Fraser Island

Submitted: Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 07:50
ThreadID: 7854 Views:1294 Replies:9 FollowUps:2
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We are off to Fraser Island soon for a short holiday, my question is regarding Eli Creek. I have read that Eli can only be crossed at low tide, at this stage with our limited experiance, we will be taking the much longer route inland around it, but I am curious as to how difficult it is as a crossing. Can anyone fill me in on how deep it is, how soft the sand under the wheels is, how far across etc... We will be going there to have a look and a swim... (dodging 4by's?? :-) Just curious to here what it's like up front.
cheers people
Brian
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Reply By: Member - Oskar(Bris) - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 09:12

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 09:12
Bian
I was there last week and crossed it at high tide with no problem, but not right at the mouth (about 30metres or so further back).
I wouldn't advise a beginner to do it at full tide but at half tide or less it will be OK.
Yes, some people do have problems from time to time but it isn't really as bad as some others might have you believe. It goes in cycles depending on where the mouth is and what the weather has been doing.
Don't go the inland route as it is slow going and not necessary.
Try to make sure that you do the beach at low tide, or near.
Just take it easy through the creek without stopping and you'll have no worries.
Once you are there you'll wonder what all the fuss is about.
We've been doing it for over 20 years at high tide and low without any drama at any time.
I have seen a rusty chassis and wheel sticking up through the sand in the creek in the past but the creek mouth has moved since then.
Just don't hit it speed.
At low tide the creek may be about 200-250mm deep and quite firm, but don't stop.
It is usually about 10 metres or so wide at low tide, no big deal. At high tide you would not want to cross at the mouth because of the waves etc.
Eli Creek twists and turns through lovely tropical beachside pandanus, reeds and undergrowth with some fairly deep holes further back. Swimming etc is done up the creek where it is narrower and deeper. Take a boogie board or an air matress.
It is a magic place for a swim. No 4bys up the creek - people only.
Just make sure you reduce your tyre pressure (to about 20PSI) before hitting the sand.
You don't say if you are coming from Hervey Bay or from Inskip. Whatever the case you'll have a great time.
Don't worry about the dingoes, just be "Dingo Smart"
Cheers
Oskar
AnswerID: 34003

Reply By: brian - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 09:15

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 09:15
Hello brian,I have just returned from frazer,where you actually cross eli was only a few inches deep.it is only when you get exteeeme tides big storms that the depth is any concern,just ask a local or barge opperator for advice when you get there.

Have you considered the beach run from mouth of noosa river all the way to inskip point its a great drive.You will see people with caravans of all types along the beach,only a couple of spots to be cautious of,keep an eye on the tides,seek local advice.Have great time
AnswerID: 34004

Reply By: Brian - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 10:04

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 10:04
Thanks for the advice guys! We are heading up via Noosa and Cooloola Beach to Inskip Point. Have been to Fraser last year with a rented Rangie, which is when we were "bitten" with the 4by bug. Have since bought the Patrol, kitted it out, joined the club, learned heaps with still heaps to learn!
We will still be doing the inland trek to have a look at the scenery etc...but now feel a little more confident in tackling Eli Creek. I was under the impression it is quite treacherous, obviously I have misunderstood, but that's the beauty of this great forum isn't it?? There is always someone with an answer!
So thanks again guys and I will post when we return to let you all know how we went
AnswerID: 34007

Follow Up By: charlie - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 23:59

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 23:59
Brian I have been to Frazer about 8 times over the past ten years and have not ever even blinked at the thought of crossing Eli. At times it can be up to 20 cm deep or so and the sides can be double that where you want to cross it but generally there is an easy route at any tide. I have stopped in it to see how high the water was up the wheels (not advised) but dove out without a problem. On that occassion it was barely 10 cm deep.

With rgards to the inland road I would strongly suggest not taking it. Go for a drive between two accesses and you will get a bit of an idea of the scenery which is mostly the same with very few places to get a view out side the corridoor that is the road. It is very rough with pot holes up to 50cm deep. It takes forever and gives the 4by hell.

Have fun on the trip it should be great.

Charlie
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FollowupID: 24540

Reply By: jackablue - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 10:10

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 10:10
Brian I too was up there a couple of weeks ago, I made sure I was back over 2hrs before high tide as some people had trouble at later times. Like said early it is no drama just keep moving. Stop & watch others if you are not sure. The inland track, The Northern Forest track, is boggy at the start & end. I came in from the top & the first few kms we got down to low range 1st & the sand was still moving under us. I ran into some guys from the land cruiser club & they said the same.

