Cape Leveque track.

Submitted: Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 10:30
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Can anybody provide feedback on the general condition of the track from the Great Northern Hwy to Beagle Bay?

regards

Wim
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Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 11:29

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 11:29
Wim, it is a road, not a track, but it can be VERY corrugated and a bit sandy.

Cheers,
Peter
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Follow Up By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:00

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:00
Peter.

Thanks for that. My info describes a difficult track.

regards

Wim
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Reply By: vk1dx - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 11:36

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 11:36
Lots of good info including road conditions, camping and access here
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Reply By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:23

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:23
I don't think I explained myself very well.
I am taking about the track that leads from Bedunburra to Beagle Bay, not the main road from Broome to the cape.

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Wim
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Follow Up By: Kumunara (NT) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 22:06

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 22:06
Wim



I used that road years ago on the way back to Derby from Lombadina.

It had recently been graded when I went through and was an excellent road. I have however heard from locals at Derby that it can be very rough at times.

Suggest you contact Main Roads in WA or the Tourist Office at Derby. They should be able to give you up to date info.



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Reply By: Member - Darren & Janella (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:49

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:49
Hiya Wim,

I've been trying to find out a bit of info on this road too. It is descirbed in Birgit Bradtke's Destination Kimberley guide as a "Private Road (meaning you are unlikely to be covered by insurance) and there are no official road reports for it. It is supposed to be a more attractive drive than the main road. It is usually in good condition and not as corrugated as the main road, it does have some soft sand sections that may require 4WD and high clearance and can have some large bog holes until late into the dry season."

A friend of mine took this road a few years ago and said that it did not pose any problems for him in his 80 series and he is a very cautious driver.

If I find out anymore, I'll let you know.

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Darren
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Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:56

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 12:56
I have not driven it either, but did have a report that it was better than the main road.

Cheers,
Peter
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Follow Up By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:05

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:05
Darren.

Thanks for the info.
Confirms what I have read.
Now I just need a response from someone who has used it recently.

regards

Wim
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Follow Up By: Member - Darren & Janella (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:13

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:13
Wim,

When will you be heading that way?

We'll be heading thorugh there (west/east) around the end of June.

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Darren
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Follow Up By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:27

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:27
Hi Darren.

I am a tragic planner. I tend to plan very early and this is no different.
The plan is to spend six weeks in your lovely state "next" year.
I am planing for June/July. A long way from here so one must plan plan plan to make the best of the effort to get over there.

Now here's the thing Darren, maybe, just maybe "you" could check out the track for me.
You could go to Janella and say you have to go there because Wim asked you to.

All the best with this years travels.

Wim
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Follow Up By: Member - Teege (NSW) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:32

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:32
Darren
Why do you suggest "you are unlikely to be covered by insurance" simply because you are on a private road. If I owned a large property and ran into a tree with my new ferrari (:)lol) I would expect to be covered for insurance. Mate of mine ran into his garage door - certainly on private property, he was covered. Mates daughter had a dingle on her friend's driveway, she was covered. I have just checked my NRMA policy book and nowhere does it exclude claims for incidents on private property, nor does it require that the incident have taken place on a public road. Am I missing something?

teege
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Follow Up By: Member - Darren & Janella (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:41

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:41
Hi Teege,

lol!! I was only quoting what was said in the guide, maybe she was talking about insurance in regards to Hire vehicles, not sure.

My policy is the same as yours, no mention of it.

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Darren
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Follow Up By: Member - Darren & Janella (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:44

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:44
Wim,

"Now here's the thing Darren, maybe, just maybe "you" could check out the track for me.
You could go to Janella and say you have to go there because Wim asked you to."

I will try my best hey! ;-)

Cheers,
Darren
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Follow Up By: Member - Teege (NSW) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:45

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 13:45
Darren
Gotcha. Sorry, didn't see the inverted commas. Somebody who doesn't know (the guide) starting vicious rumours. We'll just disregard that.

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Follow Up By: Kerrymac - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:23

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:23
Hi guys,
Yes I travelled it last year by myself. There is no sign, or wasn't then when coming off the Cape main track. But the track itself is fine. I travelled in a patrol, (before it became a hand granade) and i was towing a camper trailer. The road was good and travelled comfortably about 70-80 kph. There were some sandy spots but at that speed there were no problems. If you are coming off the Bitumen, you will see a "Kimberly Sand Stone" building on the northern side of the highway. There is a private gate there. That is the gate to go through. Enjoy it we loved it.
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Follow Up By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:32

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:32
Kerrymac

Confirmation, thank you.

regards
Wim
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Follow Up By: get outmore - Saturday, Mar 13, 2010 at 14:23

Saturday, Mar 13, 2010 at 14:23
I assume most polocies are like mine. Without going into deatils

as long as you have permission to be on a private road (ie have permits) or are otherwise legally entitled to be there - you would be covered
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Reply By: Outbacktourer - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 15:12

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 15:12
Don't have any recent info but I drove that track about 3 years ago in a Patrol towing an off road trailer. It is single lane dirt and ranges from formed and graded to unmaintained station track as you get further along, then it improves again. There are some sandy sections but nothing difficult. We never met any other traffic but you would have to get off the road in some sections if you met any.

