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Pet Friendly

Conditions apply – Please enquire

Food & Huts by Mt Oxley

Bourke Accommodation

 
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Welcome to Food & Huts by Mt Oxley!

Food & Huts by Mt Oxley hosts

Rising from a perfectly flat landscape, Mt Oxley has outstanding 360 degree views, and showcases the abundance of wildlife, including Wedge-Tailed Eagles and Euros (Macropus Robustus), who inhabit the outcrop of the mountain. Photographers, birdwatchers and bushwalkers – the experience will be unmatched.

Bill and Denise were married in 1976 and have 3 grown children, Pip Claire and Tom, who like to return home when they can.

As both their families lived in the backcountry, around the Tilpa, Hungerford, Enngonia and Fords Bridge districts for many generations, they have lots of personal family history to tell. Ask about the connection of Bill’s Grandfather and Breaker Morant.... and Denise’ Great, Great, Great Grandparents were some of the first arrivals to Bourke in 1862. They love their life and enjoy sharing it with their visitors.

Bill and Denise are founding members of Outback Beds and are very passionate about giving you an ultimate outback experience.

Welcome

Mobile Coverage: Mobile phones on Telstra network will work out in this area. Optus will work on top of Mt Oxley only. Vodaphone doesn't work in this area.

Geology of Mount Oxley

Mount Oxley and the Oxley Range (the low hills to the northeast of Mount Oxley) are composed of quartz-rich sandstone and conglomerate - called the Mulga Downs Group. They are Devonian in age - approximately 410 to 370 million years old. They were most likely deposited in a fluvial (i.e. river) environment. The river system must have been broad and quite high energy, as many of the clasts are rounded, suggesting they have been 'tumbled' along in a river bed, and there are conglomerates as well as sandstones. (Think of a high energy mountain river, rather than the low energy, meandering river like the current-day Darling River). They consist of thick beds of fine to medium grained sandstone and some pebbly conglomerate. Although the beds look as if they are flat-lying, the beds are actually dipping very shallowly (<5 degrees). The rounded clasts within the conglomerates include clasts of white quartz, granite (probably about 420 million years old) and metamorphosed sedimentary rocks (probably around 475 million years old).

The matrix of the sandstone and conglomerate is very fine grained quartz which is the reason the rocks are so hard, and they make such a ping when you hit them with a hammer! It is also the reason they form prominent hills - they are very resistive to weathering. There would have been more extensive deposition of the Mulga Downs Group than what we see today. But tectonic uplift and weathering have left us with sporadic outcrops. The Mulga Downs Group is found over a wide area in western NSW, locally at Gunderbooka Range, Bedemeer Mountain and at Mount Druid - but also further afield at Mount Grenfell near Cobar and Mutawintji National Park near Broken Hill. Fish and other fossils found elsewhere in the Mulga Downs Group help constrain the age of the rocks - though only one, non-diagnostic fish scale has been found at Mount Oxley to date.

An interesting feature at the base of Mount Oxley is an angular unconformity. Stop where the gate is - where the road changes from dirt to tar - and look in the gutter next to the road and walk downhill. You will see slate-like rocks that are almost vertically dipping in the base of the gutter (particularly where the gutter curves away from the road). These rocks are most-likely Ordovician to Silurian in age - so they are approximately 475 to 440 million years old. They were deposited on a continental slope in deep marine water, probably in a turbidity current in a submarine fan. (Probably in an environment like the 10 km off the coast of Sydney.) Overlying these slates are some conglomerates and the almost flat-lying Mulga Downs Group. We call this an angular unconformity because you have flat lying rocks overlying steeply dipping rocks - this represents a dramatic change in geological conditions with a time gap of 30 to 75 million years or so between the two rock packages. In this time the environment changed from a deep marine environment to a high energy river environment.

The flat areas you drive over to get to Mount Oxley are Quaternary and modern alluvial soils and sands related to the Darling and Bogan river floodplains. (Credit: Geological Survey of New South Wales)

Our Town

  • "If you know Bourke, you know Australia" so wrote the famous Australian poet Henry Lawson in 1882. Although Bourke is a town, it is something that is etched in the psyche of Australia and is commonly used as a reference point to the start of the true Outback. 'Back o Bourke' is a colloquial term for something a long way from anywhere. But being a long way from somewhere is a relative term in Australia as something several hundred kilometres away can sometimes be referred to.

