The End of the Outback Campfire?

In news just to hand, several Outback parks in South Australia have introduced a total ban on wood fires for any purpose.

This does not come as a complete surprise. Wood for campfires is understandably in short supply in desert areas, where trees are usually few and far between, and what dry wood there is provides homes for insects and small animals. The ban also applies to bringing wood into the parks from elsewhere, since this can introduce weeds and other foreign matter which may be detrimental to the park. These parks have introduced the ban:

•Witjira National Park, which contains Dalhousie Springs.
•Lake Eyre National Park.
•Coongie Lakes National Park, near Innamincka.
•Wabma Kadarbu Mound Springs Conservation Park, which contains Coward Springs
and the nearby Blanche Cup and The Bubbler mound springs. (Correction: Coward Springs Campground does allow fires under certain conditions — see comment by Prue Coulls below.)

It’s not hard to see this ban spreading to other camping areas in the Outback. The spectre of Outback camping without a campfire is not a happy concept, but neither is the possibility of some areas being permanently closed for years to allow for regeneration of natural vegetation.

A portable gas stove is not in the hunt when it comes to creating a relaxing and convivial atmosphere on a calm and balmy night in the Outback!


About dazzlerplus

Writing about the things that interest me helps me to discover what I think. One of my loves is the Australian Outback, and I travel out there often, and when possible take friends with me.
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4 Responses to The End of the Outback Campfire?

  1. This is the last straw..or should that be last twig? It all makes sense but camping without a fire? I agree Rob that gas cannot compare to a camp fire. I have my yearly blaze here. Surely the warmth of the fire must have been one of man’s earliest comforts.

  2. Garrie Negus says:

    So carrying seeds, dirt and other foreign stuff in stuck to the underside of a vehicle is OK then!. Where do they get off with their BS ideas and suggestions. They will be stopping us getting out at the assembly point “sorry car parks” and walking into the parks soon as we might harm a plant, insect or leave a footprint!!!!

    • dazzlerplus says:

      You’re quite right about seeds, etc coming in on vehicles. But where should they draw the line? There are always a few thoughtless travellers who make it hard for the rest of us. We’ve all seen camping areas where people break limbs off (living) trees and shrubs to burn on their (oversized!) camp fires.

  3. Prue Coulls says:

    Howdy Rob and all, I just found this ‘thread’ when I did a search for ‘coward springs campground’ (our place). Yes we are surrounded by Wabma Kadarbu Conservation Park but we are a family business AND guess what – you can still have fires (small ones in our fireplaces) here. You just have to bring your own firewood. I have been seen with steam coming from my ears ( I’m usually fairly placid!) when someone drives in with a whole tree (green leaves included) on the top of their vehicle. So start collecting long before you get to the outback region where trees are few and far between. See you this season!

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