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7 DAY TREKS 2024

Wake up to sunrises that nurture the spirit, casting a warm and golden glow over the vast,

desert landscape, making every moment a cherished memory.

 

This is more than a journey; it's an immersion, where the simple joys of  bush walking,

riding, campfires, and sunset vistas redefine the meaning of unforgettable getaway.

Step into the Outback: 
Reduced Rate for Bushwalkers and 10% Discount for Return Trekkers

Explore Pricing: Click on Each Booking Tab for Details

Camel Treks Australia Trekking Trek Safari Expedition Holiday Eco Tourism Outback.JPG

7 Day Camel Treks in Outback Australia
Arriving Saturday - Departing Friday

Trekking Guests and Terrain on Treks:  Camel Treks Australia offers personalised treks in the Outback of South Australia, starting from the Clayton Station Wetlands 'Off The Birdsville Track' and extending into the lower section of the Tirari Desert's gentle sloping sand dunes. Each trek is exclusively designed for 8 camel riders and 4 -6 bushwalkers per listed trekking experience, or a total number of 12 - 14 trekkers. Designated overnight camps are vast and there is limitless space for privacy and silence. 

Skilled Cameleers on Treks: Our Camel Trek experience is carefully curated to showcase the diverse landscape of this arid desert zone, which can features significant birdlife, flora, and fauna. A team of four or more experienced Cameleers, trained in outdoor education and eco guiding, cares, and cooks for you throughout the trek. Equipped with navigation skills and purpose-built trekking gear, they share their cameleer husbandry skills along the way.

Vehicle Backup on Treks: Vehicle backup operates unobtrusively in the shadows, ready to be called upon if needed. Otherwise, trekkers reconnect with the vehicles each late afternoon to access their luggage, and for cameleers to prepare evening and breakfast meals.

Pricing and Discounts: Experience a reduced rate as a bushwalker and benefit from a 10% discount as a return trekker by entering the code 'RETURN' during the booking process.

Adelaide City, Return Charter

Optional extra with Stateliner Premier Coach Services and Complimentary Camel Treks Australia's service: 

The optional extra Stateliner Premier Coach Service return transfer from Adelaide City in South Australia departs from The Adelaide Central Bus Station 85 Franklin St, Adelaide South Australia 5000. Ph: (08) 8415 5555 and offers comfort and quickness of arrival into Port Augusta City, specifically to be dropped off  and meeting Cameleers at the Port Augusta East - Puma Service Station. 

 

These optional extra tickets need to be managed by guests and can be booked directly with the Stateliner Premier Coach Service. Currently, Stateliner Premier Coach Service offers seats priced from $31.40 AUD for pensioners and seniors card holders and full fare from $62.80 AUD. Upon arrival into Port Augusta, a complimentary return transfer from the Port Augusta East - Puma Service Station is provided. This transfer utilises all-terrain four-wheel-drive vehicles with closed luggage trailers, driven by Camel Treks Australia's experienced off-road driving staff.

Stateliner Premier Coach Service

Arrival: Embark on your journey on Saturday morning from The Adelaide Central Bus Station at 85 Franklin St, Adelaide, South Australia, with the Stateliner Premier Coach Service departing at 8:25 am. Arrive at Port Augusta East - Puma Service Station by 12:54 noon. A representative from Camel Treks Australia will be on hand to welcome your arrival and assist with your luggage. Subsequently, you'll be transferred to the Clayton Station Wetlands in one of our four-wheel-drive vehicles, traversing the picturesque Flinders Ranges and Marree township. It is from Marree that we arrive at the southern end of the famous Birdsville Track, and journey 50kms north east to Clayton Station, which is a diverse landscape of approximately one thousand square miles.

Departure: On Friday morning, Camel Treks Australia Cameleers will help with your luggage, transferring you from Clayton Station Wetlands. Expect a 5 hour journey to Port Augusta East - Puma Service Station for the 3.47pm departure coach service from Port Augusta East - Puma Service Station to the Adelaide Central Bus Station, Adelaide City, South Australia, arriving at 8.15pm.

 

NOTE: Kindly avoid purchasing food or coffee upon arrival at the Puma Service Station. We aim to depart promptly and will make stops at cafes in Quorn and Hawker for lunch. Camel Treks Australia will provide the evening meal. On the return journey, we will once again visit townships with cafes, and upon arriving in Port Augusta, there will be time for lunch at a local cafe before boarding for Adelaide City.

Contact: For inquiries or reservations, you can reach Stateliner Premier Coach Service by phone at 1300 851 345 or via email at reservations@premierstateliner.com.au. Direct bookings can also be conveniently made online through their website at Stateliner Premier Coach Service.

Arriving earlier or linger longer in Adelaide City: The City has a range of accommodation and experiences which can be found via the South Australia Tourism Commission.

