Northern NSW to Karratha

Submitted: Thursday, Jul 26, 2012 at 21:39
ThreadID: 97110 Views:2300 Replies:5 FollowUps:18
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Hi My husband and I are relocating to Karratha. We will be driving mid September and travelling with 2 dogs. We would love advice on which is the best route to Karratha. Should we travel across to Broken Hill, South Australia, WA then up to Karratha or would travelling up to Qld, NT and thru Broome down to Karratha be the better option.

We would love to hear from anyone who has invaluable advice as we will also need to stay in o'night accommodation which is pet friendly. We are time poor and really need to do this trip in 5 days. Thanks :)
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Reply By: Member - nick b - Thursday, Jul 26, 2012 at 23:09

Thursday, Jul 26, 2012 at 23:09
Cathy ; what area of NSW would you need directions from ?

also would you be wanting bitumen , main road , towing , etc ?

cheers nick
Cheers Nick b
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Reply By: Ian & Sue - Thursday, Jul 26, 2012 at 23:31

Thursday, Jul 26, 2012 at 23:31
Coming down the West coast from the north during late September the termperatures are usually very high, I would take the Broken Hill option then across the Nullabor to Kalgoorlie through the wheatbelt to Geraldton and up from there via Carnarvon.

Cheers

Sue
Karratha WA
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Follow Up By: bibtracker - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 00:59

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 00:59
Hate to be a bore, but five days for that trip is really pushing it from a safety point of view.
Cheers, Tony
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Follow Up By: Member - Toyocrusa (NSW) - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 06:31

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 06:31
Have to agree with bibtracker. I have done it from Wollongong in six days and that entailed some long days of driving. One was up at 4 am and driving from Madura to Perth. There is also another post on the forum from Thursday on the amount of Heavy/wide machinery being transported up to the mines. They are slowing travelling a lot as well. Bob.
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Follow Up By: Member - Broodie H3 - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 11:05

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 11:05
Come across the Nullarbor, to Kalgoorlie, the instead of going to Geraldton cut up to Meekatharra then Newman and then Karratha, the should save you at least 1 days travel, did you mention where you are leaving from , the Broken Hill route would be easiest, but you will still be pushing the fatigue boundaries a bit. Broodie H3
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Follow Up By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 11:49

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 11:49
As other have said, it's a long way, about 5,500 km. By Whereis map that is about 57 hours or 11-12 hours/day over your 5 days. You will not be able to average 100 km/hr though. Even with 2 drivers fatigue will be a problem.
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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 11:57

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 11:57
round the bottom is about 5500 ks in 5 days = 1,100 each day average
over the top is about 5950 ks in 5 days = 1,190 each day average
if you could average about 80ks /hr ( with stops , !!! ) that would be about 15 hr a day average !!!!
That would be like driving from Sydney to Adelaide each day !!!

cheers nick
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Reply By: Cathy H1 - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 18:21

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 18:21
Wow thank you all so much for the feedback.

We will be starting our Journey from Ballina NSW. My husband and I were both thinking 5 days was plenty we may now have to leave a little earlier as we will be stopping every couple of hours to give the dogs a break and a bit of a run.

We prefer to stay on sealed roads, and are updating our car from a Toyota Aurion to a Holden Colorado. (Sedan just doesn't feel safe enough in the outback)

I think the best route would probably be heading out Broken Hill way and then across the Nullabor.

I am worried about accommodation as we are travelling with a rottie and little cavoodle. Do you think we have problems with this.

All responses are valuable and very much appreciated.

Cheers Cathy
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Follow Up By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 18:35

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 18:35
Use a trip planner such as Whereis maps etc to roughly plan your stops and search for suitable accommodation in those places.
You will probably not find to many accommodations that will allow dogs in rooms. Google 'Travelling with dogs' and have a look at the sites.
Here is one for you Travel Dogs Australia
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:43

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:43
Cathy,

I reckon the rottie should get a provisional license, to help you both with the driving!! You've got 8 weeks before you leave, some intense training and it'll get the required 100 hours, and as long as it doesn't bite the testing officer, it's a cinch. Red Pees!!!

Some places I've noticed will let you tie the dogs up in a secure place. Using chains to tie dogs up to vehicles at night, can be a bit noisy, especially if they aren't content.

Have travelled with dogs a lot years ago, and one secret is don't overfeed them. Preferably small amounts of dry food only, and of course, adequate water. Keep them close at any bush stops, in case there's 1080 baits about. But this should be signed, at any fences, or boundary grids.

