Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive 2007 on one (or more) of seven tours. Each lasts four nights and five days and each has its own distinct highlights.

We very much look forward to your riding with us on the Oodnadatta Track. Saddle up for 2007 – and be part of one of the world’s greatest travel experiences.

Touring Options

Cattle Kings Four Nights/Five Days – CD04

Tour four of the Cattle Drive offers a rare opportunity to actually enter the world’s largest cattle station, Anna Creek, measuring some 26,000 square kilometres (five and a half million acres), which is roughly the size of Belgium. The station has been continuously occupied since it was located in 1872, resisting the effects of drought, flood and adverse economic conditions – the only property in the region to have done so. Its hard country here, the droughts are savage, but you’ll hear stories of people – past and present – who have overcome the odds. Today Anna Creek is home to some 15,000 cattle. Though as your herd makes its 50-odd kilometre drive, at least for a short time, that figure will seemingly rise to 15,500…

You’ll be following the remains of the original Ghan railway track, as well as what’s left of the Overland Telegraph line – both critical in the settling of Australia’s interior. You’ll hear the stories of the explorers, the pioneers and the pastoralists along with historical accounts by descendants from original inhabitants, the indigenous people.

Cattle driving is thirsty business. So the outpost of William Creek – complete with roadhouse, campsite, racetrack, airport and ‘rocket park’ will make for a very special stop. With a population of less than 10, its often claimed to be Australia’s smallest town. What’s beyond dispute is the fact its home to one of Australia’s most isolated pubs. What can we say about the William Creek Hotel? Its probably best left as a surprise – but suffice to say, its like no other.

You can do as much or as little of this cattle drive as you wish; optional coach tours on days three and four are available to show you further regional highlights and histories. Experience the Outback from a unique vantage point and join a scenic flight over Lake Eyre, Anna Creek Station or the Painted Desert at an additional cost.

Your village of superior tented accommodation is Anna Creek Campsite, located 180 kilometres south of Oodnadatta.

. Day One – Monday – Arrive 1100 at Anna Creek Campsite. Enjoy the official welcome briefing, settle into the camp and have lunch. Transfer to the herd and meet the droving and farrier teams before being matched with your horse. After you get acquainted, you’ll spend your first afternoon droving cattle. Return to the camp, where your evening meal will be served. The open fire will be a great place to get to know the members of your group. (Meals – Lunch and dinner).

. Day Two, Three, Four – Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday – Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14 kilometres each day, so your droving departure and pick-up points will change. Lunch is delivered to you as the cattle rest and feed. Take the opportunity to chat to the drovers and farriers during the day. Upon returning to camp in late afternoon, you’ll find hot showers, the camp library, and cold drinks at the bar (alcohol is available for purchase). The evening meal will vary from buffet style (served in the on-site marquee) to camp-oven meals cooked on the campfire. Dinner is often accompanied by tales from the Outback – including yours. On days three and four you are invited to join a coach tour to take in more of the highlights and history of the surrounding area (optional). Scenic flights are also available for an additional cost. (Meals – Breakfast, lunch and dinner).

. Day Five – Friday – Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of Anna Creek Campsite at 100. (Meal – Breakfast).

. Operates:
. Monday 21 May 2007 to Friday 25 May 2007.

Optional Scenic Flight – Warburton Groove and Lake Eyre – CD01, CD02 or CD03

Water from one-sixth of Australia drains from all directions into Lake Eyre, most of which comes from Queensland through the Diamantina River and Cooper Creek. The water enters the northern end of Lake Eyre North through the Warburton Inlet and makes its way down the Warburton Groove. Lake Eyre is the largest area in Australia void of any vegetation. Only four times over the last hundred years has Lake Eyre filled with water.

Here is your opportunity to experience the Outback from a unique vantage point. As you climb away from the runway you first notice the remoteness of the Australian Outback. See the Oodnadatta Track cutting its way through the sand dunes with the Old Ghan railway line running alongside it. Nothing much has changed in the last 100 years – you are in the real Australian Outback.

All aircraft are designed for maximum viewing pleasure and comfort. All have panoramic windows for excellent views and personal headsets are supplied for listening to commentary on our scenic flight routes.

. Operates:
. Only available in conjunction with Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive tours –
. CD01 Dawn of the Cattle Drive, Saturday 5 May 2007 to Wednesday 9 May 2007.
. CD02 Rail and Ruins, Thursday 10 May 2007 to Monday 14 May 2007.
. For departure on day three or day four of tour.
. CD03 Sounds of the Outback, Tuesday 15 May 2007 to Saturday 19 May 2007.

Coach Transfer from/to Roxby Downs to Campsite to Join Tour CD05, CD06 or CD07

You will be transfered from Roxby Downs by coach to the Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive campsite to join your cattle drive tour. At the end of your tour you will be picked up and returned to Coober Pedy.

. Operates:
. Saturday 5 May 2007 to Sunday 10 June 2007.

Dunes, Springs and Salt Pans Four Nights/Five Days – CD05

Tour five enjoys some of the most intriguing sights of the Cattle Drive thanks to the resource that’s so precious in this region – water. As you drive the herd through the Outback landscape, you’ll see stretches of rocky plains and dunes ranging in colour from yellow to brown to rich, rich red. You’ll also see dramatic outcrops of rock as well as the searing saltpans that were a daunting sight for the earliest pioneers.

