Simmo at the moment

Submitted: Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 14:01
ThreadID: 130661 Views:1879 Replies:7 FollowUps:16
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Anyone been out the last few days ?
Just looking to know what you experienced, as I leave Brisbane Sat for a 2 day drive over to Inna way, then Walkers to BV Tk and Warburton and Rig Rd crossing.

I already know it will be 'warm-ish' and there will be loads of flies, such is life :)

Really wanting to know what it's like compared to recent temps at Birdsville, they've had 45s in the past week or so, and are heading that way again now to low 40s Sun / Mon coming.
I'm guessing g it will be the usual 5 degrees hotter in the desert, but maybe it'll be +10 ??

With such temps, I wonder why it's open until end Nov ?
Surely it is goi g to be getting a bit to warm by that time, if late Oct might be 50 ?
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Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 15:54

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 15:54
Hi Les,

We came across the Simpson (W to E) a couple of years ago in the first week of November with the temperature at 42 degrees. But as you would realise, in any year it could be well above or below that.
As you say, it would be at least Birdsville temperature but possibly 5 degrees higher.
Incidentally, we came through the Rig Road this year and it was a pleasant change from the WAA / French Line but the flies were as bad as ever out there! Don't leave home without your fly net!

But what I really wanted to ask you was, if you go through Walker's Crossing, take a look at the bridge for me and see if there are Armco guard rails on the approaches. I know that they were on the bridge itself but believed that there were none on the approach ramps until I saw Idler Chris' photo as per Thread 130409. Set me straight for once-and-for-all mate if you can.

Have a great trip.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:25

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:25
Yeah looking forward to rig rd route, supposed to be different :)
Was going to take a few pics for you at walkers, and ask at Inna pub and or any property types or road crew I might see about the railings and bridge in general.
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Follow Up By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 21:28

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 21:28
Hi Allan. Bridge at Walkers Crossing shown in picture taken Sept 8th this year. It's got guard rails as do approaches. Closed possibly due to cracked concrete at end of bridge where dirt road ends. Plenty of flies at our lunch stop too .... W
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 08:35

Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 08:35
Thanks Warrie,
We camped there right next to the approach ramp on 13 September this year and I sat in camp gazing at the ramp thinking of the need to be careful to not put the wheels off the edge as there were no guard rails. Looking at your picture I can now see that the rails on the far side extend only a short distance down the ramp leaving much of it unprotected. The unseen near eastern side rails are probably the same. This would possibly explain my confusion........ or I am totally delusional.
Pretty decent bridge, isn't it?
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Oct 31, 2015 at 13:30

Saturday, Oct 31, 2015 at 13:30
..
Tried to find other thread with search, but no luck.

So, railings all there of course, no sign of them being removed / replaced at all.







In Warries post above it looks like the right near approach rail is different, but suspect he was standing in the little angled join you can see in my pic.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Saturday, Oct 31, 2015 at 14:11

Saturday, Oct 31, 2015 at 14:11
Thanks Les, I think now that I was contemplating the lower section of the ramp where there is no guard rail yet still with a narrow ramp and significant drop-off and thinking of the need for some care. Somehow I translated that into my mind as being "no" rails. All settled now!

I read your blog on the crossing. You had a good trip and yes, the flies are bad! I just need to remember to 'lift the veil' before stuffing something into my mouth. Fly mesh has a surprising taste!
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Oct 31, 2015 at 14:19

Saturday, Oct 31, 2015 at 14:19
I think you've nailed the crossing thing Allan, further out there were no rails ever.

Yes, you can drink water and even beer through fly veil, but food not so easily :D
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Reply By: Jackolux - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:40

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:40
I think ''warm-ish'' will be a understatement , you have to remember that the temp is in the shade .

In the Desert between the dunes with no shade , it will be a hell of a lot hotter .

I was talked into going there in April one year , never again , all we could do was sit in the vehicle with the aircon flat out . The vehicles never overheated , just as well .
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:59

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:59
Yes Jack, warm-ish was meant to mean bloody hot, but used to it and don't mind it myself, as long as the vehicles are up to it we should be fine.

As I said, I am very surprised it doesn't close end Oct, rather than end Nov.
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Reply By: Ozi M - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:57

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 16:57
I did Birdsville Track 3 weeks ago, talking to Phil at Mungerannie and he had come back that afternoon from the Simmo and he said the track was chopped up very badly.

Said it had been a dry winter and lots of tourists this year, the worst he has seen it for years was his description.
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 17:07

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 17:07
Yes, he might have done French Line ?
That was really rough in July.
Rig is generally less travelled, especially via Warburton entry.
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Reply By: SKEB - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 20:36

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 20:36
G'day Les,

Just back home from a boys trip out west which included Cameron Corner, across to the Strez, up to Moomba and Walkers Crossing to Birdsvllle Track, down to Mungerannie, up to Warburton Track and then K1 to Poeppel Cnr then QAA to Birdsville and then adventures further north.

