Canning Stock Route.

Submitted: Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 00:45
ThreadID: 19215 Views:3456 Replies:15 FollowUps:5
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Ok so some people may call me crazy, but I am after information on traversing the Canning with a Cavalier Camper Trailer. I am towing it with a 94 D/C HiLux 2.8 Turbo (Denco). Many people (who have not even been to the Canning) inform me that it is impossible to tow a trailer over this Route. I know I cannot go form Wiluna to Well 9 with a Trailer and have to go through Glenayle, But surely this trek cannot be as hard as all that. I have taken my trailer many places and never had too many problems. I will be doing this trip anround end June through July taking approx 13 days to complete the Route itself. Anyone out there that has done the Canning with a trailer successfully, please feed me some details.
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Reply By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 06:17

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 06:17
We had a couple away with us last year in the cape that have towed a caviler camper towed by a mitsubishi 4x4 tray top.
He said he had to be towed over most of the larger dunes.
After the trip he had to weld a few things .
Peter has a DVD on the canning that has 2 trailers on it for sale call him on 07 4094 1745.

All the best
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Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 06:56

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 06:56
13 days is a bit quick.

When I have to do it in June we plan to take 26 days from Ayers Rock to Halls Creek.
Have you another vehicle going with you and how much fuel are you going to be carring?

I have not done the Canning but crossing the Simpson with a trailer towed by a 2.8 turbo is going to be hard work. If we have to take a trailer it has to be towed by at least a big 6. I am not saying it can't be done and that the two trips are the same, but the poor Hilux. All the fuel and the trailer and all the sand dunes, the clutch would be stuffed.

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Reply By: Member - DickyBeach - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 06:59

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 06:59
Read my post #7590, October 03.
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Follow Up By: Willem - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 09:04

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 09:04
I still stick with my reply to your post #7590 Dicky.

The trouble is, that maybe only a small percentage of trailer towing travellers, listen to experienced travellers and run their vehicles at the right tyre pressure. Rule of thumb these days is 15-18psi for the tow vehicle and 8-10psi for the trailer. Maybe there should be a driver training course for desert travellers before they go. My truck idles up the dunes with 15psi in tyres and 1800revs in 1st High Range with ease(without a trailer I might add)

I agree with all other replies that you are chancing your arm towing the CT with your Hilux. Hilux just does not have enough torque but if you must then make sure you are well prepared. We did a north south journey some years ago which is the harder of the journeys because of the approaches to the dune crossings. Go to my website below to have a read if you wish.
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Follow Up By: Member - Gary W (VIC) - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 12:19

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 12:19

I read your post #7590 with great interest.

After completing the Simpson we have been toying with the idea of doing the CSR. Like you we received much advice not to take the CT over the Simpson for the same reasons. Our personal experience was the opposite. A properly equipped vehicle and CT and the right tyre pressures and driving technique meant we had no trouble.

But Willem is right unless you have all 4 issues covered (vehicle, ct, tyre pressures & technique) it will be a mission. perhaps even mission impossible.

I had understood from other that unlike the Simpson where trailers were not encouraged that trailers were banned on the CSR. Could someone please clarify that?

Regards Gaz

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Reply By: Peter 2 - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 08:11

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 08:11
I'd agree with the previous posts in that if you must tow a trailer it should be with a larger more powerful vehicle.
More time should be allowed too, we took 3 weeks/21 days with 4 vehicles, we had no major vehicle probs so just enjoyed the trip, in the 3 weeks we only had 3 days that we didn't travel.
I would also advise against traveling by yourself and you would be silly to travel by yourself and tow a trailer.
What happens if you get stuck/jacknifed on a dune, can you and your partner unhitch the trailer on a soft sand slope and push it out of the way by yourself?
While the CSR isn't that much more difficult or harder than other desert trips it is the fact that it goes on for so long that takes its toll on vehicle and passengers. You will be in remote/rough country for 3 weeks crossing thousands of sand dunes and corrugations, the best trip in Oz but make it as easy as you can for yourself.
AnswerID: 92124

