Cape Leveque or Mitchell Falls?

Submitted: Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 15:05
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Hi guys, We are doing the Kimberley again this year in June and only have one month. We missed out on Cape Leveque and Mitchell Falls last time so have not been to either location yet. Probably only have time to do one this year. Which one would you choose?

Amanda
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Reply By: OBJ - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 15:20

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 15:20
Easy .. pick one, and then come back another time and do the other.
OBJ
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Reply By: get outmore - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 15:31

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 15:31
Im assuming you would also go to kalumbaru along with mitchel falls?
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Follow Up By: birdnerd - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 17:35

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 17:35
Hi getoutmore,

No probably won't go to Kalumburu.....
Amanda
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Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 12:13

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 12:13
Was thinking the same! It was the bride that caught this at Kalumburu and she reminds me way too often - you don't want to miss out on that Amanda!
Kind regards
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Follow Up By: birdnerd - Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 11:30

Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 11:30
And so she should, that's impressive!!
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Reply By: Member - Duncan W (WA) - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 16:22

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 16:22
Amanda you haven't said where you're travelling from but if you're travelling via the west coast then CL will be a lot closer and quicker trip and would allow for plenty of unrushed exploring. Also if coming from the East the black top to Broome is a darn sight quicker (albeit a bit boring compared with the GRR), than travelling down the GRR which could be a slow trip.

We spent 2 days at the Mitchell Falls and that was plenty of time for us. The corrugations on the Kalumbaru Rd where horrendous so we didn't venture further north.

Similarly we spent 3 nights and 2 full days at CL and that suited our need at the time. In hindsight we could have spent a week along the Dampier Peninsula.

You can see an awful lot in a month just depends on how far you've got to travel to get there and back in the first place.

Either way both are beautiful spots and in our case we hold very fond memories of both.

Cheers

Dunc.
Dunc
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Follow Up By: birdnerd - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 16:27

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 16:27
Hi Dunc,
We are travelling from Geelong in Victoria so a long drive for us! Not really fussed on going to Kalumburu. Still debating whether to cross the Tanami as well, only if it saves up some time.
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 18:15

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 18:15
If you have the time to do either I would say no contest.

Having had a look at both I would say Cape Leveque every time.

Having said that, it's been many a year since we visited CL so things may have changed. Also we went up there with a mate's 2 daughters that were working on the pearl boats so may have been able to see a few sights that others may not have.
It's not every day you get to scoop up maybe a couple of million dollars worth of pearls in your hand. Had to put them back unfortunately.
Even without that we thought the area was really something special and scenic.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 18:50

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 18:50
Ouch, one month from Vic to the Kimberleys and back. If you have not done the Tanami before I suppose you could. Shorter but its long, rough and boring IMO and more prone to damage on the dirt. Once is enough for me so far. Consider sticking to the tar from Alice up to Katherine and then across - an extra day but damage free. As for the Cape v the Falls, both are fantastic locales. Assume you have been checking all the pix in Places for those spots. A not well known treat is the Giant Tides Tour at the Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm. The ocean flows like a river!!.............. W
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Follow Up By: Member - Munji - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 07:44

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 07:44
Or go across the Buchanan to Kununurra then your on the GRR doorstep.
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 09:00

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 09:00
X2 for Buchanan. Good run across to Timber Ck, then onto Kununurra. Do it in a Holden ute, no worries.

Some great scenery through Jasper's Gorge, and along the Victoria H'way.

Bob

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

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Reply By: Rangiephil - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 21:00

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 21:00
IMHO the best thing about Cape Leveque is the ability to easily reach the horizontal falls, but you can do it by air from Broome if you have lots of money.

One arm point is interesting with the Bloke growing sea anemone for aquariums, and gathering crocus, and The church and bakery at Beagle Bay.

Cape Leveque is a lot easier than getting Mitchell Falls, although the GRR is a great
experience first time and time must be taken to visit all the gorgeous gorges.

Mitchell Falls is a 2-3 hour walk in and also back but IMHO is the most spectacular falls in OZ. You can get a helicopter in and out again if you have lots of money. the Mitchell Falls Road is probably the worst in Australia unless it has had a grader through recently and Drysdale River Station makes a good living out of replacing broken suspensions, so your car has to be in excellent condition.
My pick would be Mitchell Falls , bearing in mind the above.
Regards Philip A
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Follow Up By: Member - Munji - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 07:47

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 07:47
Agree, why would you travel all the way from NSW and not do Mitchell Falls. I did it two years in a row and planning another soon.
Just make sure your vehicle is up to the journey, it is not maintained so a bit rough
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Follow Up By: birdnerd - Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 11:33

Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 11:33
Hi Munji, travelling from Geelong and only have 4 weeks. Still working through itinerary so we will see.....how long did you have to do it?
Amanda
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Follow Up By: get outmore - Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 19:19

Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 19:19
Drysdale river does not make a living out of broken suspensions. They do tyres only
no mechanical repairs whatsoever there
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Reply By: Mick O - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 21:39

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 21:39
Both are great but totally different experiences. For spectacular, rugged impact, you simply can't beat Mitchell Falls. Amble in atop the escarpment, swim in the streams, examine ancient art and spend time above the magnificent falls then get a quick 10 minute flight out that takes you downstream to the Lower Mitchell falls and home across the scarp and ancient burial mounds. Bloody fantastic!

Stop at King Edward River on the way in and relax under the falls, check out ancient art and the sunburst wanjanas.

No comparison. Resort Vs amazing natural wonders of the Kimberley.

