Holland Track, information required please

Submitted: Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 17:35
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I am thinking of taking a trip with a friend (2 families) up the Holland Track from Broomehill to Calgoorlie in April. has anyone been there recently? It looks fairly easy from the trip notes, I am interested to find out if there are any tricky bits to make the driving interesting, and are the views/historical bits enough to keep the families keen?

Also, I note that 'Captain' posted a comment in February which refered to some damage suffered on the Holland Track. I am intending to take an off road camper trailer (Cavalier type) ...is there anything I should know, like 'don't' perhaps. I have taken this trailer to Mitchell Falls without difficulty to give you an idea of it's capabilities - corrugations are not an issue but big wash aways might be.

I had considered taking my well behaved four legged friend but note that there are nature reserves along the way, if they are small and are just 'drive through' that is OK, but if they are large and worth a stop I'll leave him at home as the wildlife is more important (and he loves the guy at the kennels anyway.)


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Reply By: Member - Ray - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:00

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:00
Don't let the locals catch you calling it "C"algoorlie Grey one.Itis Kalgoorlie and never forget it. (:-
AnswerID: 102541

Follow Up By: greydemon - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:16

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:16
Hey, the 'C' is about the only thing i got right ...I meant to write Calgoorlie!

Sorry all locals - senile dementia setting in.
FollowupID: 360247

Follow Up By: greydemon - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:26

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:26
Good Heavens, the dementia is worse than I thought, lets try again, I meant to write ......Coolgardie.

That's it, got it right this time - unless the moderator is deliberately changing it just to drive me nuts!
FollowupID: 360249

Reply By: slyonnet - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:12

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:12
Hi Greydemon,

I did the trip from Hyden to Coolgardie last Easter. There had been lost of rain the previous day and most of the track was muddy. We did not encounter too many difficulties anyhow (we were in the Defender of my wife's uncle) and if you do it when it is dry it should present no problem at all. All the books about the track tell you not to attempt after the rain but I think it is to detter novice at 4wdriving who could damage the track.
If you plan to do the trip during the Easter long week-end then be prepared to see plenty of cars. We took the right decision and left a day ahead of the long weekend so we did not see too many vehicles. But I know from reading the trip report of the Mitsubishi 4wd club that they went with a number of vehicles and passed plenty more in both directions. They also had very bad weather as stroms came by on the Saturday night.
Along the way you have plenty of rock formations and also some water holes worth seeing and some make a good campsite.
Regarding camper trailer, I think one of the guy from the Mitsubishi club had one and had to struggle a bit more in the muddy parts and when coming accross oncoming traffic on the narrowest section of the track, but that's to be expected with a trailer. I have heard of people taking normal cars with caravans or boats their (not that I agree with the first one or that there is any lake there anyway?!?!), so if the weather is good you should not have any problem.
I don't know about the nature reserves.
It is a good trip if you want to get out of the city but like I said before choose your time wisely if you want to avoid the crowd.
Ring the ranger or police station at Hyden before departing to check the track is open. I remember they had to close it earlier this summer because of a fire but they might do so as well if it is too wet.

Have a good and safe trip,

AnswerID: 102543

Follow Up By: greydemon - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:23

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:23
Thanks Sly,

No, I always stay at home over Easter as it is usually the best place to get away from everyone - they have all gone somewhere else!
I am intending to go during school holidays though but as they are spread over a couple of weeks the traffic on the track shouldn't be as heavy as at Easter.

I take it that your wife doesn't have an Aunt, when I was looking for my Land Rover the salesman told me that with nearly all couples that come in the husband wants a Defender, the wife wants a Discovery, and like all those couples, and unlike your Uncle - I drove out in a Discovery!
FollowupID: 360248

Follow Up By: slyonnet - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:49

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 18:49
No he's got a wife, but she refuses to drive the beast. Instead she drives her own comodore. He bought the vehicle a while back when he was actually doing 4wd tours to the pinnacles and down South, so it was never meant to be their normal car.
FollowupID: 360252

Follow Up By: The Explorer - Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 13:20

Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 13:20
Sly said...“All the books about the track tell you not to attempt after the rain but I think it is to detter (sic) novice at 4wdriving who could damage the track".

