Simpson loop

Submitted: Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 10:28
ThreadID: 136448 Views:1206 Replies:7 FollowUps:14
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Hi

I am planning a trip to the Simpson with some friends. We are planning on driving from Canberra to Innaminka or Birdsville (maybe via the Flinders).

We would leave our campers behind and cross the Simpson (possibly heading up to Alice via the Hay River Track) then return to our campers. One family plans to continue on a bigger trip to the Kimberly etc and we will return home.

We would prefer not to backtrack if possible.

Has anyone done a similar loop through the Simpson?

Cheers

Chris
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Reply By: Member - mechpete - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 10:43

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 10:43
how are ya
if you plan on travelling the Hay river track there is a $200 per vehicle permit
cost , an about 4pages to fill in an allow a few weeks for it to happen
but its a great drive
cheers mechpete
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Follow Up By: CKG - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 10:55

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 10:55
Thanks Pete. Good to know.
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Reply By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 20:26

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 20:26
A moderate flood is moving down both Eyre Ck and the Diamantina. The latter arrived in Birdsville on Saturday so it's early days yet before the winter travel season. But on the other hand the flows are very slow and will take months to recede.This means that the 2018 season for Simpson travel is going to be affected.
Both rivers merge before the Warburton Crossing so this is bound to go under. Check out the pix in Places. Similarly Eyre Ck 60 km west of Birdsville will be flooded within a month and will stay under IMO until at least July. There is a bypass but it adds 120 km to a trip. Again, check Places....... W
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:00

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:00
Eyre Ck bypass is only + 60km, about 30 each way.
But then people doing the crossing should have enough extra fuel / food / water to cater for at least another half a crossing for exceptional detours / delays.
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:13

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:13
Major flood in Diamantina, Warrie, though this water at Birdsville at the moment, is from an earlier channel run 4-6 weeks earlier.

Bit of a bugger about Warburton Crossing as I had plans for a trip in August, going that way onto the Rig Road.

Bob

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Follow Up By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:41

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:41
Yup Les, about 30 km up to bypass from QAA line. Bob, you might be OK by August for the Warburton. It's a rocky base so if it's only half a metre it might be doable without too much angst.We shall see what nature has in store....W
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Reply By: Member - nick b boab - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 20:49

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 20:49
Chris : you haven't said when your going to do this trip ?
you maybe better going on the Oodnadatta rd to Mt dare leaving campers
traveling into the desert weather permitting & returning , if birdsville is flooded
then continuing on your travels .
Cheers Nickb

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Follow Up By: CKG - Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 10:18

Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 10:18
Thanks Nick

This looks like a good approach. Less kms for the family that is continuing to the Kimberly.
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Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 20:54

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 20:54
When is this trip likely to occur, Chris? Just that both Georgina & Diamantina Rivers might impact on travel plans perhaps? In doing a loop, the QAA Line often has to be travelled twice.

I would have suggested, without your Alice trip, QAA to Poeppels Corner, either K1 or Knolls Track to Rig Road, then to Dalhousie and/or Mt Dare(for fuel) and return via French Line, or WAA Line.

If you are all adventurous, you could return via Madigan Track, but you'll need a permit for that. Don't forget you'll need a Desert Parks pass for SA sections of Simpson.

That's just for starters, Chris,

Bob

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Reply By: Les - PK Ranger - Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:07

Tuesday, Mar 20, 2018 at 21:07
Leaving campers is the tough part, probable leaving them at somewhere like Farina or Maree is best, you can go up the Ood Tk and do a west - east crossing, then down BV Tk, limiting the need to cover too much ground retrieving campers.
(Or vice versa route.)

You could come up via Yunta and back roads via Gammon Ranges / Arkaroola etc, to come out at Lyndhurst (short trip down Strz Tk), then up to Farina / Maree, and return trip down to Parachilna and into the Flinders.

If you do a double crossing in SA or one way via Madigan Line, you can leave campers at BV Cara Pk most likely, and do a route up via Cameron Cnr / Strz Tk, and return down BV Tk and Flinders.
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Reply By: CKG - Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 07:35

Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 07:35
Thanks for all your replies. I’d love to go up there this year with some water about. But I am planning well ahead to spring 2019.

