Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Foo
Need to get out more
Posts: 2374
Joined: March 13th, 2009, 3:14 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014

Unread post by Foo » June 14th, 2014, 3:52 am

:thumb:

Foo

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » June 15th, 2014, 10:45 am

Haven't bothered to give much of an update lately because we have been stuck in Darwin for the last couple weeks with a broken caravan and typically getting jammed up by the insurance company's crap :mad:

The main lifting cable for the pop top was rolling off the pulley and slowly cutting the 1/4 inch stainless cable. Then in Mataranka... BANG :eek: down she came while trying to set up. Luck no one was near it as the weight of this roof would have easily broken or cut off a limb.

Now after Suncorp advised on what emergency accommodation we had available to us and spending over a week in relatively expensive accommodation, another Suncorp rep rings up and doesn't know of sny other discussion we have had previously with a Suncorp Rep and that we may not get reimbursed for the accommodation, due to them ruling that the snapped cable is from 'Fair wear and Tear'. If it wasn't going to cost me a bomb in accommodation, I would have just laughed and told them to jamb their insurance and premiums up their :fish:

I went to collect the van all fixed (Bar a rip in the fly mesh) and pay cash as it was bugger all, but NOOOO I can't now until Suncorp still needing a written quote. So here we are now sitting around over another weekend waiting on Suncorp and their nominated repair to finish playing their games, all the while watching the potentially unrecoverable emergency accommodation costs escalate. :mad: :mad:

If we ever get out of here we will be taking off through Roper Bar/Savanah Way and pushing up as far as position with the van up to the Cape. Might dumb the van, wife, kids and drive sole the rest of the way to the top. Don't think the rest of the Fam really care one way or the other. Kids are too young to appreciate and the Missus does not have any shops/museum to see.

Foo
Need to get out more
Posts: 2374
Joined: March 13th, 2009, 3:14 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014

Unread post by Foo » June 21st, 2014, 2:16 pm

Bugger! :eek:

Foo

Aaron Schubert
Need to get out more
Posts: 4682
Joined: November 9th, 2009, 7:32 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014

Unread post by Aaron Schubert » June 21st, 2014, 8:02 pm

Awesome trip so far mate. Bummer about the cable. These things happen - you will be back on the road soon. Looking forward to more photos!

