Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Kings Canyon to Alice via Mereenie Loop

by Neil

Hello, just thought I'd share our trip report on the Mereenie Loop Road from Kings Canyon to Alice Springs for other travellers.

Firstly there are conflicting reports on whether you need a permit or not... We opted to buy a permit ($5.50) from Kings Canyon Resort Caltex Station.

The road itself, don't be fooled. It is harsh, very rough and corrugated. A reasonable level of driver skill is required. 4x4 experience would be very helpful. The road surface shifts from hard rocky surface to smooth sand, then corrugated sand or rocks. Some areas of bulldust.

My advise, keep a reasonable speed, not too slow, not too fast. Tyre pressure down to 26-28 psi (very important to avoid punctures) as it assists traction and makes the ride a little better. For all of you that attempt it in a hire vehicle. Check the spare tyre is ok. Otherwise, enjoy the spectacular scenery. It is some of the most diverse in the world.

My tip... don't stay at the Glen Helen resort... far from a resort. The toilets were dirty, no paper, staff not so friendly. Drive a few more km's down the road and stay at Ormiston Gorge or even better Ellery Creek Big Hole camp grounds. Much cheaper (natioanl park fees) and a better natural view with basic but adequate facilities.

Enjoy the NT!!

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