Mungo NP via Top Hut Road

StartClick to Reverse the Dynamic Map and Driving NotesWentworth Pooncarie Rd & Top Hut Rd
FinishMungo National Park Visitor Centre
DifficultyDifficulty 1.5/5
Suitable For4WD AWD 
Distance58.5 km
Minimum Days1
Average Speed61.27 km/hr
Travel Time57 mins
Page Updated: 9 Mar 2021

Description

This trek note has been prepared to provide one of the 3 alternative access routes into the Mungo National Park, located in the southwest corner of NSW, roughly 100km northeast of Mildura (Vic). For other access routes please also read our trek note for Mildura to Mungo NP.

For full details on visiting the park please ensure you also read our Mungo National Park trek note which provides details on all park features and provides the plot file for touring the 70km self-drive route within the park.

How to Use this Trek Note

If you'd like to download this Trek there are two options:
  • Purchase our app ExplorOz Traveller. This Australian-made GPS & Navigation app will allow you to download all the ExplorOz Treks to your GPS enabled smartphone/tablet/iPad or laptop and enable active route guidance along the route as per the Directions shown on this page. The app enables offline navigation and mapping and will show where you are as you travel along the route. The app also allows you to edit/customise the route. Viewing the Trek in the Traveller app also includes all the words, images and POIs exactly as on the website (excludes Wildflowers). For more info see the ExplorOz Traveller webpage.

  • Alternatively, if you already have another raster mapping software program you can Download this route in GPX format using the button shown below the map on this page .

TIP

To purchase our maps for offline use, you will need to purchase the EOTopo 2021 map licence. To install the maps you will need the ExplorOz Traveller app.

Environment

The crescent shaped lunette, otherwise known as the ‘Walls of China’, is one of the main highlights in Mungo National Park. Standing around 30m high and stretching nearly 30km long, this now dry eastern shore holds secrets of preserved campfires, cooking hearths and burials of ancient Aboriginal people. There are three distinct layers of sands and soil forming the Walls of China. The oldest is the reddish Gol Gol layer, formed between 100,000 and 120,000 years ago. The middle greyish layer and the most archaeologically rich is the Mungo layer, deposited between 50,000 and 25,000 years ago. The most recent is the Zanci layer, which is pale brown, and was laid down mostly between 25,000 and 15,000 years ago.

Flora

There are three main types of native vegetation that co-exist in the Mungo National Park - being grassy woodlands, heathlands and semi-arid woodlands. Within the grassy woodlands, cypress pines thrive on loamy soils, sandy ridges and rocky out-crops. They can grow in dense communities, but these days are somewhat scattered, mainly due to extensively harvesting. These trees must be seen in their native habitat to be truly appreciated, as they play host to a variety of wildlife including pink cockatoos, which feed on the seeds of the small pinecones. The heathlands consist of lakebed shrubs such as Chenopodiaceae, commonly known as saltbush or bluebush. During Spring, these plants reveal a beautiful understorey of wildflowers. In the semi-arid woodland parts, mallee dominate the area. The name mallee comes from an Aboriginal word for eucalyptus trees that are multi-stemmed from their base. The underground woody structure (lignotuber) stores water and nutrients, allowing the plant to survive in such harsh conditions. Aborigines used to rely on these lignotubers as an important source of drinking water.

Fauna

There are many species of fauna within the park such as the largest of our marsupials - the kangaroo. These herbivores spend their days grazing quietly in the grasslands or resting in a scratched out pad in the woodland shade. All three species - Red, Western grey, and the Eastern grey kangaroos co-exist in the park. Other animals you may be lucky to encounter are short-beaked echidnas, spiny anteaters, bats, pygmy and larger possums, bandicoots and the common and fat-tailed dunnarts. The largest reptile in the park is the harmless carpet python, which grows between 2 and 4 metres long. Mungo supports a wide variety of bird species mainly due to the diverse environment. Birds you may see include: emus, mallee ring-necks, galahs, pink cockatoos, zebra finches, crested pigeons, blue bonnets, budgerigars, and orange and crimson chats.

TrekID: 179

Preparation

MUST READ: You are strongly encouraged to read the following articles prepared by the knowledge experts at ExplorOz for your safety and preparation before undertaking any published ExplorOz Trek - Outback Safety, Outback Driving Tips, Outback Communications, and Vehicle Setup for the Outback.

