Category Archives: Travel Blog

Blog of the 2016 big trip.

Final post for the trip

It has been a year since we finished the trip. In that time I have slowly been working on a final post for the trip and I mean very slowly. Once we arrived home the everyday life of work and daycare toke over.

Sitting down and writing this final post after such a long time back home has really given me time to think about what this trip meant for Alec and myself.

The obvious one. It was part of the mourning process and that is definitely true.

I also believe it has shaped our lives going forward. It has help realise that there is this amazing world outside the usual small piece we inhabit in our daily grind. You might be thinking that I have done plenty of travel before surely you knew that already. Yes that is true but most trips I have done have been restricted to a small bite of time. Visiting the usual tourist stops and moving on. When you have the time to explore and spend time in a place a whole new world opens up and it has made me hungry for more.

The benefit for Alec is out of this world. Yes he was very young. But I am constantly amazed at what he remembers of the trip. The excitement he get recalling the adventures we had.

The sheer volume of time we spent together. The bonding time we had will again set us up for life in the future. Especially as he grows more aware and starts asking the inevitable questions.

As we traveled we meet some amazing people. Sometimes we camped next to you for days, others we briefly meet at a coffee shop, park or rest stop. Then there were the ones we meet more than once as we were traveled in the same direction.

I thank everyone of you for stopping and taking the time to chat or just say hi. At times I felt lonely or just needed a adult chat and it was you guys that helped me as we continued on this trip of a life time.

Will I do another trip like this again. Oh course the answer is yes. I we do things different and as Alec grows the pace may change as will the places we visit.  Traveling will always be a big part of Alec’s and my world.


This trip is dedicated to the most amazing wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunty, friend that any one could have. You we never be forgotten and always loved.

I have made four photo movies below for your enjoyment. I easy way to look back at this amazing trip.

The Run Home.

img_0339From Miles I decided to head south. The idea is to travel down to the Queensland and New South Wales border. Then follow it back into southeast Queensland with our last camp of course being Mt Barney Lodge.


We were back in broad arce cropping country again.

We made it to Goondiwindi and found a camp at one of the 3 caravans parks that are in town. There wasn’t a lot of choice when it came to position. The 2 that were suitable for us were both on busy roads. The one we picked allowed us to do plenty of truck spotting from our camp. Good thing we both like trucks.


We got our truck spotting fill in Gonndiwindi.


While in Goondiwindi we went for a ride along the river. Which is the border between Queensland and New south wales. The river is prone to flooding and a levey bank was built to protect the town. The path was built on top.


There is also a number of pump stations along the river.



Of course we had to stop for a baby chino and some yummy morning tea. A reward for being good and going for a bike ride.

After spending 3 nights in Goondiwindi we made our way along the border and found ourselves at Glenlyon Lake.


We followed the border as best we could all the way to Texes. It was great drive. A lot un-sealed.


Oh no. The car is in Queensland and camper in New South Wales. We were in a bit of a state really. Sorry Bill and Margret I stole you joke.


The Dumaresq river flowing over the Bonshaw weir east of texas.


One of many large Pivot irrigators been used in the area.

Of course this wasn’t my original plan. I had planned to go all the way to Mount Barney. But I had forgotten about the long weekend and the end of the Queensland school holidays. Mt Barney Lodge was booked out. So after some research I come across Glenlyn Dam Tourist Park. Which had camp sites available. We stay 5 nights which included the long weekend. This is a lovely spot, the owner’s are really great and could not do enough to make sure Alec and I were looked after.


We did manage to go for a ride while at Lake Glenlyon. The dam wall.


Our morning tee stop.


Alec checking out the variety of fish that are in the dam while at the vistor centre


Alec doing some fishing. The carvan park has all sorts of games to keep everyone occuppied.


Alec found some new friends over the long weekend.


Dinner in front of the fire. The firewood was provided by the caravan park.

While at Glenlyon Dam we got some great weather and some not so great. It rained all the last day we were there.


It may of been because the long weekend was over or it could of been the weather. But the carvan park emptied out on the monday. Bit soft I reckon.

The next day was fine but was told by the owners of the park that there was no point rushing to leave as the rivers are flooded and won’t be able to get out for some hours yet. So we slowly pack up. Around 10 o’clock we were told the road was open. We made our way and got to Stanthorpe with out a problem.