If approaching Walkers from the Sth side of Moomba roads are a breeze but directions are non existent. Walkers is in reasonable condition, same as it was 2 yrs ago, actually good nick for an outback track. Birdsville track down to Mungerannie was in my opinion good, sections ok for cruising at 100 with care others in need of roadworks which was in progress. Warburton entry (maybe 5-10 kms) rough but easy with care, Warburton from there to Rig Rd in good nick and great drive. Sorry can't tell you about Rig Rd at moment, however the main Simpson QAA very chopped up on West side but smoother on East side. Why?? Lots of guesses from what we saw out there but that's a debate for another day.
We did the Rig 2 yrs ago at the same time of year, it was a lot less travelled and as such was in good condition with soft sand crests at top of dunes due to less traffic but no whoop de doo's up the dunes.
Temps were between 40-45 and about 23-25 at night, we travelled with no air con as we prefer to experience the full desert experience, not for some I guess. It was zero humidity so very bearable, flies were a big problem this time, take some bushmans 80%deet or similar, this worked for us. We always found plenty of shade in the valleys between dunes under the trees, some valleys had none others heaps.
Hope this helps a bit, enjoy the trip. Wish I was back out there and not at work.
Simon.
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 21:27

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 21:27
Thanks Simon, yeah that's a help mate Ta.

We will be pretty flexible and play it by ear, worst comes to worst, we can find some shade or use ours (awning) and rest up for 4 or 5 hours in the heat of the day noon to late arvo, then do some driving into the dusk, if it's really bad.

Good to know about current Warburton to Rig / K1 junction, has heard it had a fair bit of road works in recent past, maybe it has, we will find out I guess.

Yes July we all thought we were lucky going west, most say the other way easier, but starting to look even, or possibly better going east - west.

From Innamincka, we will take Fufteen Mile track up to Walkers and to the BV Tk junction, much nicer but you're right, poor signage through there but have food Nav software and route all plotted out ok.

Will be a change to take lightweight sleeping gear this trip, expecting mild nights around 20c.

Thanks again, will be sure to post up what we experience out there.
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Follow Up By: salee75 - Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 16:59

Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 16:59
Found the Walkers Crossing track from Innamincka to the Birdsville track well sign posted when I was there a couple of weeks ago.

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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 17:07

Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 17:07
Agreed. There is adequate signage but some turns are unexpected so it pays to read the signs.
There are of course many roads going off to well sites, but signed.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: SKEB - Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 17:44

Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 17:44
Having previously approached Walkers crossing from the North or Innaminicka side of Moomba agree that signage is adequate to read from that direction, this time following GPS from Sth side of Moomba we were directed onto well formed mining/gas roads that skirted around the Sth of Moomba and intersected with the track from the Nth side with no signs to read. Once on this it was signed to Birdsville.
Unsure if these roads were designated public use but we're certainly not signed either way, roads leaving this were identified as mining or gas and not public access.
As your approaching from the Innaminicka side it will be no problem.
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Reply By: The Landy - Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 06:21

Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 06:21
Les

I look forward to hearing about it. I'm a big fan of experiencing travel at different times as it almost will always show a different perspective. Like travelling in the north during the wet season...

I've no doubt you will be well prepared.

Enjoy, Baz
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 06:29

Thursday, Oct 22, 2015 at 06:29
Cheers Baz, yes after July French Line and the crowds, think I prefer such epics in the shoulder seasons either side of the most popular month.

Ranger is going so well, with mods it's running better than when new, and confident of it for the run.
Preps going very well, just looking for canopy RH tilt window as I am over the slider that side, would love another tilt that side for the trip too.
Trying a few 4wd wreckers today.

Cheers mate.
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Reply By: Member - Graham D2 - Tuesday, Oct 27, 2015 at 12:19

Tuesday, Oct 27, 2015 at 12:19
What time of the year is it better to travel excluding the busiest months?

Graham
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Tuesday, Oct 27, 2015 at 15:18

Tuesday, Oct 27, 2015 at 15:18
Graham, it somewhat depends on what you consider "better".

S.A. Natural Resources dept closes the Simpson desert crossing to all travel from 1st December until the 15th March each year for safety reasons due to extreme heat.
Even in March it can still be pretty hot so it would be best to wait until May at least.
Getting rather hot again in October so "best" time to travel is between May and September.
Then the Birdsville Races are held in September and add a lot of crossing traffic at that time.
So it comes down to June, July and August........along with most other punters!
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Member - Graham D2 - Tuesday, Oct 27, 2015 at 23:08

Tuesday, Oct 27, 2015 at 23:08
Thanks Allan. Late May early June looks a good bet.
Graham
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Friday, Oct 30, 2015 at 00:42

Friday, Oct 30, 2015 at 00:42
August would be reasonable too I feel.
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Reply By: Les - PK Ranger - Friday, Oct 30, 2015 at 00:56

Friday, Oct 30, 2015 at 00:56
Anyway, crossing was great !!
Sure 'twas warm but stayed below estimated 45c.
Flies were a little annoying from early light until about 1000, and again from about 1500 or so (or when behind afternoon cloud), right up to virtually totally dark.
Figure between those times it was too hot for them.
Was a great crossing perfect to plan, now in cabin in Coober Pedy, tomorrow the drive home to Adelaide is a breeze.

Allan, the Walkers bridge has all railings on bridge itself and approaches.
I have pics :) will post on return to town and decent computer.

This link takes you to (hopefully) to the main Simmo TR, page 2.
Les's Oct Brissy road trip and Simmo
Start of thread includes trip Adelaide to Brisbane and Straddie, plus road trip west from Brisvegas.

Bob Y from this forum joined me on this run, great bloke :)
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