Driving the Nullarbor - Perth to Melbourne

Power Raid

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Carl Hooper

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I got to ceduna and had to turn around for a family issue smh..Worst 3 days of driving. I got nowhere.

I'm leaving again tho in about a week. Once (hopefully) this weather settles down a bit. It was brutal when it was raining.. Heaps of annoyon caravans doing 80 f*n kms too.

And I really need a CB radio before I go again. I wonder how much they cost. Being a sparky I should be half decent at auto electrics so Ill install it.

I brought 7 CDs and got sick of em on the first day. I need to get a Spotify subscription and download some new tracks because f me its boring by yourself.
 

Carl Hooper

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sh*t, so I left yesterday morning.. Stopped at balladonia last night. Just got to Ceduna.. WA had so many dead roos on the side of the road! Unreal.

Is there anywehere I can stay in Ceduna without paying? I'm in my station wagon.. Last night I just camped at one of those stops on the side of the road with a couple truckies. Is there something like that near by? Don't want to have to pay for one of these shitty motels
 

GreyCrow

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sh*t, so I left yesterday morning.. Stopped at balladonia last night. Just got to Ceduna.. WA had so many dead roos on the side of the road! Unreal.

Is there anywehere I can stay in Ceduna without paying? I'm in my station wagon.. Last night I just camped at one of those stops on the side of the road with a couple truckies. Is there something like that near by? Don't want to have to pay for one of these shitty motels
Keep going towards Wudinna, there will be a few more.
 

Carl Hooper

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Left Wednesday morning.. Just got to Melbourne. Stopped at Balladonia, Ceduna, Adelaide on the way.

So it is possible to do it on LPG only.. But I'm lucky I could get 780kms outtve my 90L tank. If you were towing and had a smaller tank then I wouldn't be as confident...


 

Occidental

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Just found this thread.
Did the drive back and fro from Melbourne to Perth in 1986 in my Nissan Pulsar with two other mates in January of that year (no air con). I can clearly remember us buying bags of ice where we could and just hugging them until they melted. A fabulous time in a lifetime ago. I clearly recall pulling into Iron Knob to hear the Challenger Space Shuttle had exploded two days prior. We had no idea & may well have been some of the last people to hear about it = all pre internet times!
 
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Bigjobss

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Just found this thread.
Did the drive back and fro from Melbourne to Perth in 1986 in my Nissan Pulsar with two other mates in January of that year (no air con). I can clearly remember us buying bags of ice where we could and just hugging them until they melted. A fabulous time in a lifetime ago. I clearly recall pulling into Iron Knob to hear the Challenger Space Shuttle had exploded two days prior. We had no idea & may well have been some of the last people to hear about it = all pre internet times!
A truckie at the Nullaboor hotel tried to sell me bags of ice, true story.
 

Rotayjay

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Personally I'm very intrigued by road trips, remote arse ends of the world and speeding. This thread is a perfect storm then.

I wish we had nice roads with no speed limits like they do in Germany. Astonishing to read that story of travelling from Perth to Adelaide in 26 hours in the old days - that's insane and very ballsy. Longest road trip I've ever done was a stock-standard 9-hour trip from Melbourne to Adelaide, stopping for lunch in Horsham. Perhaps one day I'll give Perth-Adelaide a go.
 

Mockcockpit

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Did it twice as a nipper, country WA-Melbourne with the olds in the HZ wagon perfectly, plenty comfortable, first time non-stop just mum and dad taking turns at the wheel, second time we stopped for the night at Port Augusta. The first time in December 1979 I remember the old man being outraged that juice was 50 cents a litre at Eucla.

The third time in 1988 was the best, I was 19, with my old man and uncle in a Barina. We left Perth about 8pm the thinking being if we did the Nullarbor in the daylight there'd be less chance of hitting a roo. It was the day of the 1988 Grand Final and I remember the ABC coverage drifting in and out. I distinctly remember stopping at the Nullarbor Roadhouse, it was warm and still, we were the only vehicle in the roadhouse and it was perfectly silent, to this day my favourite memory of anywhere I've been in Australia. Magic. Do it if you have the chance.

We still, and by we I mean me, managed to hit a roo in the Barina. Was about 4am, somewhere near Kimba in SA. Bush on the left, farmland on the right, obviously the roo came from the right. I'm driving, 6 months off P-plates not my driving instructor old-man or my traffic cop uncle, bloody me. Squared the tyres off but was only going 70km/hr so managed to slow down enough that we didn't do any damage to car or roo. Had that annoying thunk-thunk sound of squared off tyres for the rest of the trip. Barina got 54mpg on that trip, great little car.
 
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Power Raid

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Personally I'm very intrigued by road trips, remote arse ends of the world and speeding. This thread is a perfect storm then.