Reply By: rads - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 09:51

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 09:51
Did the Canning in 2003, south to north. Would advise against any sort of Camper trailer. Sand is too boggy and a large run up the dunes is not normally possible due to gullied tracks. Diff locks would definately help but still wouldn't risk it.
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Reply By: howie - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 11:35

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 11:35
seriously though, i have done the canning (without trailer) and do own a cavalier.
i have taken my CT through some pretty hard stuff but i would not dream of taking it on that trip. i'm not saying it cannot be done and if someone bet me $10000 i would do it, but it would be very hard. my advice is not to take the CT and enjoy this great trip. take swags or an easily erected tent instead.
also, if you can take more than 13 days.
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Reply By: fourstall2000 - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 14:21

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 14:21
Travelled the Canning 3 yrs ago.
We just got through after the track was open after rain.
We did meet a guy towing an ultimate camper with a 4.2 turbo landcruiser and he got through.
The problem is mentioned by others you need a good run(not always possible) up to cross some of the dunes and plenty of torque.
With the fuel load you have to carry and the capacity of your engine you will find it extremely difficult getting a trailer over these obstacles.
If you persist get a larger more powerful vehicle to travel with you ,and be prepared for long snatches for your trailer.
For this reason you would need to carry at least 4 tow straps along with other equipment and have additional time at your disposal.
We had a Landie blow its gearbox on our trip with only second gear available,we had to tow him over several dunes by joining two other vehicles together by solid tow,this will give you some idea of the difficulty.
Great trip though,but reconsider the trailer.
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Reply By: Member - Errol (York WA) - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 16:24

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 16:24
For Sale --- One Cavalier Camper Trailer , Only A little Used . (Get my Drift ). You have roughly 1100 sand dunes to cross , and as stated earler , you won,t get over first go , so you will have to back up for a second go . Imagine backing up , down hill , 40 to 50m plus , in soft sand . I did it with the ses a few year,s ago now and the only vehile that got over consistantley first go was a (choke) Ford F250 V8 with front and rear diff locks . So , my advice , take a swag , you,ll enjoy the trip a lot more than if you are trying to push a camper around in soft sand for a week or more . Cheers
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Reply By: Member - Anni M (SA) - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 16:58

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 16:58
Like everyone else I would suggest not taking the campertrailer. We are planning to do the CSR, but will leave our trailer behind. Quite apart from the difficulties involved, I have become quite concerned about the stories of environmental damage that is being done to the CSR. If eveyone did as Willem suggests then the CSR would be better preserved for us all.

Have a great time
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Reply By: s-niper73 - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 20:17

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 20:17
WOW, What a response. I have read all messages and had allready read your story Willem. Cheers, I thank you all for your grouped information. I will rethink the Trailer. (not counting it out) I will at this stage have another vehicle with us.(100 SeriesL/C) I must state, that my Lux is very well equiped with diff locks, turbo, pyro, uprated suspension,long range tank, radio (UHF) and Sat Phone, Cooper ST's the list goes on. I am well versed with beach driving and tyre pressure application. However I will admit, I have not taken the camper over very much sand. Mud yes and had little problem there. Your advice is what I feared most. that I would not be able to take the trailer on this trip (DAMN IT).
I am a mechanic in the Army with over 19 years experience, therefore know only too well the problems involved with breakdowns on route.
13 days too short eh, OK will have another look at that. I was planning on travelling on average 150-180 kms per day, with an average speed of 40km/p/h. Remember thats an average. I only have 25 days off work and have to get to and from Darwin in the process. I also have to clean my gear before returning to work.
I am happy to continue this thread as I am keen to receive other peoples views and comments on this subject. (seems to be very near and dear to a lot of people)

AnswerID: 92252

Follow Up By: Member - Ivan (ACT) - Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 06:58

Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 06:58

I was going to suggest packing your car and trailer up and giving it a run at Stockton or Robe - but from Darwin, that might be a bit far for a trial run! - nothing up there that you can use as a test??

