Oodnadatta track = July 2018

Submitted: Saturday, Apr 21, 2018 at 23:23
ThreadID: 136596 Views:1151 Replies:3 FollowUps:20
can anyony advise how long it takes to get from William Creek s.a to Coward Springs Camp and then to Marree s.a towing a camper trailer?
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Reply By: Member - Boobook - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 06:07

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 06:07
It's about an hour to Coward Springs, and another 2 from there to Maree. Not including sightseeing and pee stops
Tony
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Follow Up By: gary l5 - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 15:39

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 15:39
Hi Tony,
thanks for your comments. Much appreciated.
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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 09:31

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 09:31
Hi Gary

How long is a piece of string?.........

Are you going to stop and check out the countless attractions along the way, or just making a 'B' line from William Creek to Marree?

If it is a 'B' line trip, then less than 4 hours.

If you are in no hurry and want to see the many great attractions along the way, then a comfortable 2 days without pushing it.

We have driven it a few times, and most times we were using it from going from point A to point B and did it like most people do.

Back in 2016 we did it purely as a tourist drive and spent a lot of time along the way, and stopped at everything that there is to see along the complete Oodnadatta Track that you can view here on my Oodnadatta Track Blog

If it is your first drive, take your time and check out the history along the drive.

Also from Marree, make sure that you drop in and stay at Farina, which is one place we always stay at when up that way.




Cheers



Stephen
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Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 10:21

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 10:21
Hi Stephen,

We did a trip along the Oodnadatta Track and stayed at William Creek for four days. The woman at the Dingo Cafe (open at the time) hit her chin on the counter top in amazement that we booked for 2 nights at the caravan park, then extended our stay and booked another 2.
We drove out to Halligan bay one day, then called in to see Trevor Wright on the way back and he offered an attractive price for a sunset flight to the painted hills, then another flight the next day over Lake Eyre, along the edge of the Simpson Desert to Dalhousie Springs for a swim and an Oodna Burger lunch with Adam Plate at the Pink Roadhouse. Great experience we hadn't planned for.
Ya just cant rush these things can you?
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Follow Up By: gary l5 - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 15:38

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 15:38
Hi Stephen,
thank you very much for your comments and advise. (2 days sounds good).

I had a look a your blog which is great. Looks and sounds like you had a great trip. I will use it to plan my trip back from Coober Pedy to Marree and then home to Ballarat.

thanks Gary
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Reply By: RMD - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 11:41

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 11:41
I am not anyony but:
How long it takes is entirely up to you, drive faster it is shorter time. Drive slower and see the country and the ever changing features and be able to appreciate it, means you actually get to experience and learn about the area. Recommended.

The faster you drive the more you have to concentrate to not kill yourself in a dip as well as breaking the vehicle.
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Follow Up By: gary l5 - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 15:33

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 15:33
No worries. I appreciate what you are saying.
I am trying to plan a holiday back from Coober Pedy to Ballarat and I only have a limitted number of days.
So if I work on 2 days from Coober Pedy to Marree that should be ok...

thanks Gary
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Follow Up By: splits - Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 23:11

Sunday, Apr 22, 2018 at 23:11
Two days on paper should be easy but you are taking a risk by setting time limits on those types of roads. They are wide,flat and mostly straight which all sounds good but they have more than their share of accidents, particularly roll overs.

About three years ago, Vic Widman TRAINING of Great Divide Tours wrote an article in On The Road magazine about the need for driver training on good unsealed roads because of the high accident rate. There is plenty of training available for rough mountain tracks but serious accidents are rare in those areas mainly because speeds are so low.

The same can not be said for roads like the Oodnadatta or Birdsville Tracks. You can be hurtling along at 80 to 100 kph and suddenly come upon a deep dip, a sandy patch, large corrugations half way through a long sweeping bend, rocky sections and so on. If you go into some of them too fast, you can be upside down in seconds. You must be travelling at a speed that will allow you to stop withing the distance you can clearly see and expect the unexpected.

