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Thread: Kakadu in the Wet

  1. #1
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    Kakadu in the Wet

    From Darwin, Kakadu is just a little too far away to comfortably do in a day trip. And really you need a week to do all the attractions. But as a local living in Darwin, one can reasonably do an overnighter or 2 nights and still see a fair bit of country.
    I recommend a loop trip.....can be clockwise or anti clockwise taking in the Stuart Highway, the Arnhem Highway and Kakadu Highway.The Dry, is of course the main tourist season, and all attractions, waterfalls etc are open by July. Personally I have an aversion to crowds, so even in the Wet, there are places to visit and interesting things to do.
    Last Wet was a bit of a dud in the eastern Top End. Places out west like the Daly had record floods in Dec 2015. Kakadu region experienced a record dry Wet season, consequently seasonally closed areas remained open throughout Jan and Feb.
    My new ( ish ) lady friend, although a 22 year resident of Darwin, has seen very little of the bush but was and still is as keen as to take in the sights and sounds of the Top End.
    We had an amazing dry spell in Jan/Feb so we ventured forth down the Stuart Highway to hays creek then turned onto the roads through the Goldfieids that eventually join the Kakadu Highway east of Pine Creek. These gravel roads would normally be impassable this time of the year.














    Territory Icon, the Water Buffalo. rare to see nowadays, they were shot out/culled during the BTEC Eradication programs of the1980's


    Heading east along the Kakadu Highway past Moline Rockholes ( we were here last weekend )and the Mary River Roadhouse. Not much passing trade during the Wet, Normally the road is flooded at this time of the year. The Roadhouse looked abandoned but was merely closed ( much to our dismay as I had forgotten to turn on the Engel and we had beer ( lots of ) that needed chilling )

    I wanted to show Sonia an out of the way waterfall tucked up high in the escarpment country of the southern end of Kakadu called Motor Car Falls, Sees little passing traffic due to an 8klm round trip walk in. Its a fairly arduous walk over rough and rocky terrain. Particularly gruelling in arduous 37c heat and 90% humidity.
    But, she was up for it.


    It is pretty country out here....




    Water on the hip, but more importantly beer in the carry bag. Wont be as heavy on the walk out haha



    I've taken lots of pics of these falls but I never seem able to get the light, the shadows and the exposure right.
    Except for this one taken a few years earlier


    So when in doubt, make sure there is a bikini clad woman in the photo lol



    Again, it is important to use the 10 minute rule when swimming in Kakadu. If she is alive after 10 mins its safe for you to go in for 30 seconds.....

    Boulder Creek Falls is about a Kay from the carpark and is a welcome relief from the heat on the return walk.


    Camping out in the Wet is sometimes problamatic, so bugger it, we booked lodgings at Cooinda on Territorians mates rates $97.00 for the night plus brekky. beers, wine with the evening meal after a long day had us zoonked out pretty early. Good thing actually as we had to be up early to do the sunrise cruise on Yellow Waters Billabong.




    Prime barra fishing billabong, also a prime crocodile habitat.




    We were both mildly hungover when I rather foolishly thought it would be good idea to climb to the top of this bloody great hill and lookout, Was NOT a good idea in woeful heat and humidity lol


    Nourlangi Rock....no way were we climbing this one !

    Last edited by greysrigging; 08-01-17 at 10:14 AM.

  2. #2
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    We did this run through Kakadu anti clockwise from Darwin, heading south to Pine Creek then east and ultimately north to Yellow Waters, Cooinda, Nourlangie and the Park Headquarters near Jabiru. Late January is deep into the off season in Kakadu and for sure there wasn't too many visitors other than a few hardy locals such as ourselves. Locals don't have to pay fees to visit Kakadu. Visitors of the Southerner persuasion nave to pay $40.00 I believe.
    We gave Jabiru ( the town, not the bird ) a miss and headed out to Cahill's Crossing on the East Alligator River. I was hanging out for an ice cream at the Border Store, alas they were closed. We declined to climb Ubirr Rock due to the aforementioned mild hangovers, besides I at least had climbed it many times in the past 37 years.
    The most infamous crossing in the NT....about a dozen cars get washed away every Wet.




    We hung around for a bit waiting to see if any of the locals sitting on the waters edge on the far bank would get eaten.
    .
    Still a 300klm drive home to Darwin from here
    Even though its a dry spell, the Magelas have water over the road.


    We've recovered somewhat from the previous night, so a coupla quiet ones at the Bark Hut

    And a quick diversion into Corroboree Billabong for a flic around.



    Nearly 800klm round trip, but bloody good fun !

  3. #3
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    So many waterfalls up there. Not sure I'll ever see the one with the 8 km walk though. LOL

    Great pics and narrative mate. Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    So many waterfalls up there. Not sure I'll ever see the one with the 8 km walk though. LOL

    Great pics and narrative mate. Thanks.
    Funny thing is, there is a vehicle track to within 800m of the Falls, but the Park Nazis have closed it to the public and are "rehabilitating" the track. So imagine our surprise, when after 3.2 klm of tough hiking in, we see not one, but two 4WDs parked at the remote solar powered emergency telephone ( connected to ANPWS Headquarters ). Sonia was straight on to it, "why didn't we just drive in too...." Because I'm one of those old fashioned, "when I see a road closed, no entry sign I obey it....." kind of bloke, that's why..... So when we get to the Falls there are two family groups there, kids the works. Now my detective skills, honed by years of experience, and the fact that one of the aforementioned 4wds had a bloody great Park Ranger sticker on the door.....well.... As it turns out the unsaid questions were answered when one of the blokes pipes up with, "had to come out here and check on the emergency phone, make sure its working....", so the wife, wife's brother and his family and a total of 5 kids came too.....Haha fair enough, one of those little perks of the job. they buggered off after we arrived so we then had the Falls to ourselves.
    Last edited by greysrigging; 10-01-17 at 09:36 PM.

  5. #5
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    I thought those kind of perks wereonly applicable to our polititians.
    Cheers,

    Frank


    If you haven't grown up by age 60, you don't have to.
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