The river crossing between Lake Glenlyon and Stanthorpe. The water had been over the bridge earlier in the morning.

In Stanthorpe we did some shopping and had lunch. Then made our way to Mount Barney Lodge. The last camp of the trip. We stayed 3 nights and did very little. Enjoying the last bit of freedom before we head back to reality.


Our last camp at Mount Barney Lodge. Where else was it going to be?


Alec and Grandma having a play in the creek. The grandparents could not resist having a visit.


These two have a lots of catching to do.


Finally back home after 8 months on the road. It’s going to be strange being back in a house.

Winton to Miles. Escaping the Rain.

img_0338With the Nichols family traveling home. Alec and myself were on our own again. I decided to stay a few days in Winton to have break and to work out where to go next. I had also noticed the Mav was getting hard to start.

I was having to use both both battery’s to get the engine to fire. I initially thought it was a battery problem. But a new battery didn’t solve the problem. So after further diagnostic’s. Basically checking the wiring for bad connecters or corrosion, I came to the conclusion the starter motor was at fault. Collateral damage from the clutch issue from a few weeks ago. A new starter was ordered and fitted.


By the time we get home Alec with be a trade qualified.

Over the time it toke to get the starter motor, the weather started to turn bad. Well for us anyway. For the farmer’s, it’s good weather.

The first couple of days the weather was fine and we made good use of it.


We visted the Hertage Truck and Machinery Museum. This truck was driven by a early Cape York Pioneer Toots Holzheimer. A really remarkable woman. I have read the book about her life and it’s well worth the read.


Alec having a play


The truck graveyard. There is some interesting pieces of gear rotting away in this paddock. 


We had a play on the famous musical fence.


Alec and I both enjoyed drumming. Actually it was really just us banging stufff with sticks.


And tried to do some blog updates while Alec played road trains on the table.

Then we started to get wet.


Just a tad soggy.


It’s impossable to keep Alec out of the water.

We had some time to kill in Winton and was a little difficult when being so wet.


We had a play at the council library.


Had a chino.


Got haircuts and had a chino.


Found another dinosuar.


And went to the pub for dinner.

As the rain fell the chances of getting of the beaten track were slowing disappearing. The number of road closures keep growing. We had two choices, sit in Winton for weeks and wait for in to dry out or make our way home by the boring bitumen highway.

When we left Winton it was still raining. I do love packing up a camper trailer in the rain. If you were wondering, yes that was sarcasm. We followed the  Landsborough highway and made it to Barcaldine.


There were a few water crossing to drive though to between Winton and Longreach.


I really wanted to get a shot of a road train crossing. Unfortantly the best I could do was a car. Not that exciting really.

In Barcaldine we opted to stay in a hotel for the night. It was just to wet and soggy to camp.


The hotel did a great meal. Sometime you just have to spoil yourself.

After a dry night at the hotel we continued further south. Not really knowing how far we could go.


Breakfast in a carpark in the middle of town. It easier to do this than have it in the hotel room.


We had a quick look at the tree of knowledge. Regardless of your polical views this is a important part of Australian history.


The road condition sigh as we left town.

By the time we got to Blackall the road was open. We continued down to Augathella and stopped for lunch. I planned on camping in Augathella but found the caravan park not very enticing. There is a lovely free camp on the river but I figured that it would be to boggy. So we continued on the Morven.

The Murweh shire council which Moven is part of, needs to be commended on the effort that has been taken to entice travels to stay. The Morven recreation park which consisted of a oval, various sheds for the local clubs, a children’s play area and a skate park. Also has a number of powered caravan sites, space for un-powered camps and toilet bloke which is basic but does have hot showers. All for the small price of $5 a night for un-powered and $10 night for a powered site. They isn’t a care taker or manager. First in best dressed and honour system for paying. By that I mean slotting you money in a locked steel box.


Our camp at Morven.

The perfect place to stop and to have a breather and dry out. We weren’t the only ones doing this and founds some lovely fellow travels to spend the days with.


Our neighbor allowed Alec to have some tv time. They were waiting for the road to Birdsville to open.


As I said just can’t keep Alec out of the water.

