The Outdorian Magazine - Page 35

The water reaches temperatures from 30 to 100°C and
is laced with minerals such as sulphur, calcium and
magnesium that contribute to its long-fabled healing
powers. It’s believed sufferers of arthritis, respiratory
conditions and musculoskeletal pain may benefit from
soaking in mineral-rich baths, an ancient European practice
known as “taking the waters”.
For travellers, there are few things more relaxing than
slipping into a hot outdoor spa or steamy lap pool at the
end of a long drive day. It relaxes your muscles, soothes your
Credit: Walgett Shire Council
Credit: Walgett Shire Council
joints, clears your passages and melts stress and anxiety
away, while alternating between hot and cool pools will get
your circulation flowing.
In northern New South Wales, the proliferation of thermal
pools and their growing popularity has inspired a touring
route between the shires of Narrabri, Walgett and Moree.
Called the Great Artesian Drive, it strings together a series
of public artesian hotspots that include rustic openair baths serviced by rehabilitated 100 year-old bores, a
Across all of Australia, there’s as many as 50 known
geothermal pools and some nomads have spent years
discovering them all.
So committed is Steve Lambert, his niche travel guide and
work of ten years, Australia’s Great Thermal Way, is now in
its fourth edition. As well as the widely-promoted pools –
think Dalhousie springs and Innot hot pools – don’t forget
that a tip-off from the right local could see you enjoying a
steamy soak of the hush-hush kind.
modern aquatic centre complete with Olympic-size pool
Make no mistake, Australia’s hot springs don’t bubble up in
and waterslides, and a smattering of caravan parks and
natural rock pools with views of snow capped mountains,
motels with their own warm and cool spa pools available
and don’t expect to be able to order a bowl of ramen.
to guests. If you don’t fancy paying an entry fee, the
But if it weren’t for the arid landscape, the ties to our
historic baths in Pilliga, Lightning Ridge, Burren Junction
Aboriginal culture and pioneering past, and the relative
and Walgett are free and maintain water temperatures of
obscurity of these spa towns that hide off the beaten path,
between 37.5 and 41.5°C.
the outback’s hot spring culture simply wouldn’t be the
Continue into Queensland where you can dip your toes
into the toasty artesian baths of Mitchell, Blackall and the
far-flung outpost of Bedourie. Eulo’s hot mud baths offer
something a little different, and up near Cairns, you can
irreplicable experience that it is. So if you’re joining the
annual pilgrimage of nomads north this winter, make sure
you point your bullbar inland.
witness hot spring water surfacing in the natural setting of
Nettle Creek – but do be warned the water here reaches a
not-so-relaxing 87 degrees and wears a shroud of steam to
prove it.

Innotech Rv


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