red centre - merindee loop rd and fuel prices

Submitted: Thursday, Dec 28, 2006 at 04:04
ThreadID: 123140 Views:4713 Replies:2 FollowUps:2
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we have in the last week travelled from Alice Springs to Kings Canyon via the Mereenie Loop Road. It is very rough and corrugated in parts. The road from Glen Helen to Gosse Bluff is very corrugated and rough with speeds down to 20km/hr for a good part of it. From just past Grosse Bluff it is blacktop until Larapinta Drive. We believe the Glen Helen - Gosse Bluff road is to be tarred with work starting at the end of January 2007.

Once you hit Larapinta Drive it goes back to gravel but it is good until the turn off to Areyonga and then deteriorates badly with plenty of corrugations. The worst stretch is from about 90km out of Kings Canyon for about 40 km. We stopped for lunch and when we got out of the van found we had a puncture, so we proceeded to change the tyre . Another 20km further on and we shredded a tyre on the cruiser. The road was then not too bad until the rest area but the first 4 or 5 km's after that is rough and corrugated again. The last 10km into Kings Canyon has been tarrred, as is the road from Kings Canyon to Yulara.

We reduced our tyre pressures on both the cruiser and van down to 27lbs on all the gravel roads and had no damage to the Bushtracker apart from a can of beer that jumped off the fridge shelf and onto the door shelf and broke it, but the beer can was intact and cold. We had emptied the door shelves and thought we would be Ok but were wrong.

We are running a t/d 100 series cruiser and found that prices for fuel vary wildly in this area.

Deisel in Alice Springs was $1.299 litre, up to $1.586 at Glen Helen, to $1.71 at Kings Canyon but $1.90 at Curtin Springs roadhouse where I added 50 litres rather than fill up at that price..

I should have waited till Yulara where it was back to $1.58.

The moral of the story is make sure you have enough fuel to get to either Kings Canyon or Yulara and boycott the excessive prices at Curtin Springs Roadhouse, which is closer to the distribution point than either Kings Canyon or Yulara.

Very quiet out here for anyone who wants to see the rock and canyon without the usual hordes.

Mike and Margaret

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Reply By: Gamma and Grumps - Thursday, Dec 28, 2006 at 16:33

Thursday, Dec 28, 2006 at 16:33
We have a 20 ft van and landcruiser 100 TD and intend to travel this year so any information would be appreciated.
Do you need to carry more fuel than the 150 litres in the landcruiser?
What sort of fuel consumption do you get over the bad roads at reduced speeds?
Is there more chance of getting stuck due to rain this time of year, or is the lack of people due to the heat?
Sounds like tyres could be a problem. How many spares, spare tubes, tyre levers, bead breakers etc do you need.
Ken and Aileen

Going walkabout - about time.

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Follow Up By: Bushtracker - Thursday, Dec 28, 2006 at 19:36

Thursday, Dec 28, 2006 at 19:36
Hello Ken and Aileen,
Having been to these places with a 20' and Toyota myself, I will give you my experience on these two items...:

A) Usually the lack of people in these places this time of year is the Christmas Holidays somewhere, then lack of crowds as the weather is moving towards the heat... It is usually too hot for most til about Easter when traffic picks back up again... Some of my best travel has been just before the Crowds of Easter...

B) Personally I feel there is no such thing as too much diesel. You can buy it in cheap places and carry the reserves to get you through some expensive places. I have four long range tanks on my Mack and hold the record, towing my Bushtracker to the Victorian Reining Championships and back to Queensland 4400 kms without refueling through all the expensive southern fuel prices... My Ford has an extra 200 litre tank, plus the 135; and my 100 Series carries 270 litres with the spare tyre out the back mount.

The cheapest long range tank is still three jerry cans on the a-frame of the Bushtracker... Cheap fuel and peace of mind with reserves...

My two cents worth...............Ranger
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Follow Up By: Boystoy - Sunday, Dec 31, 2006 at 20:41

Sunday, Dec 31, 2006 at 20:41
Hi Ken & Aileen

We recently completed a 25,000km trip through Aust. over most of the inland desert routes.

We have a 20ft BT and a LC100TD fitted with long-range fuel tank. I kept complete records of expenses & travel details for this trip. Our overall average was 20.9 l / 100km. The worst we had was 25 l / 100km pushing a headwind out of Birdsville. We were blessed with a tailwind across the Great Central Road and achieved a tank range of 1230km. We topped up enough to get us to Alice Springs at Curtain Springs, and calculated after filling up at Alice Springs, that we still had about 50km of fuel left at Curtain Springs. ( I also carry a 20l jerry can on the A frame as insurance & also for the Webasto.)

We found out when we put the rig over a weighbridge on the Sunshine Coast on the way home that we were overloaded!! Would you believe a total of 7.1 tonnes.
Accordingly we were more than happy with our fuel consumption

Neil & Pat
A Bushtracker (or BT) is a "Boys Toy"

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Reply By: Bushtracker42 - Tuesday, Jan 02, 2007 at 01:57

Tuesday, Jan 02, 2007 at 01:57
We also had a 100 T/D with long range tanks. We added the tanks 2 years ago after we started to travel longer distances and I would not do without it. We can travel places, explore and never an issue.
We were getting 17-20 l/100km, which gives us at least 1200 km. I still have to see just how much fuel I can access on the sub, but I know I get 250km without the van after the light is on.
PS I recently put in a safari chip + 3" exhaust system on. We just did a quick trip to Flinders and got 21-24 l/100km. It propably was not the chips fault, just me using the extra torque and hitting hills etc hard.
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