Not surprisingly, natural springs will make for an extra-welcome sight. Waters from the subterranean Great Artesian Basin leak through a chain of springs running along what is now the Oodnadatta Track; the Aboriginal people understood the secrets of the springs for millennia. For the Europeans, however, the springs offered the means to water cattle, sustain telegraph stations and power steam engines. At Strangways historic site, you’ll see the ruin of the 1870 Repeater Station, another hub along the great ‘singing wires’ complex. Beresford Springs was an important railway siding, telegraph and radar station. Coward Springs was another railway stop – though today this is also an astonishing oasis, a place where you’ll get the chance to soak in warm waters while marvelling at the wetlands, date palms and bird life. Perhaps the most striking landforms are the mound springs. These domes of limestone literally loom out of the plains, leaking their precious water and creating unique ecosystems. Two of these mounds have come to be known as ‘The Bubbler’ and ‘Blanche Cup’, though they’ve had great spiritual significance to Aboriginal groups for many thousands of years.

You can do as much or as little of this cattle drive as you wish; optional coach tours on days three and four are available to show you further regional highlights and histories. Experience the Outback from a unique vantage point and join a scenic flight over Lake Eyre, or the Painted Desert or discover Coward Springs oasis on a camel tour at an additional cost.

Your village of superior tented accommodation is Strangways Campsite, located 236 kilometres south of Oodnadatta.

. Day One – Saturday – Arrive 1100 at Strangways Campsite. Enjoy the official welcome briefing, settle into the camp and have lunch. Transfer to the herd and meet the droving and farrier teams before being matched with your horse. After you get acquainted, you’ll spend your first afternoon droving cattle. Return to the camp, where your evening meal will be served. The open fire will be a great place to get to know the members of your group. (Meals – Lunch and dinner).

. Day Two, Three, Four – Sunday, Monday, Tuesday – Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14 kilometres each day, so your droving departure and pick-up points will change. Lunch is delivered to you as the cattle rest and feed. Take the opportunity to chat to the drovers and farriers during the day. Upon returning to camp in late afternoon, you’ll find hot showers, the camp library, and cold drinks at the bar (alcohol is available for purchase). The evening meal will vary from buffet style (served in the on-site marquee) to camp-oven meals cooked on the campfire. Dinner is often accompanied by tales from the Outback – including yours. On days three and four you are invited to join a coach tour to take in more of the highlights and history of the surrounding area (optional). Scenic flights and camel tours are also available at an additional cost. (Meals – Breakfast, lunch and dinner).

. Day Five – Wednesday – Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of Strangways Campsite at 1000. (Meal – Breakfast).

. Operates:
. Saturday 26 May 2007 to Wednesday 30 May 2007.

Optional Scenic Flight – Lake Eyre and Anna Creek Station – CD04

You cannot appreciate Anna Creek Station, the world’s largest Cattle Station, until you see it from the air. In the distance to the east you see the shimmering white of Lake Eyre, and to the west Anna Creek Station homestead comes into view. Coming into land a priceless photo opportunity arises as the aircraft passes by the William Creek Hotel.

Here is your opportunity to experience the Outback from a unique vantage point. As you climb away from the runway you first notice the remoteness of the Australian Outback. See the Oodnadatta Track cutting its way through the sand dunes with the Old Ghan railway line running alongside it. Nothing much has changed in the last 100 years – you are in the real Australian Outback.

All aircraft are designed for maximum viewing pleasure and comfort. All have panoramic windows for excellent views and personal headsets are supplied for listening to commentary on our scenic flight routes.

. Operates:
. Only available in conjunction with Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive tour –
. CD04 Cattle Kings, Monday 21 May 2007 to Friday 25 May 2007.
. For departure on day three or day four of tour.

Drovers Express Return Adelaide Coach Transfer to Join Tour CD05

Drovers Express return coach transfer from Adelaide to join CD05 Dunes, Springs and Salt Pans tour.

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive Official Tour Bus Service, Drovers’ Express will ensure you arrive at your Cattle Drive campsite location with ease and on time. All meals and accommodation are provided, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy the contrasting scenery. Drovers’ Express will collect you from a selection of Adelaide central business district hotels. Use this opportunity to forge friendships with fellow travellers with whom you will be sharing the ultimate Outback experience. On the return leg of your journey, sit back and reflect on the memories of your tour and the images in your mind that will last forever.

. Journey from Adelaide to the Cattle Drive campsite.
. Day One – 0830 Depart from Adelaide nominated Hotel pickup point. Morning break Port Pirie. Lunch Port Augusta. 1630 Arrive Roxby Downs. Overnight accommodation Roxby Downs Motor Inn.
. Day Two – 0630 Breakfast at the Roxby Downs Motor Inn. 0700 Depart Roxby Downs. 1100 Arrive at Cattle Drive campsite location.
. Return Journey from Cattle Drive campsite to Adelaide.
. Day One – 1000 Depart Cattle Drive campsite. Lunch on route. 1700 Arrive Port Augusta. Overnight accommodation Acacia Ridge Motel.
. Day Two 0730 Breakfast at Acacia. 0800 Depart Port Augusta. Morning break on route. 1200 Arrive Adelaide.

. Operates:
. CD05 Dunes, Springs and Salt Pans, departs Friday 25 May 2007, returns Thursday 31 May 2007.

Coober Pedy Morning or Afternoon Half Day Town Tour

Highlights include visit to an underground church, home and pottery display, Umoona Opal Mine and Museum, travel through the opal fields to The Breakaways Range and Dingo Fence.

. Operates:
. Daily, 0800 to 1200 or 1400 to 1800.

Lake Eyre Encounter Four Nights/Five Days – CD06

The salt lakes of the Australian interior were the scourges of the early cattlemen. When you first lay eyes on Lake Eyre you’ll know why. The enormity of Lake Eyre is overwhelming. It covers nearly 9,000 square kilometres, but its the vista of a shimmering white expanse – including the deathly mirage – that both fascinates and appals. You’ll skirt the edges of Lake Eyre South, seeing how eons of flooding and evaporation have left a skin of glittering mineralization. You’ll learn about its infrequent flooding and the ecosystem that moves to this curious timetable; and if you get a chance to go out onto its surface, you’ll see why your herd will be steering well clear.

