Gove and Nhulunbuy

Submitted: Monday, May 13, 2013 at 14:52
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Hi there,

We are currently contemplating a trip out to visit Nhulunbuy/Gove and have 5 (possibly 6) days in our current itinerary that we currently dont have any other fixed plan for (Overall trip length is 4 1/2 months) . We thought Nhulunbuy/Gove Peninsula or Cobourg Peninsula might be interesting detours and wondered if anyone has any thoughts on attempting either of these (but tending to Nhulunbuy) with only 5dys available. Timing is around mid to end of June this year (2013).

We will be camping to keep costs down (and because we love it!) but are also contemplating a half or full day fishing trip from Nhulunbuy - so any advice on a good company to do this with would be great also. We are not serious fishing people but would really enjoy the opportunity to catch at least one fish on this big trip - haha. Looking for any good tips on nice sites to camp at too (I know I have a lot of questions!)

Thanks, if anyone out there is able to help out with advice.

Shels

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Reply By: Michael A (VIC) - Monday, May 13, 2013 at 18:04

Monday, May 13, 2013 at 18:04
In and around Nhulunbuy you will need to book permits which will give you access to some great spots.

These two organisations manage access to these permits and provide more info

http://www.lirrwitourism.com.au/

http://www.dhimurru.com.au/

I would contact both and see what suggestions they have.

Also try contacting Walkaabout Lodge in Nhulunbuy, they should have some advice on other things to do.

Good luck.

Michael A
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Reply By: Member - lyndon NT - Monday, May 13, 2013 at 18:54

Monday, May 13, 2013 at 18:54
Five days FORGET IT, not enough time! To me Gove is better than Kakadu, Litchfield, The Kimberly etc etc. Why, because there is NO ONE there and it is very beautiful. Cristal clear springs and streams you can swim in and that flow all year round. Can't get better than that. 5 days, leave it until next time. Unfortunately 5 days isn't enough time for Cobourg either. I would recommend you either completely change your itinerary to include Gove or just spend more time at some places you already plan to visit. You don't say which way you are traveling? 5 days would be perfect for Lawn Hill in the gulf. Also, are you towing anything? The tracks in Gove are tight and narrow, to tight and narrow for our Tvan in many places, so we left it in Nhulunbuy and tented it.

Cheers

Lyndon
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Follow Up By: Rob N Shels - Monday, May 13, 2013 at 20:07

Monday, May 13, 2013 at 20:07
Hi there Lyndon,
Thanks a lot for your response. I had a feeling I might get something like it.
What would you consider is a reasonable amount of time to visit Gove including travel time from the Stuart Hwy? How much time did you spend there?

We are travelling north from Brisbane and our first meaningful stop off is actually going to be at Lawn Hill NP for a few days. We then intend to travel on the Savannah Way via Lorella springs etc and a couple of other places before coming out at the Stuart Hwy at Mataranka. We had planned to spend time at Katherine, Umbrawarra, Kakadu, Litchfield etc, on to Darwin and then head back south and west toward the Kimberley region, Broome, Pilbara and back through the red centre (roughly at least).

We are open to modifying our itinerary as we are not locked into too much except Koolpin Gorge at Kakadu at this stage, so are open to suggestion.

Shels
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Follow Up By: Rob N Shels - Monday, May 13, 2013 at 20:09

Monday, May 13, 2013 at 20:09
By the way, we are driving a 2003 Troopy, set up for sleeping in the back and are also carrying a tent.
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Follow Up By: Member - lyndon NT - Monday, May 13, 2013 at 20:32

Monday, May 13, 2013 at 20:32
Hi Shels

We too have a Troopy (check my profile).
We spent 2-3 months there in 08 :-) Just raveling around.
What would be a reasonable time, mmm, absolute minimum of 2 weeks. It is 700km of dirt from the Stuart Hwy, will vary as to when the grader was last through. Might be able to sit on 85-90 or you might be at 70 if flogged out. There is a nice little creek to camp at on the way in that we found be accident when the store half way along the track was closed (the supposed must stay here if stoping place).
There are no proper maps, and you will get half arsed info about where to go, and that's the beauty of it! The Nomads just won't go there! (Sorry grey power) :-)
It really is untouched, we hope to be able to go out there and work for a year in Nhulunby in a couple of years time so we can see more of it.
If you decide you are serious about changing your travel plans, message me and I can give you more details.
Lawn Hill is great , and despite what they say make sure you canoe up the second george as well :-)

Cheers

Lyndon

PS, Good comms really are a must if you plan to venture of the beaten track, Sat Ph or HF. At the very least a PLB with in built GPS registered to your name.

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Follow Up By: Member - Serendipity(WA) - Monday, May 13, 2013 at 21:39

Monday, May 13, 2013 at 21:39
I second what Lyndon has said. Spot on.

When we went it was for 2 weeks and that was the minimum time you might spend there. A lot to see and do.

You will have to get all your permits but should be straight forward.

The track over can be a bit rough and some creeks can get a bit deep. We had to recover one vehicle from the Wilton River.

Our first night was at a great spot called Flying fox creek. Really nice with krystal clear water. Next was a night on the Giddy River. Great little spot locked between rocky rapids and probably croc free - well we swam there.

After getting into town and registering for local permits (these are on top of the permit to drive across Arnhem land) we went out to Goanna Lagoon. Now that was a great place well worth 2 days. After that down to the beaches south of Nhulunbuy. Wow.Rainbow cliffs, Macassan beach and watching a sunrise over the Arafura sea. Plenty of other places with Turtle beach, Rocky Point. We missed a few others as the tracks had been washed out that season.

Overall just a great pretty place and a bit wild and definitely remote. Lots of big timber country in places. Lots of locals live there but mostly out on their homelands.

I have been out to Arnhemland on a few other occasions and found everyone very nice and helpful. Great place and I would love to go back and work there for an extended stay.

Cheers

Serendipity


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Follow Up By: ctaplin - Monday, May 13, 2013 at 23:29

Monday, May 13, 2013 at 23:29
Yes, 5 days would be cutting it very fine, if you actually want to see the area. I worked there for over 3 years and met several that drove the 700km rough dirt road in, looked around for a day and then drove back out!

This place has some jewels for those patient enough to make the effort. Many places to camp alongside pristine streams, along with stunning coastlines and islands nearby.

In many ways, perhaps it is best left untouched by the hordes that leave their rubbish and treat beautiful places with no respect???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X2KZjAqrq24&feature=youtu.be

http://www.walkaboutlodge.com.au/photos.html
( short video is at the bottom of this page )

I remember Lyndon & Bernadette visiting the area with great fondness and the fact they rate the place so highly, should count for something!

The Walkabout Lodge now has a campground, but if you book there, sites 12 -8 are best, unless you want to camp near a busy road.
http://www.walkaboutlodge.com.au/campground.html

Chris
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Follow Up By: Rob N Shels - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 07:49

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 07:49
Thank you all so much for the advice and additional information, it is greatly appreciated. I am now looking and changing my plans to include a longer visit and am very much looking forward to it.
shels
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Follow Up By: Rob N Shels - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 07:57

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 07:57
Watching that you tube link makes me wish we had access to the water by boat! Jealous!
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Follow Up By: Member - lyndon NT - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 07:59

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 07:59
Despite all the adversities as well Chris! :-)
Now is the only time you own
Decide now what you will,
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Follow Up By: ctaplin - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 21:50

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 21:50
Maybe the 'adversities' you mentioned, made your Gove visit into an adventure that you can talk about when you have grey hair? Your secrets are safe with me, Lyndon :-)
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Follow Up By: Member - lyndon NT - Sunday, May 19, 2013 at 12:06

Sunday, May 19, 2013 at 12:06
LOL, secrets. Is this after you showed our "your" video on the walkabout channel or the fact that half of Darwin has seen it due to Bernadette's insistence of showing it to anyone we meet! :-)
Still in Cairns?
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