Tanami Road

Wally Wombat

New Member
Hey Guys
Just wondering if anyone has driven along the Tanami Desert Road recently, what is the condition of the road like, can you recommend any places of interest and any campsites along it. Thanks.
 

greysrigging

Well-Known Member
I have worked out along the Tanami....run trucks out along it too and therefore I have a fairly low opinion of its state. Its a truck/trailer killer.....hundreds of miles of endless corrugations and truth be known IMHO ordinary scenery. As for camping ? and places of interest ? nah cant think of one. Rabbit Flat Roadhouse is closed now and the bloke who ran it was a mean old ornery cantankerous bastard anyway. By all means tick it off the bucket list of trips to do between Broome and Alice Springs ( maybe check out Wolf Creek at the WA end ) but fair dinkum Yuendemu and Tilmouth Wells aint really that high up on the 'must see' list.
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barcher

Well-Known Member
Making that trip five weeks from now. Sounds like it's better to do it quick and get it out of the way.
 

ULost2

Well-Known Member
I have worked out along the Tanami....run trucks out along it too and therefore I have a fairly low opinion of its state. Its a truck/trailer killer.....hundreds of miles of endless corrugations and truth be known IMHO ordinary scenery. As for camping ? and places of interest ? nah cant think of one. Rabbit Flat Roadhouse is closed now and the bloke who ran it was a mean old ornery cantankerous bastard anyway. By all means tick it off the bucket list of trips to do between Broome and Alice Springs ( maybe check out Wolf Creek at the WA end ) but fair dinkum Yuendemu and Tilmouth Wells aint really that high up on the 'must see' list.

As I read the question I was thinking about the different views between those driving it for work and those driving it to play.
That's about how most truck drivers would see it but I guess it would be considered an adventure for anyone who has never driven such a road. I have not driven it and certainly don't have any plans or even dreams to go that way. Be a Bugga of a place to break down. Better ways to get to and from WA imo.
At least the rough Gibb river road has interesting stuff passing the window
 

billolga

Well-Known Member
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dirvine

Well-Known Member
I drove it a few years ago, the last month before Rabbit Flat Roadhouse closed and 2 years later. It is really the only short cut to be able to get from Broome to Adelaide or Victoria. Yes it can be rough but if you pick your speed then it is not too bad. Definately lower your tyre pressures. Wolf Creek Crater is an interesting side trip as is the trip into the place starting with B at the end of the Canning. You can get fuel there, otherwise its all the way to Titmouth Well. There are a few side trips you can also take to water holes, and aboriginal sites etc. Have a look on Oz explorer web site. As for camping there is none now. You can stop at Refidgerator Well (Table and Chairs), but thats about it. There are side tracks to Mines but they are off limits unless in emergency. Would I do it again? Well yes I am as I am doing the Canning with Son in June/July and its the quickest way home to Melbourne. We drive basically non stop now, just stopping and dawn and dusk to let the animals settle down.
 

greysrigging

Well-Known Member
Tyre pressures lowered is essential on the corrugations of the Tanami. 25psi cold makes the ride waaay better. I reckon the Gibb corrugations are a breeze compared to the Tanami. Also 'tis better to travel light if possible....light 'n' lean means less things to rattle loose and break. I am way guilty of running too heavy and have now learned ( expensively $'s ) to ditch non essential gear when touring.
 

richardlnsw

Moderator
Wolfe Creek Crater is well worth the stop, not a bad camp site (better than Halls Creek) with clean toilets (when I was there 4 yrs ago). Didn't do the entire Tanami but like with all corrugations, lower your pressures and find that "happy" speed and you'll be fine.
 

cactusfizzy61

New Member
Interesting I have driven TT many times and find it a world of its own, like being on another planet.Lucky enough to gone of to some side tracks to see Giant dreaming cave near Yuedumu and then theres the fantastic area of Balgo Hills. Go see Lake Gregory its surreal.. Its all an adventure, imagine if the plans to seal it come into fruition, hordes could flock from Qld to Broome.
 

cookie64

4x4 Earth Contributer
I was on it 2 years ago so my info is a little out of date but...

