Fortunately there’s still a few major tests for the average dirt road bike tourer left in Australia and the Birdsville is up there for those who prefer cycling with some quantity of adversity to overcome.
It might not be as rugged an adventure as it once was, say back in the 1930s but the unsealed highway still presents its challenges: a mainly chunky road surface; goodly distance between supply points, like 523 km; a general lack of facilities along the way; the requirement to plan the water situation; the need for self sufficiency out there.
Still it retains its legendary status due to the overall remoteness, the sparseness of the landscape you traverse, it’s one of the most barren areas in the continent, it really is the whole lot of nothingness you might anticipate, massive vistas across Sturts Stony Desert, the lack of significant sized vegetation, the dry watercourses, the huge sky all making for a compelling Outback experience.
For those who are sick of riding on k after k of softish Outback dirt road the Birdsville is quite the change: softness is not a problem here unless referring to one's posterior.
Check it my report out here.