 

Accommodation

Accommodation at Mt Oxley

Denise and Bill refer to their rustic accommodation as "Authentic Shearer's Hut ... with a bit of sprucing up." As was the norm in the 1950's, the building is constructed of timber and fibro, featuring 6 bedrooms opening onto the verandah, an original dining room (still furnished as it was in days gone by with a huge table and trestles), an open fireplace, old electric stove and refrigerator and kitchen with a slow combustion two door oven.

The huts feature recently constructed bathrooms but the septic toilets, as early Australian tradition dictated, are still a 30 metre stroll from the accommodation, to which one visitor commented- "if I wanted to sleep next to the toilet I'd be in a motel"

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Five of the bedrooms at the huts have been renovated, the pick of them being the Sir Charles Sturt room featuring a view to Mt Oxley through the glass doors.

The huts are situated in natural surroundings and are cleaned on the day of your arrival to ensure freshness.

Authentic Shearer’s Hut ... with a bit of sprucing up.

Featuring 5 bedrooms to accommodate 12 people.

Enjoy cooking on a traditional wood stove and sitting down for your meal at the original dining room table and benches to sit 14 guests.

food and hut by mt oxley bourkefood and hut by mt oxley bourkeThe open fire place is terrific for cool evenings and there is a gas BBQ outside.Self catering or Dinner Bed and Breakfast packages by arrangement.

Cost includes visiting Mt Oxley and use of facilities there. Linen provided. 

Bookings essential.

Bush camping is available by the creek. We have firewood available for purchase.

Prices 2018

Rooms all $100 each- cost includes use of whole building. Tea and coffee supplied –Linen supplied- Free laundry
Breakfast pack is available. Supply meal to huts –book well ahead.

You can bring own food –Free BBQ available- Price also includes visit to Mt Oxley where facilities include BBQ kitchen sink, tables chairs and toilets –imagine enjoying drinks and nibbles whilst watching the sunset before your eyes, and then be amazed by the stars at night, so clear, due to distance from lights.

Payment is by Direct Deposit prior to arrival or part deposit to hold booking and remainder cash on arrival.
Accommodation prices can vary for group bookings or extended stays. Please speak to Denise for further enquiries.

Mt Oxley hut accommodation is closed over hot summer months October to March. Camping is available in dry weather only.

Camping – Dry Bogan River – Bush camping $10 pp

Bill and Denise allow camping by the river which runs parallel with the Kamillaroi Highway, the main road from Bourke to Brewarrina; this is not at Mt Oxley. The camping area is behind a fence and locked gate. You need to phone ahead or have email contact prior to arrival to get directions and code for locked gate. This natural camping area is for self-contained vehicles only – you need toilet facilities, water and showers. We are pet friendly; please advise if you are travelling with a pet. This is not a wet weather venue.

Camping at Mt Oxley -$25pp $10 per child

Premium camping is available to view from the best lookout in the region- sunsets and sunrises –birds –Wedge tail Eagles –goats- Euros.Toilets and camp kitchen is available –basic outback style. Showers for use at shearers huts are on the way.

Hi Tea atop Mt Oxley

Join Denise and Bill for “Hi Tea with a View”. Friday Saturday or Sunday are the days available, times are flexible. Speak to Denise 0427 815385

Enjoying a selection of sandwiches, goat cheese tartlets, sausage rolls, scones jam and cream, custard fruit flans, cakes, chocolate eclairs, Crème Caramel, Chocolate Mousse. We will be serving a selection of teas or coffee. Champagne for an additional cost per glass.

Bookings are essential and are required ahead to allow for preparation. We cater for minimum 8 people (do call even if for a couple, you may make up the 8)

Price includes entry to Mt Oxley $50 and surcharge of $7 per glass of Champagne. A deposit is payable on booking, with the balance due the day before your Hi Tea, by Direct Deposit. Please send an email advising payment.

