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Strzelecki Track

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February 244 minute read

The Strzelecki Track crosses a vast landscape, and it’s this vastness that is the biggest appeal of the track in itself. The feeling of freedom that comes from being surrounded by space is one of the many joys of the outback.

Strzelecki Track
Strzelecki Track 1

The Strzelecki Track starts in Lyndhurst and ends in Innamincka, a small town on Cooper Creek. It’s a gateway to the Central Deserts.

Strzelecki Track 2

The track is easy driving, but after heavy traffic is reportedly heavily corrugated. After heavy rain it’s promptly closed by authorities (like many roads in the area) for safety and to avoid track damage.

Strzelecki Track 3
Strzelecki Track 4

At Merty Merty Station you can take a side trip to Cameron Corner (the SA/NSW/QLD border) and the adjacent Sturt National Park. It’s worth it!

Strzelecki Track 5

Along the Cooper Creek near Innamincka there’s good camping, and sites like the Burke and Wills ‘Dig Tree’ are a great place to connect with Australian history.

Strzelecki Track 6

This route through the Strzelecki Desert was first forged in 1870. Henry Redford AKA Captain Starlight stole 1,000 cattle in Queensland and drove them down the Barcoo and Cooper and sold them in South Australia. The Strzelecki Track became a regular cattle route, and ‘Cattle King’ Sydney Kidman owned numerous properties along it.

In the 1960s The Cooper Basin, Australia’s largest onshore oil and gas was found. The track passes through Moomba which is the main production facility for the area.

Strzelecki Track 7
Strzelecki Track 8

Heading up the Strzelecki Track and returning along the Birdsville Track is a great round trip – and a trip that gives a great taste of the desert beyond.

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Mike Collister has spent his life outdoors. He has represented Australia as a slalom kayaker, guided whitewater expeditions in Nepal, and taught outdoor education and wilderness medicine. He’s paddled the Kimberley’s Fitzroy River in the wet season and across the Bass Strait and is an avid photographer, overlander and camper.