Advice on Cape Leveque and Broome

Submitted: Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 18:03
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We are planning a trip across the Tanami to Broome, Cape Leveque and then the Gibb River to Mitchell falls, Kunanarra etc.

In terms of planning is it best to do Cape Leveque first and then Broome or Broome first and then Cape Leveque. The reason I ask is that it seems a bit of back tracking for when we start doing the Gibb River the maps I am looking at basically start back at Broome.

Can you do Cape Leveque to GRR without back tracking to Broome??

At the end of the day it's all fun - I just don't like backtracking.

cheers
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Reply By: baz&pud (tassie) - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 18:11

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 18:11
The road (track) to Cape Leveque starts some 10 to 15 ks out of Broome, the GRR starts just south of Derby, so answer to your question is yes.
Cheers.
Baz
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Reply By: guy007 - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:14

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:14
Hi Stephen,
We are planning the same trip leaving Mudgee for Boggabri Camp Muster at the end of April and then to Windorah , Bedourie, Plenty Highway to Alice, the Tanami to Hall's Creek and Broome and then off to Cape Leveque and GRR etc. Will be in LC200 with Lotus Trooper Van so may see you on the road.
Guy
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Follow Up By: Gone Bush (WA) - Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 11:45

Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 11:45
Be prepared to repair damage to your van after crossing the Tanami.
I'm glad I ain't too scared to be lazy
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Follow Up By: guy007 - Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 15:16

Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 15:16
Hi Gone Bush,
Had no problems on this route 10 years ago in a Subaru Forester.
Is it bad at the moment?
Guy
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Follow Up By: Gone Bush (WA) - Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 16:12

Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 16:12
Your Cruiser will be OK, it's your van that will suffer.

The van is being dragged, your vehicle is being driven and will cope with the corrugations, the van won't.
I'm glad I ain't too scared to be lazy
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Reply By: Robtbob NSW - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:30

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:30
If you have a van, you can't take it to the Cape, so you could leave it at a Broome van park for a few days. You will have to back track but it's only a few hours.
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Follow Up By: Member - PAXHILL - Wednesday, Mar 27, 2013 at 08:48

Wednesday, Mar 27, 2013 at 08:48
I understand that you can take camper trailers to Cape Levique
is this true?
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Follow Up By: Robtbob NSW - Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 09:37

Friday, Mar 29, 2013 at 09:37
You'll have no trouble getting a camper up there.Be sure to check out the old church at Beagle Bay. An icon with the pearl shells shining with the flash camera.
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Reply By: Member - DereelGirl - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:38

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:38
Hi guys, don't forget to book Cape Leveque at least 12mths before you intend to stay there. And as its already been mentioned, no vans. I did get a standard camper trailer in..... just! What a place to just relax, try and stay at the other communities on the way out to the Cape.
Robyn
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Follow Up By: makemyday - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:58

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:58
Hi, we did GRR and Cape Leveque last year towing a Jayco Eagle Outback without a problem. Although caravans are not recommended on the Cape Leveque road we saw maybe 6 or 8 at Middle Lagoon and 1 at the Resort at the Cape it was given short shrift. We booked the Cape from Middle lagoon , you can be lucky.
cheers Kerry
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Reply By: Kris and Kev - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:56

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 19:56
We spent a few days in Broome (2011) and then spent 9 days up the Dampier Peninsular and then did the back track (short cut) to Derby and did the Horizontal Water Falls and then went back to Broome for a few more days before we did the Gibb. It is all not that far apart when considering how far it is to get there! The road up to Cape Leveque starts dirt and then is sealed. We found it a good drive but we were towing a very capable off road camper trailer. The tracks into some of the camping spots run by local communities were pretty bad. We came across a few damaged trailers. But those spots are really a must see and stay. Cape Leveque is very commercial and can be very crowded but it is still a fantastic spot. You must book ahead. They do say caravans are not permitted but a good off road van would be able to do the drive, but not to most of the communities. The following photos may help. The first is the main road up, the second is the track to Middle Lagoon, Whale Song and Gnylmarung and the third is the back track to Derby. Try and spend some time up there and stay at a few places, it is a brilliant place. Kevin





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Follow Up By: Member - Duncan W (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 10:23

Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 10:23
K&K the road must have just been graded when you went up or it has greatly been improved from when we went in 06. The first 84km or so of dirt road then was the road from Hell & had no right to be called a road. In a word horrendous.

