Cape York 2014

Submitted: Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 18:10
ThreadID: 105963 Views:2601 Replies:9 FollowUps:5
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We are wanting to travel to Cape York this year. We are solo. Is it feasible doing it by yourself?
Another alternative is by a tagalong. Did look at Olsens. Has anyone done this?
Any feedback welcome.
Grazz and Karen
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Reply By: exmouth1 - Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 19:49

Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 19:49
G, day Grazz and Karen,
DEPENDING ON WHICH ROUTE YOU WISH TO TAKE, YOU WILL HAVE NO PROBLEMS EITHER WAY. WE DID IT IN AUGUST 2013 AND WENT UP VIA THE BLOOMFIELD AND TELEGRAPH TRACKS AND BACK VIA THE DEVELOPMENT ROAD. WE WERE TRAVELLING SOLO IN A WELL SET UP AND PREPARED VEHICLE IE TROOPY, WINCH, RECOVERY GEAR, 2 SPARES ETC. IF YOU HEAD UP AFTER THE WET YOU WILL HAVE NO PROBS, LOTS OF OTHER GROUPS AND LONE VEHICLES DOING THE SAME. SOMEN OF THE CROSSINGS CAN BE DEEP SO A SNORKEL IS A GOOD INVESTMENT, WE GOT STUCK IN NOLAN BROOK BUT PLENTY OF PEOPLE TO ASSIST WITH A SNATCH IF REQUIRED.
IF YOU GO UP THE DEVELOPMENT ROAD IT IS JUST A LONG GRAVEL ROAD WITH SOME CORRUGATIONS IF THE GRADERS HAVEN, T BEEN THROUGH FOR A WHILE
CHEERS
JOHN

PS THE TELE TRACK WAS MORE CUT UP SINCE OUR 2005 TRIP, BUT THERE ARE PLENTY OF CHICKEN TRACKS AND DIVERSIONS BACK ONTO THE DEVELOPMENT ROAD.
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Reply By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 20:58

Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 20:58
G'day Grazz,

There is no reason why you can't do this on your own! the one over rider is your level of experience and your vehicle restrictions (if any). It is a big place with plenty of tracks and the main ones are relatively straight forward. Just remember it is about 1000 k from Cairns to the tip and the roads are mainly corrugated dirt which needs some care. If you are taking a trailer it requires further care and considerations. Side tracks vary in difficulty and should be researched and the old track is challenging in parts as has been suggested and some will be best avoided on your own.

Have a look at Ron Moon's book on the cape it is a good reference and will give you comfort about what is needed.

Kind regards
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Reply By: Idler Chris - Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 21:45

Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 21:45
And another alternative is to join a 4 wheel drive club, great fun and a hell of a lot cheaper and safer.
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Follow Up By: Penchy - Tuesday, Jan 28, 2014 at 10:14

Tuesday, Jan 28, 2014 at 10:14
I may have missed something, but how does joining a club make this cheaper? The same costs will be incurred no matter single or a multicar trip.
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Follow Up By: Idler Chris - Tuesday, Jan 28, 2014 at 11:03

Tuesday, Jan 28, 2014 at 11:03
I was mostly referring to his suggested option of a tag-along tour. However when you tour as a group in remote places you have mates to help should things turn pear shaped which potentially could save you big bucks. Some like travelling in groups and others don't but it is great insurance and peace of mind IMHO.
What other people think of me is none of my business.
Do unto others what you would have them do unto you.

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Follow Up By: Penchy - Tuesday, Jan 28, 2014 at 11:11

Tuesday, Jan 28, 2014 at 11:11
Understood
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Reply By: Curlynan - Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 22:24

Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 22:24
Hi Grazz & Karen.

We did that trip in early July 2007. Went up via the OTT and back along the Development Road. Did a side track out to Vrilya Point as well on the way back.
We had no others travelling with us but we did meet plenty of other travellers along the way.
We did the trip in a 2002 Kia Sportage with 2 spare tyers, a snatch strap & a tent.
It was a great trip. Some of the crossings were a bit hairy because of the low clearance of our vehicle but we made it across all even Gunshot. Took in a bit of water but it soon dried out.
Be prepared for mishaps and hope for an easy trip. Usually things don't happen. If something does there is always someone around to lend a hand or give you advice or have a gawk at what's going on. We reckon on a couple of the crossings, bets were being laid to see if we would make it through. We always did and it was only through sensible approaches and knowing your limits.
We did lose 4x4 once up at the top on the sandy track between the Tip and Punsand Bay. A trip to a mechanic in Bamaga and a couple of hours later & $80 we had 4x4 back again.
Have a great trip. :)
AnswerID: 525182

Reply By: Member - Stuart and Gunny - Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 22:51

Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 22:51
I will be going up May Or June if you would like to come you are welcome
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Follow Up By: Member - Stuart and Gunny - Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 22:54

Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 22:54
I really should have added i travel with a reasonable size dog.
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Follow Up By: Member - Grazz T (NSW) - Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 20:52

Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 20:52
Thanks for the offer Stuart and Gunny but we are aiming more for early July. Gunny is a good looking dog.
Grazz and Karen
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Reply By: Tony F8 - Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 09:02

Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 09:02
Morning Grazz
You should have no problems, and a heap of fun, depending on your skills level. A weekend 4wd course and a copy of the Moon's Cape York guide are the best things you could invest in. Having travelled the Cape since the mid 80's, the most common problem I have witnessed is people using too much of what is attached to the end of the right leg, and not enough of what's between their ears. There will be someone come along, if you do get into a bit of a bother, but remember, the friendship will be short lived if you have gone unprepared, particularly with recovery gear. Be careful with the advice you will undoubtedly get before you leave, I shake my head at what I have read and heard, of which some is nothing but b*$# bleep . There are a lot of informed people on this forum, who will give you sensible advice. Also do not forget to read up on the history of the Cape, it is far more than a over sized 4wd adventure park, it is steeped in an enormous amount of history, one controversial book worth reading is Rodney Liddell's "Cape York, The Savage Frontier " if you can get hold of it and "Paradise Found" by Linda Rowe.
Enjoy and drive safe.
Tony F8
AnswerID: 525195

Reply By: bigden - Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 11:14

Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 11:14
hi all
we did cape york in june july 2013 and while we were in 2 cars there was nothing that we couldnt have done alone
did find very few cars making it out unassisted of the first crossing at palm creek, us included. we were set to winch out but young guys camped on the other side pulled us out. people camped there said only one car made it out the previous day. there is a chicken track or the develpment rd if your unsure.
i have all the crossings on you tube if you search " telegraph track great wall" , sorry i dont know how to post a link
mate drove straight back to port douglas from bamaga in 10-12 hours so the main rd is not bad
love to do it all again but its a long way from melbourne
AnswerID: 525199

Reply By: jdpatrol - Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 13:32

Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 13:32
G&K, like Bigden we had to winch ourselves out at Palm Crk last July. But otherwise had no drama’s on OTT or Frenchman Track. Just be warned because lots of people do experience problems – we witnessed lots. As others have said here, experience / equipment / vehicle / vehicle setup are all important. We were towing a camper and I wouldn’t do Frenchman on our own – there were few vehicles on this track and getting out of Pascoe Valley (heading east) was a serious affair towing – 2 cars in front of us were winched up the slope. We did it no worries but if Pascoe departure was more damp / cut up than it was then we would have needed help too.

Hey, the flip side of going on your own is making new friends. A couple, on their own, who we met at Weipa joined us to travel north on the OTT. We ended up spending 2-3 weeks together and we’ve become firm friends. Cheers
AnswerID: 525206

Reply By: Member - Grazz T (NSW) - Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 20:47

Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 20:47
Thank you all for your valued replies and great tips.
We have a well set up 4WD and have some off road experience.
It sounds like there will be help at hand if we need it.
We are roughly aiming for early July. Will get Ron Moons Cape York guide as suggested and do more research on the area to develop an itinerary.
Awesome support.
Grazz and Karen

AnswerID: 525234

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