Running south of the lake are the remains of the original Ghan railway track as well as what’s left of the Overland Telegraph line – both critical in the settling of Australia’s interior. You’ll hear the stories of the settlers, their successes and failures along with historical accounts by descendants from original inhabitants, the indigenous people.

You’ll also see the Dog Fence. One of the world’s most bizarre structures, the fence runs 5,400km from the Great Australian Bight to Queensland’s Bunya Mountains. Regarded as man’s longest structure, it divides cattle country from sheep country – protecting the latter from dingos.

You can do as much or as little of this cattle drive as you wish; optional coach tours on days three and four are available to show you further regional highlights and histories. Experience the Outback from a unique vantage point and join a scenic flight over Lake Eyre, or the Painted Desert or discover Coward Springs oasis on a camel tour at an additional cost.

Your village of superior tented accommodation is Lake Eyre Campsite, located 328 kilometres south of Oodnadatta.

. Day One – Friday – Arrive 1100 at Lake Eyre Campsite. Enjoy the official welcome briefing, settle into the camp and have lunch. Transfer to the herd and meet the droving and farrier teams before being matched with your horse. After you get acquainted, you’ll spend your first afternoon droving cattle. Return to the camp, where your evening meal will be served. The open fire will be a great place to get to know the members of your group. (Meals – Lunch and dinner).

. Day Two, Three, Four – Saturday, Sunday, Monday – Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14 kilometres each day, so your droving departure and pick-up points will change. Lunch is delivered to you as the cattle rest and feed. Take the opportunity to chat to the drovers and farriers during the day. Upon returning to camp in late afternoon, you’ll find hot showers, the camp library, and cold drinks at the bar (alcohol is available for purchase). The evening meal will vary from buffet style (served in the on-site marquee) to camp-oven meals cooked on the campfire. Dinner is often accompanied by tales from the Outback – including yours. On days three and four you are invited to join a coach tour to take in more of the highlights and history of the surrounding area (optional). Scenic flights and camel tours are also available at an additional cost. (Meals – Breakfast, lunch and dinner).

. Day Five – Tuesday – Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of Lake Eyre Campsite at 1000. (Meal – Breakfast).

. Operates:
. Friday 1 June 2007 to Tuesday 5 June 2007.

Optional Scenic Flight – Painted Desert and Lake Eyre – CD04, CD05, CD06 or CD07

The Painted Desert is best viewed by air. It consists of approximately 30 kilometres of eroded sandstone hills brilliantly coloured with ochre, yellow, white and orange. Lake Eyre actually comprises of two separate depressions. Lake Eyre North is 8,430 square kilometres in size as compared to Lake Eyre South, which is 1,260 square kilometres. Lake Eyre comprises of 400 million tonnes of salt and is the lowest point of Australia, at 18 metres below sea level.

Here is your opportunity to experience the Outback from a unique vantage point. As you climb away from the runway you first notice the remoteness of the Australian Outback. See the Oodnadatta Track cutting its way through the sand dunes with the Old Ghan railway line running alongside it. Nothing much has changed in the last 100 years – you are in the real Australian Outback.

All aircraft are designed for maximum viewing pleasure and comfort. All have panoramic windows for excellent views and personal headsets are supplied for listening to commentary on our scenic flight routes.

. Operates:
. Only available in conjunction with Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive tours –
. CD04 Cattle Kings, Monday 21 May 2007 to Friday 25 May 2007.
. CD05 Dunes, Springs and Salt pans, Saturday 26 May 2007 to Wednesday 30 May 2007.
. For departure on day three or day four of tour.
. CD06 Lake Eyre Encounter, Friday 1 June 2007 to Tuesday 5 June 2007.
. CD07 Cattle Drive Round Up, Wednesday 6 June 2007 to Sunday 10 June 2007.

Drovers Express Return Adelaide Coach Transfer to Join Tour CD06

Drovers Express return coach transfer from Adelaide to join CD06 Lake Eyre Encounter tour.

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive Official Tour Bus Service, Drovers’ Express will ensure you arrive at your Cattle Drive campsite location with ease and on time. All meals and accommodation are provided, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy the contrasting scenery. Drovers’ Express will collect you from a selection of Adelaide central business district hotels. Use this opportunity to forge friendships with fellow travellers with whom you will be sharing the ultimate Outback experience. On the return leg of your journey, sit back and reflect on the memories of your tour and the images in your mind that will last forever.

. Journey from Adelaide to the Cattle Drive campsite.
. Day One – 0830 Depart from Adelaide nominated Hotel pickup point. Morning break Port Pirie. Lunch Port Augusta. 1630 Arrive Roxby Downs. Overnight accommodation Roxby Downs Motor Inn.
. Day Two – 0730 Breakfast at the Roxby Downs Motor Inn. 0800 Depart Roxby Downs. 1100 Arrive at Cattle Drive campsite location.
. Return Journey from Cattle Drive campsite to Adelaide.
. Day One – 1000 Depart Cattle Drive campsite. Lunch on route. Afternoon break. 1930 Arrive Adelaide.

. Operates:
. CD06 Lake Eyre Encounter, departs Thursday 31 May 2007, returns Tuesday 5 June 2007.

Down ‘n’ Dirty Opal Digging Four Hour Tour

A safe, fun, informative way to mine your own opal. You will have access to a working mine where you will be supplied with a hard hat, torch and handpick to get Down ‘N’ Dirty and try to find your fortune.

. Operates:
. Daily at 0945 to 1345 approximately.

Cattle Drive Round Up Four Nights/Five Days – CD07

On the final tour of the Cattle Drive, you’ll meet some most unusual characters. Finniss Springs is home to the Marree Man. This is a geoglyph – a design etched in the ground – and thought to be the world’s largest artwork, measuring four kilometres long and only visible from the air. It depicts a standing Aboriginal warrior with a boomerang, and was discovered by air in June 1998. How did such a huge undertaking come into being? No one knows.

As you drove the herd along this final stretch, look out also for strange sculptures left by previous Outback residents. You’ll see a giant dog, camels and a bizarre bus. You’ll be following the remains of the original Ghan railway track, as well as what’s left of the Overland Telegraph line – both critical in the settling of Australia’s interior. At Hermit Hill, another natural water source, the history goes further – framed by ancient hills on both sides, this area is home to fossils of rainforest plants. The cattle are heading to Finniss Springs for good reason – water. Here, you’ll see a natural wetland as well as the ruins of the Finniss Springs homestead and perhaps a herd of wild horses known to frequent the area.

This marks the official end of the Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive 2007 and there will no doubt be some rejoicing in the nearby town of Marree. You will be welcome to join in the celebration, which will almost certainly be a spirited affair in fine Outback tradition.

You can do as much or as little of this cattle drive as you wish; optional coach tours on days three and four are available to show you further regional highlights and histories. Experience the Outback from a unique vantage point and join a scenic flight over Lake Eyre, Anna Creek Station or the Painted Desert at an additional cost.

Your village of superior tented accommodation is Finniss Springs Campsite, located 360 kilometres south of Oodnadatta.

. Day One – Wednesday – Arrive 1100 at Finniss Springs Campsite. Enjoy the official welcome briefing, settle into the camp and have lunch. Transfer to the herd and meet the droving and farrier teams before being matched with your horse. After you get acquainted, you’ll spend your first afternoon droving cattle. Return to the camp, where your evening meal will be served. The open fire will be a great place to get to know the members of your group.

. Day Two, Three, Four – Thursday, Friday, Saturday – Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14 kilometres each day, so your droving departure and pick-up points will change. Lunch is delivered to you as the cattle rest and feed. Take the opportunity to chat to the drovers and farriers during the day. Upon returning to camp in late afternoon, you’ll find hot showers, the camp library, and cold drinks at the bar (alcohol is available for purchase). The evening meal will vary from buffet style (served in the on-site marquee) to camp-oven meals cooked on the campfire. Dinner is often accompanied by tales from the Outback – including yours. On days three and four you are invited to join a coach tour to take in more of the highlights and history of the surrounding area (optional). Scenic flights are also available for an additional cost. (Meals – Breakfast, lunch and dinner).

. Day Five – Sunday – Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of Finniss Springs Campsite at 1000. (Meal – Breakfast).

. Operates:
. Wednesday 6 June 2007 to Sunday 10 June 2007.

Optional Scenic Flight – Lake Eyre – CD05, CD06 or CD07

Lake Eyre actually comprises of two separate depressions. Lake Eyre North is 8,430 square kilometres in size as compared to Lake Eyre South, which is 1,260 square kilometres. Lake Eyre comprises of 400 million tonnes of salt and is the lowest point of Australia, at 18 metres below sea level. Water from one sixth of Australia drains from all directions into Lake Eyre, most of which comes from Queensland through the Diamantina River and Cooper Creek. The water enters the northern end of Lake Eyre North through the Warburton Inlet and makes its way down the Warburton Groove. Lake Eyre is the largest area in Australia void of any vegetation. Only four times over the last hundred years has Lake Eyre filled with water.

Here is your opportunity to experience the Outback from a unique vantage point. As you climb away from the runway you first notice the remoteness of the Australian Outback. See the Oodnadatta Track cutting its way through the sand dunes with the Old Ghan railway line running alongside it. Nothing much has changed in the last 100 years – you are in the real Australian Outback.

All aircraft are designed for maximum viewing pleasure and comfort. All have panoramic windows for excellent views and personal headsets are supplied for listening to commentary on our scenic flight routes.

. Operates:
. Only available in conjunction with Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive tours –
. CD05 Dunes, Springs and Salt pans, Saturday 26 May 2007 to Wednesday 30 May 2007.
. CD06 Lake Eyre Encounter, Friday 1 June 2007 to Tuesday 5 June 2007.
. CD07 Cattle Drive Round Up, Wednesday 6 June 2007 to Sunday 10 June 2007.
. For departure on day three or day four of tour.

Drovers Express Return Adelaide Coach Transfer to Join Tour CD07

Drovers Express return coach transfer from Adelaide to join CD07 Cattle Drive Round Up tour.

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive Official Tour Bus Service, Drovers’ Express will ensure you arrive at your Cattle Drive campsite location with ease and on time. All meals and accommodation are provided, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy the contrasting scenery. Drovers’ Express will collect you from a selection of Adelaide central business district hotels. Use this opportunity to forge friendships with fellow travellers with whom you will be sharing the ultimate Outback experience. On the return leg of your journey, sit back and reflect on the memories of your tour and the images in your mind that will last forever.

. Journey from Adelaide to the Cattle Drive campsite.
. Day One – 0830 Depart from Adelaide nominated Hotel pickup point. Morning break Port Pirie. Lunch Port Augusta. 1630 Arrive Roxby Downs. Overnight accommodation Roxby Downs Motor Inn.
. Day Two – 0730 Breakfast at the Roxby Downs Motor Inn. 0800 Depart Roxby Downs. 1100 Arrive at Cattle Drive campsite location.
. Return Journey from Cattle Drive campsite to Adelaide.
. Day One – 1000 Depart Cattle Drive campsite. Lunch on route. Afternoon break. 1930 Arrive Adelaide.