Dunc
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Follow Up By: Kris and Kev - Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 11:04

Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 11:04
Dunc, you are right, the road was no problems when we did it. Some corrugation, but a lot of the times if you were able to drive more to the right it was OK. Just think what it will be like when they seal it for the gas. Nice drive, but imagine the crowds. I would rather the dirt. The road to Wolf Creek Crater was a lot worse and then the road to Kalumburu, well enough said. Kevin
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Follow Up By: Member - Duncan W (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 16:58

Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 16:58
What worse than the Kalumburu Rd, I thought would be damn nigh impossible based on the experience that we had on that road.

Dunc
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Reply By: stephen R5 - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 20:07

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 20:07
Hi All

This is great feedback - thank you to all. Kris and Kev, what's the back road to Derby like and what would the driving time be - taking it easy. PS - we have an ultimate camper so no issues there.

I just don't like back tracking.

Appreciate any other inputs.

cheers Steve
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Follow Up By: Member - John Baas (WA) - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 21:52

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 21:52
Hi Steve.

Not wqanting to gazump Kand K, but...the eastern leg out from the main N/S bitumen is soft and sandy as per the pic above, but becomes generally station track sort of country as it flicks south.

The sand will be no probs but you might consider dropping the pressures (altho we didn't). Nice drive but it's not a gazetted road so your insurances might be an issue...

Cheers.
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Reply By: Member - Kiwibound eventually - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 20:07

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 20:07
We went to Cape Leveque in June 2012 leaving our caravan in Broome at the caravan park. We took our tent up the cape. We telephoned both Middle Lagoon and the resort at Cape Leveque and were able to make bookings for the dates we wanted which were within the next week. At Cape Leveque we opted for a beach shack and erected our tent in that. It was more expensive than just a tent site but worth the extra money to be absolute beach front. The sandy road to the beach shacks requires a 4wd. The restaurant at Cape Leveque is top quality yet still reasonably priced and very enjoyable.
Middle Lagoon is a great spot and a visit to the cafe at Whale Song nearby is great. Enjoy!
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Reply By: GimmeeIsolation - Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 22:33

Monday, Mar 25, 2013 at 22:33
Google Earth and Google Maps
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Reply By: Member - Charlou - Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 00:44

Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 00:44
Hi we have travelled the short cut twice last two seasons and towed camper trailer in to Middle Lagoon which is a great spot. About 20-25 Km south of Derby look for gate on right usually shut go through it takes about 2 hours sometimes on track to get to Cape Leveque road Enquire at service stn in Derby or phone Middle lagoon for update on roads the track is on Hema maps for the area and GPS works fine tracking through there Enjoy Cheers Charlou
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Reply By: MEMBER - Darian, SA - Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 10:59

Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 10:59
Just re the Cape itself.......we only had a few days on that Cape a few years back - went to Middle Lagoon first - the indigenous owners were very accommodating and friendly, the sun was shining on the turquoise ocean, the cliffs were bright red, the beach was pristine and we saw whales moving offshore.... couldn't find a single reason to go on to the tip of the Cape - maybe next time !
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Reply By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 19:12

Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013 at 19:12
Hi, we did the Cape in May 2010. The resort had a policy of only camper trailers, Jayco Dove/Swan type vans but not full size vans which could easily do the road. But that was their policy. There's only 90 k's of sandy dirt and IMO it's no problem if you drive to the conditions. i.e. 80kmh and tyres at 28psi. We also did the track into Middle Lagoon no problems towing the Dove. We stayed at Gambanan and had it to ourselves. Drove back to Cape Leveque resort and paid $10 for a day use pass. Magic sunset.
We will be back in the region this year to do the Giant Tides Tour from the Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm which is new for this year by the looks of things. But if you go the missus might want some pearl earings! You have been warned. Link here:Cygnet Bay Pearls
Cheers... W
Warrie

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Reply By: V8 Cruiser Ute Paul - Wednesday, Mar 27, 2013 at 18:40

Wednesday, Mar 27, 2013 at 18:40
Gday stephen R5
As mentioned by others the turn off to Cape Leveque is only about 15 kms out of Broome so its not exactly back tracking .
In my humble opinion I would do the Cape first , then come into Broome and restock ready for the GRR .
Don't miss Middle Lagoon its tops , we are heading up there for Easter ( live in Broome )
Apparently the road is being graded at the moment , which will help towing the boats up , a lot of the road is black top but the sections that aren't are very average , narrow and corrugated . drive to the conditions
I am very passionate and admit it , love the Kimberley .
Have done GRR and Plateau at least 50 times ( work if you can call it that ) .
Make sure u do the helicopter flight at the MP , walk in chopper out .
If time permits do Kalumburu also .
Bungles awesome
One post was for a road 25ks out of Derby on the right , unless I have red it wrong I believe this is not correct , I'm thinking the track they are talking of is at Kimberley Colour Stone turn off about half way between Broome n Derby
Safe travels
regards Paul
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