I think you will find that the recommendation not to attempt the track went wet applies to all people as the damage done by a person experienced at leaving ruts on a wet track is likely to be the same as those created by a novice rut maker. It could even be argued that a person with experience would do more damage as they would persist and get further thereby doing more damage than a novice who may think better and turn around or not attempt it in the first instance. It is illegal to drive on some “outback” roads when they have been officially closed due to rain (because you will leave ruts) – there are no exemptions for those who may think they have more experience than others…because they will still leave ruts.
I sent one final shout after him to stick to the track, to which he replied “All right,” That was the last ever seen of Gibson - E Giles 23 April 1874

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FollowupID: 360330

Follow Up By: slyonnet - Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 14:18

Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 14:18
Explorer, please don't put words in my mouth.
Just to clarify, what I meant was that novice at 4wdriving will have no idea of the extent of the damage they could do to the track and the fact that there is mud will not make all novices turn around. Of course some will, but I can tell you that some will see it as a challenge for their new vehicle and have as much fun as they can fun as they can trying to get through and maybe not so much fun trying to get out of trouble when it is too late. Having said that, it is true also that an experience 4wdriver can make ruts on a wet track but then he doesn't care about the others, does he. That's unfortunate but some people are like that and wether you write some advice in books or not will not stop them since they don't car in the first place.
We did the track when it was wet and were actually worried of this advice about not trying it when wet. We decided to try and see. If it was looking like too much trouble and likely to be damageable to the vehicle or the track to turn around. We did not create any major rut as we were extra cautious of what we were doing and being aware of the consequences.
Furthermore there is no sign forbidding access to the track when wet and the road was certainly not closed if not we would not have attempted it.
So to conclude, the reason I wrote that line was to actually point out that the track is not necessarily impassable when wet (in case Greydemon cancel his trip if he did not know better). Maybe I should have also point out that it is recommended to be carefull not to damage the track, but I thought it was obvious for people on this forum. And again, the people who will leave ruts don't care in the first place so what does it matter if I wrote it or not.
FollowupID: 360335

Reply By: Member - Captain (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 19:20

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 19:20
Hi greydemon,

The track itself is very easy, capable of being done in 2WD the whole way (if no rain for a while). However, it can get very muddy in sections if there has been recent rain. Taking a Cavailer camper will be fine. There is the odd section when you have to snake carefully between the trees, but overall you should have no problems.

However, do NOT take an offroad caravan done this track! In places it is simply too twisty and overgrown with trees on the side of the track for anything longer/higher than a camper trailer. A Jayco Hawk that was with me also suffered minor damage. These types of trailers are simply too long in the wheelbase and one cannot snake around the trees when required.

But a trailer based camper (Cavailier etc...) has a short enough wheel base plus has hard sides for the occasional tree branch sticking out. As for washouts, there are a few but my van was fine with them, a Cavalier will handle these easily. Take your Cavalier and enjoy!!!



AnswerID: 102556

Follow Up By: greydemon - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 22:26

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 22:26
Thanks Captain, advice much appreciated.

To do as much damage as you did I will have to write off the whole trailer!

FollowupID: 360286

Reply By: Davoe - Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 23:16

Tuesday, Mar 15, 2005 at 23:16
last information I got (last week) was that the track was extensively burnt out around christmas time. in this part of the world the fires are just left to burn destroying 100s of 000s of hectares of forest. i can definitly tell you the first 25k (from victoria rock road) are ok but the person I spoke to did not complete the track due to dead fall and k after k of depressing burn out
AnswerID: 102610

Follow Up By: greydemon - Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 09:09

Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 09:09
Thanks Davoe,

I might give Hyden police a ring, they will probably know the extent of it. I could always go elsewhere this year, or perhaps go in the Spring, the wildflowers are usually spectacular after a burn.

FollowupID: 360315

Follow Up By: Davoe - Thursday, Mar 17, 2005 at 13:12

Thursday, Mar 17, 2005 at 13:12
gd following your post I questioned the person again and they did the track early in the year and embers were still glowing and there was total burnout for most of it there was heaps of deadfall and they pulled as much as they could off. they got exausted and the lack od scenery caused them not to complete the track it would really pay you to try and get goodinfo in case of dissapointment
FollowupID: 360446

Reply By: Member - Martin- Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 01:49

Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 01:49
Hi Greydemon,
Did the Holland track from Coolgardie to Hyden last Easter we towed our Camprite camper and our friends towed an Outback camper, had no problems a bit tight in some areas so expect some scratches and keep your UHF on scan if possible as some areas get a bit narrow,had a group of eight vehicles go bush so we could get through. Remember unwritten rule he who has the trailer has right of way. Also the nights can get really cold.

Have fun

Martin and Samantha
AnswerID: 102625

Follow Up By: greydemon - Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 17:58

Wednesday, Mar 16, 2005 at 17:58
Thanks M&S, advice appreciated.


M&S ? Didn't I used to buy my underwear from you in the UK?

Let's not even think of S&M !
FollowupID: 360351

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