. Operates:
. CD07 Cattle Drive Round Up, departs Tuesday 5 June 2007, returns Sunday 10 June 2007.

Coober Pedy-Oodndatta One Day Mail Run

The run delivers mail to both Oodnadatta and William Creek, as well as five remote cattle stations including the largest cattle station in the world – Anna Creek. We travel over diverse country, including gibber plains, sand hill country and the ancient inland sea bed.

. We go through the Dingo Fence, stop at and see the old Ghan railway line, travel up the Oodnadatta Track and talk about the Lake Eyre drainage basin, Lake Eyre itself, the arid land pastoral industry as well as the early explorers, Afghan camel drivers and pioneers of the area.

. While we have to keep a bit of a timetable this is very flexible and we make sure that we have time to stop for photos and things of interest. We no longer offer meal options, but meals can be bought from both Oodnadatta and William Creek.

. Operates:
. From the Underground Books Shop, Coober Pedy on Monday and Thursday at 0900 (check in 0845), returns 2100, we will drop off at your accommodation on returning to Coober Pedy.

Drovers Express Return Adelaide Coach Transfer to Join Tour CD01

Drovers Express return coach transfer from Adelaide to join CD01 Dawn of the Cattle Drive tour.

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive Official Tour Bus Service, Drovers’ Express will ensure you arrive at your Cattle Drive campsite location with ease and on time. All meals and accommodation are provided, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy the contrasting scenery. Drovers’ Express will collect you from a selection of Adelaide central business district hotels. Use this opportunity to forge friendships with fellow travellers with whom you will be sharing the ultimate Outback experience. On the return leg of your journey, sit back and reflect on the memories of your tour and the images in your mind that will last forever.

. Journey from Adelaide to the Cattle Drive campsite.
. Day One – 0700 Depart from Adelaide nominated hotel pick up point. Morning break Port Pirie. Lunch Port Augusta. Afternoon break Woomera. 1800 Arrive Coober Pedy. Overnight accommodation Opal Inn Hotel Motel (upgrade available).
. Day Two – 0630 Breakfast at the Opal Inn. 0700 Depart Coober Pedy. 1100 Arrive at Cattle Drive campsite location to begin your tour.
. Return Journey from Cattle Drive campsite to Adelaide.
. Day One – 1000 Depart Cattle Drive campsite. Lunch on route. 1600 Arrive Coober Pedy. Overnight accommodation Opal Inn Hotel Motel (upgrade available).
. Day Two – 0630 Breakfast at the Opal Inn. 0700 Depart Coober Pedy. Morning break Glendambo. Lunch Port Augusta. Afternoon break. 1800 Arrive Adelaide.

. Operates:
. CD01 Dawn of the Cattle Drive, departs Friday 4 May 2007, returns Thursday 10 May 2007.

Optional Coward Springs One Day Camel Tour – CD05 or CD06

Discover this Oasis in the Outback – available on tours CD05 and CD06 only.

Coward Springs is a well-known oasis on the Oodnadatta Track. It features date palms amidst local trees, a wetland with birdlife, a bubbling pool and of course camels. Once a thriving railway siding on the Old Ghan railway line, today it is popular for its natural spa – revitalising mineral water, at a constant 29 degrees Celsius (84 Fahrenheit), that feels cool on a hot day and vice versa. The Engine Drivers Cabin, once a near ruin, is now heritage-listed and restored. It houses displays that give a sense of place in detailing both the natural and cultural environments.

Your day at Coward Springs will include a leisurely camel ride into the surrounding landscape where you will begin to get to know the characters of our quiet, friendly camels. You will be travelling with a string of camels and visiting an area that others rarely see. You can expect to experience the singular peace of travelling with an animal well adapted to the desert. Lunch is provided along with billy tea beside a small campfire. At Coward Springs you will get the chance to soak in the natural spa, surrounded by the wetland and date palms. You can take the short self-guided heritage walk to the Engine Drivers Cabin where you can read stories of the past or browse through some reference books. Or, if you are a birdwatcher, you may be able to see some usually secretive wetland birds such as Australian Spotted Crakes and Little Grassbirds.

Expect to experience – Coward Springs, an oasis in the Outback. Riding a camel through a spectacular landscape. The peace of the Outback by travelling in a small group (12 maximum). The region’s birds, plants and indigenous and European heritage.

The camels are gentle, well trained animals and easy to get to know and give you the opportunity to get off the beaten track to places others rarely visit.

Your hosts operate Coward Springs and camel safaris, have been working with camels for many years and will enhance your experience with their knowledge of local natural and cultural history.

. Operates:
. Only available in conjunction with Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive tours –
. Dunes, Springs and Salt Pans CD05 Saturday 26 May 2007 to Wednesday 30 May 2007.
. Lake Eyre Encounter CD06 Friday 1 June 2007 to Tuesday 5 June 2007.

Wayward Bus Breakaways Express Transfer to Join Tour CD01, CD02, CD03 or CD04

Breakaways Express (Coober Pedy to Alice Springs) – One day transfer. A 0600 dawn departure is a must to experience the rocky, colourful forms of the Breakaways in the complimentary early morning light. Joining the Stuart Highway for the obligatory long drive across a variety of central Australian landscapes, the day will be broken with refreshment/meals stops at the legendary roadhouses enroute: Cadney Park, Marla, Kulgera, Erldunda and Stuarts Well. Arrive early evening into Alice Springs via Heavitree Gap in the MacDonnell Ranges. (Lunch).

. Operates:
. Thursday 10 May 2007, Tuesday 15 May 2007, Sunday 20 May 2007 and Saturday 26 May 2007.

Desert Cave Hotel Coober Pedy One Night Accommodation

Enjoy one nights accommodation during the Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive at the Desert Cave Hotel, Coober Pedy, the only international underground hotel, allows you to experience dug out style living. It is the experience of a lifetime. Underground accommodation, shops, cafe, bar and display areas all within beautiful soft, natural sandstone surrounds. Sleep underground or above if you prefer, enjoy fine dining, splash in the pool, relax in the spa.

. Operates:
. Tuesday 1 May 2007 to Thursday 14 June 2007.

Drovers Express Return Adelaide Coach Transfer to Join Tour CD03

Drovers Express return coach transfer from Adelaide to join CD03 Sounds of the Outback tour.

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive Official Tour Bus Service, Drovers’ Express will ensure you arrive at your Cattle Drive campsite location with ease and on time. All meals and accommodation are provided, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy the contrasting scenery. Drovers’ Express will collect you from a selection of Adelaide central business district hotels. Use this opportunity to forge friendships with fellow travellers with whom you will be sharing the ultimate Outback experience. On the return leg of your journey, sit back and reflect on the memories of your tour and the images in your mind that will last forever.

. Journey from Adelaide to the Cattle Drive campsite.
. Day One – 0700 Depart from Adelaide nominated Hotel pickup point. Morning break Port Pirie. Lunch Port Augusta. Afternoon break Woomera. 1800 Arrive Coober Pedy. Overnight accommodation Opal Inn Hotel Motel (upgrade available).
. Day Two – 0630 Breakfast at the Opal Inn. 0700 Depart Coober Pedy. 1100 Arrive at Cattle Drive campsite location.
. Return Journey from Cattle Drive campsite to Adelaide.
. Day One – 1000 Depart Cattle Drive campsite. Lunch on route. 1600 Arrive Glendambo. Overnight accommodation Glendambo Hotel Motel.
. Day Two – 0730 Breakfast at Glendambo Hotel Motel. 0700 Depart Glendambo. Morning break. Lunch Port Augusta. Afternoon break. 1530 Arrive Adelaide.

. Operates:
. CD03 Sounds of the Outback, departs Monday 14 May 2007, returns Sunday 20 May 2007.

Opal Inn Hotel Motel Coober Pedy One Night Accommodation

Enjoy one nights accommodation during the Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive at the Opal Inn Hotel Motel, Coober Pedy. The Opal Inn Hotel Motel and Caravan Park in the centre of Coober Pedy has something for everyone, with well appointed accommodation, all caravan and camping amenities, plus a range of dining, bar and gaming facilities.

. Operates:
. Tuesday 1 May 2007 to Thursday 14 June 2007.

Dawn of the Cattle Drive Four Nights/Five Days – CD01

The beginning of an historic journey, a unique journey – your journey.

In time-honoured tradition, the Cattle Drive will be given a rousing send-off from Oodnadatta. The outpost town lies on the road to Alice Springs and is named from the Aboriginal ‘Utnadata’ meaning ‘blossom of the mulga tree’. Between 1891 and 1929, Oodnadatta was a busy railhead on the train journey from Adelaide to Alice Springs. Its little changed from its origins. The heritage listed sandstone railway station has been converted into a museum. It provides great tales of yesterday.

On your first afternoon, you’ll be a part of the ‘handover and counting of cattle’, the official start of the drive. At night, join the celebrations in the town, where you can expect plenty of traditional Outback festivities.

Next morning its down to business. You’ll join the herd near Oodnadatta on the first tour of its 390 kilometre push south east to Marree. The scenery is spectacular with colourful rocky landscapes framed by hazy blue hills; and though the creeks are dry, seasonal rains often leave the desert vibrant with plants and animals. You’ll be following the remains of the original Ghan railway track, as well as what’s left of the Overland Telegraph line – both critical in the settling of Australia’s interior. You’ll hear the stories of the settlers, their successes and failures along with historical accounts by descendants from original inhabitants, the indigenous people.

You’ll do as much or as little of this cattle drive as you wish; optional coach tours on days three and four are available to show you further regional highlights and histories. Experience the Outback from a unique vantage point and join a scenic flight over Lake Eyre or Dalhousie Springs at an additional cost.

Your village of superior tented accommodation is North Creek Campsite, located 27 kilometres south of Oodnadatta.

. Day One – Saturday – Arrive 1100 at North Creek Campsite. Enjoy the official welcome briefing, settle into the camp and have lunch. Transfer to the herd and meet the droving and farrier teams before being matched with your horse. After you get acquainted, you’ll spend your first afternoon droving cattle. Return to the camp, where your evening meal will be served. The open fire will be a great place to get to know the members of your group; those who wish can join the night-time celebrations in Oodnadatta. (Meals – Lunch and dinner).

. Day Two, Three and Four – Sunday, Monday and Tuesday – Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14 kilometres each day, so your droving departure and pick-up points will change. Lunch is delivered to you as the cattle rest and feed. Take the opportunity to chat to the drovers and farriers during the day. Upon returning to camp in late afternoon, you’ll find hot showers, the camp library, and cold drinks at the bar (alcohol is available for purchase). The evening meal will vary from buffet style (served in the on-site marquee) to camp-oven meals cooked on the campfire. Dinner is often accompanied by tales from the Outback – including yours. On days three and four you are invited to join a complimentary coach tour to take in more of the highlights and history of the surrounding area (optional). Scenic flights are also available at an additional cost. (Meals – Breakfast, lunch and dinner).

. Day Five – Wednesday – Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of North Creek campsite at 1000. (Meal – Breakfast).

. Operates:
. Saturday 5 May 2007 to Wednesday 9 May 2007.

