With a mixed Aboriginal and European population of about 80 people Oodnadatta is arguably the most isolated surveyed town in SA. There is no all-weather road access and no regular public transport. The town is sometimes isolated after heavy episodic storm rain.
The town is regarded as the southern gateway to the Witjira National Park, Dalhousie Springs and the Simpson Desert. It has also been a pivotal centre for stations in the Kidman empire with Macumba to the east and The Peake to the south still operating within that company configuration. The town is still surrounded on all sides by the commonage of the largest teamster and travelling stock reserve in the State. It was proclaimed in 1897.
There is a range of accommodation available at the hotel and the well-known ‘Pink Roadhouse’. Seven-day fuel and supplies are available. There is a police presence and a permanently staffed Frontier Service clinic and hospital.
The town hosts an annual race meeting and the local community and surrounding pastoralists run an annual Bronco-branding event.
The Progress Association meets on a monthly basis and has limited fundraising activities other than the rent received from Progress owned houses based near the local airstrip.
OCA staff has supported the Progress through training and mentoring over the last 2 years to reform from a group comprising 2 members to a current stable group of 8 members.
The OCA recognises both the Oodnadatta Progress Association (OPA) and Dunjiba Council which represents the Indigenous population of the town.