Western Desert Resources haul road

Submitted: Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 00:33
ThreadID: 109880 Views:2981 Replies:6 FollowUps:6
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It blew me away to know there was a bitumen road which linked Lorella Springs to Roper Bar which was in mint condition with fully erected bridges able to withstand year round conditions including the wet season. What a tease, it took us 2 days carefully towing a caravan to get from Lorella to Roper Bar when 150 tonne trucks can do the same run in 2 hours using this purpose built bitumen road. For the people that already know this (sorry to bore you).
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Reply By: Kilcowera Station Stay - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 07:05

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 07:05
Handy to know, just goes to show you cant trust maps or GPS systems all the time hey?
Kilcowera Station Stay

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Reply By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 08:12

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 08:12
Is that road available to the general public?
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Reply By: Member - Alan H (QLD) - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 08:26

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 08:26
The road actually goes from the minesite near Roper Bar down to Bing Bong.

Access not permitted when we went by.

Alan
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Follow Up By: The Original JohnR (Vic) - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 19:07

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 19:07
Last year it was only just being built when we went past. Went in to Bing Bong and saw the end there, and the other end nearer the WDR mine end. You are right Alan.

May be interesting in the future though with the company in administration with their costs being too high for the iron ore market. A more or less straight bitumen road is hardly interesting though!!
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Follow Up By: Member Andys Adventures - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 20:34

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 20:34
The road will never be for public traffic as there are other minerals in the area that can be mined and will use the hale road.
WDR mine has very high grade ore and needs a high price for it otherwise it stays in the ground.
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Follow Up By: The Original JohnR (Vic) - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 21:32

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 21:32
The AFR was suggesting the $65/T wasn't enough to return anything and the barging system was too cumbersome to load. A rate has been given loading a 55,000T vessel in five days. A loading facility can load 180,000T in half a day.

The suggested break even costs are available HERE for the competitors. I note that $50/T is suggested for BHP, but I have heard a slightly lower figure suggested elsewhere.

Quality is immaterial if the banks don't see a return and they need more money. Mothballs you would expect
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Reply By: Member Andys Adventures - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 09:58

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 09:58
Sorry to tell you but that is a haul road for the mine and not to be accessed by the public. We even have trouble getting across it as they took away our tracks that went to the coast and Rosie fishing camp. Theses tracks are now replaced but be carful when crossing it.
We can not even use it in the wet season to get to town. It is a pain in the side of our pants having this road in the middle of Lorella Springs.
Worst part is WDR is broke and not carting Iron Ore to the port at Bing Bong at the moment. So we have a road to nowhere.
The road did have problems in the wet season and did flood in places.
Cheers Andy
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Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 05:27

Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 05:27
G'day Andy,

So who owns the road? If it'd WDR and they are not using it now or in the future then what stops you using the road?

Just asking!

Kind regards
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Follow Up By: Member Andys Adventures - Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 09:14

Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 09:14
The haul road is owned by WDR and forms part of the mine. The land was take from the Lorella lease. As it is a will all ways be a mine haul road. And after watching them build the bridge over the Rosie creek, you wouldn't want to drive over it in the wet season.
They are lucky not to have had a good wet season yet as the last 3 were very tame.
Cheers Andy
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Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 09:43

Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 09:43
Thanks, it looks like it inconveniently cuts Lorella Springs in half according to the map below. Otherwise it looks pretty convenient and I hope you get a good wet soon.

Kind regards

Ps still think about my time at Lorella Springs, hopefully get back there one day.
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Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 22:19

Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014 at 22:19
Changed over at Barkly Homestead earlier this year, with a bloke who was doing a run from Darwin, on his R n R.

Said they did 2 trips a day, but wasn't happy as the bitumen surface was breaking up badly in some places. Probably had to slow down? :-)

Good loot apparently, something like $2K plus/week. Pay rate wouldn't be too good at moment, I'd suspect!

Found this map on WDR website today.



Did see a good photo on an ABC article, which I couldn't download, of a crossing on one of the rivers. Appeared to just be an earth weir, with some pipes through the base. Whether this was only temporary, or a "permanent" fix I don't know.

There are numerous photos on their website too, but are very low resolution so don't copy well.

Bob




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

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Reply By: Member - KBAD - Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 11:35

Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014 at 11:35
Fished Home creek at Bing Bong years ago a few years before they were due to start to build the facilities there to load the barge's it was originally developed for McArthur River mine, the company bought Bing Bong Station to facilitate it, bought a couple of other stations and gave them to the local indigenous people as a trade off for the ability to do what they wanted. It was a beautiful little system with fish everywhere doubt much is left of it. Same story as elsewhere mining companies will promise you the world to get access unfortunately from a landholder perspective that is about all you will ever get out of them, promises.
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