Saturday spotlight: free camp at Calliope River
Pet friendly, good fishing and winter markets, ex-Gladstone
This must be one of the top free overnight camping areas in Qld. Located beside the Calliope River, you have the option of setting up camp above the river on the high northern side or on the river bank on the southern side.
Fires are allowed as are generators and animals.
Fishing is good for barra, flathead and bream on the downstream side of the weir, while yabbies and mud crabs may also be found in the weir. Birds are in abundance; from kites wheeling overhead and a sea eagle diving for prey, to red backed fairy wrens.
Markets are held here regularly during the tourist season (winter), too.
If you are coming from the south, the campsite is 7km north of the Calliope town turnoff. Take the last road left before the road bridge over the river.
The "Road Closed" sign applies only to the closure of the lower old bridge, and this road takes you to the south river bank, where you may fish, swim, go boating or water skiing.
From the north, the turnoff is well marked and you follow the signs into the historic village and museum before reaching the camp area. Another "Road Closed" sign is located here, but once again applies only to the old road bridge.
The northern side has been sealed, so there is no dust, whereas the southern side has a dirt camp area with some grass. Both have their advantages. There are toilets and water in both areas, although it would pay to carry your own drinking water as the water is untreated. The amenities on the south side are hard to find and are on a higher level.
A time limit of 48 hours is enforced, and the area is patrolled and looked after by the local council. - Tony Allsop.
- Tony and Denyse Allsop are long standing contributors to Caravan World magazine. The couple are currently on tour. Read their travel tips in the DIY special edition of Caravan World magazine, out now.