The Canning Stock Route by The Beanie Bunch
Monday, July 6,2009
Everything is going well. We are at Kimba (a couple of hours west of Port Augusts) and on track. The Nullabor is nextand we expect to be off the air till Friday or Saturday - July 11 and 12.
Last night was the first time we have used our tents due to the shocking Victorian weather experienced on the way, rain, wind, cold, so we stayed in cabins for 2 nights. We stayed at Halls Gap Lakeside and Wimmera Lakes Caravan Resort, on the Western HIghway. Last night we stayed at Mannum Caravan Park in South Australia. We had a big camp fire to keep warm but at least the night was not wet.
Now we are bound for Cactus Beach. We went through Clare SA and Kimba. Like many of the towns in this part of Australia Kimba is pretty and neat, with many buildings built with the gorgeous cut limestone. Its claim-to-fame is that it is half-way across Australia. It is also the home of the Big (pink) Galah.
It is a major wheat belt area and Kimba is where the Sturt Desert Pea, South Australia's National flower, is grown commercially.
Cactus Beach is located 21 kilometres south of Penong, on the western edge of South Australiaand surfers from around the world and Australia frequent the area to surf 1 right hand and 2 left hand breaks despite Great White Sharks which are know to share the water.Cactus Beach is rated by surfers as one of the best surf beaches in Australia. The area is also noted for strong sea winds and flies in summer.
We are happy with the way the DPChip we fitted to the GoSee HoldenRodeo is performing.
The Rodeo fully laden is nicely balanced and after about 1300km over the last three days at 90 to 95kmh into big winds we are getting 10.5litre per 100 km. We had strong winds all the way to Mannum, on Murray River in South Australia.
The Murray is low but the cruise paddlewheeler MurrayPrincess is churning along the river from Mannum. Mannum is busy with tourism. There are lot of people on school holidays and caravan park cabins are heavily booked.
Tackling one of the worlds most isolated and challenging outback tracks might sound a bit questionable. Why travel over 2,000kms battling through deep sandy terrain covered with prickly wattle and spinnifex, rocks and scraping the paint work with no civilization, shop or supplies for three weeks? . . . because, the remote Canning Stock Route presents an exhilarating escape from day-to-day issues and offers the chance to have a lot of fun as well.
We do it because we can, even although our group members have crook knees, titanium plates, fused ankles, vegetarian requirements, dairy intolerance, diabetes and other idiosyncrasies, we will do it because we can.
GoSee Canning message -Travel the Gravel before we Unravel
Our group of experienced campers and 4 wheel drivers has mostly travelled together for some 22 years, experiencing the adventure of The Gunbarrel Highway, The Bungle Bungles, Simpson Desert, Cape York and many other places equally as beautiful.
2009 brings together much of this practical experience and friendship in tackling The Canning Stock Route.
Planning started twelve months prior to setting the start date of 4th July 2009.
It meant researching the track, talking to people who have driven the area, talking to those in retail 4w4 shops who have seen first-hand the problems others have experienced.
Then there was arranging itinerary, time off work, budgets, permits, suitable vehicles, modifications, vehicle set up, packing, practice weekend away and re-packing. Why? Because we can.
Our group consists of:
2006 Holden Rodeo
GoSeeAustralias Alan Pam
2006 Holden Rodeo LX Turbo Diesel 5 speed Manual twin cab utility with
3.0-litre, four-cylinder turbo-diesel Intercooled engine.
Manufacturers Specifications: 96KW at 3800rpm and 280Nm at 2000rpm.
Vehicle Unladen Mass 1,850 kgs
Alan Pam fully laden weight with 2 persons 2,830.(Identical to 2000 HiLux).
Load capacity: 1015kg.
Towing capacity: 3000kg.
Fuel Tank Capacity 76 litres
Rhino Roof Rack Sportz Bars
4 x Pedders TrakRyder Shock Absorbers
Pedders LSR Leaf spring reset (rear)
DP Chip for additional Diesel Power. Claimed to power up the Rodeo to 116kw with 350Nm.