Excessive speed is the big killer in those areas and there is no such thing as a safe cruising speed.
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 07:33

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 07:33
Hi Splits

You made a claim "there is no such thing as a safe cruising speed"

First of all if your follow a few golden rules when travelling on any of out great Australian Outback Roads, you will have a safer trip than travelling at high speed, which I would say 100kph of roads like the Oodnadatta Track, Birdsville Track and the like is far too high for a safe trip.

The first thing any experienced outback driver will do is decrease tyre pressures, and likewise drop your speed to accomodate the pressures selected, and in most cases would set around 80kph as a maximum speed.

Also another pet hate when travelling on any stoney road is when the approaching vehicle does not slow down and showers you with stones.



Cheers



Stephen

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Follow Up By: KevinE - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 08:28

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 08:28
Yup! We always slow right down when we spot the oncoming dust trail of another vehicle coming the other way. But we've had this happen to us on just about every dirt road we've traveled on! I think that it's lack of thought, they often speed past, kicking up rocks & the look on their faces seems to say that they are wondering why I've slowed down?

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Follow Up By: RMD - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 11:33

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 11:33
While this isn't the OP situation,
Having travelled that road a few times I have been passed and also overtaken by the larger 4wd's towing dual axle large vans which were travelling approx 30kmh faster than I would tow them.

"Offroad van, off road 4wd, Gung Ho and off we go", is their motto.
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 12:05

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 12:05
Hi RMD

So very true and then they wonder why the roll and someone gets hurt.


Cheers

Stephen
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Follow Up By: Nacho - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 13:43

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 13:43
And bone heads towing camper trailers are the biggest culprits, we've had 3 windscreens done by them. The ones that have that stupid shade cloth angled down are the worst, stones bounce from their rear wheel on to them with an almighty force.
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 13:53

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 13:53
Hey Nacho

Not sure why you paint those that tow camper trailers as "Bone Heads"

To my it sounds like you are more than a bone head.....3 broken windscreens...

I thought you would have learnt by no 2.

Slow right down and sometimes you may have to come to a complete standstill if the oncoming vehicle is still going like the proverbial.

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Follow Up By: Nacho - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 14:09

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 14:09
Where did I say I didn't slow down or stop and clearly I've struck a cord :)
And yes the one's who are going too fast and don't slow down are boneheads or whatever you're preferred endearment is.
And those shade cloths on campers should be banned.
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 14:36

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 14:36
Nacho

If you were at a complete stand still and pulled right off the road, as I have done countless time, you should be free from that rock shower and a possible broken windscreen.

I have found that most people on bush road are very courteous and will usually slow right down and do the right thing, but then there are those that drive like there is no tomorrow and they are the ones that cause problems.

As for broken windscreens, most of mine have been caused by large trucks on the bitumen.

We have a moto when on dirt roads, "If in Doubt, sit it out" and will stop a lot of grief.

The picture below show our moto in action for two very good reason.

Firstly, road trains need as much road space as possible and secondly you will never know if some moron is trying to pass them through that cloud of dust. A friend on mine that once worked up in Moomba told me he was called out a number of times for that very reason, someone dead set to pass a truck through a cloud of dust without knowing what is coming the other way, with the end result not very pretty.


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Follow Up By: KevinE - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 16:08

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 16:08
My experiences have involved 4x4's not towing, and those towing CT's & those even towing caravans. But they are in the minority, as already said above.

Of course, there are exceptions, but a personal observation of mine has been that the more 4x4 accessories that they have loaded onto the roof of their rig, the more likely it is that they haven't much experience on those roads.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 17:36

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 17:36
.
Errr, Nacho, maybe you do slow down but you certainly have not "struck a cord".
If you could strike anything, it would be a 'chord'.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Jarse - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 20:35

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 20:35
We have a real Einstein here. The ‘shadecloth’ actually absorbs the energy of the stones that hit - it doesn’t act like a trampoline and bounce them off as someone here implies.