This road was not signposted in any way and the entrance was just west of some buildings of some sort. I was using Garmin GPS software and Tracks 4 Australia and the entrance was not the same as on the GPS and where it came out at the Beagle Bay end was different as the main road had deviated somewhat

You can see the track easy enough on Google earth and it starts off as the Mount Jowlaenga Rd.

My impression at the time was that given the amount I had read of this road, it appeared to me to be a little less used than what I had expected and we had a few of those "are you sure we are on the right road" kind of moments, but it was all good in the end.

OBT
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Follow Up By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 15:29

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 15:29
OBT.

Thanks for that. Just what I was looking for.

regards

Wim
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Follow Up By: Member - John and Val - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:21

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:21
Wim,

We drove that track in winter 08 (See our bloghere) and would endorse all of Outbacktourer's comments. Not much scenery as its flat scrubby country - apart from one small hill that gave a bit of a view. Saw a couple of vehicles - locals - and as OBT says there were times that without a GPS we would have wondered whether we were on the right track. We use OziExplorer with 1:250,000 Natmap.
That track is probably a better drive than coming down the main track from Beagle Bay to the northern outskirts of Broome where you get onto bitumen again.

Cheers,

Val
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Follow Up By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:31

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 16:31
Val.

Confirmation, thank you

regards

Wim
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Follow Up By: Member - TJ (VIC) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 20:06

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 20:06
Hi Darren and Teege,

I've read Birgit Bradtke's Destination Kimberley Guide too which is largely directed at overseas tourists but is still a useful guide for anyone. She mentions that some roads are ungazzetted and that they may not be covered by your hire vehicle companies insurance policy. I recall that the Mitchell Falls Road was one that was mentioned.
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Follow Up By: Member - Darren & Janella (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 20:55

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 20:55
Hi TJ,

Page 87, paragraph 3 is where Birgit mentions "...meaning you likely have no insurance cover on it...", but there is no mention as to whether this is to do with privately owned vehicle insurance or hire vehicle insurance. I'm just assuming the latter. I suppose it is up to the individual. It'll definitely cut some distance off our trip, so I'm pretty sure we'll be using it.

Nice looking Patrol by the way ;-)

Regards,
Darren
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Follow Up By: Member - TJ (VIC) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 21:37

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 21:37
Thanks Darren. You've got me interested in that track now for my own trip. I asked my Insurer on Friday about cover in remote areas and the reply was that as long as you exercising reasonable care you were covered including private property. Thanks for your admiration of my Patrol. Your rig looks good too but it needs a wash.:-)

TJ..
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Follow Up By: Member - Darren & Janella (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 21:48

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 21:48
LOL!! It's been washed a few times since then and it's showing its true colour now.
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Reply By: Member - Vivien C (VIC) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 22:59

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2010 at 22:59
I've got a mud map for that track. I phoned the Derby Information Centre and they faxed it to me. When I phoned them about certain details about the track the person I spoke to then told me that the track was closed to the public. Our trip to Cape Leveque had to be abandoned because we had a mishap in Broome... so we didn't use the track or the map.

We had already travelled that way back in 2001 and it was fine...from reading the replies it seems that even though I was told the track was closed to the public, the public are still using it!

If you would like a copy of the mud map I would gladly fax/email it to you

Viv
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Reply By: horseshoe - Saturday, Mar 13, 2010 at 14:03

Saturday, Mar 13, 2010 at 14:03
Hi we did this track several years ago. The trek up is well worth it , Be sure to stop at Beagle bay and see the church completely decorated inside with various shells, it is beautiful.Cape leveque is a magic spot, whales, dolphins, flight access to horizontal falls, multi coloured sands etc... I will certainly go back.
Road- corrugated with sandy potholes, to be weary of.
Do not do what we did and tackle the road late in the afternoon, the setting sun throws horrible shadows over the track and it's visually very difficult to concentrate, makes for a very exhausting trip; not to mention the odd unexpected real pothole missed by shadows. Towing will be fine, just drive to suit your rig with corrugations, of course if there has been rain, then said above is different.
With the Gas pipe line going ahead in that area, the road will probably get busy with heavy trucks soon, which is sad, also means more traffic and possible easier access. So go now, if you want to experience it before the crowds.

Cheers
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