The Owen Springs Reserve was formerly
the Owen Springs Cattle Station and was acquired by the Northern
Territory Government in the year 2000 and opened to public access and enjoyment
Steeped in Territory and pioneering history, the Owen Springs Reserve
protects some important historical events. The main access track through the
reserve closely follows the route that John McDouall Stuart took through the
MacDonnell Ranges. His explorations between 1860 and 1862 help open up Central
Australia to white settlement.
Together with William Kekwick and Benjamin Head, John Stuart became the first
white men to travel through this region. Whilst making their way northwards
along the Hugh River, on 11 April 1860, they discovered a large waterhole that
Stuart named Ewart Springs1, later to be renamed
One of the immediate results of Stuart's explorations was construction of the
Overland Telegraph Line that originally followed the Hugh River through Lawrence
Gorge in the Waterhouse Range. Even before the Line was completed in August
1872, cattleman William Gilbert was on his way from South Australia to establish
a cattle station here. The Old Owen Springs Homestead was the first station
homestead built in Central Australia.
Located just a short drive southwest of Alice Springs, the Reserve is a
favourite destination for 4WD visitors seeking quiet bush camping without
facilities. Dog owners are also permitted to bring their pets to the south of
Waterhouse Range within the Owen Springs Reserve.
NRETAS - Owen Springs Reserve