Our next stop after our 3 nights in Morven was Possum Park, 20km north of Miles. A uncle and Aunt of Peta’s had been travel through the Northern Territory and Queensland and were slowly making there way home. So we arranged to meet up.


Everyone enjoying the community fire in the afternoon.


Possum Park was once a World War 2 ammuntion dump. There is 20 of these bunkers on the property.


Some have been made into accomdation. This one is a games room.


They are also doing up this old aircraft for accomdation.

After a loverly stay it was time to move on. With home being so close it will not be long before or big adventure will soon be over.

The Dinosaur Trail. Rrraaaa

img_0336After our stay at Porcupine Gorge, we drove the short distant to the town of Hughenden. The first stop on our Dinosaur trail.

In Hughenden we visited the Flinders Discovery Centre and Museum. Here we got to meet Hughie. A life size skeletal replica of a Muttaburrasarus.


Meet Hughie


The Flinders Discovery Centre and Museum has a great children’s area. Perfect for puzzle obsessed mothers.


The boys enjoyed the costumes. Alec makes a cute little dinosaur.


And a kangaroo.


A amazing view with Hughenden in the distant.

Our next stop was Richmond. This was going to a be a 2 night stop but after seeing how nice the caravan park and the nearby lake was, we decided to stay a extra night.


The view of Lake Fred Tritton from our camp site in Richmond. The lake was completed in 2003 and provides a place for recreation for people of the town as well as visiter’s.

Richmond is a Dinosaur enthusiast paradise . In town, at Kronosaurus corner you can learn all about the marine fossils found in the area. A short 12km drive out of town there is free Fossil Hunting area.


Alec in front a replica Kronosaurus. Or a Crocodile as Alec kept calling it.


Some of the display’s at Kronosaurus Korner.


The boys enjoying the self guided tour.


It’s tough work this dinosaur exploring. Time for a chino.


One of the free fossicking sites. This one a quarry site that is still in use.


While we were at the fossicking site, a fellow traveler thought he had found something big and got the experts from town out. It was a real buzz having them there. So full of knowledge and enthusiasm. Unfortunately it wasn’t a big discovery. But still very interesting.

The final stop on the dinosaur trail was Winton. The 2 main Dinosaurs attractions are out of town. The stampede at Lark Quarry and the Australian Age of the Dinosaurs. Both well worth the drive.


The road between Richmond and Winton was a great drive. The country very green from recent rain. This road was open to four wheel drives only when we drove it.


This complex protects the stampeded foot prints from the weather and provides a viewing platform for the tourist.


Everyone having a look at the dinosaur foot prints in the rock.


Alec found another Dinosaur.


Some of the fossil’s discovered in the area, now displayed at the Australian Age of Dinosaurs.

The Nichols family and us parted ways at Winton. Alec and I had to decided what to do next. But with the weather closing in we may not have much of a decision to make.

Dinosaur jokes

When it comes to bad jokes, dinosaur jokes are at the top of the list. I guess they are 200 million years in the making. So enjoy and try not to groan to much.

Q. Why do museums have old dinosaur bones?

A. Because they can’t afford new ones.

Q: Why can’t you hear a pterodactyl using the bathroom?

A: Because the ‘p’ is silent

Q: What do you call a blind dinosaur?

A: adoyouthinkhesaurus.


Karumba to Porcupine Gorge

img_0334We arrived in Karumba. Actually Karumba point and made camp at the Karumba Holiday and Tourist park. We were warmly welcomed and advised we were in time for the last weekly free fish meal and entertainment night for the season. Just bring drinks, something to go with the fish and a couple dollars for a raffle. How could we resist. I do love a night off from cooking dinner.


Karumba Holiday and Tourist Park know how to keep the guest’s happy.

We didn’t do a lot in Karumba. The Nichols family were keen to experience one of the famous sunsets over the water, and had dinner at the local pub and enjoyed the setting sun. Alec and myself may of been a little spoilt over the last couple of mouths with sunsets and were happy to have a quiet afternoon and a early night.

While staying at Karumba Point we drove back to Normanton and did a 2 hour trip on the Gulflander. A passenger train service that runs runs between Normanton and Croydon. A distance of 151km. However we didn’t do that trip, but a shorter 2 hour trip. From Normanton and back. Which I must admit, was more than enough as the ride was a bit rough on the old tracks.img_9116


The Gulflander at our turn around point. More passages boarded for the trip back to Normanton.