Please bring a coat, hat and walking shoes if wishing to take in the views, craters, flora and fauna. If it rains and roads are closed, or rain is imminent, Hi Tea will be served at Bill and Denise’ home, which is on the main Kamillaroi Highway.


Things to Do

Things to do:

Mt Oxley

  • As you will be staying at Mt Oxley and have access to the best lookout around Bourke. Partake of Hi Tea on Mt Oxley you will be impressed.
  • Visit Mt Oxley - for ambience, flora and fauna, photography, painting & bushwalking. Sunset Supper Tours / Campoven Scones and Billy Tea Tours.
  • Also check out the craters atop Mt Oxley, a short walk from the facilities.
  • When visiting Professor Fred Hollows' grave in the Bourke Cemetary, marvel at the 60 boulders from Mt Oxley which form the shape of an eye, with Fred being buried in the Iris. Also note the 9 tonne granite boulder, transformed into a living sculpture by Andreas, who eloped to marry Sandra on Mt Oxley, December 2006
  • Bourke is joining many country towns by having regular Market Days throughout the year, at the Wharf. The wharf precinct is a very enjoyable spot on the banks of the Darling River.
  • Talk to us about activities at Mt Oxley and mud map tour of property.

Bourke:

  • Add a visit to the Back O Bourke Gallery, coffee shops and gift shops and you can easily spend a few days .
  • Not to be missed Poetry on a Plate on Sundays, Tuesday and Wednesday nights at Kidmans Camp. A slow cooked dinner by the campfire, local storytelling ,poetry and music by the Bard of Bourke Andrew Hull. (I have been to all the above, taken friends visiting and had a wonderful time, and thoroughly recommend everything.) 
  • Unique and historically interesting town – spend a couple of days
  • Enjoy relaxing on the Jandra Paddleboat.
  • Learn lots about Bourke on the town tour with Stuart.
  • Phillip and Anne Marie of Back O Bourke Motel have purchased and renovated Bourke's Oxley Club –ie RSL Club. Naming it the"" Diggers on the Darling"" Restaurant. It is open from early morning offering good coffee, all meals, morning and afternoon teas. Please drop in ,you will be very welcome. If you are interested in wartime memorabillia that was originally housed in the Club, it has been retained in the restaurant , for future generations of locals and visitors.
  • Add to this art galleries –the replica of old Wharf on Darling River- mudmap tours –a visit to Mt Oxley for sunset supper or picnic. You'll be amazed where the time goes.
  • Driving East 45 minutes from the huts to Brewarrina visit the Aboriginal Museum - also has one of the few remaining original Greek Cafes and other things of interest, very easy day trip.
  • Very easy to spend a few days away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Bourke Historic Cemetery. Many of the epitaphs tell of the tragedy that constantly stalked the western plains and back country- ''Drowned'' ""killed by lightning"' "Shot by police " perished in the bush"An hour spent browsing will take you back to the world of bushrangers ,drovers , cameleers, riverboat men,lost children and Denise' Great Great Great Grandparents James and Frances Reed. James and Frances were some of the first arrivals in Bourke in 1862. Much to my surprise they had license to Mountain House Hotel, 2 sitting rooms and 3 bedrooms at the point of Oxleys tableland. Frances features frequently in volumes of History of Bourke.She witnessed first births and marriages at the town. she provided the tea party for the laying of the Church of England foundation stone in 1874. Extract from the Sydney Mail newspaper November 11 1871 a very interesting story on how butter was made in those days. Ask me about it when you come for a visit.

At the Back O Bourke Information Center pick up a Premium Package which combines tickets for

  1. Back O Bourke Exhibition Center
  2. PV Jandra –paddling down the Darling River
  3. Outback Show April to October 11am Tuesday to Sunday –Bullock Teams ,Working Clydesdales, sheep dogs and wild horses, a very funny show
  4. Back O Bourke Tours –departing the Little Birdy Cafe, Wharf Precint 9.30am daily. The two and a half hour tours will take in Bourke's historic buildings, Fred Hollows grave at the cemetary, the Lock and Weir and a walk onto the span of the North Bourke Bridge, the Back O Bourke Gallery and possibly the School of Distance Education - before concluding at midday in time to see the Crossley Engine in action at the wharf. 

