Passing thru cutting Old Ghan Line.


The Oodnadatta Track & Old Ghan Line - SA / NT

Lake Eyre Yacht Club at Marree.

Travelling along the Oodnadatta Track.

This route through the heart of northern South Australia into the Northern Territory to Alice Springs is a beauty, traversing as it does a wide range of desert country along the historic route first pioneered by John McDouall Stuart during his attempts to cross the continent in the 1860s. The Overland Telegraph Line (OTL) followed his route when it was established in 1870 and the Ghan Railway Line did much the same during its protracted construction between 1880 and 1929.

From Marree to Oodnadatta the route traverses some of the driest country in Australia along 410km of graded wide dirt road that has more than its fair share of stones and ‘gibbers’ to destroy a carelessly placed or inflated tyre.

Camp north of William Creek.

Inside the William Creek Pub.

At Oodnadatta, once an important railroad town and for many years the end of the line, you’ll find a number of historic spots relating to its heritage but the place that everyone visits is the Pink Roadhouse (

Algebuckina Waterhole on the Neales River is a good spot to camp


'The Bubbler' - Oodnadatta Track - A mound spring in the Wamba Kadarbu National Park.

From Oodnadatta north it is another 250km or so (depends on which track you take) to the Mt Dare Hotel ( which is a top spot to enjoy a cold beer and camp. Being on the edge of the Simpson Desert and this close to Dalhousie Springs it’s highly recommended you head north from Oodnadatta via Dalhousie to Mt Dare.

Mt Dare Hotel-edge of the simpson Desert.

For a change we didn’t, taking instead the route through Eringa (the first property owned by ‘the Cattle King’, Sir Sidney Kidman), where we had the added bonus of the large Eringa Waterhole being almost full. It’s a top spot to camp!

The picturesque waterhole at Eringa (when it's got water!).

After a night and a few beers at Mt Dare we headed north via the ruins of Charlotte Waters, once an important telegraph station on the OTL to the Aboriginal Community of Finke, a distance of about 105km.


From Rodinga the route stays close to the original route of the Ghan Railway although the latest alignment of the road is a little to the west in places.

Now you’ll need to turn east off the main track north to go and see the Ewaninga Rock Carvings which used to be right beside the track north.

From there it is jus32km to the bright lights of Alice Springs, where you’ll find a wide range of things to do and places to visit