If you're going to be doing 10-12 hour days, start early, after sunrise, and don't drive, unless necessary, into the setting sun. The glare, and a dirty windscreen can hide a world of grief. Drink adequate water, and don't eat turkey, pasta, bananas or heavy, fatty foods, like you get at roadhouses. Nuts and dried fruit are good snacks for driving. I chew sugar-free chewing gum.

The other thing, with the rottie driving, I'd say you would have a 200m radius "undesirable person exclusion zone" around the new Colorado. Think you'll have to ditch any fruit, or honey at the WA border too.

Have a safe, but long trip,

Bob.

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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:46

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:46
I forgot, Cathy, what's the other half of a "cavoodle"???

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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 22:34

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 22:34
"cavoodle link
cavoodle

cheers
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 09:18

Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 09:18
Ha ha, watched Don's road test. They're a happy, friendly little fur ball, eh.

Might have to get one as we head into our.......umm, senior years.

Thanks Nick,

Bob.

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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 09:51

Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 09:51
Bob : ....They're a happy, friendly little fur ball, eh. ...." a vets delight !!!! "

I see your sporting a Alice springs lally bull bar .... very tuff ,

cheers nick
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Reply By: Member - nick b - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:12

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:12
Cathy : you could have a look at places for your accommodation -top tool bar -> Places > find all places >features > check the box , camp & accom ......zoom in on the the places you want to stay ....click on the place ...open .

Image Could Not Be Found

The route over the top via QLD & NT is about 300 ks shorter about 5500ks from Ballina & maybe shorter in time because of less towns ???

southern route 5840 ks from Ballina to karratha

Image Could Not Be Found

cheers nick
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:55

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:55
Nick,

They'd cut even more off if they turned off at Dunmarra, and travelled the Buchanan H'way to Timber Creek, via Top Springs. I last did it in a holden ute, about 1973, and it wasn't too bad then.

Bob.

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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:56

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 21:56
Nick,

They'd cut even more off if they turned off at Dunmarra, and travelled the Buchanan H'way to Timber Creek, via Top Springs. I last did it in a holden ute, about 1973, and it wasn't too bad then.

Bob.

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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 22:19

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 22:19
Bob : we did it in june this year ,still a good road .but Cathy wants to stick to the bitumen

The short cut would save 176 ks ....bitumen via Katherine 569 ks Buchanan H'way via Timber Creek 393 ks

cheers nick
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 09:06

Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 09:06
Yeah, for that distance saving, it's hardly worth leaving the bitumen, Nick, eh.

And timewise, it'd probably be about the same. The long way means they can see the delights of Katherine, and more importantly, the scenery from Willeroo through to Timber Creek.

Not surprised I've got 2 follow-ups above, something "funny" was going on with exploroz and/or the internet last night.

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Follow Up By: Cathy H1 - Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 15:30

Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 15:30
We may consider taking short cuts if the roads are good, being a first timer driving in the outback is a bit daunting. The longest route we have driven was to Townsville way back in the late 80's from Sydney in a Mitsubishi L300.

I would prefer the top end route but hubby is leaning towards the south route.

Everything you guys are saying is definitely being considered we really appreciate the advice. I think sitting around a table with a map of Aus, a few beers and this forum page open is on the cards tonight. Pity you both couldn't join us.
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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 22:24

Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 22:24
Cathy : If it was me I think i would be looking at to top route .The road north would be as good as the road south i would think but i havnt been out through central QLD for a long time , may be someone could give some info on that . Roads in the N.T & W.A are very good and this way is easy to navigate after Toowoomba

The short cut mentioned is most likely not a big save and its a bit rough timber ck end & slower ...but if you did you will pass top springs hotel / road house & Victoria river downs station & cross Victoria river - wet -

It would also depend on the weather conditions at the time .... Hot / Rain !!! try a search of temp for that time of the year .... B.O.M .

Did you have a look at places ....find your way around that .

P.S " Pity you both couldn't join us." .....I wished i was heading north ....wet and cold here .

cheers nick









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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 23:11

Saturday, Jul 28, 2012 at 23:11
The suggested route from Ballina to Toowoomba from my gps program !!!!


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Reply By: rocco2010 - Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 22:37

Friday, Jul 27, 2012 at 22:37
Gidday

And in case somebody hasn't mentioned it, once you are in WA you should presume that your dogs are at risk picking up a bait ANYWHERE and they must be watched closely. This doesn't only apply to pastoral land as large areas of the outback are baited for wild dogs. I know it doesn't sound very welcoming but it is the way it is over here.

Cheers

Rocco

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