I wish we had nice roads with no speed limits like they do in Germany. Astonishing to read that story of travelling from Perth to Adelaide in 26 hours in the old days - that's insane and very ballsy. Longest road trip I've ever done was a stock-standard 9-hour trip from Melbourne to Adelaide, stopping for lunch in Horsham. Perhaps one day I'll give Perth-Adelaide a go.
the fastest we crossed it was in just over 23 hours, cruising at 160km/hr and slowing down for towns or line of sight to another vehicle. There is no way you could do that now with changing attitudes and policing of the road rules.

back in the early 90s, you could blow way over (a bottle of red in 2 hours or another occasion 10 scotches) and allowed to drive home if you were clean cut and polite. No doubt pulling out the military ID immediately would help.

The cops would just say "why are you showing me your military ID?"
"because if you are going to arrest me, the military law requires me to"
"have you been drinking"
"yes"
"how much"
"you'd be proud of me"
"will you be OK to drive home?".
Then a "be careful and I don't want to hear from you further tonight" and you were away

It's embarrassing to think about it in today's standards.
 

Southseas

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I've done it upwards of 50 times I guess, was originally from Esperance and had relatives on Eyre Peninsula - not sure if it's been mentioned but you can cut quite a few k's off by heading west just north of Norseman - track is gravel but if it hasn't been wet and you're accustomed to the type of thing then it's doable in std sedan - comes out near Hyden (Wave rock). https://www.dangerousroads.org/australia-and.../4530-hyden-norseman-road.html

We used to own Fraser Range station which is 80 k's east of Norseman - good for an overnight stop and they do a good feed too.

Fowler's bay is worth a stop - crazy little town slowly being consumed by the dune system.
 
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swingdog

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Bump.

Good reading this thread. Daughter and I going to do this next year when she's on her P plates. The idea is to get the 120 hours out the way in one shot rather than me spending every weekend forever driving aimlessly round Melbourne.

This way, can have a bit of an adventure and see family back in WA. Apart from Highway One where it can't be avoided, going quieter roads most of the way and taking our time.

Have done it too many times to count on a bus (now, that's boring), so looking forward to this.
 

sprockets

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Bump.

Good reading this thread. Daughter and I going to do this next year when she's on her P plates. The idea is to get the 120 hours out the way in one shot rather than me spending every weekend forever driving aimlessly round Melbourne.

This way, can have a bit of an adventure and see family back in WA. Apart from Highway One where it can't be avoided, going quieter roads most of the way and taking our time.

Have done it too many times to count on a bus (now, that's boring), so looking forward to this.
The Nullarbor isn't a good place to learn to drive, although it's a good place to have her first drive. If you want her to be a good driver (and live out her full life) she needs to learn in traffic because traffic will be her biggest issue.

We did the trip back when it was hundreds of km of gravel btw and it cost me my custom made Oak surfboard, because the roof rack gave way and flipped off the car. The trip also destroyed the gearbox and tailshaft of the HR wagon we did it in but that's another story. We did stop to buy some 'aboriginal art' which went against the advice of the day. These days I wouldn't baulk at crossing it, it's not much different to a trip to the supermarket.
 

swingdog

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The Nullarbor isn't a good place to learn to drive, although it's a good place to have her first drive. If you want her to be a good driver (and live out her full life) she needs to learn in traffic because traffic will be her biggest issue.

We did the trip back when it was hundreds of km of gravel btw and it cost me my custom made Oak surfboard, because the roof rack gave way and flipped off the car. The trip also destroyed the gearbox and tailshaft of the HR wagon we did it in but that's another story. We did stop to buy some 'aboriginal art' which went against the advice of the day. These days I wouldn't baulk at crossing it, it's not much different to a trip to the supermarket.
Yeah, we'll be doing plenty of city driving in Melbourne first. Actually, once she gets back here, she'll hardly be driving at all but good to have the hours done.
 

JoondalupJ

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Bump.

Good reading this thread. Daughter and I going to do this next year when she's on her P plates. The idea is to get the 120 hours out the way in one shot rather than me spending every weekend forever driving aimlessly round Melbourne.

This way, can have a bit of an adventure and see family back in WA. Apart from Highway One where it can't be avoided, going quieter roads most of the way and taking our time.

Have done it too many times to count on a bus (now, that's boring), so looking forward to this.
You'll love it, there are some long long stretches from Port Augusta to WA, if you are coming from Melbourne you can take the straight forward way through to Adelaide via the Western Highway through Ballarat and Bordertown then up to Port Augusta from Adelaide. Then you hit the Eyre Highway, you can go down through Whyalla and back up to the highway or just head for Ceduna direct from Port Augusta.

