Travelling over the Toowoomba range to Canarvon.

Submitted: Monday, May 10, 2010 at 11:04
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Hi,
I am travelling from Brisbane to Carnarvon Gorge in an older 1985 Toyota 2 litre camper van, automatic. [quite heavy with fit out].

I am not too concerned about climbing the Toowoomba range but a little concerned about travelling down it on the way back to Brisbane because of the steep descent. The camper is automatic.
Any suggestions for a alternative route on the way back or should I be okay descending the range?
Much appreciated,
Annette
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Reply By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 11:22

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 11:22
You should be able to select a low gear even in an automatic and just take it easy going down. Don't worry about going slow and holding up traffic because it is 2 lanes and there are plenty of slow trucks going down.
Not sure how steep other routes are, but you have to go down the range somewhere.
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Follow Up By: Native - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 11:25

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 11:25
Thanks Rod. Might take a trip up and down the range in my regular vehicle just to experience the drive
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Reply By: Rockape - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 12:24

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 12:24
Annette,

when you are decending the range, pump your brakes rather than riding them. Slow the vehicle gently then let it roll with your foot off the brakes, as you start to speed up slow it again, this will stop your brakes from overheating and fading.

You will be fine if you use low in the auto and go steady, steady.

Have a good trip, enjoy Carnarvon and Takarakka, make sure you have comfortable shoes as you will need them.
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Reply By: brushmarx - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 13:20

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 13:20
I don't think you would have much trouble if you pick a lower gear, but there is a less steep route that uses the New England Hwy out of Toowoomba towards Warwick, and winds down through Heifer Creek Rd and back around short of Gatton.
It is a bit narrow in places, a couple of single lane bridges with current roadworks, a bit twisty, but overall, a nice drive.
I dragged a 18' van up there last friday Brisbane to Roma), and enjoyed the trip. Nice scenery, and a few good picnic areas.
I'm guessing it added about 30 to 40km to the normal trip, but nowhere near as steep.
Cheers
I'll get there someday, or die wanting to.

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Follow Up By: brushmarx - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 13:31

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 13:31
Taking this route through Clifton, heading towards Toowoomba, I think I saw a sign to Cecil Plains? There are also signs from out past Oakey turning South towards Cecil Plains.
I assume this may mean that you don't have to go through Toowoomba if you didn't have any need for it, which could lessen the time to go through all the heavy traffic in town.
It may be possible to go from Oakey (or further west towards Dalby) through to Cecil Plains, Clifton and through to Gatton.
Maybe someone more local or experienced could confirm or deny this, or more research may be necessary.
Cheers
I'll get there someday, or die wanting to.

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Follow Up By: Member - Alan H (QLD) - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 16:34

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 16:34
Yes! there is bitumen road from Clifton - Leyburn - Cecil Plains and comes out at Dalby. Less traffic and not so steep.

The Heifer Creek road from Gatton to Clifton has most of the road works completed and as stated is a very scenic drive.

Alan
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Reply By: Merl57 - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 13:22

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 13:22
Hi Annette,
We recently travelled from Brisbane via Toowoomba to Carnarvan Gorge. Instead of towing the van up the range we turned off the highway and went through Gatton, and took the road to Clifton. This then leads to the Warwich/ Toowoomba Highway and you come out in Toowoomba.
It takes a bit longer and there are some hills but nothing steep. Also quite a nice drive.

Merl
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Reply By:- Monday, May 10, 2010 at 17:43

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 17:43
Gidday Annette,

you could always head further north from Carnarvon Gorge - upto Emerald, then head to the Coast - Rockhampton and head south from there - make more of a circuit out of your trip so you don't see the same roads twice. Alternatively, if you don't have enough time, you could cut the corner and just totally Gorge yourself - go from Carnarvon Gorge to Cania Gorge, then back to Brisbane from there.
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Reply By: D200Dug- Monday, May 10, 2010 at 19:26

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 19:26
From memory there are also a few rest stops on the downhill road.

It would be worth making a stop and letting everything cool down for a while.
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Reply By: KyleF250 - Monday, May 10, 2010 at 20:12

Monday, May 10, 2010 at 20:12
there's a rest stop/camp area at heifer ck on gatton to clifton road which is nice .
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