Where is Timber Creek?

Timber Creek is a small roadside town, located 285 km west of Katherine and 193 km east of the border between the Northern Territory and Western Australia on the Victoria Highway. The town site was discovered in 1856 by explorer Augustus Charles Gregory. It wasn't until 1898 that a permanent police presence was established. Since that time it has grown to it's current population of around 600 in the township and about 1800 in the surrounding area. The Gregory National Park is right next door and covers approximately 13,000 sq kms. 


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Short history

Timber Creek is the traditional land of the Ngaliwurra Aboriginal people, who provided early European settlers with valuable bush knowledge and acted as guides for police. Throughout the region Ngaringman is the main language except at Yarralin where it is Gurundji.

In 1855 the explorer Augustus Charles Gregory, financially backed by the Colonial Office, sailed from Moreton Bay, around the coast of Queensland and the Northern Territory and up the Victoria River. Gregory's boat was wrecked at the site of Timber Creek and it is claimed that Gregory named the site after cutting timber to repair his vessel. The site of Gregory's camp, known as Gregory's Tree Reserve, can be found to the west of the town. The boab tree with the date '2 July 1856' clearly carved in it can be accessed from a track which runs from a cairn on the Victoria Highway to the tree at the riverside. Over a period of eight months Gregory with various numbers of the expedition explored large areas of the Victoria River catchment and penetrated nearly 500 km south, along Sturt Creek, to the edge of the Great Sandy Desert.

Gregory was one of the many believers in an 'inland sea' within Australia’s centre. He explored the Elsey, Roper and McArthur Rivers, in 16 months travelling more than 8000 km. The subsequent settlement of the area resulted in Timber Creek becoming an important port for the surrounding cattle stations particularly Victoria River Downs Station which was then the largest pastoral enterprise in Australia. The river was used until the 1930s when road transport made it redundant. A police station was first established in Timber Creek in 1898. Initially just a hut and a goat yard, the dwellings were upgraded to iron and steel in 1908, now the Timber Creek Police Station Museum.

 

Fishing Competition

Attractions

The town features several attractions that preserve its rich pastoral and exploration heritage and fishing is one of Timber Creek's biggest draw cards. The beautiful Victoria River, running through deep valleys and gorges, is one of the Northern Territory's most scenic places to catch barramundi. Gregory National Park is Timber Creek’s backyard. Covering an area of approximately 13 000 sq km, the park is home to red-rimmed escarpment ranges, plunging gorges and ancient boab trees.

  • watch the nightly turtle and crocodile feeding in Timber Creek at the back of the Circle F Caravan Park and Motel.
  • walk from the Circle F Caravan Park and Motel along the heritage trail as it follows Timber Creek to the old National Trust Timber Creek Police Station, built in 1908. It is sign posted with the history of Timber Creek with the occasional park benches to relax upon. In the early morning or at dusk are the best times to observe the local wildlife (wallabies, birds, insects, etc.).
  • drive up to the escarpment above town and take in the spectacular views from the ANZAC memorial for the Australian Coast watchers.
  • fishing in the untamed Victoria River for Barramundi or mud crabs. Timber Creek runs into the much larger Victoria River a few kilometres out of town.
  • take a spectacular high speed Sunset River Cruise up the Victoria River observing the abundant Australian wildlife as they come down to the river for a final drink for the day. Wildlife along the river include kangaroos, wallabies, sea eagles, crocodiles, fish, etc)
  • visit the nearby...
    • Gregory National Park, the Territory's second largest national park covering 13,000 square kilometres
    • Limestone Gorge and swimming hole.
  • Further afield visit Keep River National Park featuring Aboriginal rock art and Bullita Outstation with stockyards, old homestead, and camping area.

 

Temperatures

The wet season (November to April) high temperature for Timber Creek is approximately 35oC and the low approximately 25oC.

The dry season high (May to October) is approximately 30oC and the low approximately 19oC.

 

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