Everyone enjoying the ride. Even if was a bit rough.


The Gulflander is powered by a 102 horsepower Gardner engine and gets better fuel economy than the Mav.


The boys loved the croc.


A little snack.

One the road again our destination was Porcupine Gorge National Park. A overnight stop was required as the distant was to much in a single day. We stayed in the lovely little town of Forsayth and then continued on to Porcupine Gorge.


As we headed east the country changed from flat plains to hills and rocky out crops.


A old diesel locomotive in the park at Forsayth.

Porcupine Gorge is a little hidden gem. Hidden it is. With no indication from the surrounding country side that the gorge exists. We stayed 3 night and enjoyed the bush camping, the wonderful views and a cold swim.


Our camp at Porcupine Gorge National Park.


Porcupine Gorge from a look out south of our camp.


A small part of the gorge looking from the start of the walking track.


The Nichols family completing the walk back up from the gorge.


A beautiful water hole at the bottom of Porcupine Gorge. A great place for a swim.


Another shot of the water hole.


Alec about to take off.


Us boys enjoying the cool water down in the gorge.

Having enjoying the gorge we left to meet some scary creatures from the distant past.

The Answer’s To The Important Questions




Only after they left us.


Mount Isa to Karumba

img_0332Once set up at our new home in Mount Isa. We went about doing all the usuals choirs that need to be done when in a major town. We also had a tailer suspension repair to do.


Welcome to Mount Isa. Yes, that big hill and the stacks is a mine. Nothing hiding the fact this a mining town.


Alec doing repairs again. This time on the trailer. He’s a handy bloke to travel with.

Our new travel companions arrived in town all the way from Brisbane. Mick and Ange Nichols and there 2 children Lennox and Zara.

Apart from doing some of the usuals tourists things together. The Nichols family also had choirs to do including a zip repair on their camper.


One of the biggest events for the town. The Mount Isa Rodeo.


The centre of town and of course the mine.


Lake Moondarra is a short drive out of town. With picnic spots, boat ramps and a playground. This is a very popular spot for the locals.

With all the jobs done we left Mount Isa and made our way north/west to Lawn Hill National Park.


Most of the drive to Lawn Hill National Park was dry and dusty. As we got closer we had to cross a couple of these gorgeous little creek crossings.

We stayed 3 nights in the national park. We spent the time enjoying the gorges that the national park is famous for. Mick and myself rented canoes and with the boys help paddling though the gorge.


The amazing Indarri falls.


Alec ready for some canoeing acton. He loved his big spade as he called it.


Paddling though the gorge was a real highlight of our visit.


Indarri falls this time in a canoe.



Once at the falls you have a choice of going further above the falls. This requires carrying the canoe to the top side of the falls. The 2 rails in the picture are not hand rails but rails to assist in getting the canoe up and down the bank.


No explanation needed.


Mick and Lennox enjoying the relaxing paddle.

Once our time was up in the national park we drove the short distant of 10km to our next camp, Adels Grove. Here we were able to relax in the tropical shaded campground and enjoy a few luxuries such as a bar, restaurant, hot showers and phone service.


Our cool and tropical camp at Adels Grove.


Relaxing by the fire.


A nice little spot for a play in the water at Adels grove. There were others areas to swim, just not suitable for young kids.


The boys enjoying a very special treat.

After a relaxing time at Adels Grove we drove to the small town of Gregory Downs.


Once we left the paradise of Adels Grove we were back to dusty dry country.

Here we did a over night stay at a free camp a little out of town on the Gregory river. As free camps go this was a great camp. We set up camp only metres away from a clear running creek. We spent the afternoon playing in the water and floating down the creek on tubes.


Our camp spot on the Gregory river.


The big kids had fun playing in the river too.


The general store in Gregory Downs is worth the stop.

From Gregory downs we headed further north. We made Burketown for lunch then found another free camp at Leichhardt Falls. 70 kilometres south east of Burketown.


The Leichhardt river below the falls. No water was flowing over the falls. I would love to go back when it is.


The boys enjoying a cold morning together while at Leichhardt falls.

After our overnight stay in at the falls we continued east to the seaside town of Karumba.

Stay tuned for the next chapter of the Kethel boys Adventure with the Nichols family.

Will the Nichols family get to see a sunset over the water, will the boys  get out of there pj’s before 9 o’clock, will Zara look cute yet again, will the Nichols buy a new faster kettle, will I ever be able to find the missing socks that will match the single ones in my washing basket.

Weipa to Mount Isa

IMG_0329Well what can I say. When it rains it pours. Everything was going well until I picked up the Mav after getting a service. The Mav had a oil leak from the rear axle. The next day we dropped the car back to the workshop for the repair. Only to find out 1 hour later that there were no parts in town. So parts were ordered with a expected wait of a couple of days. 7 days later the parts arrived. So instead of having 3 1/2 weeks to get to Mount Isa. We now had 8 days.


We filled the time in Weipa by exploring on the bike. I am not sure about the train line being so close to the bike track.


Playing in the local pool. Which was so much better than the caravans parks pool.


Building sand castles on the beach.


And filling up with chino’s.

This was really going to test myself and Alec as some big driving days are going to be required. It was 1650km to Mount Isa and I still wanted to do some exploring.

We set off nice and early from Weipa and made it down to Musgrave station. I didn’t really want to visit Musgrave again but it was the the most convent place for us to stop. We needed to do a couple of big days driving to allow for some exploring. Stopping at Musgrave station gave us a good days drive with out it being to long or to short.


Our lunch spot on the river outside of Coen.

We left Musgrave roadhouse with the plan to camp at the Aboriginal town of Pormpuraaw, 216km away on the west coast. We covered the distant with out a fuss. The road was dirt but very well maintain. We arrived just after lunch to find everything shut including the ranger station. It was Sunday after all. We made our way to the nearest camp site just out of town on the beach. I wasn’t impressed. I got stopped by a guy chasing a lift to Kowanyama 180 km away and there were a some locals that seem to be just hanging around. Now I have camped in some interesting spots before and I am fairly open minded, but this place just didn’t feel right.

So I drove back into town to find another camp. The information I had mentions 2 other camps further away from town. But just as we were about to explore, trouble hit. I lost my clutch. I quickly had a look and found the slave cylinder was leaking, and bad. Nothing I could do unless I was able to get a new slave cylinder. The most likely place that was going to happen was Mount Isa. 1060 km away.

After some thought and a good look at the map I made the decision to keep heading south. The quicker we can get to Mount Isa the better.


The road / track as we left Pormpuraaw. A lot of back burning happens this time of year.


This is what happens to a track after rain then driven on. This was the worse section but all the way down to Normanton there were smaller sections like this.

We drove for another couple of hours and and found ourselves at the Mitchell River which we had to cross.


The Mitchell River. The sand bank you can see is actually in the middle of the river.

The river was wide with a sand bank in the middle. With a quick walk I was able to figure out the first part of the crossing and I could see tracks up on to the sand bank in the middle.

I drove across the first section then on the middle sand bank and got the Mav and camper stuck in the soft sand. I got out a had a look at the next part of the crossing. A causeway of sorts had been put in. The water was flowing over it but wasn’t deep.

The recovery toke some time. It’s hard enough getting a car out of soft sand try and do it without a clutch. Once out of the soft sand we crossed the second section with out a problem and found a camp for the night on the side of the river.


The sand dug out from around the tyres and from under the vehical, Maxtrax’s put under rear wheels and tyres pressures lowered. Ready for a second attempt to break free from the sand. It had to to do this 3 times to break free. Each time moving a metre or so.

The following morning we continued south stopping for fuel and morning tea at the Aboriginal town of Kowanyama. Then making the big drive down to Normanton.


One of the logoons we passed. I would like to go back after a good wet season.

We stayed in Normanton for two nights. Both Alec and myself were in need of a break. I was able to organise parts for the car and camper . Which now also had a repair to be done.


Alec enjoyed patting the big croc in Normanton.


A after dinner stroll down the main street of Normanton. You can’t miss the famous purple pub.

As I said above when it rains it pores. This time it wasn’t the parts or the car giving trouble, it was logistics. The slave cylinder was available in Mount Isa on the Wednesday and the plan was to get to Mount Isa earlier than planed to pick it up and fit it. I was already booked into a caravan park to arrived Saturday. I rang the park to see if we could arrive early. Unfortunately no spaces were available. The rodeo was on. One of the biggest events for the town.

When we left Normanton I wasn’t sure what I was going to do. We continue south down the Burke Development road. Before leaving camp we aired up the tyres to highway pressure for the first time in two months. It’s bitumen all the way from Normanton to Mount Isa.


Back on the bitumen. There were lots of birds on the side of the road taking avantage of the road kill.

We made good time on the bitumen and stopped for lunch at the Burke and Wills Roadhouse. Then finding a road side camp with 20 other caravans 80 km north of Cloncurry.


Lunch stop at the Burke and Wills roadhouse.


It a tough country out here. When a grey nomad drops that’s that is where they are left. There belongings are spilt up among fellow travelles. 

The next day we made our way to Mount Isa. Getting in at midday we picked up our parts and had lunch. We then headed back out of town the way we came in to find a camp.


As we got closer to Mount Isa the country changed. So did the road conditions and traffic.

I had been told about a camp spot by a fellow traveler the night before. The turn off was 30 km out of town and then a further 8 km to the banks of Lake Mary Kathleen. I wasn’t expecting much. Maybe a puddle of water and if lucky some shade. What we found is now in my top 10 camp spots on this trip maybe in the top 5. A gorgeous lake with shady camp spots right on the waters edge. We had a great stay and didn’t want to leave. I would of rather of been relaxing than fixing the car too.


What a spot. Could of stayed longer.


It been a while since we camped on green grass.


Now where did I put that 14mm spanner.


You will need this dad.


Hey dad I think I have found the problem.

After a slow pack up we drove out of this amazing spot. Now with a working clutch to meet up with good friends in Mt Isa.

In 8 days we had traveled 1644 km. 1060 km without a clutch. We got to see some remote and amazing country. We didn’t see another vehicle between Pormpuraaw and Mitchell river. Unfortunately it was a rushed trip. I guess we will just have to go back one day.

To Clutch or not to Clutch that is the question?

Now you might be wondering how do you drive a manual car with out a clutch. Trust me it’s not easy. Below I will try to explain how it is done.

The first problem you encounter when you don’t have a clutch is getting the car in gear while at a stand still. It just not possible with the engine running without doing serious damage to the gearbox.

So to get around this problem you have to turn off the engine then start the car in gear. Of course once you do this you are rolling and the only way to stop the car is turn the engine off or pull the car out of gear. Once stopped you then have to repeat the starting process above to get rolling again. A real problem if in traffic. Luckily I didn’t have that problem.

The other problem you have is changing up and down gears. This requires a bit of skill.

In all modern gearbox’s a component called a synchromesh does the job of matching the speed of the gears to allow for smooth gear change. This process can only happen with the disengagement of the clutch during gear change.

When driving with out a clutch this process has to be done by the driver. When changing up you have to wait for the engine to slow down to match the road speed to the new ratio change before the gear will engage. When going down gear you need to speed the engine up while in neutral to again match the ratio change to the road speed. This process is not all ways easy especially with a gearbox never designed to be driven this way. Unlike some large truck gearbox’s.

Seisia back to Weipa

IMG_0326We left our beach front camp and headed south. Our destination one of the jewels in the crown of Cape York. Eliot / twin / Indian Head falls. I just wasn’t sure which way we would get there. Either the Bypass road or the telegraph track.

I had no intention of driving the telegraph track this trip. I had the safety of Alec to think of, I was traveling alone and it just wasn’t that sort of trip.

But as we traveled I started getting positive tracks reports from other travellers. I had also seen the lack of water in the two crossing we had crossed getting into the Dulhunty camp. My mind was slowly changing. With the bypass road badly corrugated and with heavy traffic. I figure it might be a safer and more relaxing drive doing the Telegraph track.


Yep still corrugated.

The first creek crossing I will come across driving the track north to south is Nolan’s Brook. We drowned the Mav in this crossing on our 2011 trip. All the reports I were getting, was that the Nolan’s Brook was easy this year. So I decided I would go have a look, if the Nolan’s was crossable with out drowning the Mav. Then I would continue down the Telegraph track to the falls.

With only a short drive from our return crossing of the Jardine River, we got to Nolan’s Brook. I found the reports were all correct. Nolan’s was indeed a easy crossing this year. With a splash and jump up out of the creek we crossed with out a problem and continued down the Telegraph track. Tackling each crossing with out fuss and arriving at the falls with out any major incident or damage.


