Chambers Pillar

StartClick to Reverse the Dynamic Map and Driving NotesAlice Springs
FinishChambers Pillar
DifficultyDifficulty 2.5/5
Suitable ForAWD Motorbike 
Distance160.92 km
Minimum Days1
Average Speed62.13 km/hr
Travel Time2 hrs 35 mins
Page Updated: 21 Oct 2021


This trek starts at Alice Springs and travels south on the Old South Road taking in some ruins along the way to the small town of Maryvale. It then heads south east to Chambers Pillar which is an amazing rock formation in the Chambers Pillar Historical Reserve. This part of the trek is extremely scenic and is a good introduction to the type of scenery you would see in the Simpson Desert although the route runs between dunes and is relatively easy.

The track to Chambers Pillar is officially not recommended for trailers but other than a bit of sand, a rocky low range 2nd steep descent and patches of corrugations, it is straightforward and many people do bring them. There are red dunes on either side of the track, bits and pieces of historic ruins, and not a car in sight. The track is mostly sand and has good drainage when wet.

You can climb up to the base of the vertical section of Chambers pillar to view the inscribed names of the famous explorers who passed here before the Telegraph and Ghan was built and there's a nice walk around the base of Castle Rock. Late afternoon is the best time to view the rainbow colours of the ridge that glow vibrantly when struck by the golden rays of the setting sun.

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 .


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.

TrekID: 41


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.


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.


Chambers Pillar lies in an Historical Reserve and you do not need permission to enter it. Also, you do not need an Aboriginal Land Permit because you won't be passing through any restricted land.

Fuel Usage

4cyl 21 litres *4cyl 26 litres4cyl 32 litres
6cyl 25 litres6cyl 32 litres *6cyl 28 litres
8cyl 25 litres8cyl 27 litres
Usage is averaged from recorded data (* specific to this trek) and calculated based on trek distance.

Best Time To Visit

Closest Climatic Station

Alice Springs Airport
Distance from Trek Mid Point 54.75km N
Mean Max. °C36.435.132.628.223.019.819.722.627.230.933.635.4
Mean Min. °C21.520.717.512.
Mean Rain mm38.643.832.316.318.913.615.09.28.521.429.136.9
    Best time to travel      Ok time to travel      Travel NOT recommended


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Alice Springs to Ewaninga Ruin
Driving: 32.08 km
Heading: 171°
Avg Speed: 71.5 km/hr
EST Time: 26:55
Ewaninga Ruin to Ooraminna Ruin
Driving: 34.17 km
Heading: 162°
Avg Speed: 73.2 km/hr
EST Time: 28:00
Ooraminna Ruin to Old South Rd & Phillipson Stock Route
Driving: 6.66 km
Heading: 159°
Avg Speed: 84.45 km/hr
EST Time: 04:43
Old South Rd & Phillipson Stock Route to Old South Rd & Hugh River Stock Route
Driving: 11.2 km
Heading: 201°
Avg Speed: 74.55 km/hr
EST Time: 09:00
Old South Rd & Hugh River Stock Route to Bokhara Ruin
Driving: 10.3 km
Heading: 168°
Avg Speed: 79.58 km/hr
EST Time: 07:45
Bokhara Ruin to Mount Madigan
Driving: 12.75 km
Heading: 162°
Avg Speed: 78.57 km/hr
EST Time: 09:44
Mount Madigan to Maryvale
Driving: 9.78 km
Heading: 186°
Avg Speed: 65.86 km/hr
EST Time: 08:54
Maryvale to Hugh River, Chambers Pillar Rd
Driving: 4.73 km
Heading: 251°
Avg Speed: 51.2 km/hr
EST Time: 05:32
Hugh River, Chambers Pillar Rd to Chambers Pillar Historical Reserve
Driving: 37.16 km
Heading: 227°
Avg Speed: 43.97 km/hr
EST Time: 50:42
Chambers Pillar Historical Reserve to Castle Rock
Driving: 1.21 km
Heading: 117°
Avg Speed: 39.95 km/hr
EST Time: 01:49
Castle Rock to Chambers Pillar
Driving: 0.88 km
Heading: 227°
Avg Speed: 20.58 km/hr
EST Time: 02:33
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


Where to Stay

The camp sites are excellent - great views of both Castle Rock and Chambers Pillar, free gas BBQs, hotplates, fire pits and large picnic tables. The camp sites are not ideal for campertrailers or caravans with bollards making sites better suited to tent campers. Although you can camp in the shade your vehicle certainly won't be. This is a consideration in hotter weather as there is no power to keep fridges or batteries charged.

Services & Supplies

No Services & Supplies available for this trek


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Comments & Reviews(11) Rating 4/5

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