SOUTHEASTERN LAKES SURVEY TREK

Including part of the Kallakoopah Creek

Conducted in association with the South Australian Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources

 

 

 

 Duration:

 Dates:

 Breakup:

 Difficulty:           

 Max group size:

 Start point:

 Finish point:

 Cost:

 

16 Days

July 3 - July 18 2014

2 days 4WD / 13 days trekking / 1 day 4WD & flights

Moderate

12

Adelaide

Adelaide

AUD$5500

Includes flights from Adelaide and Charter flight over Lake Eyre, Warburton River, southern Simpson Desert, Tirari Desert & 4WD transfers

Southeastern Lakes Survey Trek

SURVEY COMPLETED

Summary

Map

Practicalities

Project 138 will initially focus on the ephemeral drainage systems directly north of Lake Eyre, concentrating particularly on the Kallakoopah Creek in the Simpson Desert Regional Reserve.

ADE senior ecologist and program director, Dr Max Tischler explains:

 

The riparian vegetation associated with desert ephemeral drainage lines such as the Kallakoopah Creek are known to be important dry-period refuge sites to a range of arid-zone fauna. This includes important habitats for native birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians, which are able to maintain populations in these areas during otherwise unfavourable conditions – conditions which are now prevailing in this part of the desert.

 

These ecological communities are also the most likely to harbor invasive and feral species. As such, loss of habitat to weeds and enhanced predation pressures make these areas critical sites for evaluation and (later) management. By visiting previously un-surveyed areas of the desert we will be able to determine the state and condition of a range of threatened species and ecosystems.

 

By employing modern survey techniques, historical benchmarking and traditional knowledge, our surveys will endeavour to better understand the extent and impact the threatening processes of invasive plants and animals have had, and will continue to pose, to ephemeral drainage lines such as the Kallakoopah Creek.

As with the preceding Southern Simpson Explorer Survey, we will be spending most of this survey visiting the numerous salt lakes that lie to the north of the Kallakoopah Creek. We will also have an opportunity to briefly visit part of the creek, although our time spent there is totally dependant on what we find enroute and the actual course of our survey.

 

The country to the north and northeast of the Kallakoopah Creek consists of low white to washed-red sand dunes with wide inter-dune corridors. This is part of the great lake salt lake system of the Simpson Desert, of which the biggest is Lake Eyre-Kati Thanda which is also the lowest point on the Australian mainland.

 

The lakes will be dry and only ever 'fill' when there has been heavy and sustained local rain. Some lakes appear to join the main creek channel although these are generally regarded to be part of the creek itself rather than a separate feature.

There is a possibility that we may find megafauna fossil remains along these lakes, so this survey will also form part of our overall palaeontological survey for the southern Simpson Desert.

 

 

 

 

...and even though it has nothing directly to do with ecological research, it's always a highlight to see a desert full moon on July 12th...

General survey corridor

General survey corridor

THIS SURVEY IS RATED AS MODERATE

See here for a guide.

 

WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING?

We will issue you with a comprehensive Survey Information Guide that details everything you need to know about what to bring and what to expect on your trek. This will be sent to you both as a PDF document and printed hard copy.

 

DO I NEED TRAVEL INSURANCE?

Yes, travel insurance is compulsory.

 

INCLUDED

- Charter flight from the southern Simpson Desert to Olympic Dam

- Charter flight from Olympic Dam to Adelaide

- All specialist safety equipment & communications

- Swags & tents

- Trek kit bag for your personal gear

- Desert silence!

 

NOT INCLUDED

- Your flights to Adelaide and any other transport in Adelaide prior to the survey

- Your flights from Adelaide and any other transport in Adelaide after the survey

- Accommodation and meals in Adelaide

- Personal trekking equipment you may wish to use such as walking poles etc

- Eating and drinking utensils

- Waterbottle

- Sleeping bag, sheets & pillowcase. (You need to bring these items and they will be put into our swag)

- Day pack

 

FOOD

You must notify us upon booking if you have any known medical and/or food allergies.

 

GETTING TO THE SURVEY

Your camel team will be in the Simpson Desert Regional Reserve and we will be using a 4WD bus for this transfer which begins in Adelaide. The drive will be via the Flinders Ranges and Marree where you will camp on the first night. From there we travel along the Birdsville Track to Mungerannie and then into the Simpson Desert Regional Reserve via the Warburton Crossing to the camel camp.

Back to Adelaide

The return vehicle transfer is via 4WD to an airstrip in the southern desert where you join the charter flight to Olympic Dam. This will fly over Lake Eyre-Kati Thanda, the Warburton River and Tirari Desert. From there you join the scheduled domestic service to Adelaide, arriving in the late afternoon/early evening.

 

 

FULL SURVEY NOTES WILL BE ISSUED WITH YOUR SURVEY INFORMATION GUIDE

 

 

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