Lower your tyre pressure and find a speed you are comfortable with, too slow and you will feel the corrogations, too fast and you run the risk of losing control or overheat your shockers, I sat on around 100 KPH (there were a couple of others doing about the same, indeed I got overtaken by another 200 with a Kimberley Camper on the back.

The truckies are fantastic as they will let you pass even pull onto the wrong side of the road to allow you to pass if the dust is going the wrong way - I takes my hat off to those boys.

There was a road gang working on the road and in my opinion they had done a great job, they were also telling jokes over the radio which was most amusing for us - great sense of humour out there.

We camped at Mt Doreen Ruins as it is outside of Aboriginal Territory and as we were carrying alcohol we respected the law of No Alcohol & No Porn - there are signs and I believe the penalties are quite substantive.

Enjoy your trip

cheers
 

richardlnsw

Moderator
I was on it 2 years ago so my info is a little out of date but...

Lower your tyre pressure and find a speed you are comfortable with, too slow and you will feel the corrogations, too fast and you run the risk of losing control or overheat your shockers, I sat on around 100 KPH (there were a couple of others doing about the same, indeed I got overtaken by another 200 with a Kimberley Camper on the back.

The truckies are fantastic as they will let you pass even pull onto the wrong side of the road to allow you to pass if the dust is going the wrong way - I takes my hat off to those boys.

There was a road gang working on the road and in my opinion they had done a great job, they were also telling jokes over the radio which was most amusing for us - great sense of humour out there.

We camped at Mt Doreen Ruins as it is outside of Aboriginal Territory and as we were carrying alcohol we respected the law of No Alcohol & No Porn - there are signs and I believe the penalties are quite substantive.

Enjoy your trip

cheers

So you only had alcohol???? find that hard to believe.;););)
 

Ziggy

Well-Known Member
Currently it's closed north of Yuendumu due to flooding. A local told me today the black stuff is almost thst far from Alice now. There's road works around Mt Wedge.
I'm hoping to get to Newhaven from just north of Tilmouth well tomorrow. More rain on the way though.
 

barcher

Well-Known Member
Borrowing some Telstra. Detoured north to Dunmarra, Timber Creek, now at van park just off the highway going into the Bungle Bungle. Road into Purnululu National Park is also closed because of wet track and one of those 4wd buses getting bogged. May have missed out on doing the tanami but need to see the bungle bungle, will sit this out for a couple of days.
 

Ziggy

Well-Known Member
We got to within 30 ks of Newhaven dealing with increasingly long and deep ponded water on the road. Then pulled off and camped for a couple of days waiting for it to subside before returning to Alice. There's some vehicle damage to sort out while the Tanami dries out.
 

OnmyJeep

New Member
Hey Guys
Just wondering if anyone has driven along the Tanami Desert Road recently, what is the condition of the road like, can you recommend any places of interest and any campsites along it. Thanks.
I last did the Tanami a couple of years ago (5 times in all; once with a Magna s/wagon and camper trailer). The Tanami is almost always very corrugated and has a lot more traffic now that even a couple of years ago. Everyone says very corrugated. Having said that I found that at its worst it was still not that difficult. The CSR is worse and with much longer distance for corrugations. Taking it easy is the key, and not being overloaded. I don't think that there is that much to see. Better to see Wolf Creek once from the WA end. I still think that taking the long way home (e.g. Broome to Kununurra along the bitumen) is much more scenic and a lot more to see. Ditto the Gib River Road but that can also be unpredictable in terms of condition of the "road". Also going via the Great Central Road is much more interesting and better maintain dirt "road".
 

Ziggy

Well-Known Member
On it now. Telstra reception at the Granites. Floodways a bit chopped up north of Yuendumu. Where the drainage starts to run underground to the Granites it's 80-90 kmh. A lot was recently graded and that is continuing. Locals say the WA side is good.
 
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