TALLARINGA CONSERVATION PARK (SA) Put these dates in your diary if you’re planning a trip along the Anne Beadell Highway: the Department of Defence has announced future closures of this route from February 29 to March 23, 2016, and again from May 16 to May 29, 2016.

When the park is open, in addition to a DEWNR entry/ camping permit or a Desert Parks Pass, a tourist access permit from the Department of Defence will also be required to access this area.

More details and/or changes can be found at: au/woomera/permit-tourist.htm COLSON TRACK OPENS? (NT) Permits for the Colson Track, which have been notoriously hard to get for the past 20 years or so, suddenly seem easier to obtain. After hearing they were being issued, we applied for one online – articles/info/application-foran- entry-permit – from the Central Land Council (CLC), headquartered in Alice Springs. We had a permit within two weeks. The track doesn’t get a mention on the application form, though, so under ‘Community to Visit’, I just listed: ‘Colson Track’. If you have a problem, give the CLC a call on (08) 8951 6211.

We found the staff members very helpful.

PURNULULU NATIONAL PARK RE-OPENING (WA) The fabulous Purnululu NP will be reopening in April, but ranger staff members are based at the park year-round.

When it does open, all of the roads are only open to four-wheel drive vehicles. 2WD vehicles will be refused admission, and only singleaxle high-clearance trailers are permitted in the park.

The travelling time from the highway to the Visitor Centre is about two hours. For more info visit: park/purnululu TENTED ACCOMMODATION ON ROKO ISLAND (QLD) Now here’s something a little different to do at the top of Cape York. The team at the Roko Island Pearl Farm is currently busy setting accommodation for the coming year. You’ll get an ocean view and discover the magic of pearls and the wonder of the Torres Strait.

For more info and to book, visit: and drop them an email TASTE THE HARVEST FESTIVAL (TAS) On the weekend of March 5-6, 2016, celebrate the diversity of the fantastic produce available on the north-west coast of Tassie. There’s food and wine, entertainment for the whole family, a kids’ playground and a lot more.

Named ‘Taste the Harvest’, the festival is north-west Tasmania’s premier food and wine event and is held at the Mersey River foreshore, Devonport. For more info visit: FISHING IN THE ‘RUN-OFF’ (NT) Between March and April in the Top End, the rain eases, the wet season dissipates and the big rivers start to regain their shape as the floodplains drain into the sea. Local anglers call this time of year tting up tents for visitor ommodation ing n the ‘run-off’, and claim it’s the best season for barramundi fishing, with lots of action to be experienced around the mouths of creeks. To find out more, visit: things-to-do/outdoor-activities/ fishing/fishing-charters ALL TRACKS OPEN (VIC) All seasonal road closures in Victoria for 2015 were supposed to end on Thursday, October 29, 2015, but some tracks had their closures extended up until the end of November. However, by the time you read this, they should all be open. For the latest information go to: parkweb. THEY’RE OFF AND RACING AT BROKEN HILL (NSW) St Patrick’s Race Day is one of the great outback events and is held every year at Broken Hill. The 2016 event is due to be held on March 19 and, like all previous years’ events, it will be a beauty with some great racing, a fashion show and a games night. Don’t forget the recovery day at the Silverton Pub! For more info visit: