Comment: Savannah Way

Hi All, I am looking at doing this trip from Alice Springs to Borroloola across to Cairns in June 2014, I will have a brand new 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee overland, what are people thoughts of this vehicle and getting across this area? any information will be greatly appreciated. :-)
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Reply By: Bludge - Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 12:21

Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 12:21
I can't see any issues, plan your fuel stops and overnight stops and away you go..

AnswerID: 518947

Follow Up By: Bludge - Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 12:24

Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 12:24
May be useful Savannah Hwy by NRMA
FollowupID: 798900

Reply By: rooster350 - Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 19:12

Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 19:12
Alice Springs to Borroloola is easy , blacktop all the way , the Savannah Way from then on is variable from rough to very, very rough with the occaisional creek or river crossing , your vehicle should have no trouble if you do not push it to hard. By June there should not be to much water in the crossings, just depends on how much rain that they have in the area. We turned off the Savannah Way just west of Doomadgee and went down to Kingfisher camp and further on but it was pretty rough up to there in places and from talking to other travellers it was no better further on....cheers
AnswerID: 518967

Reply By: Member - Chris_K - Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 21:33

Monday, Sep 30, 2013 at 21:33
It is quite rough in places - I'd put some off-road (AT) tyres on the new car. preferably light truck (LT)...discarded tyres and casings all over the place in some areas.


AnswerID: 518972

Follow Up By: Member - Brenden H - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2013 at 10:25

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2013 at 10:25
Cheers, The new car comes with the 265/60/R18 Michelin Latitude all-season tyres, what are the thoughts on these?? I have never run Michelin tyres, always coopers, currently trying Yokohamas.
FollowupID: 798945

Reply By: Member - Chris_K - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2013 at 11:50

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2013 at 11:50
Hi Brenden

I've not had any experience with 265/60/R18 Michelin Latitudes either. Given that most manufacturers want a quiet and road based tyre, they normally compromise on the "offroad" bit- so these are likely to be no different. There would a "proper" off-road tyre available - but then you have to spend more dollars to change over. I prefer the LT construction as they seem to have stronger sidewalls - which is good for stone chips, and general offroad stuff. For that trip, you'd probably be fine if you took your time in the rough bits anyway, especially for the corrugated parts (which change every week/month/year as the traffic and maintenance happens). We did a Cape York trip last year with friends who had stock standard tyres on their Landcruiser...they went ok.


AnswerID: 518996

Reply By: oldplodder - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2013 at 16:51

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2013 at 16:51
Are they 'P" passenger rated tyres?
Went across the tanami about a month ago and came across a jeep that had travelled 50k of dirt from Halls Creek.
Two tyres done and the rims damaged. - Standard tyres supplied with the vehicle.
The landcruiser 200 another 10k up the road had punctured one tyre, also factory supplied tyre.

We went through the trip you are doing 4 years ago and if it is the same recommend LT spec tyres.

Had no tyre problems this trip, other than a nail in Broome. Plug fixed that.

Up to you. Also drop pressures to help.
AnswerID: 519022

Follow Up By: Member - Brenden H - Wednesday, Oct 02, 2013 at 11:13

Wednesday, Oct 02, 2013 at 11:13
Hi cheers for that,
Yeah I am a bit concerned running on standard rubber, as I have always replaced them from buying a new car. I will request that the dealer replaces the tires with the usual coopers that I run, I think I will go back to the ATR3's I had them on my Pajero and think they were the best tire I have ever run.

I play with mu pressures allot when traveling off road, depending on what you are traveling on and what weight but often run 20-26 psi on the dirt roads.
FollowupID: 799037

Follow Up By: oldplodder - Wednesday, Oct 02, 2013 at 17:35

Wednesday, Oct 02, 2013 at 17:35
Yes, I have the same issue. New triton with stock rubber and a run on the planty., tanami & gibb river road this year. Did replace with LTs on new rims. Now maybe it would have been OK with stock, who knows. Plenty of 4wds with tyre issues, but mainly stock rubber on pajeros, toyotas and jeeps to name a few.
If you drive carefully, possibly get through OK, but I was not going to take the chance.
Talking to the guy half way across the gibb river road who does tyre repairs, $500.00 for a replacement tyre, fitted. Once you got there.

Have a good trip.
FollowupID: 799053

Follow Up By: The Original JohnR (Vic) - Wednesday, Oct 02, 2013 at 20:55

Wednesday, Oct 02, 2013 at 20:55
I am with you oldplodder. Did a 10k trip a few years ago, three thousand of those with a mate with factory spec tyres on his Landcruiser. You can guess he had the punctures. Two of them.

This year we have done 18k Kms and the only puncture being a pop rivet. A quick plug did that one.Savannah Way dirt was a fair part of the cover. The pop rivet was on the Oodnadatta Track. Not bad for eight tyres in contact with the road all the way.

Don't use passenger spec tyres if you want to do rougher stony roads, or even bitumen with sharp stones, and drop your tyre pressures to take a lot of the shock from your other components
FollowupID: 799072

Follow Up By: Member - Brenden H - Thursday, Oct 03, 2013 at 07:50

Thursday, Oct 03, 2013 at 07:50
Thanks guys, the only problem I am having is the jeep comes with 20" rims, I have added the 4wd kit which replaces the 20" with 18" as listed above, to get the same size tires they are only made in passenger due to the 18" rims. I contacted our local dealer and the Cooper ATR3 are $415 a tire plus fitment etc. roughly $2200. Trying to work out a deal to swap the new tires to save me money. I would be comfortable doing it in my Pajero as that is well set up, but I have that for sale and get the new car Jan / Feb 2014.

JOHNR, you said you did the Savannah way?? what time frame do you think it will take to go from Borroloola to Normanton? we have allocated 2 days.As always, we travel alone, only the family in one car, so we have to do our homework and make sure we prepared every time.

OLDPLODDER: I agree with the standard rubber being crap,I believe all 4wd manufacturers should offer you a choice of tires you want to fit when ordering a new car. I bought our 2011 Pajero in Adelaide, drove 1500km home to Alice and swapped them out to coopers.. but..with all due respect, I laugh at $500 a tire in the remote areas as we often pay extreme prices for everything in the Alice as it is. as I said above the price to replace the Jeeps tires are $415 plus balancing, fitment and alignment I was quoted yesterday. that's in a large town. I think $500 is a good price remote considering the freight cost and areas.

We are currently looking at a camper trailer to tow behind as well, The Market Direct Camper Expedition Voyager RF
The last trip we did was the Central Arhnam highway to and around Gove area and we run the Coopers and had no problem what so ever.
FollowupID: 799084

Follow Up By: The Original JohnR (Vic) - Thursday, Oct 03, 2013 at 08:38

Thursday, Oct 03, 2013 at 08:38
Brendan, that depends entirely what you want to see along the way. Yes, you could do it in two days, but if you want to go to Kingfisher Camp, if you want to go to King Ash Bay, and whatever. I think we took four days, but we were towing a caravan. There are some good side trips. Lorella Springs isn't that far from Borroloola for instance.

The low profile tyres make me wince, just thinking of running those at lower pressures! Not so bad for a road car, but for outback. How many pinches to cut through a sidewall. I have 17" tyres with higher profile to give cushioning against the stones.
FollowupID: 799087

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