After 3 fantastic days checking out “the tip” it was time to turn around and travel the 1,000 plus kilometers back to Cooktown to pick up our caravan from our new mate “Nicko”, then continue on our way south toward home.
We’d heard a lot on our travels up on the Cape about Lockhart River; things like rocks that appear to float on the ocean and the (apparently) world famous Chili Beach, so we naturally headed that way on the way back down from the cape.
So it was off down the PDR (Peninsula Development Road) AKA Telegraph Track over the Jardine River hitting those damn corrugations again..
The Greenhoose – Lockhart River
Bramwell Station was discarded as our first overnight stop (we used it on the way up to the cape) and we booked into The Greenhoose (yes folks a Scotsman came up with the name LOL). Turning off the PDR at Picaninny Plains onto Portland Road (maplink) provided us with our first experience of the famous outback bulldust. In some parts of the first 20kms we probably hit about 20 or more dust bowls where it just covers the car just as if we had driven into water (at a slow speed of course).
Finally reaching our destination at the lovely and basic accommodation we found a green oasis after all of the dust. The people who run the Greenhoose were so welcoming it made the stay even more enjoyable. They also run a little take-away food truck up on the main road so it was pizza for dinner – yummo!
Quintel Beach – Lockhart River
Taking an afternoon drive from the Greenhoose to the town of Lockhart River we found the famous rocks that appear to float on the ocean at Quintel Beach.
These rocks are pretty cool, but didn’t appear to be floating on the water as the tide was not right. Even still it was worth the drive to check them out.
Leaving the Greenhoose the next morning we took a detour out to see if Chili Beach is as good as it’s cracked up to be. Well, maybe it was the really strong onshore winds or the tides were wrong here too but it was a fail as far as we were concerned. Quintel beach was a much better choice.
The only cool thing we found were the pumice stones littering the beach, which apparently, have come from volcano action in Indonesia.
Heading back to the PDR we basically drove (at about 10km/hr) into a bull-dust hole that totally covered our car so much that we had to put the wipers on the clear the windscreen.
Continuing down the PDR
Returning to the PDR we then reached Coen for another overnight stay at the same guesthouse we stayed in on the way up. It was a matter of off to the pub for dinner then bed; nothing exciting.
Hitting the road again the next day, reaching Musgrave Roadhouse we then turned off the PDR and headed down the Lily Dale Road travelling through the Lakefield National Park to reach the Laura pub for lunch. Then it was back to Cooktown, pick-up the van and settle down for a couple of days to clean up our filthy & very dusty car.
A dirty car!
The roads certainly made a mess of the car, both inside and out. Not sure if we will EVER get rid of the red!