Wyperfeld National Park and Big Desert 2018
Wyperfeld National Park and Big Desert 4th – 6th May 2018
A small but quality group left the clubrooms at 7am on a very chilly Friday morning at 7am to head for Wyperfeld. We recaffienated at Avoca and continued to Patchewollock to refuel and head into the national park where the Casuarina Camp ground is just down the road after turning left.
After a quick set up of Warren and Shez’s soon to be “old van” and Warren demonstrating his considerable backing skills, we set off for a quick spin of the north east section of the park. This involved getting slightly lost to the south of O’Sullivan’s Pine Plains Lodge. All good, we found our way our way through some interesting sandy but treed tracks to emerge to the west of the lodge into much more open, grassy terrain along the Wirrengren Plain. Along the way we found some old bores and then arrived at the base of O’Sullivan’s lookout. We walked about a kilometre to the lookout for some great panoramic views, although some felt it was much further! On the way back we took a “shortcut” down the steep sandy face of the lookout. Fortunately the pink ribbons that Hansel and Gretel had tied to the trees stopped us from getting lost on the way to the car park.
We continued around the Wirrengren Plain checking out the Snowdrift sand hill and camping area before returning to camp for some obligatory ambience and overtraining.
Day 2 was always going to be a long day and in retrospect was a little over ambitious. We headed south down Eagle Track and North-South Track to Wonga camp. This was mainly uneventful apart from a few big whoop-de-do’s over some rises. After bottoming out the suspension on one, my co-pilot (Tim) suggested that I had probably just bent my new underbody protection plates; I said “no way”, but Tim was right! Good fun but.
After Wonga we continued south on bitumen to arrive back on sandy tracks to the east of Lake Albacutya. Plenty of kangaroos and ostriches, oops, I mean emus there. We partially circumnavigated the lake, then cut across the southern park border to Milmed Rock track. This is about 60km of sandy track which is generally pretty easy, but with a few dunes which were a bit of fun. Not far up the track was a short steep track to a lookout, but we couldn’t get up without deflating tyres (even with the fog lights on) so we left that for another day in the interest of time. We checked out Round Swamp Camp which would be a good camp site for a future trip. Then on to the not so famous Milmed rock; less impressive than Ayres Rock but one of the few rocky structures in the park. On to the Murrayville-Nhill Rd and then to Big Billy Bore Camp, another good future camp site. By the time we reached Deliso track which leads to the “BIG DUNE” it was 3.30pm. We really should have headed back to camp but Big Dune just had to be done…and it is a lot of fun!! With all those attempting it reaching the top (one way or another) we headed back to Murrayville, airing up and then back to Casuarina. We collected wood on the way and arrived back at camp at 8pm… later than planned. We covered about 375 km for the day, which was too much, but we did see a lot. “Some” of us were a bit puffed out after a long day is the saddle and didn’t train as hard as the night before, but there was good ambiance.
The next day we made a slow start and made our way home.
Overall it was a great weekend with much knowledge gained for future trips in the region. Thanks once again to Warren, Shez, Kevin and Tim for a fantastic weekend.
Cheers, Geoff Davey