Freedom camp beside an abandoned uranium mine at Mary Kathleen, Queensland

If you are self contained and looking for a quiet camp spot away from the Flinders Highway the old Mary Kathleen township site between Cloncurry and Mount Isa is well worth a visit. The road into the old town is slowly deteriorating, but still accessible with care.

Once you get to the old town, there is nothing left except the roadways and some concrete slabs, the land owner allows overnight stays as long as you do not light a fire.

Mary Kathleen was first surveyed as a mining town in 1956 after the discovery of the largest known deposit of uranium. The township and mine prospered until the first closure in 1963. Re-opened in 1974 after a new overseas contract, the town once more prospered and the population peaked at about 1200 residents. In 1983 the structures were all auctioned off, many located to Cloncurry and the town was officially abandoned.

The open cut terraced mine is still accessible by foot and the deep blue coloured water offers a great photo opportunity. However, it is said to still be radioactive – so no swimming.

This free site has room for Big Rigs, and pets are allowed. Find it in the CAMPS App and guides.

Images Mitch King

Video by CAMPS Ambassadors, Overland Exposure

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