It was with some trepidation we headed off up the Kalumburu Rd towards the Mitchell Plateau. The Gibb is notoriously rough, this apparently is a level above that! (is that possible??).
One thing we have learnt so far is that complete strangers and grey nomads like to give their opinion very readily. We heard various bits of unsolicited advice about everything from tyre pressures to optimal speed over the endless corrugations.
Common happy hour banter in these parts go along the lines of, “you can’t tow there” or “you can tow if the moon is in phase four of the cycle and you hold your tongue out to the right” as well as”our friends said this or that”.
The location of the local grader is also open to constant speculation. If you mention you have seen it during the day everyone suddenly wants to talk to you!
We set off from Drysdale Station full of nervous energy but unfortunately not full of diesel… 5kms down (and 5000 corrugations) we turned back realising we were gunna need every drop! I had prepared every nut and bolt on the trailer and car but forgot to fill it!
The rest of the trip up was remarkably uneventful. It was rough, dusty and rattled our back teeth. Noah actually lost one. Myrtle kept all its wheels on which is unusual.
We stopped in at Munurru (King Edward Camp) for a lunch break. We had thought if it was too tough going we would set up here for the night. It looked beautiful and although we wanted to stay, the idea of the bumpy long day trip up to the falls and back made us decide to press on. We are so glad we did.
We were greeted by Jaz the ranger at the front gate. She gave us the best ever rundown of the park, the falls and the heli-options available.
She was hilarious and gave us so many bits of information. The park map she gave us ended up full of silly squiggles, stick figures and even a badly drawn stick-helicopter thingo. It made for entertaining navigation two days later as we laughed our way along the track.
After finally getting past the super talkative ranger we found a lovely camp area with heaps of shade. It was well worth the drive and we felt like we had made a good decision.
We scheduled in a rest day after bouncing around the day before. We managed a bit of a swim and prepared our hiking gear for the big walk coming up. I will save the helicopter ride for another blog as it was just epic!
Just in case anyone does want our unsolicited advice… camper trailers are fine on the road in. There are a few steep points and a couple small creek crossings to negotiate. These would pose a big problem for longer off-road caravans with overhang so I would avoid towing anything with that sort of length in.