From Melbourne you could go up past Bendigo and through I think the highway that goes past the Ouyen area, across due west to the SA border to Pinnaroo then go through the middle of the state where there is beautiful farming country to Burra and Port Pirie onto Port Augusta from there. Even go to Adelaide through the Barossa if you like.
Or you could go Via the Geelong road through Warnambool and the great ocean road, along the coast into SA then onto Adelaide or keep going north from Mt Gambier to that middle of the South Australian farming region up to Pinnaroo, country I just said about.
Up in there is also Loxton, Berri, Barmera, that takes you the same way through the middle of SA, to Port Pirie via Gladestone and or Crystal Brook, you could also go that way across the middle of SA via Midura and Renmark, if you are looking for different sights, the Mallee is brilliant a bit deserty in parts though.
Give yourself a week or more , you can always rush over the Nullabor, but people do that. If you want to enjoy it go slow, and look, I've done Mildura , I've done the Great Ocean road I've done the Western Highway I've been through Ouyen, and the SA middle its all great. So enjoy it.
I have also done Perth To Melb many times and fast, it is not that much fun fast.
I am from Melbourne I love the place but I live in WA, ALWAYS TRAVELIING UNTIL COVID KILLED IT.
HAVE A GREAT TRIP.
 

swingdog

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You'll love it, there are some long long stretches from Port Augusta to WA, if you are coming from Melbourne you can take the straight forward way through to Adelaide via the Western Highway through Ballarat and Bordertown then up to Port Augusta from Adelaide. Then you hit the Eyre Highway, you can go down through Whyalla and back up to the highway or just head for Ceduna direct from Port Augusta.

From Melbourne you could go up past Bendigo and through I think the highway that goes past the Ouyen area, across due west to the SA border to Pinnaroo then go through the middle of the state where there is beautiful farming country to Burra and Port Pirie onto Port Augusta from there. Even go to Adelaide through the Barossa if you like.
Or you could go Via the Geelong road through Warnambool and the great ocean road, along the coast into SA then onto Adelaide or keep going north from Mt Gambier to that middle of the South Australian farming region up to Pinnaroo, country I just said about.
Up in there is also Loxton, Berri, Barmera, that takes you the same way through the middle of SA, to Port Pirie via Gladestone and or Crystal Brook, you could also go that way across the middle of SA via Midura and Renmark, if you are looking for different sights, the Mallee is brilliant a bit deserty in parts though.
Give yourself a week or more , you can always rush over the Nullabor, but people do that. If you want to enjoy it go slow, and look, I've done Mildura , I've done the Great Ocean road I've done the Western Highway I've been through Ouyen, and the SA middle its all great. So enjoy it.
I have also done Perth To Melb many times and fast, it is not that much fun fast.
I am from Melbourne I love the place but I live in WA, ALWAYS TRAVELIING UNTIL COVID KILLED IT.
HAVE A GREAT TRIP.
Thanks, good tips. There's a few places I want to stop at where I used to live (Whyalla, Esperance), but otherwise pretty open to trying different routes.
 

Great8

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Many, many years ago in my foolish youth I flew to Perth from Adelaide to purchase a motorcycle and decided to ride it home. Never again!!
Have done the trip in a car a few times and actually enjoy it though
 

Great8

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you regret the ride across the nullarbor or going to Adelaide?
The ride or probably more importantly the short time frame I allowed myself to do it in. Couldn’t sit for a week when I got home.
Don’t regret arriving in Adelaide as I’ve lived here a fair chunk of my life and love it. Even after many work stints abroad it’s always been good to come home
 

JoondalupJ

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Thanks, good tips. There's a few places I want to stop at where I used to live (Whyalla, Esperance), but otherwise pretty open to trying different routes.
You could do Esperance easy, I think from Norseman you go south west , not quite sure.
I just remember my early tracking from East to West the first time, 300 (miles) not ks, over dirt done that about twice in an EH Holden, between Ceduna and Eucla.
Past Eucla into WA there are some trips you can take off road to the Great Australian Bight wow is that a sight, and somewhere along there , is a wedgetail Eagle, rescue place, I am not sure exactly where, but you'll find it, we missed out. We had helped an injured wedgey off the road , hit by something, still lively hurt a wing or leg, when we got to Perth we heard about the rescue place, bit late, but it's worth a look, I reckon we will next time.

I think you may need longer than a week or so , but that is the good thing, no rush.
 

swingdog

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You could do Esperance easy, I think from Norseman you go south west , not quite sure.
I just remember my early tracking from East to West the first time, 300 (miles) not ks, over dirt done that about twice in an EH Holden, between Ceduna and Eucla.
Past Eucla into WA there are some trips you can take off road to the Great Australian Bight wow is that a sight, and somewhere along there , is a wedgetail Eagle, rescue place, I am not sure exactly where, but you'll find it, we missed out. We had helped an injured wedgey off the road , hit by something, still lively hurt a wing or leg, when we got to Perth we heard about the rescue place, bit late, but it's worth a look, I reckon we will next time.

I think you may need longer than a week or so , but that is the good thing, no rush.
Yep, turn left at Norseman coming from the east. Then going to go through Gnowangerup and Kojonup on the way to family in Margaret River.
 

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