Phil Barbara. Swan Hill Riverside Caravan Park.
2009 Toyota HiLux
Vehicle 2009 Toyota HiLux SR5 Double Cab 4 cyl 3.0 litre EDI Turbo Diesel 4 speed Auto.
Manufacturers specifications: 126Kw and 343 Nm
Phil Barabra laden weight with 2 persons 3500 kgs
Vehicle Weight 1,900 kgs
Load Capacity 880 kgs
Fuel Tank Capacity 76 litres
ARB Roof Rack
Long Range Fuel Tank
Thumper Battery Pack and smart solenoid.
Bert Shirl from Warragul Victoria
2004 Landrover Defender 130 2.5 litre 5 cyl 4x4 Turbo Diesel Twin Cab with
Tray 5 speed manual.
Manufacturers specifications 90kw 300Nm
Towing Capacity 3,500 kg
Bert Shirl laden weight with 2 persons 3800 kgs
Load Capacity 1,300kgs
Dual Battery System
Upgraded suspension and air bags
Geoff Sue from Nar Nar Goon Victoria
2000 Toyota HiLux
2000 Toyota HiLux 4x4 Dual Cab
3litre Diesel with Canopy.
Towing Capacity 1290kg.
Geoff Sue fully laden weight with 2 persons 2,830
Load Capacity 1054kg.
Gross Laden Mass 2590kg.
Approach angle 36deg.
Departure angle 34deg.
Fuel capacity60 litres.
ARB Roof bars rack
Upgraded suspension and air bags
We plan to be on the Canning for three weeks starting from the South and ending at Halls Creek WA at which time we will decide on where to then depending on vehicle condition and timing issues.
Then there is the food. What do you take for three weeks plus the required 3 days emergency rations per person. You can live for two weeks without food, but only three days without water.
We plan to take a drinking water allocation of five litres per person for 21 days. We will, however, have some water available from Wells along the Canning for cold water bathing and cooking.
Each vehicle will be carrying sufficient diesel fuel for around 1,200kms in 4x4 mode and we have arranged to replenish fuel supplies at the Kunawaritji Community about half Way.
We are unsure of fuel costs at this stage but are expecting to have to pay around $3 - $4 per litre for another 160 litres per vehicle.
Each vehicle will be carrying two full spare wheels plus an independent puncture repair kit.
Cooking is planned in camp ovens, cast iron skillet pans, open fire, OzPig LPG barbecues, a lot depends on the availability of wood. Maps have been individually purchased from our friends at Westprint Maps Nhill Victoria.
ARB Awning on Toyota HiLux
Fruit vegetables cannot be purchased in quantity due to fruit fly border quarantine crossing from Victoria to South Australia then again a major quarantine area at Eucla on the South Australia and Western Australia border. We will need to purchase our requirements probably in the Kalgoorlie area.
Barbara has provided our group with our own beanies. She also produced our special bright orange Swan Hill Riverside Caravan Park sand flags which need to be used when crossing the 990 sand dunes on the trip. They are supposed to be flown three metres above ground level when travelling the dunes.
We will be taking a Satellite Phone for emergency contact which we have hired from Peter James at Lara Electronics near Geelong.
Some Travel Hints -
Take a photocopy of your drivers licence and credit cards in case wallet is lost
Some pics of your vehicle and luggage, camping equipment for insurance purposes in case of fire or loss
Medication, allergy cards, dental floss.
Have your teeth checked before you leave.
Spare set of glasses (specs not drinking!)
Insect repellent or fly nets.
ContACT Internet Solutions, a web design, build and hosting company in Canberra ACT have kindly provided the GoSeeAustralia mobile Broadband equipment for the trip.
ContACT has set also up a multi-distribution email service for The Beanie Bunch. This enables communication with family and friends and GoSee Editor Garth Morrison who will post our travel reports from the Canning Stock Route to the GoSee Australia.com.au website.
Editors Note - Also see: