Gunbarrel Highway is one of Australia's most famous and challenging tracks, through some of the remotest areas in the country. Low range and high ground clearance required. It’s one of the Australia’s best 4WD tracks.
How long is the Gunbarrel Highway?
The road is 1,350 km (840 mi) long and links the Carnegie Station (central Western Australia) with the Meteorological Station at Giles (west of the Northern Territory border). Part of the 2.800 km (1,740 mi) long Outback Highway (or Outback Way), the track varies from stony to sandy with corrugations, ruts, washaways and sometimes mud. Parts of the track are only suitable for high clearance four wheel drive vehicles and should only be attempted by confident drivers. This is for experienced desert travellers and your vehicle needs to be tough.
How long does it take to drive along the Gunbarrel Highway?
Allow 4 days minimum. Don't make this your first desert adventure. The Gunbarrel Highway has important historical significance. It was completed in 1958. Many of the roads are gravel or natural earth. It receives very little attention and in fact some sections have not been graded since the original days of construction. Supplies and services are limited and road conditions can vary, so plan ahead, stock up on food, water and fuel and contact the local visitor centre for up-to-date track information. Only experienced four-wheel drivers with confidence in themselves and their vehicles should attempt this trip.
What is the condition of the Gunbarrel Highway?
This trail passes through remote areas, so you need to be prepared. 4 wheeling is an inherently dangerous activity and shouldn’t be attempted without the appropriate training and equipment. By any standard, this is a long and tough haul through very remote territory. Its isolation requires travellers to be totally self-sufficient with water, food and fuel (the longest distance between fuel outlets is 489 km, between Warburton and Carnegie Station). The road travels through a very isolated and unpopulated part of the Australian outback, with towns and fuel stops far and few between. Travellers on the route should be aware of road and weather conditions at all times and travel prepared.
Pic: David Rowley