One of the smaller easier crossing on the northern section of the Telegraph track.


The mav flexing up on a rough section.

We stayed 3 days at the falls spending alot of time in the water.


Twin Falls.


Twin Falls is a great place for young childen. We spent most of our time hear.


Peter at Twin falls 2011.


Alec at twin falls 2016.


Peta at the area called the saucepan. 2011


Alec playing in the Suacepan. 2016


Alec at Eliot falls. 2016

New Pictures 1287

Peta at Eliot falls. 2009


Action cam photo of Alec having a play.


Dad being a human boat.

After our stay at the falls we continued down the southern section of the telegraph track. I had no real concerns about this section of the track as the southern section has always been the easier section. We made good time the only hold up was pulling over to let other travellers past. Because the southern section of the Telegraph track is the easier section, there is more traffic. A lot of people only drive the bottom section.


For us this was the first crossing on the southern section. No I didnt use the bridge.


One of the telegraph line poles. Not many left. The Telegraph track follow the old overland telegraph line that was built in the 1860’s. The line was used for 60 years. In 1942 cross arms and 4 lines were added for modern communication. In 1987 the line was closed after more than 100 years in use.


The famous Gunshot creek crossing. No I have never driven it. I have always used a easier way. These lads were deciding to go down it or not.

We got to the end of the telegraph track and arrived at Bramwell roadhouse for a late lunch. T hen continued on to Moreton Telegraph station.


The start of the Telegraph track. For us it was the end. 2016

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Peta in 2009.

We did a overnighter at Moreton. The next day we arrived back in Weipa for a 2 night stay. The Mav was booked in for a service and all the usual chores needed doing before we make our way south. We actually have a deadline to meet. We have 3 1/2 weeks to get to Mount Isa.


Morteton tellegraph station as the name suggest it was originally one of the repeater stations for the telegraph line. Now it is a camping and tourist stop.

Cape York creek crossing of the season.

Whenever you hear people talking about driving the Telegraph Track, you always hear about the usual bad crossings. I drowned my car in Nolan’s, I broke my car going down gunshot or I had to winch out of Palm creek.

This year was a little different. Yes, certainly gunshot and Palm creek were no different from any other year. Nolan not so much.

A little creek called Scrubby was causing all the problems this year. Previous years this barely rated a mention. It was a bit of a fun splash that was it. This year it was the major creek crossing on the Cape. To make matters worse this is also the one and only creek crossing you need to cross to get into falls. You could come in from the north but that requires you to do a small bit of the telegraph track and 2 smaller crossing. Which a lot of people did.

The problem is a lot of people who visit the falls aren’t four wheel drivers as such, more tourers. They are not set up or keen to cross a creek with water high enough to cover your bonnet. It’s strange but a lot of people don’t enjoy it. In fact they find it stressful.

The result a lot of people had to miss out on seeing the falls. As I mention above, it really is a must do when travelling in Cape York.

Because I am one of the normal people how enjoy doing dumb stuff with my four wheel drive. I decided I would cross it. We did the crossing leaving the falls as we were traveling south.

I decided to film the crossing. I figured if I got stuck I would least have a cool video.

The Tip of Australia

IMG_0291For most people who travel Cape York, arriving at the Tip is a happy moment. It means they have survived the corrugations and dust of the development road, tackled the creek crossings of the telegraph track and put up with all manner of wildlife that want to eat, bite and sting you.

For some people it’s not always a happy occasion. Maybe a relief as they limp there broken vehicle or camper into the nearest workshop. Hoping the mechanic can perform some magic to keep them going. While some it’s a costly arrival as they don’t get to finish the drive. Instead a tow truck is now there mode of transport.

For me being the third time to the tip and the novelty might wearing of a bit thin. However I was excited to take Alec to the northern most point of Australia.The excitement was also mixed with a touch of sadness.

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Peta at the tip on our first trip to Cape York 2009.


Alec at the tip of Cape York. 2016


Peta and myself at the tip in 2011.


Alec and myself at the tip of Cape York. 2016


Myself at the tip. 2016


It’s only manners to stop at the Croc Tent to grab a souvenir shirt. Alec is happy with his shirt.

