VicSouth Desert Spring Star Party
location & maps
VicSouth is held at the Little Desert Nature Lodge about 16km south of the town of Nhill, on the northern edge of the Little Desert National Park. Nhill itself is on the main highway (A8) between Adelaide and Melbourne. Driving time to Nhill at legal speeds is about 4½ hours from Adelaide's Old Glen Osmond Tollgate or from Melbourne's Westgate Bridge.
Note that the highway has heavy vehicle traffic on it 24/7, and long stretches of the highway are single lane.
To get to the Lodge from Nhill, follow the Western Highway (A8) to the southwest end of town, then turn onto the Nhill-Harrow Road (C206) and proceed southwards for about 14km. Then look for the Lodge's vermin-proof boundary fence and main entrance gate on the eastern side of the road.
The entrance gate's coordinates are:
(WGS84) 36° 27' 05" S 141° 39' 35" E
(GDA94 zone 54H) 559 115m E 5965 784m N
Geographical coordinates for the main observing area are 36° 27' 16" S 141° 40' 07" E, and it is about 160 metres above sea level. The Magnetic Declination on 1 January 2013 was 9.71° and decreasing at 0.01° per year. Therefore True North is about 350.3° on a magnetic compass.
A Google Maps satellite image of the Lodge.
If you don't have a car (or a ride in one) then bus-and-bike is an alternative. Most buses on the Adelaide-Melbourne routes stop in Nhill and can carry bicycles as luggage. The bitumen road from Nhill to the Lodge is almost flat but it is not wide. There are no taxis in Nhill.