Coach Transfer from/to Coober Pedy to Campsite to Join Tour CD01, CD02, CD03 or CD04

You will be transfered from Coober Pedy by coach to the Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive campsite to join your cattle drive tour. At the end of your tour you will be picked up and returned to Coober Pedy.

. Operates:
. Saturday 5 May 2007 to Sunday 10 June 2007.

Drovers Express Return Adelaide Coach Transfer to Join Tour CD04

Drovers Express return coach transfer from Adelaide to join CD04 Cattle Kings tour.

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive Official Tour Bus Service, Drovers’ Express will ensure you arrive at your Cattle Drive campsite location with ease and on time. All meals and accommodation are provided, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy the contrasting scenery. Drovers’ Express will collect you from a selection of Adelaide central business district hotels. Use this opportunity to forge friendships with fellow travellers with whom you will be sharing the ultimate Outback experience. On the return leg of your journey, sit back and reflect on the memories of your tour and the images in your mind that will last forever.

. Journey from Adelaide to the Cattle Drive campsite.
. Day One – 0700 Depart from Adelaide nominated Hotel pickup point. Morning break Port Pirie. Lunch Port Augusta. Afternoon break Woomera. 1800 Arrive Coober Pedy. Overnight accommodation Opal Inn Hotel Motel (upgrade available).
. Day Two – 0730 Breakfast at the Opal Inn. 0800 Depart Coober Pedy. 1100 Arrive at Cattle Drive campsite location.
. Return Journey from Cattle Drive campsite to Adelaide.
. Day One – 1000 Depart Cattle Drive campsite. Lunch on route. 1700 Arrive Woomera. Overnight accommodation Eldo Hotel.
. Day Two – 0730 Breakfast at the Eldo Hotel. 0800 Depart Woomera. Morning break. Lunch on route. 1500 Arrive Adelaide.

. Operates:
. CD04 Cattle Kings, departs Sunday 20 May 2007, returns Saturday 26 May 2007.

Rail and Ruins Four Nights/Five Days – CD02

As you take your place on the second tour of the cattle drive you’ll soon find yourself awe-inspired to the desert horizons. Over your 50-odd-kilometre journey, red and white sandhills will give way to red rocky plains flanked by purple hills.

You’ll be following the remains of the original Ghan railway track as well as what’s left of the Overland Telegraph line – both critical in the settling of Australia’s interior. You’ll hear the stories of the settlers, their successes and failures along with historical accounts by descendants from original inhabitants, the indigenous people.

The route will take you past the Algebuckina Bridge, the state’s longest steel-span bridge at 580 metres in length and 12 metres in height, where you and the herd will cross the Neale River. The river is dry, but cliff formations show how wide it becomes in flood. Small quantities of gold were mined here in the 1880s.

You’ll be visiting a series of ruins en route, including Peake Telegraph Station (one of the relay stations for the famous ‘singing wires’) and abandoned shafts of gold and copper mines. The whole area is of great historical significance. Explorer Ernest Giles arrived here in 1876 after crossing the continent from Geraldton in Western Australia.

You can do as much or as little of this cattle drive as you wish; optional coach tours on days three and four are available to show you further regional highlights and histories. Experience the Outback from a unique vantage point and join a scenic flight over Lake Eyre or Dalhousie Springs at an additional cost.

Your village of superior tented accommodation is The Peake Campsite, located 66 kilometres south of Oodnadatta.

. Day One – Thursday – Arrive 1100 at the Peake Campsite. Enjoy the official welcome briefing, settle into the camp and have lunch. Transfer to the herd and meet the droving and farrier teams before being matched with your horse. After you get acquainted, you’ll spend your first afternoon droving cattle. Return to the camp, where your evening meal will be served. The open fire will be a great place to get to know the members of your group. (Meals – Lunch and dinner).

. Day Two, Three and Four – Friday, Saturday, Sunday – Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14 kilometres each day, so your droving departure and pick-up points will change. Lunch is delivered to you as the cattle rest and feed. Take the opportunity to chat to the drovers and farriers during the day. Upon returning to camp in late afternoon, you’ll find hot showers, the camp library, and cold drinks at the bar (alcohol is available for purchase). The evening meal will vary from buffet style (served in the on-site marquee) to camp-oven meals cooked on the campfire. Dinner is often accompanied by tales from the Outback – including yours.

On days three and four you are invited to join a coach tour to take in more of the highlights and history of the surrounding area (optional). Scenic flights are also available at an additional cost. (Meals – Breakfast, lunch and dinner).

. Day Five – Monday – Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of the Peake Campsite at 1000. (Meal – Breakfast).

. Operates:
. Thursday 10 May 2007 to Monday 14 May 2007.

Coach Transfer from/to Coober Pedy Airport

You will be transfered from/to Coober Pedy Airport to Coober Pedy by coach.

. Operates:
. Tuesday 1 May 2007 to Thursday 14 June 2007.

Optional Scenic Flight – Dalhousie Springs – CD01, CD02 or CD03

Dalhousie Springs lies in the heart of arid Australia, a large oasis in one of the driest parts of the continent. They are the largest artesian springs in Australia and are of national and world significance. These springs are so isolated from other bodies of permanent water that they contain many endemic animals. Experience the sand dunes and natural colour and the chance to see the native wild life. Explore the natural ponds and swim in the warm waters.

Here is your opportunity to experience the Outback from a unique vantage point. As you climb away from the runway you first notice the remoteness of the Australian Outback. See the Oodnadatta Track cutting its way through the sand dunes with the Old Ghan railway line running alongside it. Nothing much has changed in the last 100 years – you are in the real Australian Outback.

All aircraft are designed for maximum viewing pleasure and comfort. All have panoramic windows for excellent views and personal headsets are supplied for listening to commentary on our scenic flight routes.