3 windscreens, eh? And all by the same vehicle combinations? Is that bovine excrement I smell??
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Follow Up By: gary l5 - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 21:20

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 21:20
It's amazing how a simple question regarding travel times can change, evolve, speed up, slow down, change direction, cause damage and develop into bullshit!!!!!
Well done everyone......
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Follow Up By: splits - Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 21:30

Monday, Apr 23, 2018 at 21:30
Stephen

The first thing any experienced outback driver will do is decrease tyre pressures, and likewise drop your speed to accomodate the pressures selected,
-----------------------------------------------------------

Last Sunday I was watching Pat Callinan's show on TV. He mentioned reduced speeds with reduced tyre pressures. He said don't exceed 100 kph!

I have never reduce pressures on those type of roads and have never had a problem. I started driving on them in south western Qld in 1967 then followed it up with four trips over the Nullarbor in an EH Holden in 1972/73. There was still around 500 ks of unsealed road in SA in those days.

The car manufacturers recommended pressures are so low anyway that I doubt if anyone would want to reduce them but they work perfectly everywhere from freeways to the Oodnadatta to the Gunbarrell west of Warburton and many mountain tracks.

My speed on unsealed roads or tracks is anything from near stopped to around 70 kph and I don't get up to 70 very often.

I was working in the motor industry in rural NSW in the '70s. I can't remember any of our out of town customers mentioning reducing pressures.

If you want to change tyre sizes and use whatever pressures you think is best then you are on your own. I prefer to let the manufacturer's engineering team work it all out for me. The rest of the car works very well so why shouldn't their tyre size and pressures do the same? If they want them reduced they will put it in the handbook.


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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 08:10

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 08:10
Hi Splits

First of all it sounds like you do not like change.

When you worded in the Motor Industry way back nearly 50 odd years ago, first of all there were only very basic four wheel drive Work Horses that in no way can be compared to todays modern four wheel drive vehicles and then you are also trying to compare tyres from that period.........what a joke

Another very leaned person for correct tyre pressures for outback travel was the late Adam Plate from the Oodnadatta Pink Roadhouse. Adam spend years repairing tyres and wanted to pass on his guide for safer outback travel.

As for your details about new vehicle manufactures not quoting reduced tyre pressures, is quite simple....Most four wheel drives that are purchased are used as "Toorak Tractors" and never get off the bitumen, with a quoted around 5% of new vehicles sold ever used in true four wheel drive country.

Have a read of this Pink Roadhouse Outback Tyre Pressure Guide.

We all have our own thoughts, but if you still want to live with nearly 50 year old thoughts, then you are most welcome to, but the very first thing you will notice if you want to try some modern thoughts, is just how much more comfortable the drive will be on heavily corrugated roads and you will feel that your vehicle is not going to shake to pieces.
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Follow Up By: splits - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 22:38

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 22:38
but if you still want to live with nearly 50 year old thoughts, then you are most welcome to
------------------------------------------

The first thing you learn when working in the motor industry is cars never stop changing. When I started one of our customers had a 1928 sleeve valve Falcon Knight. That was not the only car from the 1920s that I worked on.

When I left it was twin overhead turbo charged electronic everything.

If I was using tyres from Cooper or Micky Thompson for example, I would reduce the pressures because their information brochures tell you to do it. They, and a few other companies, don't make standard specification tyres like a 205 x 16 LT or a 7.50 x 16.

I fitted new standard spec. 205 x 16 Goodyear Wrangler TGs when I bought my current car. I then rang Goodyear's customer information number and was told to use the pressures in the car's handbook, don't reduce them in off road conditions and never exceed the factory recommended pressures by by more than four psi. They also said each 1 psi increase at the rear when loading the car will support 70 kg.

I thought do I follow the advice of the people who made the car and the tyres or the "experts" in 4x4 magazines or net forums. I chose the first and have never had a problem. I have used the handbook pressures everywhere from sealed highways to major desert roads to seriously remote tracks including a few that Len made. The pressures look too low but they work and do not wear the outside edges of the tyre as would be the case if they were under inflated.

Those tyres are now thirteen years old and have been used close to home on a trailer for the last three years. The replacements on the car are Bridgestone 697s . They are the same size and specifications as the TGs. So far they have been from Sydney to Darwin and back via Cameron Corner, Innamincka, Boulia and down the Donahue and Plenty Hwys to Alice Springs. The whole trip was on the handbook pressures and everything worked perfectly.
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