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Rail & Ruins

Tour Code: CD02
4 nights/5 Days
Thursday 10th May – Monday 14th May 2007
Price Per Person for tour only: - £1,323


Tour highlights

Dawn Cattle DriveAs 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 sand hills 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 1880’s.

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 3 and 4 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 66km south of Oodnadatta.


Day 1, Thursday - Arrive 11:00am 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 2, 3, 4, Friday, Saturday, Sunday - Each morning after breakfast you will be transferred to the horses where your droving will commence. The cattle will move some 14km 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 3 and 4 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 5 Monday - Enjoy breakfast then farewell your Outback home of The Peake Campsite at 10:00am.
(Meal - Breakfast)

What's included?

  • Superior carpeted tent accommodation at The Peake campsite including camp bed, sheets, quilt (duvet), pillow and towel.
  • A fully maintained campsite with bathroom facilities including hot showers, hair dryers and flushing toilets.
  • All meals stated as per itinerary (full breakfast, lunch, two-course dinner). Australian cuisine will be featured. Special dietary requests are catered for, however please confirm this at time of booking.
  • Non-alcoholic drinks, including soft drinks, tea, coffee and unlimited water.
  • Horse riding, including saddle, safety equipment and helmet.
  • Guided coach tours on days 3 and 4 of your tour featuring surrounding attractions and historic points of interest; this is offered as an alternative option to droving.
  • Exposure to Aboriginal and cultural experiences as offered by guides.
  • Experienced staff including doctor and event management staff, professional drovers, farriers, horse tailers and vets.

CAR PARK Will be located adjacent the campsite and will be well sign posted from the Oodnadatta Track.

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