Eli creek is a wonderful place to refresh & relax.

Cheers

Jackablue
AnswerID: 34008

Reply By: Member - Rohan K - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 17:17

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 17:17
Oh for the good old days when Eli could go over the bonnet - we had it half way up the doors of an FJ40 on an outging tide at half-tide. back then it went straight across the beach from the boarwalk, was narrow and deep.

Now, it diverts about 500 metres north before crossing the beach so you don't even have to cross it to visit Eli, if approaching from the south. It is wide and shallow and unless there has been heaps of rain, or a king tide, is easily crossed within 2 hours either side of high tide, even by a beginer (I made my wife drive the crossing and she'd never driven a 4x4 off-road before).

You'll have more trouble negotiating some of the inland bog holes, especially on the approach to Kingfisher Bay.

Have a ball.Smile, you're on ExplorOz
Rohan (Sydney - on the QLD side of the Harbour Bridge)
AnswerID: 34055

Reply By: Jimmy - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 19:10

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 19:10
Hi Brian I cant help with Frazer but I have been to Cooloola a couple of times.
If you want a break from the beach on the way through to take the Freshwater track off Tewah beach to Rainbow Beach rather than the Leisha track. Its a great drive and much more seanic than the Leisha track( longer though). The track is just a couple of Klms before the wreck of the Cherry Venture but that is not worth bothering with these days, not much left of it.
On the way back you might like to check out Kings Bore Road. The turn off to this is about ten Klms past the turn off to Freshwater road when heading south from Rainbow beach. Another sceanic track with some good 4wding which takes you back to Tewah beach about halfway along. The last part is down a steep sandy one way track to the beach which is quite safe and good fun.
Pick up The Black and white map of the Cooloola region when in Noosa
Happy trails
AnswerID: 34077

Reply By: Willie - Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 21:33

Thursday, Oct 16, 2003 at 21:33
I once heard a tale of a couple who had lost their vehicle completely in Eli Creek. This I could not believe 'cause when we drove by there in 96 at low tide the creek was only six inches deep and the surface was as hard as a rock. We crossed it halfway between the dunes and the sea. Obviously it changes all the time. We were just lucky. But I did walk it to see how soft/hard the sand was before crossing. On the return trip with an incoming tide we crossed in the same place without any problems.
Cheers
Willie

Never a dull moment
AnswerID: 34097

Follow Up By: Brian - Friday, Oct 17, 2003 at 08:00

Friday, Oct 17, 2003 at 08:00
Willie,
Thats probably the story I heard... that someone had lost their truck in the creek! And although I still class us as beginners, we have been on quite a few easy/medium/hard trips with the club, so far with no problems. We have driven on Fraser last year and did the Lake McKenzie/Central Station run... even drove the inland road instead of Hook Point! Now THAT was an adventure!!!
It looks like we will be tackling Eli Creek when we go, which will save considerable time as opposed to the inland road... personally I can't wait to get there!!!!!!!
Thanks for your help Willie
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FollowupID: 24544

Reply By: Prado Boy - Friday, Oct 17, 2003 at 07:56

Friday, Oct 17, 2003 at 07:56
Brian,

Most of the folks who have trouble at Eli Creek try to cross it either at
- high tide (I'll advised - but as other folks have mentioned usually possible)
- in the deepest part of the creek
- at speed.

Any of these (or combo there of) can be disastrous. But really - it's not that bad - if you are careful. If in doubt - get out! And have a squiz at it. Even walk through it to find the shallowest spot with the least under cut/steep side. I have seen X-Trails make it through no problems near high tide - simply because they had a look at what they were about to do - worked out the safest spot - and went about things the right way. Don't let that one crossing deter you from using the beach route - just be sure to travel Hook Point at low tide...

Enjoy Fraser - its a magic place. Cheers,
Prado Boy
AnswerID: 34114

Reply By: Groove - Friday, Oct 17, 2003 at 12:34

Friday, Oct 17, 2003 at 12:34
Hi Brian
I was there last week and had no problems within an hour of High Tide it was very shallow.

As for the inland road I would strong agree with others who have said take a drive up the beach. It is very straight forward and if you do it on an outgoing or low tide you will be fine.

I did it in a GU 3l Patrol at 20 psi tyre pressure and had a ball.

Please watch out for troopy loads of backpackers they really have very little idea of what they are doing. They drive too fast on the narrow inland tracks and have no idea what to do when you encounter them on a track only wide enough for one car.

Saw surprisngly few dingos, there is a total fie ban at the moment rangers visited our camp site on the beach three nights in a row.

Cheers
AnswerID: 34145

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