Conditions: Kingoonya to Wirrulla via Hiltaba?

Submitted: Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 08:09
ThreadID: 136159 Views:790 Replies:8 FollowUps:8
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Early May, I should be travelling north to south from Alice Springs on my way to Maralinga. To avoid the long drive around via Port Augusta, I've been perusing the map for a reasonable short cut.

The shortest shortcut would be the Googs Track. But north to south travel on that route is strongly discouraged. So the next option would be Glendambo to Kingoonya, then south, continuing past Mount Sam to Hiltaba, and then to Wirrulla.

Has anyone been on this route, or at least parts of it, recently? Much of it is shown on the 2014 SA Hema Handy Map as a "major unsealed road." The balance is shown as a "minor unsealed road."

Vehicle will be a hire Hilux 4WD, no trailer.

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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 08:54

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 08:54
Hi Candace

It is a dead easy, wide and most times very good dirt road.

The only time to keep away if it is wet, but that applies to many outback roads.


Cheers


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Reply By: terryt - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 11:23

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 11:23
We were on it about 6 months ago and a good 50k's was as rough as guts. The rest was pretty reasonable.
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Follow Up By: Candace S. - Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 04:53

Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 04:53
Rough due to corrugations? Or something else?
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Reply By: Member - Boobook - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 12:18

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 12:18
Easy Peasy...

Much of it is an easy 80kmph
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Reply By: Member - mechpete - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 13:01

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 13:01
Googs Trk is wasy which ever way you choose to go I come that way in oct an easy
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Reply By: Member - JOHN C16 - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 15:50

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 15:50
Hi Candace,

North to south travel on Googs Track was strongly discouraged a few years ago. That no longer seems to be the case. I travelled Googs in both directions in April 2017. Here are some photos of the signs on the track:









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Follow Up By: Candace S. - Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 04:51

Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 04:51
Interesting! On the Yellabina RR web page (have to click around a lot to find it) it still encourages south to north travel. But, not mandatory. Thx for the pics.

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Reply By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 16:35

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 16:35
While Googs would be a nice way to go, you're in a hire Hilux 4WD, most likely this would make it impractical.
If they said ok, I would go for it, plenty of fuel, it's a great track with lots to see.
(Do take a few hours to climb Mt Finke from the camp, 2 peaks, main one through the saddle, write in the log book.)

Secondly, you would need certain supplies (ample fuel / water, comms), and certainly a sand flag, which might be awkward getting set up on a hire vehicle.
If a suitable bullbar is fitted, then a stout length pf PVC pipe, a bright safety flag of sorts, and some good old duct tape should get you through.

Googs isn't hard for experienced 4WDrs, but just last week a German visitor had to be rescued from Googs, got a flat and no spare. Could have been tragic, it was in the hot spell and they LEFT the vehicle !
A German backpacker rescued on Googs Track

I would even be double checking the hire co to ensure you can even go via Kingoonya - Wirrulla Road, before you get to advanced planning this.
I know a young bloke that actually broke a rear leaf spring on a PX Ranger series 1 driving through there, hit the edge of a small side ditch, so was mostly driver error, but these are primitive roads that only get periodic maintenance.
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:15

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:15
Hi Les

I like the bit about no spare tyre, and walking 40 kilometres to get phone reception.


What do we say about a PLB or SPOT.

When will they ever learn.



Cheers


Stephen
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:31

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:31
To think just taking a spare might help too !!
He did it around Wed 17th, it was 40c that day !!!
And 43c on Thursday, so lucky he didn't perish . . . those were Ceduna coastal temps too.
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:55

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 at 18:55
Makes a great story for when they get back home
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Follow Up By: Candace S. - Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 05:00

Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 05:00
I sent Britz a preliminary list of tracks I might do, including Googs, and Googs was not rejected (though the Finke Road was!?).

I would expect the vehicle to have a bull bar. I wouldn't be hiring out 4WDs for Outback use without them. But in the end, until I get the vehicle I won't know 100% for sure!

I was going to bring a folding, shock-corded tent pole to serve as a sand flag mast.

Oh and I'll have a plb and sat phone. :)
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 07:23

Sunday, Jan 28, 2018 at 07:23
You should be ok then, Britz are often seen crossing the SA Simpson, but I've always wondered if they had the ok for it !!

I would be dubious about initial track oks from a hire co, rejecting Finke Rd and not Googs is just so confusing.

A shock corded tent pole will last a minute or so (if not seconds) under those conds, even if the strongest one you can find.
Either a 3 piece mining one (about $100) or the $15 - $20 3m length of 30mm to 40mm dia PVC pipe would be the go, fluro singlet from one of the big discount stores secured on, and you're set (with a good dozen wraps of duct tape !).
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Follow Up By: Candace S. - Friday, Feb 09, 2018 at 03:20

Friday, Feb 09, 2018 at 03:20
After some back-and-forth with Britz: When I asked them about the "Finke Road" I was thinking of the road between Kulgera and Finke. Which turns out to be fine. Its the road between Maryvale and Finke that is not allowed.

Britz does allow their vehicles on the Simpson, but it is one of the tracks/locales that require prior written permission:

See section 17.3

40.2 in that same document mentions GPS tracking... ;)
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Reply By: Duncan M4 - Monday, Jan 29, 2018 at 15:08

Monday, Jan 29, 2018 at 15:08
You dont need to go down all the way to Glendambo to get to Kingoonya. 50klms north of Glendambo there's a shortcut through to Kingoonya - its sign posted. Excellent dirt road, and it will take at least 50klms off your journey.

Its well worth overnighting in Kingoonya, the little pub does good simple meals and a few beers on the verandah before hand will be thoroughly enjoyable.

The town campground has good clean toilets and its always stocked with firewood.
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Reply By: Member - Rustygq - Monday, Jan 29, 2018 at 15:11

Monday, Jan 29, 2018 at 15:11
We did most of that in October last year. Mostly good big wide dirt road, a few corras here and there. Have a night at Kingoonya Pub, its a great stopover, cheap basic rooms and a top feed. I dont think Id do Googs in a hire truck. Pretty remote and places like that you should be well prepared and have a pretty reasonable cache of spares. Prefer to have my own trusty Patrol underneath me. I dont see that there's much difference in nth /sth or sth / nth on Googs, pros an cons for both. And if your doing Googs, it'd be a shame not to go out to Narla an Lois Rocks.
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