Louth to Tilpa

Upriver: Bourke (95km) – Downriver: Wilcannia (137km)
Downriver: Tilpa to Wilcannia (137km)
Upriver: Bourke to Louth (95km)

Louth to Tilpa map


‘A place that loved a drink, a party and a punt..’ So wrote Henry Lawson.

Louth is a small service town (pub, fuel and general store) on the Darling River about 100km downstream from Bourke and 100km upstream from Tilpa.

Normally a quiet and sleepy settlement, once a year it is the scene for an classic annual country race meeting in August each year and attracts travellers form far and wide to the 7 race event.

The town of Louth was created when TA Mathews established a hotel to service the river trade and the Cobb & Co coaches that used it as a stopover.

Nearby, the historic Dunlop Station was the first sheep station in the world to use mechanical shears.

Louth is ideally located for access to the Darling River Run and offers a choice of eastern or western route downstream to Tilpa as well as the upstream section to Bourke and beyond.

Louth also is the site of an amazing and emotive structure known as ‘The Celtic Cross’ – a 7 metre (24 ft) polished granite cross that dominates the cemetery on the hill overlooking the town. The cross was constructed by the founder of Louth, Thomas Matthews, who erected the monument as a perpetual memorial to wife, Mary Mathews, who died in 1866. Significant anywhere, the Celtic Cross is even more so here as it reflects the setting sunlight to the space where the front door of there house every year on the anniversary of her death on August 19.

The monument is not only testament to the love and devotion of a husband for his wife but also the accuracy of navigation technology of the 1800’s as its alignment was reportedly aided by one of the river boat captains of the Darling River. Anyone visiting Louth can observe the occurrence and the locals have thoughtfully marked the places throughout the year that the visitor can experience the 3 minute lightshow.

Just over an hour on either side of the river will take you to Tilpa 67km.

Side Experiences

Darling River Run