Least you'd get a feel for how well it will do the dunes (which is a whole lot different than just beach driving too! ;-)

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Follow Up By: Well 55 - Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 08:40

Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 08:40
Forget the thought of 150 - 180k a day if towing and your speed will be more like 25 - 30k an hour at best and in some places down to 5 - 10. so 17 days is more like your time frame.

From Darwin you maybe better off going from north to south that will leave you the hard top to scoot home on. Travelling in this direction the dunes are a bit steeper but not as rough, except for the sharp turning approaches at the bottom.
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Follow Up By: Member - DickyBeach - Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 08:52

Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 08:52
I started counting the corrugations and lost count at a hundred million - seeking to average of 40kmh, with or without a trailer, will in my opinion take its toll on your vehicle.
Taking the dunes at any speed greater than 20kmh will cause (further) damage to the dunes as you will bounce because of the existing scallops caused by earlier cars, and when you bounce your spinning wheels will then enlarge the scallops.
We took 21 days including 1 rest day at Windich Springs (only 120k or so into the CSR but was really lovely and the women wanted to stay), 2 days at Durba Springs and 1 day at Well 46 - so 19 driving days and 100 hours driving time. That's an average of about 20kmh.
Best of luck and enjoy.
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Reply By: Member - Luxoluk - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 20:38

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 20:38
Hi S-niper

I recently bought the video referred to earlier on in this post and found it to be most informative. If you can grab a copy of it I believe it will assist you to finalise your plans. It also covers a bit of the Gunbarrel as well. Have a good trip!! Cheers
AnswerID: 92255

Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 21:36

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 21:36
Just something else to think about.

Saw a Dual Cab Hilux come off the Simpson last year towing a camper trailer. The force of all those bumps and whoopsy-doos bent the hilux chassis so badly, it looked like the vehicle was a write-off. They are not made to take all that weight behind the rear axle.

AnswerID: 92265

Reply By: sean - Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 22:27

Monday, Jan 10, 2005 at 22:27
I towed a trailer over CSR in 2004. Gross weight was a bit over one tonne. The 4.2TD6 patrol struggled and ran out of power on some of the dunes and we had to winch over one occasion. Most of the damage to the vehicles in our group was from was from the corrugations.

So we found the CSR to be HARD on vehicles and HARD on trailers. Mechanical problems are common. We came across one guy who had independent suspension and he had snapped off both his wheels over the trek. Also saw a written off camper on the trip out to Rudell and it had a snapped off stub. Also heard of two other trailers having probs including one guy on the Macca show who pulled out near the start.

I would not hesitate to take a trailer again but only if I had to. But that goes for any trip. We have 3 kids and for the 30 day trip a trailer was necessary for us.


AnswerID: 92278

Reply By: Greg - Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 11:50

Tuesday, Jan 11, 2005 at 11:50
Did the Canning last year without a trailer, north to south. I have towed them in some rough places and it is possible to take them but with difficulty and the risk of damage. It is very costly to recover them.
The Canning is slower than the Simpson but not rougher or tougher. The dunes often have a right angle bend at the bottom meaning a run is impossible. You will need at least 20 days to enjoy it and will probably average under 30kph where as on the Simpson slightly over 30kph is possible (I don't know why). An obstacle on the CSR rarely mentioned is that you will get your vehicle severley scratched by vegetation that cannot be avoided. I estimate as much as 200kms of scratchy scrub. Also watch out for spinefex fires in petrol vehicles. We had a small one that burnt out the gearbox wiring loom resulting in a major stop whilst the main engine computer fuse and loom were rebuilt.
Leave your trailer home and enjoy the trip.
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Reply By: s-niper73 - Wednesday, Jan 12, 2005 at 08:02

Wednesday, Jan 12, 2005 at 08:02
OK OK, I get the trailer....hey thanks guys ....looks to me like you have saved my ass on this one and I appreciated all your efforts. Got some bad news yeaterday that I will probably be working over the June July period this year so will have to postpone the trip yet again......Thanks again for all your advice.....
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