TIP

Please refer to Road Reports published by the local shire and/or main roads for the area you intend to visit. Road/Track conditions can change significantly after weather events. Travellers must be responsible for their own research on current conditions and track suitability.
Mungo National Park does not have closing times, but be aware that all roads in and around the park are closed after rain. Please take adequate supplies of fuel, food and water. No food, petrol or diesel is available at or near the park, and water is a rare commodity in a semi-arid environment - so always carry plenty with you. All roads in and around the park are unsealed. Many of them have little traffic, particularly outside holiday seasons. Always carry extra food and water in case of an emergency. If you become stranded - stay with your vehicle.

Consider taking communications equipment such as HF or UHF radios. Mobile phones do not work in Mungo National Park, so in emergencies, a ranger can be contacted on UHF channel 22. Mungo lies in the fruit fly exclusion zone so you can only bring in food bought in from Broken Hill, Menindee, Hillston, Griffith, Narrandera, Shepparton, Swan Hill, Mildura, Waikerie, Renmark or other places within those boundaries.

Permits

If you are driving into Mungo National Park, then you will need to purchase a Vehicle Day Pass.
Payment is by self registration. Envelopes & information from the front of the Mungo NP Visitor Centre.

Camping fees in Mungo NP also apply. Belah campsite has 12 sites. This campground is a great overnight spot for people taking their time doing the Mungo Drive Tour, or for those looking for a secluded campsite. No fires are allowed.
For more information on fees, please click: Camping in Mungo NP

For more information in general, you can contact the park office in Buronga.

Buronga

Street address: Corner of Sturt Highway and Melaleuca Street, Buronga NSW
Postal address: PO Box 318, Buronga NSW 2739
Phone: (03) 5021 8900
Fax: (03) 5022 2037
Email: buronga.office@environment.nsw.gov.au

Fuel Usage

Unfortunately, there is no longer any fuel available at Pooncarie.
DieselULPLPG
4cyl 8 litres4cyl 9 litres4cyl 12 litres
6cyl 9 litres6cyl 11 litres6cyl 10 litres
8cyl 9 litres8cyl 10 litres
Usage is averaged from recorded data (* specific to this trek) and calculated based on trek distance.

Best Time To Visit

Outback New South Wales experiences very hot and dry summers. Travel is safer and more enjoyable between March and October. Please note - unsealed roads may be closed after rain.

Closest Climatic Station

Pooncarie Mail Agency
Distance from Trek Mid Point 34.61km NW
 JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Mean Max. °C35.834.430.526.320.917.317.019.523.426.931.033.2
Mean Min. °C18.818.214.811.17.15.24.45.47.710.614.416.2
Mean Rain mm23.123.218.317.525.926.022.522.621.526.320.921.4
    Best time to travel      Ok time to travel      Travel NOT recommended

Map

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Directions

Wentworth Pooncarie Rd & Top Hut Rd to Top Hut
Driving: 45.42 km
Heading: 102°
Avg Speed: 89.99 km/hr
EST Time: 30:17
  • Drive east on Top Hut Road. for: 45.42 km time: 30:17
Top Hut to Top Hut Rd & Garnpung Rd
Driving: 8.25 km
Heading: 108°
Avg Speed: 88.79 km/hr
EST Time: 05:34
  • Drive east on Top Hut Road. for: 8.24 km time: 05:29
  • Turn right onto Turlee Leaghur Road. for: 0.02 km time: 00:05
Top Hut Rd & Garnpung Rd to Garnpung Rd & Mungo Station Access Tk
Driving: 3.85 km
Heading: 182°
Avg Speed: 24.88 km/hr
EST Time: 09:17
  • Drive south on Turlee Leaghur Road. for: 3.83 km time: 09:12
  • Turn left onto Mailbox Road. for: 0.02 km time: 00:06
Garnpung Rd & Mungo Station Access Tk to Mungo National Park Visitor Centre
Driving: 0.98 km
Heading: 66°
Avg Speed: 41.43 km/hr
EST Time: 01:25
  • Drive east on Mailbox Road. for: 0.95 km time: 01:15
  • Turn left. for: 0.03 km time: 00:08
  • Turn left. for: 0 km time: 00:03
Distance is based on the travel mode shown (Driving, Straight, Cycling, Walking etc), Direction is straight line from start to end, Avg Speed & EST Time is calculated from GPS data.

What to See

Facilities

Where to Stay

No Places To Stay available for this trek

Services & Supplies

No Services & Supplies available for this trek

Wildflowers

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