Travelling from Glendambo to Ceduna: weighing the options

Submitted: Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 14:12
ThreadID: 102102 Views:4365 Replies:5 FollowUps:3
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The current version of my highly tentative 2014 itinerary requires me to get from Coober Pedy to the Eyre highway (and ultimately to Maralinga). Studying the map, I see there are a number of options for this, other than driving all the way around on the sealed highways via Port Augusta.

The Googs Track seems like the most direct and obvious choice. But I see it's also possible to turn south at Kingoonya and follow that track to Wirrulla. I'm wondering which is a better choice for me?

This thread: seems to say the road down from Kingoonya may be easier than the Googs Track. Judging by that thread (and other information), Googs involves a lot of dune driving. The other track may be corrugated in places, but doesn't offer up other challenges such as dunes (assuming, of course, it's dry). In fact it appears somebody drove it in a sedan!?

I see I could also go southeast and down to the Gawler Ranges NP. However, after visiting Maralinga, I plan to travel east via the Eyre highway to Port Augusta. Along the way, I would have the opportunity to visit the NP (and possibly the adjoining CP).
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Reply By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 14:40

Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 14:40
We drove north to Kingoonya a few weeks ago towing a van with a few others. The road was very good dirt. There was a bit of drizzly rain but still good, no dust.
A good overnight (or longer) stop is Mt Ive. I you are not into serious 4WDing I would take this road.
AnswerID: 510639

Reply By: Echucan Bob - Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 15:02

Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 15:02

Last October, in going from Ooodnadatta to Ceduna, we turned right off the Stuart toward Bulgunnia Station. This cuts off a big corner and gets you to Tarcoola by a much more interesting route. My passenger was anxious about all the Defence and Mining signs but as it was a Friday afternoon I was relaxed and comfortable. After all, you'd be pretty stiff to be hit by a Blue Streak Rocket!

Through Tarcoola along the rail service road. There were lots of great camping spots (and excellent 3G coverage). You then head down Googs. It was pretty easy going, yes a few dunes but manageable.

Then Ceduna- fresh oysters, fish and chips. A lovely end to a great desert trip. We then headed east to our respective homes in country Victoria and South Coast NSW.

AnswerID: 510641

Reply By: Priscilla G - Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 18:37

Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 18:37
Depends...Kingoonya to Wirrulla.Not a bad road most of the way with a few bad corrogation areas.It,s quite a nice drive & no other obstacles.
Googs track would be slower& many high sand dune/hills.
Wirrulla Pub good for a meal, small caravan park & friendly people.
Would all be nice say July to October
AnswerID: 510656

Reply By: Member - mechpete - Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 22:49

Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 22:49
Googs track southto Ceduna is easy . just keep ya tyres pressures low ,
As for Maralinga , very difficult to get permits , they just say .permit denied an they
don,t give a reason .
Last yr a group of us managed to get a permit after 2nd application in March ,
tried again for August an got knocked back three times . one of our group is going through the motions again for this yr an got met with a NO end of conversation again unfortunately the person who issues them in Ceduna is very difficult to deal with
an you can,t over his head .
best of luck mechpete
AnswerID: 510678

Follow Up By: Candace S. - Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 23:12

Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 23:12
Interesting. Over the last year there's been quite a bit of traffic on here indicating it is now easy to get permission to enter and tour Maralinga.

EO Trek - Maralinga via Colona

EO Trek - Range Tour
FollowupID: 788814

Reply By: Motherhen - Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 23:14

Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 23:14
Hi Candace

It looks like you have already researched the facts on the routes so it will be for you to choose the level of adventure you want. We have been through from Glendambo to Wirrulla and although a pleasant drive, it was very corrugated at the time, but four wheel drive not necessary. Our daughter and her first husband went through it once with a his company sedan and it was in very good order at the time.

Will you be towing a camper trailer? We have not been through Goog's track as we tow a caravan. The roads through the Gawler Ranges and from Iron knob heading west have all been good roads when we have taken them.


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AnswerID: 510679

Follow Up By: Candace S. - Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 23:57

Thursday, May 09, 2013 at 23:57
I won't be towing a trailer. In fact I'll most likely be driving a hired Britz bushcamper! So the prospect of serious sand and dune driving isn't appealing. I can always air down a bit and go slowly on the corrugations! I'll be out there to sight-see anyway. =)
FollowupID: 788816

Follow Up By: Cheeky1 - Friday, May 10, 2013 at 23:09

Friday, May 10, 2013 at 23:09
The corrugations on the road to Wirulla are mainly on the dunes. You do go through very different country side and some of that country is through sand dunes. The difference between this road and the googs is that it is a road rather than a track. It is quite isolated through there. It took us about 6 hours and we didn't see another vehicle the whole time.
FollowupID: 788881

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