Discover the peace and beauty of Illamurta Springs Conservation Reserve – one of the NT’s most isolated reserves. Located 192 kilomtres south-west of Alice Springs, it encompasses the southern foothills of the James Range, a permanent natural spring where several relict aquatic plant species are found and the ruins of the Illamurta Police Camp.
A large number of stone artefacts, including fragments of grindstones can be seen in the reserve, providing evidence of Aboriginal occupation. An important cultural site for the Southern Arrernte (Pertame) Aboriginal people, the area is part of the ‘Kuniya-Snake’ (Python) dreaming.
The Illamurta Springs Police Camp was established between 1893 and 1912 after the closure of the Boggy Hole Police Station in the Finke Gorge National Park. The Police Station functioned for a time as an administrative centre and as a distribution point of rations to Aboriginal people.
Access to the Reserve is via the Stuart Highway and Ernest Giles Road, or from Palm Valley via the Finke River 4WD route. The Ernest Giles Road and access tracks are unsealed, sandy and occasionally closed following heavy rain. The tracks are four-wheel drive only, due to their unstable and changing road surfaces.
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