Oondooroo Station – Farm Stay

Oondooroo Station is situated north of the outback town of Winton on the Winton-Hughenden Road. You turn off the tar onto a dirt road and travel for 7km before reaching the entrance gates of Oondooroo. Oondooroo Station is a working cattle and sheep property but a few years ago the current owners, Jason and Kerry Turnbull added farm stay camping as another source of income.

Upon arrival at Oondooroo Station we were met with a warm country welcome by Jason. We paid up and followed Jason on his 4 wheeler and he showed us to a grassy spot. It costs $25 per night for 2 people and they also have fire pits &to wood available for $10 per night.

There are two toilets and a shower available for campers use. Water taps are scattered around the campground and they are artesian water from their bore.

Oondooroo Station has a rich history and was originally purchased by the Shollock family in 1878 and they stocked it with 23,000 sheep. The Shollacks aim was to establish ‘refined living’ and the cost of constructing the many fine hand-hewn sandstone buildings almost left them penniless. They sold the property to the Ramsay family in 1886.

In 1886 a shearer’s strike for better pay and conditions commenced and it is said to have begun at Oondooroo Station. The original 26 stand Woolshed was burned down during the strike.

In 1895 Banjo Paterson was staying on nearby Dagworth Station where he met Christina McPherson. Together they put Banjo’s poem ‘Waltzing Matilda’ to music. However Dagworth Station didn’t have a piano but Oondooroo did, so it was in the lounge room of Oondooroo Station that Waltzing Matilda was sung for the first time.

In 1990 the family business, Landers Creek Pastoral Company, purchased Oondooroo and Bill & Jean Tudehope lived at Oondooroo for 17 years before the current custodians, Jason and Kerry (Bill & Jean’s granddaughter) Turnbull took over in 2004. Jason and Kerry continue to live at Oondooroo with their two children Toby and Chelsea.

Many of the historic buildings still stand at Oondooroo and the family continue to live in the homestead. The homestead has been added to over the years and now consists of the original central sandstone building which boasts pressed metal ceilings, a main living room and four bedrooms. Another two bedrooms and wide verandah have been added which help to keep the house cool.

Oondooroo is situated on grasslands and, although they have had droughts, in a good year the Mitchell Grass, which is rich in nutrients, can fatten livestock well.

As a working property there is always something going on at Oondooroo and families will enjoy seeing the animals. During our stay there were kids (baby goats), puppies, many farm dogs, and friendly horses waiting for a pat.

You can take the short walk down to the Woolshed and see examples of the wool that is shorn at Oondooroo.

On the evening we arrived Jason told us they were trying something new. They were making hamburgers, using their own beef, and selling them to campers for $10 each and Jason would even deliver them to our camp. We said yes please to that and I’m glad we did. The hamburgers were excellent and beautifully presented wrapped in paper with a couple of onion rings on top. I hope this idea was a success and others get to experience one of those delicious burgers.


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