Bloomfield Track - Mossman to Cooktown, Qld

Submitted: Thursday, Oct 30, 2014 at 21:25
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Planning to go to Cape York Pen in Aug 15. We will be towing a genuine off-road trailer. Just wondering if anybody has info on Bloomfield Track from Mossman to Cooktown. The info I'm reading says this is a hair-raising road. Is this correct? Am I being stupid trying this by ourselves? We are reasonably experienced off-road adventurers.
Peter & Ann

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Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Thursday, Oct 30, 2014 at 21:34

Thursday, Oct 30, 2014 at 21:34
The Bloomfield Track is a delightful drive. It is mostly unsealed and has some rather steep sections, but most of those are sealed. It is hardly 'hair-raising'. You will be down in a low gear for short sections but the Prado should handle it well.
Have a great trip.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Member - Peter & Ann - Thursday, Oct 30, 2014 at 21:38

Thursday, Oct 30, 2014 at 21:38
Thks, Allan. I have a Prado and thought it would be Ok but just wanted to check. Am absolutely looking frwrd to this trip.
Peter & Ann

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Reply By: brendan l4 - Thursday, Oct 30, 2014 at 22:14

Thursday, Oct 30, 2014 at 22:14
No mate you'll be fine. Especially in aug. It is very challenging in the wet but august no problems with a trailer. I have done the track alot of times. There is a bridge now over the bloomfield river this was always the show stopper but not now. Emmogen creek can be deep but usually by august its about knee to thigh deep. There is another bridge been built as we speak over one of the other show stopping creeks. there are some very steep hill climbs and descents, but if its dry offers plenty of traction. Just select 1st gear in 4wd and crawl up them. I have towed many of trailer loads of work gear through the track. Its a great drive well worth it. Be sure to go to the bloomfield falls at wujal.
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Follow Up By: Member - Peter & Ann - Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 09:23

Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 09:23
Mny thks, Brendan. Sounds great & looking frwrd to it. Did you by any chance stay at Home Rule Rainforest Lodge or Mungumby Lodge or know about them? What are they like?
Peter & Ann

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Follow Up By: Member - OnYaBike - Monday, Nov 10, 2014 at 01:09

Monday, Nov 10, 2014 at 01:09
I stayed at Home Rule a couple of years ago. It was after the eclipse and was full of hippies who had moved there from the Palmer River eclipse venue. Skinny dipping, chanting, bongos. All good fun. I thought I had travelled back into the sixties.
It was $10 a night. Hot showers and toilets. The walk to the falls was worthwhile. It's only a few minutes off the road so check it out, turn off just before Lions Den if you're coming from Bloomfield. Otherwise you can camp at Lion's Den.
The only time I made a mistake was when I thought I was wrong, but I was mistaken.

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Follow Up By: Member - Peter & Ann - Tuesday, Nov 11, 2014 at 08:59

Tuesday, Nov 11, 2014 at 08:59
On Ya Bike, mny thks. That sounds great. Will definitely check out.
Peter & Ann

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Reply By: Member - ACD 1 - Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 00:34

Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 00:34
Hi Peter & Ann

We have just come back from the Cape. We did the Bloomfield towing a Conqueror UEV 490 with a 100 series Landcruiser. Both were running at maximum weight (probably cranking around 5.5t over both) as we were doing a 6 month lap with 4 people on board.

The track was in great condition, hardly hair raising or even challenging as 4 wheel drive tracks go. As Allan said some extremely steep sections. I just dropped down to Low 4 and at times was even down to Low 4 first (but never went backwards).

Overall the road needs to be treated with respect - take your time - there are some tight and blind corners - choose the right gear before you start up the hills. Overall, it was one of our favourite roads and would do it again in a heartbeat.

Cheers

Anthony
VKS 3539
Work - a 40 hour interuption to my weekend!
Too many places - too little time

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Follow Up By: Member - Peter & Ann - Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 09:24

Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 09:24
Thks, Anthony. That's very positive news.
Peter & Ann

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Reply By: outback epicurean - Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 09:59

Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 09:59
Hi

Interested in above comments. We did this road 20 years ago before the steep bits were sealed and no problems as used low range in a Patrol. Going again next year with Prado but when in Low range, also central diff is locked and so low can't be used on sealed roads. Do you need to go down to low range or will 1st or 2nd gear high range be enough to pull a medium camper trailer up the steep sealed sections?

cheers
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Follow Up By: deserter - Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 12:33

Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 12:33
I've done it a number of times and never looked like needing 4x4. Its just a dirt road after all.
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Follow Up By: outback epicurean - Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 13:50

Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 13:50
Agree don't need 4WD but low range is now a big issue with steep sealed roads as you can't seperate low from locked diff!
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Follow Up By: cruza25 - Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 14:45

Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 14:45
What model prado are we talking about. I have 150 series auto.

There is one switch for hi or low and another next to it for centre diff lock.
engaging low does not lock the diff.
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Follow Up By: outback epicurean - Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 15:31

Friday, Oct 31, 2014 at 15:31
120 series, moving lever to low also engages lock diff.
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Reply By: Member - Tardis 2013 - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 03:12

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 03:12
Hi Peter & Ann,

I recently did the track in July of this year. Yes, it's steep in places but I had no problems towing my off road trailer with the 80 series Landcruiser, it just made it a bit more interesting at times.

Enjoy, it's a fantastic trip.

Cheers
Shirl
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Follow Up By: Member - Peter & Ann - Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 09:26

Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 09:26
Thks, Shirl, that's encouraging news.
Peter & Ann

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Reply By: Hoyks - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 12:23

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 12:23
I did it in about '95 and again in June of this year. yes it is steep, but better than it was with the concrete sections.

In June it still had some soft sections at the end of the concrete sections, but traction wasn't really an issue and the creeks were only about a foot deep. they are building a causeway over one of the deeper ones too.

I used low range on the concrete as we were quite heavy and I didn't want to be going too quickly when the greasy clay sections started. Transmission wind up isn't really an issue in this situation as it is quite steep and there is a loose scattering of grit which gives sufficient wheel slip to stop any problems. If you do feel the steering getting really heavy and the transmission fighting it's self, then stick a tyre in the gravel on the edge and it will sort its' self out.

Make sure your cooling system is 100% as I passed a bloke in an older 'cruiser towing a camper that had his whole radiator out trying to flush the core 1/2 way along the track. Not the best place for that kind of work.

It's steep and picturesque, but not that hard going. We got passed some locals that were doing it in a Falcon wagon.
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Reply By: Member - Michael A (ACT) - Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 22:28

Wednesday, Nov 05, 2014 at 22:28
If you have to use low range on the Bloomfield ' road' ( hardly a track anymore) then you will be buggered on the rest of the trip north
The CREB track is the ' hair raising ' trip
I was raised in the area and the Bloomfield track is a gravel road which can be used by 2wd vehicles except after heavy rain

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