Gibb river & Tanami Trek in April

Submitted: Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 00:54
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Please can someone help with information about the Gibb River Road and the Tanami trek....I have never been along the Gibb River Road before and where heading off in the middle of April ....I wish to travel from Derby to Kununnurra via the Gibb River road and then to Halls Creek via the highway ...Then we want to go down the Tanami trek to Alice Springs/Aryers Rock and from there accross to Leonora....Has anyone done this before and if so could i do with as much information as possible to make the trip a safe one....Also i would like to know if the Gibb River road is open from approx 15/04...We are travelling in a landcruiser 100 series and have coopers 305 st tyres 6 of and 270 litre tank duel batteries and built in air compressor bull bar spotties and the usual amounts of water....Please, advice or recomendations would be appreciated....

Regards Phil
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Reply By: Patsy - Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 07:31

Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 07:31
We have only done part of the Gibb River Road from Windjana through to Bells Gorge and then back to Derby so cannot tell you too much about that but we have done the Tanami from Alice return (September 2002), The road from Alice was sealed for the first 160 or so kms and was quite picturesque with the Macdonell Range off to the south. It then turned into gravel 30 or so kms from Tilmouth Well. This is a good road house which has a pool, camp ground, bar, shop and of course, fuel. The road from here on up was extremely corrugated but found that if we kept our speed up around 85-90 then it ironed out the ride. Watch out for the road trains and camels on the road. The road train drivers are very considerate but do throw up a lot of dust. The camels on the other hand, are not as considerate. At the time we went, almost the entire length of the Tanami had been burned off, so pulling off the road to camp in a picturesque setting was hard to find. We did however spend a night at Renehans Bore. There is the remains of a windmill, water tank and water trough here and fresh water in a tank on the siding. We pulled into Rabbit Flats for a look (fuel is extremely expensive here) and the woman attendant was locked behind a cage door inside. Must be a pretty scary place at times. We took the time to pull in to see Wolfes Creek Crater and this was well worth the look.
Cheers
Patsy
AnswerID: 50492

Reply By: Willem - Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 08:56

Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 08:56
If you are leaving Derby in mid-April you had better check the road conditions as some of the rivers and creeks may still be too deep to cross. It depends on the wet season. All the roads you are talikg about are an easy drive in a 4x4. Just take care and drive to road conditions. Do not speed out along these tracks as there are bulldust patches in places and you can roll your vehicle quite easily if you are not observant. Make it an adventure and enjoy the places and characters along these routes.
AnswerID: 50500

Reply By: Member - Mal (Brisbane) - Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 10:14

Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 10:14
Phil,

Depending on the wet all that trip will be OK. You will need permits to go from Ayres Rock to Warburton, but one of the benifits in having these permits is that you don't have to pay to get into the Ayres Rock National Park. Show them the permits and tell them you are on your way to Warburton and they don't charge you, but you can still stay at Ayres Rock camping ground/resort and do the touristy things.

Have a grerat trip.

Mal T.
AnswerID: 50510

Reply By: Moose - Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 14:13

Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 14:13
check out the Trek Notes section on this site - under Topic Searh on the left side of screen. Heaps of other useful stuff there.
AnswerID: 50528

Reply By: Davoe - Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 15:56

Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 15:56
Instead of heading from derby straight onto the grr try going to fitzroy crossing- Geike gorge then backtrack 70k and take the road north to join up with the grr as this will take you past tunnel creek and windjana gorge all of which is not to be missed. I think they have had a decent wet so you would be well advised to phone the tourist beureus in Derby and Kunnunurra to find out local conditions as it is probable that places such as Bell Gorge and the Mitchell plat could well be closed or Ann from Drysdale station could also be a good source of info
AnswerID: 50538

Reply By: Member - Errol (York WA) - Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 19:03

Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 19:03
Ring this number 91911426 ( Derby vistors center ) and ask them to send you there latest GRR booklet . Thea ask you to call in when in Derby and pay the cost , witck is $4 . We,ll be doing the same trip leaving at the end of May , also be going up to the Mitchel falls , (another $50 bucks added to the trip ) . Cheers .
AnswerID: 50562

Reply By: maverick - Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 19:06

Tuesday, Mar 16, 2004 at 19:06
currently - wet / wet / wet and more wet forecast. tanami is just wet and no work until mid april - if no more rain. might be better to wait another few weeks.
rgds
Slow down and relax......

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AnswerID: 50563

Reply By: Hankster - Thursday, Mar 25, 2004 at 14:39

Thursday, Mar 25, 2004 at 14:39
Tanami is closed at Billiluna right now (130k's from Halls Creek) and has been for about 5 weeks because the Sturt Creek is up at about 1.8 metres. I travel this road every few weeks for work. With this cyclone bringing in rain again, who knows when it will re-open... Best to ring the Shire of Halls Creek to save disappointment. Other than that, the road is fine. I just drove from Rabbit Flat over the border to Billiluna the other day. As far as the Gibb River Road goes, I'll be taking my family in the last week of May and I'm still hoping the creeks won't be too high then!! There has been a lot of water up that way recently and you may find quite a few high creek crossings in mid April. Best to contant Drysdale Station for advice.

Hope this helps.
AnswerID: 51916

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