Wet Season Driving


Written and posted on-line 8th February 2011


During the middle of the wet season, people like ourselves who live way out on the remote stations along The Gibb River Road, sometimes have to desperately go into town for supplies that cannot be carried by plane, or to see a doctor. If this occurs, we have to wait for at least a week of no rain, so the road is not too dangerous to drive on. We have to take a support vehicle down our 50km Driveway as far as our turn-off, to back up the main town car - in case the main town car needs to be towed out of a bog.




Deep washouts along our 50km Access road or "drive-way" caused by flood waters, make the road difficult to traverse. You are constantly having to concentrate keeping an eye on what is ahead of you, so that you do not end up in one of these...


Sections of the road become extremely boggy, and slippery to drive on. Trying to keep the car on the road when driving through these sections, requires skill behind the wheel, as the vehicle aqua planes in the wet mud and slides all over the road.









During the wet season some sections of the access road gets covered in long grass, and scrub which often makes the road hard to locate. Deep Wash outs and boggy sections of road are often hidden in the long grass, which means we have to stop, get out and walk these sections of the road before we drive them.







A professional local shooter from Derby used to come out controlling the wild scrub bull numbers within the conservation estate. However after 16 years of service, last year The Department of Environment and Conservation took away this man’s rights to shoot the wild scrub bulls (which is another story for another day...) Since then, for the first time in 16 years the wild scrub bulls and cattle have become less fearful of cars and people. Some of the wild scrub cattle herds ran out in front of our vehicle and then stood on the road…


Whilst some of the cheeky wild scrub bulls tried to bail up the car…


Some of the dips and depressions in the road fill up with water and these can often be somewhat…unexpected.


At this time of the year the creeks & rivers are very deep and flowing quite fast. So crossing them during the wet season is quite a challenge, especially when the car starts to drift downstream from the pressure of the water.







Every wet season The Gibb River road suffers damage from the rain and becomes rough to drive, and sections of the road gets washed away by the flood waters...







Because of this, during the wet season you have to concentrate really hard and focus the whole time you are driving The Gibb River Road, because you never know what is around the next bend. Bridges and Sections of the Gibb River Road located on flood plains go under water during the wet season…


On the way back from town, this storm build up was really not the best site to see on the horizon of the road leading back to Mt Hart…


The rain came pouring down and whole sections of road in front of us had gone under water.


It is very difficult driving in these conditions as the car aqua planes across the road.


Luckily by the time we got back to the turn off to the Mt Hart Access road, we had got through the worst of the storm bank.


Due to our slow progress, because of the rain, we ended up having to drive the 50km Mt Hart access road in the dark. We did not get home until 7:30pm. After a 15 and ½ hour day of driving and picking up much needed supplies, we felt really, really buggered! And we were really glad to be back home again.


Life out here has always been tough, and troubles may be a plenty at the moment for us. Yet the experiences are and will always be priceless - for we are in one of the last frontiers of Australia living as part of the wilderness, and there are few who ever get to really know, understand and be accepted by the country up here, as we have.