Aaron
Looking for somewhere to go 4WDing in WA? Check out WA 4WD Tracks

My 80 Series Landcruiser

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 5th, 2014, 5:02 pm

Finally got the camper fixed $400 for the cable and adjustment and then $2000 emergency accommodation. Surprise surprise we are now waiting on Suncorp to stump up. Now they are saying that we may not be covered for Wear and Tear or Mechanical Fault!!!
Anything to dodge their commitments! Sound like society as a whole these days.
I can not say enough good things about Northern Van Repairs in Pinelands. They were nothing short of friendly and fair dinkum. They even let us take the van, not cash down, expecting Suncorp to honour the claim. I slipped them a case for all their great dealings
The claim is still with Suncorp to pay up. Just with Suncorp I have a decade of insurance on house, contents, vehile, bike, etc, yet still they are stuffing me around.
We picked up the van and headed south to try Mataranka Hot Springs again (place where the van initially collapsed over 2 weeks earlier.
Excuse the absence of details in Darwin, but after living there for 27 years nothing has changed. Yes there are more highrise units in the CBD and Lee Point is built out in house, but the original suburbs of Wanguri, Wagaman, Casuarine has not changed. I expected every second house to have been expanded and improved given the stupid prices up here. But NO, they are just now over grown and messy with trees and palm fronds.
Mataranka has changed heaps since I was there last 30 years ago (surprise surprise). Sheet piling and insitu concrete steps have made the place very hospitable. The gem would have been Bitter Springs that were much more natural and worth the visit and float down to the bridge, don’t forget your mask and snorkel.
We left Mataranka after a few days staying at Elsey NP and doing the walks, great little spot. Would have been great with a little tinny and 5hp motor to get out to the Barra, still a bit cold for them in late June.
After no breakages this time at Mataranka we headed along the Savanah Way toward Roper Bar then onto Lorella Springs.
Wow! This place was huge!!!!! I vaguely remember 4WD Action doing a trip here. With the day stay at the same as a Capital City Big4 stay with bugger all facilities was disappointing. The fuel was $3/L Diesel and ULP the trip to the Gulf beach would have cost us $200 in fuel alone. The facilities were very ordinary for the price, but more than adequate for the bush. Massive camping grounds and very friendly staff (the Girl was very cute!!! Don’t tell the missus). If you plan ahead and drop in with literally a 44 of your own fuel this place would be WELL worth the trip for atleast a week or two.
Moving on we headed towards Borroloola where we got our first puncher (trailer) after going through a river crossing (only 500mm deep) and pushed a rock between the treads. Lucky we pulled over just after for a weeeeee stop and heard the air pisssssssssssssssss...g out, saved the rubber. Had it all fixed in Borroloola, picked up a $70 carton of XXXX Gold after giving licence details and blowing into bag, kicked on to a road side stop at a river.
At the river we got chatting with another bloke Mat (Sparky) from Cairns and his three kids, great bloke and sank a few of his Bundies. Another great bloke that offered his yard while he was away if we wanted to leave our van there while we hit the Cape. The longer I travel the more I believe there are some real genuine people still out there. Mind you, there are still a lot of ‘Morons’ out there that should stay home and leave the oxygen for the rest of us.
From here is where everything went downhill in a good wayish. Oxymoron I know but let me explain.
We dropped into a spot called KCF (Kingfisher Camp) not a nugget to be seen anywhere, very basic but a great little camp site. Second day in and planning the departure the old trusty Cruise blew a fuel pump. 90Km west of Doomadgee way out West Qld outback, *****!!
The car cranked normal but no fire. I broke the fuel line and found no fuel coming through on the crank. Pulled the seats and carpet out to expose the fuel pump access panel and located the 12V feel to the pump on the crank. I was hoping Toyota hadn’t installed some kind of safety back feed circuit and is was a simple 12V to pump, surprise that’s all it was. With 12V direct to the top of the pump from my cordless drill battery the pump made no noise and pumped no fuel. Now What???
I chased a replacement pump from Cairns and Mt Isle, only to be told I had to go to Brisbane. Ordered and dropped into an ‘overnight bag’ expecting delivery in 3-4 days. 7 days later after going through a typical Doomadgee Post Office shut down due to lack of interest, then the next day a community death and town shut down, then one of the station staff was in town and found the PO open, they finally got the parcel. 15min later the pump was in and the old 105 was going again.
The Manager Mick at KFC was fantastic and VERY helpful.
Now the best part of the whole incident and trip would have to be Frank and Dot (Tyre fitter from Mildura S.A.)...
...who??
This two lovely couple were fantastic and helped us out like you would not believe. Having driven into KFC with only food rations we found ourselves with no food for the kids or us. After just chating with Frank and Dot, Bammmm!!!!! They threw their spare food to us, and the keys to their new 79 series V8 Dual Cab Cruiser to drive the 90Km into Doomadgee to buy more food.
DAMN!!! I love Australia. They even extended their own stay to help out if we needed their car again to drive into Doomadgee to pick up the pump. Frank was a great bloke and we talked a lot of ***** and had a great few days. When the time came for Frank and Dot to leave, it was a sad moment and I swear I will catch up with this fantastic couple again in the near future. The kids had been adopted as temporary grandkids to Frank and Dot and they loved the attention.
Frank and Dot... Thanks soooooooooooooooooooooo much and hope to repay the favour soon.
Finally packed up and said good bye to Mick and KFC, and we are now parked at Mount Surprise heading to Cairns, wishing Frank and Dot were in the camp next door.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Last edited by Muddie Wilsons on July 13th, 2014, 4:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 5th, 2014, 5:09 pm

Still going on with some photos here
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 21st, 2014, 1:29 pm

