Empress Spring

David Carnegie Highway

Fifteen kilometres west of ‘Chooka’ the David Carnegie Highway leads off to the north – past Breaden Bluff and Empress Springs – before eventually intersecting with the Gunbarrel Highway. The track continues north of the Gunbarrel from where is is known as the Eagle Highway – but often the entire track from the Great Central Road is termed Eagle Highway.

Breadon Bluff

The Honourable David Wynford Carnegie led two expeditions of exploration through the Great Victoria Desert in 1896-97. Water was always scarce and their journey was a continual search for water.

Breaden Bluff

The David Carnegie Track passes Breaden Bluff, an interesting breakaway full of overhangs, caves, rocky crevices and spindly vegetation. They are named after Joseph A. Breaden (1859-1924), a member of Carnegie’s party.

Though the current day track has been routed close by, Carnegie never actually never visited them, only recording them from his vantage point on a small ridge near Empress Spring.


Thirteen Days Without Finding Water

On 10 August 1896, early in the journey from Coolgardie to Halls Creek, he was in desperate need of water for his men, and team of camels. They had been 13 days without water.

Empress Springs

He pressed a local aboriginal  into a search for water. King Billy, as the local was nicknamed, led the expedition to a water source he termed Murcoolia Ayahteenyah.

Carnegie recorded it on his Exploration Roll as Empress Springs. He believed it to be a permanent soak.

On the return to the Great Central Road we stopped to collect wood and noticed that Seb’s vehicle was leaking fuel. Scott applied some metal sealant that solved the problem.



© Kim Epton 2016-2024
368 words, 11 photographs.

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