Overnight accomodation in Adelaide City:  Camel Treks Australia staff prefer accommodation at the Adelaide YHA, conveniently situated near the Adelaide Central Bus Station at 135 Waymouth Street, Adelaide City. For reservations, you can contact them via email at stay@yha.com.au or by phone at (+618) 8414 3010. Further details can be found on their website: YHA Adelaide City.

Optional luxury unit accommodation on the 1st night at Clayton Station: Experience the indulgence of Clayton Station's luxury units, each featuring a private, natural, rejuvenating hot water artesian basin spa-sized outdoor tub—ideal for relaxation under the stars. This optional extra is exclusively available on the Saturday night of the camel trek. To book accommodation in one of these luxury units, kindly use the following link Air BND Clayton Station.

Self-Driving:  If you choose self-driving to Clayton Station guests can meet us in the evening at the Clayton Station Wetlands Camping grounds, located opposite the Clayton Station Homestead.

Guests can easily self-drive in standard 2-wheel drive vehicles, provided they have high ground clearance for the final 50 km of dirt road on the Birdsville Track from Marree township to Clayton Station. Many guests have split the 7 hour 50 minute drive into two days, staying overnight at the halfway point Hawker Township region—perhaps visit Wilpena Pound and overnight at Merna Mora Station, conveniently located off the main road for an effortless start the next day.

Self-drivers are welcome to arrive at Clayton Station Wetlands before our arrival, which serves as our first night's camp for all Camel Treks Australia journeys in 2024. We kindly request that you review the Outback Roads website before departure. It's important for self-drivers to be aware that road and weather conditions can rapidly vary in the Outback, with frequent crossings of native animals and station stock on the roads; we recommend avoiding driving at dawn and dusk. Additionally, self-driving guests should ensure they have a spare tyre, an adequate supply of drinking water, and confidence in the mechanical reliability of their vehicles. Please note that mechanical services and towing services from the Northern Flinders onwards are limited and costly. Now might be a good time to check your RAA or equivalent membership.

Self-driving guests can arrive at The Clayton Station Wetlands Camping Ground anytime in the afternoon. However, please note that the Camel Treks Australia crew will likely not arrive until 6 pm onwards and will provide a late evening meal. If you arrive earlier, feel free to enjoy the hot tub and showers. For navigation, we recommend setting your GPS to Clayton Station, Birdsville Track, or Marree in South Australia (postcode 5733). Follow the Birdsville Track from Marree to reach Clayton Station, approximately 50 km from Marree.

 

Explore Marree Township before navigating the 50-kilometre dirt road of the Birdsville Track to reach the Clayton Station Wetlands Campground. Upon the arrival of our Cameleers, they will guide you in safely parking your car, caravan, or trailer for the duration of your trek.

To avoid confusion, we request early arrivals to wait for our arrival at the campgrounds instead of proceeding to the busy working Station base at the Clayton Station Homestead. Please be aware that we will be in transit with guests arriving on the above mentioned bus schedule, with an expected 5-hour transit depending on road conditions and wildlife activity. Some guests in the past have chosen to dine in the Marree Hotel or Oasis Cafe. Many past trekking guests arriving earlier have indulged in one of Clayton Station's two luxury units, each featuring a private, natural, rejuvenating hot water artesian basin spa-sized outdoor tub—ideal for relaxation under the stars. This optional extra is exclusively available on the Friday night of the camel trek. To book accommodation in one of these luxury units, kindly use the following link Air BND Clayton Station. The fully equipped luxury units at Clayton Station, each feature two bedrooms, a lounge, bathroom, and kitchen. Remember if you arrive before the evening meal to bring your own food provisions, as there are no shops on-site at Clayton Station.

A typical day on our camel trek unfolds with a serene rhythm:

  • Morning Delights: Begin with hot tea or coffee 1 hour after sunrise

  • Breakfast Bounty: Enjoy a leisurely breakfast amid the picturesque surroundings.

  • Camel Moments: Capture the beauty of camels grazing in the morning light.

  • Guest Engagement: Join in as guests are welcome to assist with camel care.

  • Saddling Up: Observe or participate as cameleers prepare camels for the day's journey.

  • Scenic Walk: Set out for a walk with camels, cameleers, and fellow guests.

  • Midday Pause: Take a break for lunch halfway to the next campsite.

  • Camp Arrival: Reach a new campsite in the late afternoon.

  • Unsaddling Ritual: Join the process of removing saddles and blankets from camels.

  • Evening Atmosphere: Experience the magic of evenings with campfires, stories, and new friendships.

  • Guest Participation: Choose your level of involvement, from observing to hands-on engagement.

  • Hot Soak: At certain campsites a relaxing wash in the hot Artesian Basin waters is possible.