What a lot of people don’t realise is that this northern part of Cape York is worth visiting in it’s own right. Regardless of it goegraphic interest point. It has a very tropical island relaxed feel about the place with beaches to explore and history to learn about. It is also the gateway to the Torres Strait islands.


The beach right in front of camp. Yes, it’s a hard life at the top.


We had to put up with these sunsets every afternoon.


I know, such a cliche moment. Local kids riding bareback along a beach at sunset. But it did happen.

We stayed nine days making our home at the Seisia caravan park. We didn’t really do a lot. We did two big day trips. One to the Tip and the other to Thursday island. The rest of the time we spent relaxing on the beach, having several attempts at fishing and chatting to other campers about how bad the roads are.


On the the jetty at Thurdays island. I decided to take the bike over and ride around the island.


There is only two hills on Thursday island. We rode up both. The first one wasn’t really a tourist stop.


One of the main attractions of Thursday island is Green Hill Fort. It was built between 1891-1893. This was a defence against a possible Russian invasion.


The view from the fort. The land mass in the centre of the photo that is just visable in the distant is the Australian mainland.


The view of the first hill we rode up from green hill fort. Note the wind turbines. 


Our first fishing attemp on the jetty was cancelled due to bad timing. They close the jetty when unloading freight. We did watch the unload for a bit.


Alec having a fish off the jetty until he decided the hand reel was better in the water.

Horse’s and dogs.

In some of the aboringnal commuties there are dogs and horses everywhere, roaming the streets and generaly do what they want to. A lot of times you have to drive around the dogs laying in the streets or carparks. The town of Bamaga and Seisia are no exception.


We had a horse in our camp as Alec keeps reminding me.


North to the tip of Australia


After our relaxing stay at Stone crossing we headed back to Weipa for a 2 night stay to restock and do washing.

We managed a early start the day we left Weipa. Thanks to me being super organised and I was also able to leave the camper hitched up during our short stay. I often do this if I can.

Back on the Peninsula development road we headed out of town. It had been over two weeks since we had driven this road and it hadn’t fared well with all the holiday traffic. More and worse corrugations and plenty of dust. After 100 kilometres travelling east we reach the Telegraph road and headed north. Making good time we got to Bramwell roadhouse for a early lunch. This is also the start of the famous Telegraph Track. The four wheel wheel drive only track that follows the original telegraph line. A fun drive with multiply creek crossings and plenty of rough track to test out you vehicle and driving ability.

The camp site we were driving to is on the Telegraph track. Actually 7 kilometres off the track. However I only plan to drive a small section of the track to get there. From our lunch stop we toke the southern bypass road for 50 kilometres and then turned west and travel a further 24 kilometres to connect on to the Telegraph track. A short drive and 2 creek crossings we reached the turn off to our camping spot.

The video below will explain why we made the effort to get to this particular spot.

I made a couple of mistakes when making this video. I actually mention the wrong river a first. It’s the Dulhunty river not the Wenlock. I also mention that the guides made the cake. At closer inspection of the photo’s it’s obvious that it was brought cake. They still had to cart it from Weipa and that trip we did drive the Telegraph track.

Hope you enjoy.


The gunshot bypass road passes though the Healthland Resource Reserve.


Our bush camp on the Dulhunty river.


The falls near our camp. The good thing is not many people know about them.


Alec having a play in the Dulhunty river.


A couple kilometers from our camp is a water testing station run by the DPI. The track continue past here. To where I have no idea. Might be somewhere to explore next Cape trip.


One of the crossings. This was us leaving and yes it is raining.

After 4 nights on the Dulhunty we back tracked back on the Bypass road and continued heading north. In the video I mention the worse corrugations I had seen had been on the gunshot bypass road. Well the corrugations thats we drove on the way to the Jardine ferry weren’t bad they were terrible. So bad in fact a lot of travellers were driving in the spoon drains just to provided some relief from the bone jarring vibrations.


Which lane should drive.

After crossing the Jardine river ferry we drove the short distant to our new home for 9 days at the Seisia Caravan Park.


It cost $129 return for the car and trailer to use the Jardine river ferry. It is also permit to cover bush camping in the area.


The line up for the ferry. We arrived right at midday when the ferry closers for a hour lunch break.