Geology of Mt Oxley area is predominantly acid intrusive rocks with the mount itself mainly metamorphic rocks. The climate of the nearby town of Bourke is semi arid characterised by hot summers and mild winters Birds observed include striated pardalote, inland thornbill, yellow rumped thornbill, and southern whiteface. Chestnut –breasted quail thrush and pink cockatoo sited and are of concern for their conservation status. Pick up a copy of "The History and Mystery" of Mt Oxley at the Bourke Visitor Information Center.

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Getting Here

Getting to Mt Oxley

Access to Huts by Mt Oxley and Mt Oxley includes travel off the highway on dirt roads. It is approximately 8 kms to the huts and the road can be slippery and boggy depending on the amount of rain. The huts are situated on the road to Mt Oxley, another 6kms and approximately 40 minutes from Bourke.

Travel 28kms from Bourke on Kamillaroi HWY which is the road to Brewarrina , turn right at T turnoff marked Tarcoon / Mt Oxley, travel thru 2 ramps to another right turnoff marked Mt Oxley, travel out to locked gate. Through these two ramps are the huts and shearing shed.

The Gate has many locks and you'll be provided with the code on booking.

The Bourke Shire closes the road after enough rain to do damage to the roads We don't encourage travel if roads are wet, but if you are at the huts and the rains come, we will tow you out if necessary.

Driving to Bourke

Use controls or mouse-wheel to zoom in or out.

Open Information on town or member by clicking panel on top left of map.

There are many different routes that can be taken when driving from any of the capital cities to Bourke.

The following is an overview of the routes from Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide that may help you in planning your Outback Beds experience.

From Brisbane:

Warrego Highway > Mitchell Highway: Distance = 970km aprox

From Sydney:

The Great Western Highway >Mitchell Highway > Castlereagh Highway: Distance = 690km approx

From Melbourne:

The Kidman Way: Distance = 1,020km approx

From Adelaide: 

Barrier Highway > Darling River Run (Unsealed): Distance = 1,050km Approx

 


Touring Routes

Touring Routes

  • How outback do you want to go? The Corner Explorer touring route is one for the adventurer. While this involves outback driving on unsealed roads, it is possible to do it in a conventional vehicle (although a higher clearance SUV is probably better). On trips like this, always phone ahead to get an update on road conditions.

  • Never been to the outback but really want to go? Then this touring route is the perfect way to get an insight and understanding of what makes the outback such a wonderful place to visit. The Outback Intro tour while take you to the ‘Back O Bourke’ and you will be able to do so easily and safely in a non-4x4 vehicle with your Outback Beds hosts expecting you every step of the way. After all, the Outback Beds motto is “travel in the outback with friends...

  • The Darling River Run is a journey of discovery along one of Australia’s most iconic rivers. Steeped in indigenous culture and pastoral history, an adventure along the Darling can include staying at any of the Outback Beds members along the river, and in the surrounding area when venturing away from the river to explore the wonderful Outback NSW. Like many parts of Outback Australia, the Darling basin is rich with Indigenous history, spirituality and living culture, as well as being an integral part of early European history and exploitative efforts of iconic Australians like Burke & Wills, Sturt, and Major Mitchell.

 

Guest Book

What others have said

"We camped adjacent to the creek at Rossmore Station (Mt Oxley) for 5 nights in September 2015. A quiet relaxing, easily accessible and safe camp, behind locked gates, tucked away just off the Kamillaroi Highway. The bird life was fantastic around the camp area. We visited Mt Oxley twice as well as doing a lot of bushwalking and wildlife photography around the property. A ‘’must stay there again” experience next time that we are in the Bourke area."

Judy and Keith Humphries


 

more information

For more information on rates, accommodation, bookings, etc, please contact us directly by clicking on the following link:

Email Food & Huts by My Oxley

Phone: 0427 815 385