Travel from Coober Pedy to Marree by AWD vehicle in Xmas?

Submitted: Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 14:14
ThreadID: 140698 Views:1815 Replies:7 FollowUps:8
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G'day mates!

Just wondering is it feasible to travel fromCoober Pedy to Marree (via William Creek road then Oodnadatta Track ) in a AWD car (Nissan Xtrail T32) in one day? We are planning to visitCoober Pedy in Xmas break and it would be nice if we can go back to Port Augusta via Marree. We don't have much outback driving experiences and don;t want to risk too much. If punctures are very common or the driving is too risky then we won't be going. Google map says it will take 4.5 hours, not sure if this is realistic.

Thanks in advance!
Kevin
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Reply By: Member - Suitcase (QLD) - Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 14:42

Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 14:42
better read these first:

https://www.exploroz.com/forum/140659/oodnadatta-track-in-december

https://www.exploroz.com/forum/140654/article-comment-birdsville-track

cheers
Suitcase
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Follow Up By: KevL7735 - Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:19

Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:19
Thanks mate!
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Reply By: pmk03 - Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 14:46

Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 14:46
G'Day Kevin
It will probably be pretty hot during that time. As long as your car is up to it (and you) & you have decent tyres, not highway tyres. You could do it easy in that time IMO.
Other travellers will be far & few between also at that time. So if you would be relying on that in case of trouble you will have a long wait.
Forget it if there's been rain.
From Marree to Port Augusta is sealed all the way now, so that part shouldn't be too much trouble.
Cheers
Paul
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Follow Up By: KevL7735 - Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:20

Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:20
Thanks Paul. Heard that it would be so hot in the desert.
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Reply By: AlbyNSW - Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:05

Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:05
It is all easily doable except the time of year is less than ideal as in very undesirable for most people
If you are not used to being in those weather conditions you will probably think it is hell on earth and is not going to the great outback experience you are looking for.
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Follow Up By: KevL7735 - Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:21

Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 15:21
Thanks mate. I'll think about that
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Reply By: Stephen L (Clare) SA - Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 22:53

Friday, Oct 30, 2020 at 22:53
Hi Kev

Where are you from please?
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Follow Up By: KevL7735 - Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:23

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:23
From Sydney, planning on go to Coober pedy first then come back from Marree. But seems like it is not a easy ride if go from maree
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Follow Up By: Stephen L (Clare) SA - Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:59

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:59
All I can say at this stage Kev is please keep an eye on the weather.

This year the weather has been what can only be described as utter crazy......

Up north recently, the best rains in over 7 years have closed all dirt roads north of Port Augusta and since then they have had more great rain.

Strangely enough, it has not been real hot up north for this time of the year and the temperatures have only been in the low 30's.

Ou plans have now been changed twice but if the rain holds off, the wildflowers in the next few weeks will be the best in over 7 years.

Usually January can be very hot, but if it keeps going the way its been, it could be cooler and damp.

If it keeps up, then yes it can be done comfortably in a day, but just keep an eye on the weather and the road closures.

ps...dont believe mr Google, it will be a good days drive.
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Follow Up By: KevL7735 - Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 20:11

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 20:11
Yeah thanks! 2020 is a strange year of course, will definitely keep watching and let’s see what happens!
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Reply By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:15

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:15
The road from Coober Pedy toWilliam Creek is quite sandy in many parts from memory and will be easy but from William Creek to Marree is rough with sharp rocks imbedded in the road, slower driving and lower tyre pressures and a compressor are needed to suit conditions. You may not be able to leave your car for lunch, flies could be bad in the summer, we have experienced this. As mentioned above All Terrain tyres are best with that type of sharp stony road. There is no Telstra or Vodafone mobile phone service along that route but you can get Optus, Amaysim and Aldi etc. The last time we did this route was two years ago, but we returned from NT via this route on a previous trip end of October with twoyoung children and it was very hot then, Xmas would be unbearable i'd say, worse if you have young kids.. Michael
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Follow Up By: KevL7735 - Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:22

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:22
Thanks mate, sounds like I am not going in that hard conditions. But will try in future.
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Follow Up By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:25

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:25
May to September is magnificent out there.. Michael
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Reply By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 20:31

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 20:31
.
Kev, it is unusual to seek to visit Outback places like Coober Pedy, William Creek and Maree in the very hot summer period. Are you new to Australia and not familiar with our summer?

You will most probably experience very unpleasant conditions of heat and flies. Both you and you vehicle will be stressed. Few other travellers will be on the tracks to render assistance should you need it.

If Christmas is the only time you are able to get away then perhaps choose a less stressful destination.
If you have a personal need to visit Coober Pedy at Christmas then you may do better to keep to the Stuart Hwy and travel via a southern route.
Cheers
Allan

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Reply By: Member - McLaren3030 - Sunday, Nov 01, 2020 at 08:47

Sunday, Nov 01, 2020 at 08:47
Hi Kev,

Is it “doable”? Yes. Would I do it? Not at that time of year if I could avoid it. Apart from the what Stephen “L” has said regarding the weather and the possible state of the road conditions, I totally agree with Allan with regard to the ambient temperature and the flies. It will not be a pleasant experience.

To drive from Coober Pedy to Port Augusta via the route you have suggested will take you a good 2 or 3 days travel if you stop and explore the interesting places along the way. I travelled this route back in mid 2016, the road between Coober Pedy & William Creek was in fairly good condition then, some corrugations and some sandy sections. It took us around 2 to 3 hours from memory for this section. We stopped for lunch at William Creek. From then on the Oodnadatta Track, we made it to the Beresford Waterhole by about 4:00 pm. stopping at the various points of interest along the way. Then on to Hawker by about 4:00 pm the next afternoon.

The Oodnadatta can be quite corrugated depending on when it was last graded, and if you stop at the various points of interest, it will add up to around 3 days of travel. Yes you probably could do it in about 10 to 12 hours, but would you want to?

Macca.
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