Diamantina Lakes National Park

Submitted: Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 17:04
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I was wondering if anyone has experience of the road from Boulia through the Diamantina Lakes NP and out to Windorah.

I would like to do this trip but the park guide says it is suitable for 'high clearance four wheel drives' due to wheel ruts.

I drive a Subaru Forester with 110mm clearance (not much less clearance than a Landcruiser, but with poorer approach and departure angles).

I have seen photos of the road being graded.

I was tempted to do the trip recently on our way back from the Oonadata Track and Hermensberg but shied away due to light showers in the area.

Any advice, most welcome.
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Reply By: Kris and Kev - Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 18:44

Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 18:44
We went from Middleton to Boulia via the park (2009), Old Cork Station and Larks Quarry, and found the roads not too bad at all. Only a bit of bull dust off the main road into some of the spots to look at. But make sure you have plenty of fuel! Also not good to go if there has been any rain. (We had a camper trailer and Landruiser 200 series.) Kevin
AnswerID: 509020

Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 07:56

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 07:56
Thanks Kris and Kev,

That would have been a great trip.

I was hoping to get to Lark Quarry on a trip I did from Sydney to Karumba on the Gulf.

Terry
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Reply By: Member - eighty matey - Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 20:41

Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 20:41
G'day,

we drove through there last August. It's a long way. The roads not too bad but a Forester would hve to take it easy. There are a few sections that you would bottom out on but most of the way is well graded.

I wouldn't attempt it in my Landcruise if there was any rain around.

I'm not sure of the fuel range of the Forester but that would have to considered.

It is remote country. The only vehicle we passed was a pushbike, no one else.

Steve
AnswerID: 509033

Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 08:10

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 08:10
Thanks Steve,

The distance between Windorah and Boulia via the park is around 550 kms. My Forester (loaded) has a range of between 500-560 kms. however, I can extend this out to around 950 kms depending on how much additional fuel I carry.

So, I think my biggest concern is the road condition.

Terry
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Follow Up By: Member - eighty matey - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 19:09

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 19:09
We were pretty well loaded up . I scraped my 2nd spare that was slung underneath a couple of times.

The vast majority of the roads are big dirt roads in pretty good nick.
In my opinion the Forester would be ok "with care".

It's a long way through, took us about four hours with stops from memory because we were just passing through. I really want to spend a few days up there to check it right out. It's great scenery in parts.

In August it was about 30 degrees.

Hoo roo.
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Reply By: Member - VickiW - Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 21:33

Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 21:33
We travelled in from Windorah many years ago. Unfortunately don't remember much at all - I was coming down with the flu on the drive in - just remember bad corrugations & lots of bulldust & feeling very miserable, 2 days wrapped in a blanket on a hammock, no cold / flu tablets or even panadol. I vaguely remember some creek / washout crossings through the park that may be the reason for high clearance advice, but nothing memorably bad (other than the flu).
AnswerID: 509039

Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 22:06

Sunday, Apr 14, 2013 at 22:06
2008, typical....


We were towing a boat....

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 Motorhome
AnswerID: 509043

Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 08:11

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 08:11
Thanks Peter.

Let's hope it is like that we I get around to doing this trip.

Terry
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Reply By: Member - cherrywipe - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 07:41

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 07:41
Hi Terry,
Don't know if it is the same track we travelled in 2000 ,but I would not recommend it at all. What we travelled (straddled) on were 2 deep ruts that I believed to be made by a grader or ag vehicle with single tyres. We had 145 ltr s diesel on board and running on fumes when arriving at Winton. We were in a patrol not towing anything.
Cheers Cherry.
AnswerID: 509051

Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 08:13

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 08:13
Thanks Cherry,

I guess this is the problem with remote outback roads. Once there is rain on them they can be in very poor condition for months after.

Terry
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Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 09:48

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 09:48
Terry,

If there has been no recent rain in the area, I would have no hesitation in taking your Forester along that road. Over the years, much work has been done to improve them, and with some patience, you would be okay.

Treat all creek crossings with respect, and steady speed, as there are often loose rocks in the gravel base of the crossings. Much of the bad builldust south of Davenport Downs, and past Palparra, has been "sheeted" with gravel, and provides easy travelling.

Maybe 2 jerricans of fuel would be good insurance too. Depending on when you decide to go again, there maybe some wear and tear on the road if Davenport have turned off a lot of cattle. A walk around to check for a detour on any bad patches, may save an embarrassing time in a bulldust hole, or hung up on wheel tracks.

That's a magic part of the channel country - horizons that go on forever, glimpses of distant hills in the mirage and the changing terrain, often full of surprises.

Enjoy,

Bob.

Seen it all, Done it all.
Can't remember most of it.

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Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:11

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:11
Thanks Bob,

All good advice.

I share your enthusiasm for the Channel Country. I have been across the Diamantina a number of times (Bedourie to Windorah and Boulia to Winton) but have always longed to go to the remote centre of this area.
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Reply By: Member - John and Val - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 10:09

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 10:09
Hi Terry,

We went to Diamantina Lakes NP in 2011 and loved the area. The road out to Boulia was pretty good as far as I recall. We have some blogs about our time there - link here - that may be helpful.

Cheers,

Val
J and V
"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted."
- Albert Einstein

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Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:18

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:18
Hi Val,

Fantastic photos. I am thinking now do I need to go after seeing it all from your lense (just joking).

Terry

BTW. Before I started this thread I searched the site using the word 'diamantina'. It did not return your blog. I will try again with capitalisation.
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Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:22

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:22
Val,

I had another go with the search engine. It was me. I found you blog and lots of other stuff.

I haven't used the site a lot but am finding it most useful.

Terry
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Reply By: Farms - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 11:20

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 11:20
Hi Terry,

we did this route in September 2012.

The weather was hot and dry. In those conditions, you should have no problems. As previously mentioned you will need to slow down for any dips in the road.

Diamantina NP had plenty of water and there was heaps of birdlife and flies. A lovely place to stay and explore.

Regards,

Peter
AnswerID: 509064

Reply By: Member - Myles F (QLD) - Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 19:05

Monday, Apr 15, 2013 at 19:05
Terry, I suggest that you give it a go if you can. You should be right if it’s dry and Diamantina Lakes National Park is definitely worth the effort. I’ve posted two photos from within the park to whet your appetite.
Myles.
AnswerID: 509090

Follow Up By: Terry F2 - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:14

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:14
Hey Miles,

I hope it is only my appetite that is 'whetted' and not the road.

Great photos.

Thanks
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