. Operates:
. Only available in conjunction with Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive tours –
. CD01 Dawn of the Cattle Drive, Saturday 5 May 2007 to Wednesday 9 May 2007.
. CD02 Rail and Ruins, Thursday 10 May 2007 to Monday 14 May 2007.
. CD03 Sounds of the Outback, Tuesday 15 May 2007 to Saturday 19 May 2007.
. For departure on day three or day four of tour.

Drovers Express Return Adelaide Coach Transfer to Join Tour CD02

Drovers Express return coach transfer from Adelaide to join CD02 Rail and Ruins tour.

The Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive Official Tour Bus Service, Drovers’ Express will ensure you arrive at your Cattle Drive campsite location with ease and on time. All meals and accommodation are provided, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy the contrasting scenery. Drovers’ Express will collect you from a selection of Adelaide central business district hotels. Use this opportunity to forge friendships with fellow travellers with whom you will be sharing the ultimate Outback experience. On the return leg of your journey, sit back and reflect on the memories of your tour and the images in your mind that will last forever.

. Journey from Adelaide to the Cattle Drive campsite.
. Day One – 0700 Depart from Adelaide nominated hotel pick up point. Morning break Port Pirie. Lunch Port Augusta. Afternoon break Woomera. 1800 Arrive Coober Pedy. Overnight accommodation Opal Inn Hotel Motel (upgrade available).
. Day Two – 0630 Breakfast at the Opal Inn. 0700 Depart Coober Pedy. 1100 Arrive at Cattle Drive campsite location to begin your tour.
. Return Journey from Cattle Drive campsite to Adelaide.
. Day One – 1000 Depart Cattle Drive campsite. Lunch on route. 1600 Arrive Coober Pedy. Overnight accommodation Opal Inn Hotel Motel (upgrade available).
. Day Two – 0630 Breakfast at the Opal Inn. 0700 Depart Coober Pedy. Morning break Glendambo. Lunch Port Augusta. Afternoon break. 1800 Arrive Adelaide.

. Operates:
. CD02 Rail and Ruins, departs Wednesday 9 May 2007, returns Tuesday 15 May 2007.

Sounds of the Outback Four Nights/Five Days – CD03

Tour three of the Cattle Drive offers something of a quiet interlude. You’re the sort of person who is happy to lose yourself in the scenery, fill up on the solitude and ponder life to the steady rhythm of your horse’s gait. Get ready to sit back and be apart of an historical re-enactment, moving a real herd through real outback wilderness.

Of course you’re still on the Oodnadatta Track and all the history that comes with it. You’ll be following the remains of the original Ghan railway track as well as what’s left of the Overland Telegraph line – both critical in the settling of Australia’s interior. You’ll hear the stories of the settlers, their successes and failures along with historical accounts by descendants from original inhabitants, the indigenous people. Their stories will be told – stories of survival, stories of trade and stories of the sacred Dreaming.

The route comes across some little-visited ruins, including settler’s cottages and one of the abandoned railway stations whose stones have been left to the desert breezes.

Though the creeks are dry, seasonal rains often leave the desert vibrant with plants and animals. Listen to the sounds of the Outback…

You’ll do as much or as little of this cattle drive as you wish; optional coach tours on days three and four are available to show you further regional highlights and histories. Experience the Outback from a unique vantage point and join a scenic flight over Lake Eyre or Dalhousie Springs at an additional cost.

Your village of superior tented accommodation is Nilpinna Campsite, located 145 kilometres south of Oodnadatta.

. Day One – Tuesday – Arrive 11:00am at Nilpinna Campsite. Enjoy the official welcome briefing, settle into the camp and have lunch. Transfer to the herd and meet the droving and farrier teams before being matched with your horse. After you get acquainted, you’ll spend your first afternoon droving cattle. Return to the camp, where your evening meal will be served. The open fire will be a great place to get to know the members of your group. (Meals – Lunch and dinner).

. Day Two, Three, Four – Wednesday, Thursday, Friday – Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14 kilometres each day, so your droving departure and pick-up points will change. Lunch is delivered to you as the cattle rest and feed. Take the opportunity to chat to the drovers and farriers during the day. Upon returning to camp in late afternoon, you’ll find hot showers, the camp library, and cold drinks at the bar (alcohol is available for purchase). The evening meal will vary from buffet style (served in the on-site marquee) to camp-oven meals cooked on the campfire. Dinner is often accompanied by tales from the Outback – including yours. On days three and four you are invited to join a coach tour to take in more of the highlights and history of the surrounding area (optional). Scenic flights are also available for an additional cost. (Meals – Breakfast, lunch and dinner).

. Day Five – Saturday – Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of Nilpinna Campsite at 1000. (Meal – Breakfast).

. Operates:
. Tuesday 15 May 2007 to Saturday 19 May 2007.

Coach Transfer from/to Manguri Station to Coober Pedy

You will be transfered from/to Manguri Station to Coober Pedy by coach.

. Operates:
. Tuesday 1 May 2007 to Thursday 14 June 2007.

Activites and Experiences at Great Australian Outback Cattle Drive 2007, The

  • Camel Riding
  • Horseriding
  • Scenic Flight
  • Wholesale
  • Waiting Area
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
  • Active
  • Adventure
  • Caravan and Camping
  • Rural/Country
  • Flora and Fauna
  • Historic/Heritage
  • Off road
  • Outback
  • Remote
  • Soft Adventure
  • Underground
  • Wildlife
  • English
  • American Express
  • Bankcard
  • Cheques Bank
  • Cash
  • Diners Club
  • Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale
  • MasterCard
  • Money Order
  • Australian Travellers Cheque
  • Visa
  • Commentary
  • Host/Hostess
  • Meal

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