The trek's unhurried pace ensures you savour every moment of this unique holiday adventure. Each morning offers opportunities to witness and participate in the saddle-fitting process, fostering a deeper connection with the camels and the trek experience.

 

With an average daily trek of 8-15kms, there's ample time for exploration, relaxation, and enjoying the natural beauty of the Outback. Morning activities commence at sunrise, allowing guests to appreciate the tranquil light and enjoy a leisurely start to their day.

 

Whether you're an early riser or prefer a bit more sleep, our camel trek accommodates your pace for an enriching and memorable experience.

DAY 1. Transfer Day and Arrival at the Clayton Station Wetlands Campground

If you have opted for the additional service departing Adelaide at 8:25 am on Friday with the Stateliner Premier Coach Service from the Adelaide Central Bus Station, our Cameleers will welcome you at the Port Augusta Regional City, specifically at the Port Augusta East - Puma Service Station, at 12:54 noon.

Our goal is to depart promptly, and along the journey, we'll make stops at cafes in the Quorn and Hawker townships for refreshments and lunch. We'll provide frequent toilet breaks and pauses at notable locations en-route, taking you through the picturesque Flinders Ranges and Outback. A highlight stop will be the camel historic township of Marree, where you can explore camel memorabilia and, perhaps, enjoy a drink at the old Marree Hotel showcasing regional Gin creations. It is from Marree that we arrive at the southern end of the famous Birdsville Track, and journey 50kms north east to Clayton Station, which is a diverse landscape of approximately one thousand square miles. 

Upon arrival at the Clayton Station Wetlands Campground, our staff will assist you in setting up our brand new Darche luxury King-Size Swags and preparing the communal, natural, rejuvenating hot water artesian basin spa-sized outdoor tub, ideal for relaxation under the stars on your first night in the Outback. If the tub isn't to your liking, we can highly recommend the relaxing artesian showers. While you enjoy, our Cameleers will prepare a delicious evening meal for you to savour under the clear night sky.

Day 2. Cameleers Rise Early for Your First Day of Trekking

Early in the morning, our Cameleers rise to prepare hot coffee and tea, setting up the breakfast/lunch tent with an array of options to cater to all tastes. As a group, we pack up and transfer to locate the camels deeper on Clayton Station. Observe as we muster the camels, halter them, apply lead ropes, and feel free to become as hands-on as you'd like, brushing, blanketing, and saddling the camels before we embark on a full day's trek, covering typically between 10-15kms before setting up camp along the Clayton Creek.

The trees along the creek-line are teeming with birdlife, dingoes are regularly spotted, and the colors of the sunset never fail to disappoint. Once our Cameleers have completed their camel tasks, they set about lighting the evening campfire, boiling the billy, and preparing the evening meal, which frequently includes making damper breads with main meals and sweet puddings for dessert.

Camel Treks Australia Trekking Trek Safari Expedition Holiday Eco Tourism Outback Camel Ri
August - September 2024
Saturday 31st - Friday 6th

DAYS 3 - 4 - 5:

We journey deeper into the parallel sand dunes of the Tirari Desert, observing their increasing height as we venture northward. There are varying distances between the dunes, separated by the inter-dune flats. The dune ridge-tops stretch across hundreds of kilometers, punctuated by salt lakes and immense sand formations running from north to south. Situated in the eastern reaches of South Australia's Far North, the Tirari Desert encompasses part of the Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre National Park, with Lake Eyre North to its west.

The Tirari Desert hosts a diverse range of flora and fauna. Sandhill canegrass and sandhill wattle dominate the dune crests and mobile slopes, while varied grasses thrives on stable slopes and sandy corridors. Sparse shrublands of acacia, and eremophila are common on dune flanks, with saltbush and bluebush found in swales and interdune flats. Coolibah woodlands can be found flourishing around good rainfall catchment areas and floodplains. 

Among the threatened and vulnerable species in the Tirari Desert are the Crest-tailed mulgara, dusky hopping mouse, fawn hopping-mouse, grey falcon, and woma python. A night walk with head torch is worthwhile. Finally the Australian Dingo is at home here and it is not uncommon to see them and hear their unique howl. They pose us no threat, but do tuck your shoes away at night! 

Depending on the prevailing wind and our current wanderlust, our destinations may include the following locations:

  1. Peachawarina Wetlands: An oasis between the dunes attracting an abundance of birdlife and wildlife in general, thanks to the constant flow of artesian basin water. There is also an opportunity to soak in the waters under the stars and sleep like a baby after absorbing the mineral-rich waters.

  2. Kabeer ClayPan: An impressive sight to be discovered after a sand dune expedition. This impressively large claypan is covered in fossilized remains of a time long passed. Formations exhibit coral-like resemblances.

