East Kimberley Day 16 - Bush Camp to Bungles

Saturday, Jul 07, 2001 at 00:00

ExplorOz - David & Michelle

Day 16 - Saturday 7/7/01
Start - Bush Camp
Stop - Bungles
Trip Odometer - 151.4km
Stopped time - 2.54hr
Moving average - 38.6km/hr
Moving time - 3.55hrs
Max speed - 102.8km/hr

It seemed we were set to have the first rainy day of our trip, but it cleared as we approached the Spring Creek Track at 10am. The condition of this access track into the Bungle Bungles is the cause of great controversy and speculation. It is definitely 4WD only due to the river crossings and terrain and we did use low range a couple of times. We certainly didn’t feel it was a difficult or even rough track, in fact we felt it was a highlight of the whole Bungle Bungle experience.

The views are sensational and if you are travelling in convoy, you’ll probably be tempted to get a few photos of one another’s river crossings. Although, the crossings weren’t terribly deep – at most up to top of wheels, many of the crossings are dense with vegetation with sweeping views of river bends, beautiful river gums and pandanus. If you talk to the “caravaners” however, you may hear that “its quite a rough road!”. Caravan’s are not permitted access into the Bungles and people who tow trailers will take a fair bit longer than those that don’t however loads of people tow camper trailers in with absolutely no problem at all.

The first part of the trip into the Bungles involves a 53km trek through undulating country with around 50 creek crossings. This access track passes through the Mabel Downs Station and camping is strictly prohibited and a 50km/hr speed limit is enforced. This part of the trip will take and around 2hrs. At the 53km mark, you will come across the ranger station where you will need to pay your entry fee (or quote your park pass number) and pay for camping - $9 per person. There are a choice of 2 camp grounds and you will need to nominate which one you intend to use at the time of paying your fees.

We chose the Kurrajong Camp, just 6km further on and after setting up camp drove a further 16km to the Echidna Chasm where an easy walk along a rocky river bed led into a narrow chasm, similar to Standley Chasm. Echidna Chasm is actually far more spectacular at about triple the length and with great surrounding views.

This is the northern end of the Bungle Bungle range, which is quite different to the southern end, where the well-known beehive domes are found.

The boys later walked to the Frog Hole Gorge, a short but difficult scramble to a waterhole, whilst the girls drove back along the track for sunset photos.

It was dusk when we arrived back at camp with too much rain cloud for a sensational sunset view of the massif so we sat back and enjoyed our evening without feeling slack for not making the additional journey to the sunset lookout.
David (DM) & Michelle (MM)
Always working not enough travelling!
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