Home' Traveller : Scoop Traveller WA 25 Contents Scoop Traveller 289
The premier guide to Western Australia scoop.com.au
You can get to Kalgoorlie on an hour-long flight from the state’s capital, or
alternatively spend a day driving from Perth. 4WD or caravan enthusiasts can
take The Golden Pipeline Heritage Trail from Mundaring to Kal.
SCENIC DRIVE ROUTES
CANNING STOCK ROUTE
Approximately 2000km long, running from Halls Creek to Wiluna, The Canning Stock
Route is a standout 4WD adventure that crosses the Gibson and Great Sandy deserts.
Planning’s a priority – this is a pretty intense trek and not for the inexperienced.
To avoid searing heat or muddy terrain, the route is best taken between May and
September. The Canning Stock Route passes through native title lands, and you’ll
require the appropriate permits. Four Wheel Drive Australia (www.anfwdc.asn.au)
will tell you what you need to know about the permits, and where to access them.
(The website also includes a free downloadable booklet that will come in handy.)
Other helpful sites include (www.canningstockroute.net.au) and The Department of
Aboriginal Affairs (www.daa.wa.gov.au). If you’re doing the whole journey, it’s best to
forgo a trailer, because they’re not permitted in certain early land areas.
THE HOLLAND TRACK
Stunning during wildflower season, this popular 4WD track is just over 670km from
Broome Hill to Coolgardie. Originally a cart road that fell out of use, it was recut in
1993 as part of the track’s centenary by 4WD fans who saw the potential. There are
a couple of places you can get fuel along the way. Watch out for ruts, more notable
in wet weather (think high-clearance 4WD vehicles) and the route is probably
best avoided in the intense heat of summer. You’ll need permits, so contact
www.daa.wa.gov.au. A stop at Wave Rock is a popular addition to the itinerary.
GOLDEN QUEST DISCOVERY TRAIL
The Golden Quest Discovery Trail, launched in 2003, is 965km in total, beginning at
Coolgardie and ending at Laverton. It offers 25 sites that allow you to immerse yourself
in the Goldfields region (including details of the gold-rush era, perfect for history
buffs). With supermarkets, fuel and places to stay along the way, it’s less arduous
than some of the other trails. The Antony Gormley sculptures at Lake Ballard are
one of the must-sees on the list. You can travel the whole thing, spread out across
a week or so, or choose particular areas that suit your holiday plans for drives of a day
or two. Contact the Kalgoorlie-Boulder visitor centre on (08) 9021 1966, or visit
LEONORA LOOP TRAILS
The Leonora Loop Trails comprise two drives starting in Leonora – the Darlot Loop and
the Agnew Loop. Each trail includes fifteen stopping places (roughly 10-15km apart)
each marked by a metal silhouette waiting to tell you a story (via interpretive panels)
about the history of that particular spot. It’s generally recommended you spend a day
on each loop, and the routes are especially lovely in spring. If you don’t want to do the
full circle back to Leonora, you can incorporate a few stops into your journey through
the region. For details, contact Leonora Visitors Centre on (08) 9037 7016.
SCENIC DRIVE TIPS
Always check up on the condition of the roads ahead, but keep in mind they can
change quickly – and drastically – as a result of the weather; it’s recommended you
drive according to the condition of the track. Make sure you’re prepped for emergency
repairs, and that food, water and fuel are covered. Also check up the condition of
campsites along the way before setting out. Extra fuel is a good idea, considering the
extreme remoteness of area; if you get caught out, you might not be passing a servo!
• Check out the big trucks
at the Super Pit
• See the Lake Ballard sculptures
• Visit one of the old mining
• Walk vibrant Hannan Street
• Sip a peanut buttery stout
• Go prospecting for gold
• Photograph the wildflowers
(August to December)
All these and more at
a roadhouse or visitor centre. With seriously
rugged terrain, don’t bother taking it too
seriously. TIP Watch out for the crows, they’ll
pinch your balls.
If you’re heading to Kalgoorlie, art lovers will
appreciate the Philip Goatcher curtain in the
Boulder Town Hall. Painted over a century
ago, the detail’s exquisite (it’s apparently
the last remaining stage curtain in the world
painted by the talented artist). History buffs
can trace the pioneer origins of the local
gold industry at the Western Australian
Museum of Kalgoorlie-Boulder, and don’t
miss the underground gold vault (the kids
will love the gold bars and nuggets). Aside
from the gold, another result of the boom
was the flourishing brothels, and a few are
still operating today; you can even book
a tour in the one remaining bordello from
the original gold-rush days. Coolgardie is
also another great place to visit, with its
Goldfields Exhibition Museum, or, for
a more sombre experience, visit the
cemetery, where the inscriptions tell many
a tragic tale. There’s also the eerie ghost
town of Gwalia and the Great Beyond
Explorers Hall of Fame in Laverton.
The epic Kalgoorlie Race Round has
become an institution in the Goldfields,
and every year in September, thousands
head trackside for one of the biggest and
best parties. The two main races of the
round are the Hannans Handicap and the
Kalgoorlie Cup, the former running
a Fashions on the Field competition.
Odd as it may seem, golfers are known to
make a weekend of playing the Kalgoorlie
Golf Course. Although Kalgoorlie is in
the middle of nowhere, the grounds are
topnotch and there are plenty of pubs
in town (what’s not to love?). There’s also
the Nullarbor Links course that begins or
finishes in Kalgoorlie, depending on which
end you start at. It’s is the longest course
in the world (1365km), score cards are $70,
and you get a completion certificate if you
get your card stamped at each hole by
Nullarbor Links, at the Kalgoorlie Golf Course
end (photography Tourism WA).
The Canning Stock Route (photography Dan Paris).
INSET Kalgoorlie Town Hall (photography Heather Zubek).
Links Archive Scoop Traveller WA 26 Scoop Traveller WA 24 Navigation Previous Page Next Page