  3. Lake Eyre: The camels traverse as close as they can to the Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre National Park. In some areas, we approach the ground softens, and the heavier camels literally sink - this is how we know when to stop. Beholding the endless vista of Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre and remaining to take in the sunset makes for a great day and memory.

  4. Dicka Dickana and Coodlunga: This area is close to the Clayton River that, when in flow, feeds into Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre. The soft creek beds make for a wonderful night's sleep, birdlife is abundant, and dingoes never fail to show us their curious nature at this location.

  5. Halfway Floodplain: A wide expanse at the end of the southern Tirari Sand dunes on the eastern side. It greets the sunrise and hosts evidence of Aboriginal life in years since passed. Arriving here takes us through tighter and tighter sand dunes as the spaces between the inter-dunes tighten.

  6. CaneGrass Swamp: A gibber plane and complete change of landscape signal our arrival to this wetland, which is home to Australia's largest crane, The Brolga. They are a sight to behold and hear as they fly above and gracefully land. The entire area is a mecca for desert birdlife. Camping here is a delight surrounded by permanent waterholes, lots of lush vegetation, and a chance to wash off the sand in Great Artesian waters. It's hard to believe the lofty dunes of the Tirari Desert remain so close.

  7. Illturina: We camp either near a delightful wetland or at the top of a dune crest. Either option is a visual delight. If you like riding earlier in the morning, why not assist or photograph the morning's activities as the cameleers gather the camels for the morning's brushing and saddling activity.

 

The above represents some of the many possibilities of the varied landscapes which we encounter on Camel Treks. We are absolutely fortunate to experience enormous diversity on each and every exploration.

Camel Treks Australia Desert Expeditions Outback Camels Safari Tours Riding Eco Tourism Fl
September 2024
Saturday 14th - Friday 20th
Camel Treks Australia Desert Expeditions Outback Camels Safari Tours Riding Eco Tourism Fl

Day 6: A Full Day of Desert Adventure

Cameleers rise early to kindle the fire, boiling the eco billy for authentic coffee and offering an assortment of teas. Inside the kitchen tent, they prepare provisions for breakfast and lunch, providing a diverse selection to choose from. Early risers are welcomed to join the Cameleers in preparing the camels for the day ahead.

Depending on the wind direction, our journey will take us either north or south, ultimately leading us to the southern end of the Tirari Desert—a hidden gem accessible only through private lands such as Clayton Station.

The Tirari Desert: An Enigmatic Landscape

The Tirari Desert, part of the Simpson–Strzelecki dune fields bioregion, lies within the complex desert country of northeastern South Australia, flanked by the Simpson Desert to the north and the Sturt Stony and Strzelecki deserts to the east. Covering 15,000 square kilometres entirely within South Australia, the Tirari Desert is a unique ecosystem.

The Cooper Creek winds through the northern Tirari Desert, fostering a corridor of coolibah shrubland. Salt lakes and north-to-south sand dunes dominate the landscape, covered with canegrass and sparse acacia shrubland. Sandhill canegrass and sandhill wattle grace the dune crests and slopes, while hard spinifex thrives on stable slopes and sandy corridors between dunes.

Sparse, tall shrubland of acacia, eremophila, and grevillea dots the dune flanks, with saltbush and bluebush found in swales and interdune flats. Occasional crossings of floodplains and gibber plains—desert pavements covered with closely packed, interlocking rock fragments—add diversity to the terrain.

After rainfall, Gibber plains transform into short-lived herb-fields of ephemeral grasses, chenopods, or daisies. The Tirari Desert, like the Simpson Desert, is characterised by predominantly north–south-oriented parallel longitudinal dunes. Smaller areas of transverse and reticulate dunes appear near river and creek systems. Tirari's dunes, though sharing characteristics with those further north, are generally lower, shorter in length, more closely spaced, and closely associated with clay pans and salt lakes.

This day provides trekking guests with a genuine sense of Australia's arid desert environment, one that the camels effortlessly glide over with ease and enjoyment.

Day 7. Goodbye to Camels, Tirari Desert and Return Transfers 

The return journey to Port Augusta from Clayton Station, off the Birdsville Track, is an adventure in itself. We start our day early, with the option to refresh in the hot artesian showers or indulge in a soak in the hot tub. After packing our bags and enjoying breakfast, we set out along the Birdsville Track, immersing ourselves in the picturesque landscapes of the Outback, Far North and Central Flinders Ranges.

If time allows, we make a stop at The Maree Oasis Cafe, where you can purchase souvenirs to remember this unique region. We also visit the Aboriginal Ochre Pits before pausing for lunch at The Flinders Cafe in Hawker. Our journey continues via Quorn, winding our way back to Port Augusta.

While goodbyes may be bittersweet, the memories we've shared will last a lifetime.

Camel Treks Australia Camels riding bush walking tour safari expedition outback adventure
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