Great Central Road - reports?

Hi Everyone,

We will be travelling the GCR in a couple of weeks ( weather permitting ) towing an off - road van. We are just wondering if anyone has travelled it in the last couple of weeks as to condition & best places to stop.

Any current information will be greatly appreciated.

Thankyou,
Dave & Shell
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Reply By: Motherhen - Monday, Apr 23, 2012 at 22:23

Monday, Apr 23, 2012 at 22:23
Hi Dave and Shell

I can't help with current conditions, but so long as it hasn't rained you will be fine. Don't miss the early morning tour at Giles weather station - and remember they run on SA time. Pleasant caravan parking behind the Warakurna Roadhouse to be on the spot for the morning start.

If you would like to know of a couple of other bush camping options along the way, MM me.

Motherhen
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Follow Up By: Member - Shell P (W.A) - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:53

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:53
Hi Motherhen,
thankyou for your input, we will definately call into the Giles weather station if we go this way.
Regarding Bush Camps - will contact you a bit closer to leaving.

Cheers,
Shell
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Reply By: Ron N - Monday, Apr 23, 2012 at 23:00

Monday, Apr 23, 2012 at 23:00
Dave - Study the weather patterns on the satellite photos, radar and synoptic charts - and and look at the BOM weather observations, in the days before you leave.

If you see rain heading towards the Western Desert, or rain recorded out there, you'll run into muddy conditions.
This time of year, the predominant weather pattern is cold fronts brushing the Southern parts of the State, and it's unlikely there will be decent falls of rain in the Western Desert area - unless a "mid-level trough" containing a lot of moisture, moves in from the Northern Indian Ocean, and travels through the Pilbara & Murchison, to Central Australia.

BOM Rainfall & River Observations - http://www.bom.gov.au/wa/flood/

Farmonline weather - satellite imagery - http://weather.farmonline.com.au/satellite.jsp?lt=wzcountry&lc=aus

Cheers - Ron.
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Follow Up By: Member - Shell P (W.A) - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:45

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:45
Thanks Ron,
Good advice, we will be doing this.

Shell
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Reply By: Wayne's 60 - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 08:32

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 08:32
Hi Dave & Shell,

Can't help you with current road conditions, though the people who run the Tjukayirla road house used to post from time to time on the forum. Maybe contacting them directly, or the Warakurna roadhouse.

We stayed at the Warakurna Caravan Park and were happy with our choice, visiting Giles weather station is a must, to see some of Len's drawings and to watch the balloon go up.

Tjukayirla road house also has very good accomodation and the local scenery is stunning.

There are mixed feelings with regards to staying at either Warburton or Docker River. At the end of the day, you have to feel comfortable with the location you choose for your overnight camp.

Drive to the conditions and have a great trip.

Cheers,
Wayne & Sally.

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Follow Up By: Member - Shell P (W.A) - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:47

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:47
Hi Wayne & Sally,
Thankyou for your reply. We have heard about the Giles Weather Station as a Must See. Also been told to avoid Docker River.

Cheers Shell
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Follow Up By: Bush Wanderer - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 21:10

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 21:10
Definitely don't miss Giles. Spend some time inside tracking the balloon.....very interesting.

Camp site in the desert sheoaks a couple of kilometres west of Docker River is a nice spot to camp, as long as you ignore the wrecked toilets. Water is no longer connected.

BW.
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Reply By: andoland - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:34

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:34
I spoke to my parents today who were about to embark on the GCR with their van but apparently the road is not in great shape with lots of washouts from recent rain and more rain was forecast so they decided to go a different route.

I would call Tjukayirla Roadhouse before you go and get up to date conditions. They also have road conditions listed on their website.
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Follow Up By: Member - Shell P (W.A) - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:50

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 13:50
Thankyou Andoland,
This is what we are after.
I will ring the roadhouse a bit closer - the road conditions on their website haven't been updated for a few weeks :(
We will not be taking any risks either, we live in our van fulltime so don't want any damage done.

Cheers
Shell
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 16:00

Tuesday, Apr 24, 2012 at 16:00
It's surprising to hear that less-than-favorable road report. The rainfall records over the past month indicate that the Western Desert hasn't received a great deal of rain (0-25mm).

However, apart from Giles, the rainfall recording and reporting system along the GCR isn't exactly the best around. "Sparse" recording and reporting stations is probably the best way to describe it.

As a result, you basically have 1300kms between Laverton and Uluru with only a couple of reporting points along that route - and heavy rain can be quite localised in those areas, so it isn't picked up by the BOM.

http://www.bom.gov.au/jsp/awap/rain/index.jsp?colour=colour&time=latest&step=0&map=totals&period=month&area=wa

Cheers - Ron.
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Reply By: Croozerute - Wednesday, Apr 25, 2012 at 19:18

Wednesday, Apr 25, 2012 at 19:18
G'day Dave and Shell,

Serena and I used to run Tjukayirla, but aren't there anymore, left in December... we used to keep the road conditions up to date on this website as well as the Tjukayirla roadhouse site. I don't know how up to date it's kept these days.

Cheers
Al and Serena
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