Gary Junction Road - best start route.

Submitted: Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 11:43
ThreadID: 136606 Views:1299 Replies:9 FollowUps:9
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We are planning to drive the Gary Junction from East to West in June. Which is the best route from Alice Springs - across to Glen Helen, Haasts Bluff etc, or up the Tanami & across to join at Papunya? Have Landcruiser 200, towing 22 ft off- road van, so interested in hearing about pros & cons, & recent road conditions.
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Reply By: Life Member - Duncan W (WA) - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 15:05

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 15:05
G'day JB. We traveled west to east a couple of years back after coming out of the sandy Blight Junction Rd. The GJR was a race track it was in such good condition heading east. can't comment on points west of the intersection near Kintor. We headed into Alice via the main track passing Haast Bluff (16km east of Papunya) which takes you onto the Namatjira Drive Rd. Really pretty drive and the dirt roads were in excellent condition. We traveled in July.

After Alice we headed to the Kimberley via the Tanami Rd which was also for the most in good nick. The section of the Tanami to the GJR is all sealed.

Enjoy the journey.

Dunc
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Follow Up By: Member - jb2211 - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:44

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:44
Thanks for that - look forward to some lovely scenery!
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Reply By: Member - Wildmax - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 16:54

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 16:54
We might see you there jb2211. We're doing the same trip leaving Alice mid-June (via Glen Helen etc).
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Follow Up By: Member - jb2211 - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:46

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:46
Will look out for you along the way!
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Reply By: CSeaJay - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 16:55

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 16:55
We travelled from Alice cross to Glen Helen, Haasts Bluff etc, onto the GJR, all the way to just short of Marble Bar.
Fuel is fine, just make sure you do not arrive on a weekend or public holiday.
Camping along the side of the road may be a bit tricky if you are towing, as the "windrow" on the side of the road is pretty high so you can't just pull over anywhere (and you want/need to camp well off the road)
We did it in April 2017 and it was in good condition.
Juniper Bore has water and a lovely shady camp but firewood is becoming scarce there so pick some up beforehand.
The permit does not (theoretically) allow any camping because it has some crazy requirement to travel through within a limited time (a day I think but not the point). We did not worry about this at all, we had a permit and IF (big IF) we were questioned I would just have replied that we had to stop for an emergency or something.
It is a nice stretch of road, the best way to get from the eastcoast to the west for us.
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Follow Up By: Member - jb2211 - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:48

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:48
Thanks for those useful tips!
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Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 18:18

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 18:18
Here is a link to a friend's blog. They have come up the SBJ Road and west from there on the GJ Road. They broke a rear leaf on the SBJ Road and have been nursing it. They are probably at Carawine Gorge tonight.
http://www.epicycles.com/ Go to the bottom of the page.

Cheers,
Peter
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Follow Up By: Member - Andy M (QLD) - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:32

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:32
Thanks Peter for sharing Ali & Julian's blog. What amazing travels over a number of years! Very interested in their current adventure. I did west from Alice via Glen Helen, Haast's Bluff, Gary Junction Rd to SBJ road a couple of years ago. It was a great run. We will be travelling this August from Brisbane to Port Hedland. Some of that will be along Gary Junction Rd and I'll probably go the same way again but haven't been west of Kintore yet so keen to follow their current trip.

Cheers
Andy
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Follow Up By: Member - jb2211 - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:52

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018 at 20:52
Thanks for that blog- loved the photos, & some good tips too!
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Reply By: Motherhen - Wednesday, Apr 25, 2018 at 21:19

Wednesday, Apr 25, 2018 at 21:19
Either way. We went west to east and continued via Haast Bluff and the West Macdonnells. My Blogs (2009) describe, and I have links to a friend Blog of a more recent trip. The best way out of Western Australia.
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Follow Up By: Member - jb2211 - Thursday, Apr 26, 2018 at 16:04

Thursday, Apr 26, 2018 at 16:04
Thanks, Motherhen - enjoyed reading your blog. What is the link to your friend's more recent trip, please?
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Thursday, Apr 26, 2018 at 16:49

Thursday, Apr 26, 2018 at 16:49
I will send you a member message JB.
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Follow Up By: Member - jb2211 - Thursday, Apr 26, 2018 at 17:46

Thursday, Apr 26, 2018 at 17:46
Thanks for that - most appreciated.
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Reply By: Jane b16 - Saturday, Jun 23, 2018 at 19:10

Saturday, Jun 23, 2018 at 19:10
Hi. We’re thinking of doing this in late July. We will have 2 kids with us. Starting Alice springs heading towards WA coast as we’re keen to get to Karijini and coral coast - eventually. How did you find the road ?
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Reply By: Member - jb2211 - Saturday, Jun 23, 2018 at 21:16

Saturday, Jun 23, 2018 at 21:16
Have just finished the Gary Junction with our Toyota Landcruiser 200 series, towing 22 ft off- road Evernew van - really enjoyed the trip, & as long as you drive to the conditions, you will be fine! There are some stretches of heavy sand before Jupiter Well, & also some very rough corrugations past Kiwikurra, but otherwise OK. Enjoy the trip!
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Reply By: Member - Jane b16 - Sunday, Jun 24, 2018 at 09:27

Sunday, Jun 24, 2018 at 09:27
Thanks so much. Great to hear. Should we do it in a convoy do you think or will we be fine just us? Other alternative is to go from Uluru to Coast via gun barrel but I love the sound of the Gary junction.
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Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Sunday, Jun 24, 2018 at 20:11

Sunday, Jun 24, 2018 at 20:11
We have driven the GJR twice on our own (once towing a boat) and enjoy it a lot.
It is not a demanding route (much less demanding than the Gun Barrel), but it would be advisable to have some long range communications available in case of difficulty.

Cheers,
Peter
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Reply By: Member - jb2211 - Sunday, Jun 24, 2018 at 21:02

Sunday, Jun 24, 2018 at 21:02
We travelled with another couple - I think it is good to have company in case something goes wrong.Yes, agree that a sat phone is a good idea also. We found that we often drove for 3 to 4 hours without seeing another vehicle, so it is quite remote out there.
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