We have made it back to Cooktown after an epic trek up to the Cape. Just in the last 30Km we had to drive with no power to the dash, lights, windows, etc. With a short-circuit in the arse end caused days earlier on the OTT (old telegraph track).
We should have spent longer up there but we are running out of cash and time. I will definitely heading back some time, but without the trailer.
For the uninitiated, like me a couple weeks back, the Cape is just one big ‘$’ sign, in more ways than one. The OTT is the direct route to the top as it generally travels straight, while the south and north bypass roads run in an ‘S’ shape around the OTT, hence the ‘$’ term.
The road from Laura/Cooktown was magic and the Commodore would have been more than adequate. The real OTT action starts right from Bramwells Junction called the southern leg of the OTT. Or you can stay in your Commodore and travel around the bottom end of the ‘$’ sign Southern Bypass road up to meet again with the adventurous ones that took the southern OTT at/near Twin Falls and Fruitbat Falls.
The road into Fruitbat Falls can nearly be reached with the Commodore, while Twin Falls you need to go through a nice 30m ‘top of wheel arch’ water crossing. Nice and flat no issues, just don’t stop half way to sightsee.
Both falls are fantastic, but my pick with the kids would be Fruitbat Falls as you can walk around waist deep in most places looking out for the kids. Twin Falls does still have a couple really shallow pools, but boring for the kids. While the main falls are good for teenage + with great jumps into deep water and diving under water falls.
The roads from here are a mirror image of the south. First you can continue up to the Jardine Crossing in the Commodore on the Northern Bypass Road, or take on the Northern OTT leg, both basically meeting up at the Ferry Crossing. Be warned the road from the ferry crossing to Bamaga is flattish but the corrugations are very bad. The little bit left to the top was a great little drive through the rainforest, not challenging at all, but fantastic scenery. I took the trailer to the tip thinking there might be camping up there, but nothing was suitable.
Going from Weipa back across on the ‘Top Road’ York Downs to Batavia Down was a super road in great condition.
The road from Laura north to Cooktown was a great drive with great roads and fantastic scenery, even worth a day trip from Cooktown.
We camped at Old Laura and pulled a couple great freshwater prawns out of one of the crossing. Most crossings we stayed at all gave up a few red claw and prawns, so it is worth taking a couple pots and bag of dry dog food for bait.
I didn’t and wouldn’t take my 2t camper through the north or south OTT sections of the ‘$’ sign, just not worth the risk as you WILL get damage of some kind. I had far more fun setting up at South Jardine and Bramwell Junction a base and then going out for day trips to do the North and South runs of the gnarly OTT. I drove the entire OTT with only one winching at Palm Creek. There was an easier track off to the side but I was too far into it to drive back out the other side and try elsewhere.
All the other crossings were quite simple with exception for a couple on the northern OTT leg, being the Nolan’s Brook and I think Sam Creek (when heading south). Nolan’s sent a wave over my bonnet but made it through, while a mention should be made for Cypress Creek as this was just as deep but longer with a good base.
If Sam Creek is the right one, this was a ‘U’ turn in a swallowish creek then a 3m jump up. Easy from the North but a challenge with lockers heading north. I went to the right of the normal exit over the stormwater washout and this was the only place I could get traction. But did risk rolling sideways into the torn out entry ramp to the left.
Back to the short circuit thing, when I was pushing out of Palm Creek I reversed and twisted my exhaust back onto the handbrake cable and need to remove it after I winched out. The chap that helped with the winch, leaving the missus to just watch and shake her head, Thanks Again!
After I removed the damaged/twisted closed exhaust the exhaust gases proceeded to melt the trailer plug wiring loom. These then shorted out a few fuses, take gradually dropped out my trailer brakes, Cruise Control Brake cut off, Dash Instruments, Electric Windows, Remote Locking, Lights, Indicators, Hazards, Etc. Amazing I know. Once back into Cooktown I isolated the short circuits, replaced some fuses and all was back to normal. Who would have guessed a couple trailer loom wires could cause some must damage.
To all those stuck-up travellers that didn’t wave back as I travelled to the tip and back, or flew 80km/h past the 3 times I was laying under a car on the side of the road helping others, peppering us with stones, I hope you never get in trouble on the side of the road and need help. If I knew it was you, then I would return the favour.
As for the rest of you all, great to meet you all and happy to help and I appreciate the times you slowed down to offer help when I was tapping mine old bitch back together. This country still has some great characters and genuinely nice people.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 21st, 2014, 1:37 pm

Not sure why you can only add a couple photos per posting, but here are some more.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Peter Aawen
Admin
Posts: 20780
Joined: June 17th, 2005, 8:01 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Unread post by Peter Aawen » July 21st, 2014, 1:40 pm

It STILL sounds like a Fantastic Trip Muddie, and the pics are great too!! Good stuff, thanks for the ongoing trip report!! Should be more of it!! :thumb:



You aren't going to know what to do with yourself when you finally get home to the 'real' world.... Ahh well, don't forget, you only work to live (& 4WD! :D ) & don't live to work!! ;)




About the pics, many readers have issues opening posts with more than 6 pics/attachments at a time, & at other times the Forum has issues just loading them.... sorry, but they still look fantastic! And they still make me jealous~! :(
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 21st, 2014, 1:47 pm

And some more text to allow minimum text for a posting
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 21st, 2014, 1:56 pm

Blah blah blah, minimum text
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 21st, 2014, 2:05 pm

Teeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeexxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxttttttttttt
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Muddie Wilsons
Been here a while
Posts: 374
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 4:04 pm

Re: Muddie Wilsons OZ Lap 2014 (half lap make that)

Unread post by Muddie Wilsons » July 21st, 2014, 2:08 pm

HERE IS THE FAMILY AT THE TIP,

...all down hill from here back to Brisbane
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Return to “Epic Adventures/Multi-State”