Besides, the mudcrabs at Leveque can be dangerous..eh Jack? ;-)

Drysdale to the Mitchell Falls

A stroll to Mitchell Falls

The amazing art of King Edward River

Another stroll to Mitchell Falls

A day of high drama on the Mitchell Plateau

Cape Leveque and the ballad of Kenny the Crab...You Bastaaaaarrrrrddd!


''We knew from the experience of well-known travelers that the
trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
Richard Maurice - 1903

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Follow Up By: Rangiephil - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 08:34

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 08:34
I thought at first the video was about a bloke who stopped to chat when we were taking pics of those cabbage trees. 1 km further there he was with the same, all the studs gone. But his ute was a Navara.
Lesson is don't overload or overtighten.
Needless to say my old Rangie came through unscathed, but I burnt my fingers when I thought I would see how hot the Billies were.
Regards Philip A
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Reply By: Member - Laurie K (WA) - Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 22:59

Thursday, Feb 19, 2015 at 22:59
We did both in 2011. Cape Leveque is at the top of the Dampier Peninsula, and there is much to see and do in the middle. If you are into fishing or camping, there is plenty of both up the west coast above Willie Creek. James Price Point is also in this area.

The Missions are well worth a look, and there are a number of camp grounds towards the top. The roads into many of these are sand tracks. There is a bit to see around One Armed Point, and watch the hump as you approach Kooljaman

We spent a week exploring, and we could have spent more time there.

Mitchell Falls is a must see, but the country is totally different. The road from Drysdale Station to the turnoff is usually shocking, but if driven according to the conditions, you shouldn't destroy your suspension. It's those in a rush who usually wind up in trouble.

We went on to Kalumburu, and the road from the MF turn Off wasn't bad, mind you it had only been open a week or so earlier. The camp grounds beyond the townsite were excellent, especially Honeymoon Bay, and again, some of the roads were sand tracks. In my opinion, if you are going as far as Mitchell Falls, it would be a shame to not visit this area.

My 5 cents worth. Enjoy your trip

Laurie


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Reply By: tim_c - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 09:28

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 09:28
The main attraction of the Mitchell Plateau is the falls. Depending how much water is still around in June, they may not be quite so spectacular that long after the end of the wet season.

Cape Leveque is a nice change from the busy-ness of Broome - I'd recommend staying at Middle Lagoon rather than at Cape Leveque itself - it was a much nicer area.

You may still be able to take a scenic flight over Mitchell Plateau from Drysdale River - this would save you quite a bit of time which might even enable you to see both Cape Leveque and Mitchell Plateau.
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Reply By: pop2jocem - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 14:08

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 14:08
Part of our "lap of the block" last year included the GRR.

We did the seaplane flight from Derby to the Horizontal Falls. A bit of a buzz shooting the two falls in one of their 900 hp open boats and tour through various creeks. Not that cheap, but we figured it was one of those "once in a lifetime" things.

We went up the Kalumburu road as far as Drysdale River Station, the burgers are something else. If that road had a grader over it in living memory I would suggest that the driver should lower his blade about another 300 mm next time.
As the road to the Mitchell Falls was still closed we took a light plane flight from Drysdale to The Kings Cascades and Mitchell Falls. The pilot circles both at around 500 feet altitude. He circles in both directions several times with the appropriate wing dipped so people on both side can get a look and take photos or videos. Once again a cost, but to my mind another "once in a lifetime" experience and didn't tear the suspension out of our vehicle, although that road did give it a good workout.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: birdnerd - Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 11:37

Saturday, Feb 21, 2015 at 11:37
Thanks Pop. No light planes for me though, I don't even like going up in the big ones! Or helicopters! My hubby loves it though. He could go.
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Reply By: Member - BUSH CAMPER - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 16:49

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 16:49
We live in Bannockburn and have done both in the one trip. We took 16 weeks and still didn't see it all.
If you only have a month, I would suggest to do Cape Leveque and leave Mitchell Falls for another trip as once you are on the GRR there is so much to see.
What are you driving and are you towing, and what are you towing?
This has a lot to do with the decision you will have to make.
You will need to book into Cape Leveque as this will be very busy at that time of the year.
Hope this helps.
Regards Hugh
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Follow Up By: birdnerd - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 18:48

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 18:48
Hi Hugh, we are towing a Johnnos off road camper trailer with a Navara. Done the GRR with this, the Cape - not the OTT, Savannah Way, Strezlecki and so far so good!
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Follow Up By: Member - BUSH CAMPER - Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 21:01

Friday, Feb 20, 2015 at 21:01
Friends of ours had a Johnno's and did the Cape OTT with no problems.
Another friend from Banno broke his diff in half on the road to Mitchell Plateau last year, in his colarado, toooooo much weight.
Two years ago we were going to do the Tanami with our off road caravan, but when in Alice we saw vehicals that were damaged by the road so we went the long way. Met up with some people( in Kunanarra) that did it about the time we were planning, and they had no trouble, the grader had just gone thru just before them.
Good travelling but think your short time frame will be a problem.
Stop and smell the roses!!!
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Reply By: Boobook2 - Monday, Feb 23, 2015 at 07:01

Monday, Feb 23, 2015 at 07:01
Make sure you go on a full moon, then take a flight tour to the Horizontal Waterfalls that stops at Cape Leveque on the way back. Get the tour that stops overnight at the falls.
Then go to the Mitchell Falls by 4wd.

Horizontal falls it THE not to miss highlight of the Kimberly in my humble opinion.






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