I will be poring over my maps plotting your suggested routes.

I like the idea of going via the Flinders on the way there or back.

Thanks

Chris
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Reply By: CKG - Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 10:21

Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 10:21
Current thinking:

Canberra - Flinders Ranges - Oodnadatta - Mt Dare.

Leave our campers and head northeast crossing via the Madigan Line to Birdsville.

Return to Mt Dare via QAA and French's Line.

Then on to Alice.

Any thoughts?

Cheers

Chris
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Follow Up By: Crackles - Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 22:26

Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018 at 22:26
Broken Hill, Tibooburra, Innamincka, Strzelecki, then head up to Oodnadatta dropping the campers off at Mt Dare then crossing via the Rig Road & up to Birdsville. Refuel then back across via the French line, pick up the campers then onto Alice Springs via Old Andado.
I'd suggest leaving the Madigan as it's a bit of a mission which may get complicated with campers to pick up.
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 07:07

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 07:07
Would change Simpson crossings, Crackles, to W-E on French Line, then return to Mt Dare via K1 and Rig Road. Not a lot of fun doing E-W on the French Line!

Rig Road is a very pleasurable drive, and no much traffic..........maybe I'd better shut up.

If Chris & friends have fuel quantities required for a Madigan lap, can't see why they couldn't do that too? Just adds an extra few days.

Bob

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Follow Up By: CKG - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 11:42

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 11:42
Thanks Bob and Crackles

I have been looking a bit more into Madigan and agree it is a challenge - but probably more like what we're looking for (ie not much traffic).

But, it might be a bit too tough for the other families (not experienced 4wders. I also saw on here that you need to carry at least 300 litres of diesel per vehicle. We're putting in a long range tank - but for the others, that's a lot of gerry cans!

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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 15:54

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 15:54
Chris,

Just checked some old records and in 2016 we used 128L from Mt Dare to Birdsville, on Madigan via Hay River track & QAA Line. In a Landcruiser V8 s/cab ute, alloy canopy & 2 bodies on board. The couple we travelled with only used about 170L for the entire Birdsville-Mt Dare-Birdsville trip, in a Dmax extra cab, with an alloy canopy.

The Madigan could be classed as slow, as most of the way we were using 2nd gear, High range, up to Camp 15. Once on the Hay River track to 16, and eastward to 17-22, the country opens up a bit and 3rd, & even 4th, makes travelling a bit quicker.

Bob

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Follow Up By: CKG - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 16:54

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 16:54
So, 300 litres is probably excessive. I have a 200 series and the fuel consumption on sand can be very high.

How many days did the Madigan line take you?

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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 19:58

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 19:58
Madigan is not long stretches of heavy sand, over all. Western approaches are fairly short, until you get down towards Camps 17-20, where the dunes are higher and require longer run ups.

Last year, we took 5.5 days, Mt Dare to Birdsville, including Camps 17-22, through Adria Downs. Early on 2nd day, we passed a group of 5 vehicles towing 2 trailers, and kept our group going to keep ahead of them, until Camp 13. Just taking your time, could take 7-10 days, Chris. Just means carrying extra water/tucker, if you have the room.

In 2016, we took the same number of days, via Hay River, Beachcomber Oil Well & QAA Line.

Bob

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Follow Up By: Crackles - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 20:21

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 20:21
The reason I discounted the Madigan is the entire convoy needs to be well prepared & completely self sufficient & I wasn't getting the impression Chris your group knows their way around the desert that well yet? Much of the route is just a pair of very rough unformed wheel tracks (if not virgin dunes). You'll see big variation in fuel consumption as sand conditions & detours for water can vary from season to season. Also some just blaze straight across while others take side runs to points of interest. From memory we used 175L over 7 days in a 100 series but of course carried a lot more for possible detours.
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 22:07

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 22:07
Chris,

Re fuel use on Madigan, forgot to add that we carried 260L total fuel, though only used 128L in 2016.

Bob

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Follow Up By: CKG - Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 23:06

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018 at 23:06
Absolutely right Crackles. I reckon we should leave the Madigan Line to another trip. I’d love an excuse to go back for more!
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