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Perth to Melbourne

Discussion in 'Roads, Touring, Journeys, and Travel' started by nbarras, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. Hi Guys
    I am planning a trip from Perth to Melbourne. Any tips for crossing the Nullabor would be greatly appreciated

  2. I've done it a few times by car, never by bike. Definitely a trip that I think every Australian should do at least once in their life. Most of it is the standard "country driving in isolated areas" stuff, and the Nullarbor is well-trafficked enough that you're unlikely to have to wait for more than a few minutes if you do get stranded. Off the top of my head:

    - double-check the distance between fuel stations, their opening hours, and your fuel range. From memory, the largest gap between roadhouses is about 200km, but some of them at least used to close quite early (6pm!), and there are often strong winds so you can end up using a lot more fuel than you expect.
    - watch out for roos at night and also just after dawn, pull over or tuck in behind a truck if you're seeing lots of them around
    - the ninety mile straight is a test of concentration/willpower and will drive you batty
    - there's a handful of things to see between Perth and Adelaide, but not very many. e.g. the Bight, whale watching (some times of year), the Arid Lands botanic garden in Port Augusta, apparently there's now a golf course with one hole at each town or roadhouse
    - if you take the super-long way via Esperance, there's apparently a replica of Stonehenge there now
    - there are two routes between Ceduna and Port Augusta. The coastal one through Streaky Bay is longer but more pleasant, especially if you like seafood.
    - there are two main roads between Adelaide and Melbourne, and they're both dull. But you'd be mad not to do the Great Ocean Road for a fun afternoon ride before you hit the freeway for the final leg into Melbourne.
    - once you're in Melbourne, note that the CityLink tollway is free for bikes and you're allowed to park on the footpath anywhere, including the CBD.
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  3. Thanks
    I'm not in any hurry and I love seafood so it looks like I could be into Streaky Bay for a feast:D
  4. +1 to what Cameron said.

    Watch the time of year for heat exhaustion and bring lots of drinking water with you.

    Take the time to stop at as many things as you can. It breaks up the ride and refreshes the mind.

    Don't ride at dawn/dusk unless you like catching kangaroos on the front of your bike.

    Have fun. I want to do it next summer, but it depends on the planets aligning....
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  5. It's a bloody long way and a lot of it is very boring, but at least it's all bitumen now, I did it several times on the dirt, that sucked. The rest has been said. Good luck, take your time.
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Thanks Guys

    If it is as boring as you all say it is I might have to ride all the way around to avoid coming bac across it.
    • Like Like x 2
  7. Fill up when you can, not when you have to and, if you possibly can, maintain enough reserve to get you to the roadhouse beyond the one where you expect to fill up. This will likely entail including a 10l can in your luggage but it could save you a long and expensive wait for a fuel delivery or the bowser repair bloke to turn up.

    I did the run at <100 km/h on a Ural combo and, TBH, didn't find it boring at all. The scenery is surprisingly varied, there are any number of mental games you can play to pass the time and there are many opportunities to people watch.

    Something I didn't really twig until I did it was that you will find yourself leapfrogging the same few people from roadhouse to roadhouse. Not necessarily a bad thing but beware having a dropkick attach themselves to you early in the crossing or you may find yourself concentrating on outrunning them rather than enjoying the experience.
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  8. Watch out for the last trailer on the really big roadtrains. They tend to slide side to side and it's not unusual to see one suddenly appear in your lane.
    They also generate quite a vacuum as they pass so give hem plenty of room.
    Trust me these mothers are friggin long.
  9. I thought triples were only legal in the NT? 150 tonnes and 50m long, if your over taking, go wide. Go fast.

    Make sure you keep up the fluids. Dehydration creeps up fast.

  10. WA's got plenty of triples too, not to mention a few quads up north.
  11. Quads are a weird set up double trailered triple. See them all the time. They seem to track straighter than normal triples most of the time. It's the big double deck cattle trucks they really get up a sway. I've had them chase me half way across a lane before. Nothing worthwhile has ever fallen off a cattle truck. Don't bother getting close enough to look.
  12. Three times each way across the Nullarbor for me by bike and trailer.

    I have yet to see a triple do that run, plenty of B doubles and doubles, and may be a C Train but rare. Avoid following to close at night (if you must ride) as anything they run over; you won't see until you're on top of it.

    Road houses advise not to drive/ride at night across there. I have done a little on one return trip but I usually set up camp before sunset.
    Prevailing winds are from the west but what you gain going east you'll lose going west.
  13. Nah , just Victoria holds back on road trains, maybe tassie too.
    Running out of fuel is your biggest worry on that trip.
  14. 57 m long up my way. Three wagons and all full of defecating cows. Fun.
  15. #15 firetiger, Apr 1, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2013
    anyone who says that going across the Nullarbor is boring has either never been across or they have a screw lose... especially doing it on a bike...

    read my review by following the link below...
  16. Can't see the linky!