Outback Airlines is Alice Springs leading air charter company with a fleet of six aircraft.
We operate half-day and full-day sightseeing tours to West MacDonnells and Uluru landing at iconic and environmentally sensitive places such as Palm Valley (Hermannsburg), Kings Canyon (Kings Creek Station) and at Uluru itself.
When Lake Eyre started to flood we added a full-day tour to Lake Eyre stopping at Dalhousie Springs for a picnic lunch beside the lake on the way back.
Although Dalhousie Springs comprises 80 springs spread over 100sq kms and is a popular spot for camping and 4WD tourists, the SA Parks and Wildlife Service are refusing us permission to land for a picnic lunch because airstrip access is ‘only available to environmentalists and heritage people’.
Presumably, other air charter operators at William Creek and Coober Pedy are similarly affected by the ban.
If tourists in 4WD vehicles are allowed to drive through and camp in the reserve and environmentalists and heritage people are allowed to fly in, why single out one flight of four people once a week from having access to this iconic spot as a solution to all the problems that tourism may bring to an area.
This is clearly a case of double standards where some toursist modes of transport and special interest groups are allowed in but not others.
Either everyone should be banned or no one at all.
It would be greatly appreciated if the Parks and Wildlife service could review its policy in relation to Charter flights to Dalhousie Springs.
Air Charter & Sightseeing Tours
ABN: 83 132 151 163
PO Box 8520 Alice Springs NT 0871
Phone: 0415 634 179
Fax: (08) 8955 5160