Top Trail: Gibb River Road
The legendary Gibb River Road, is an icon of outback adventure through the heart of the Kimberley in Western Australia’s north west. The 660 kilometre dirt track passes through remote station country with magnificent scenery and plenty of opportunities to get out of your vehicle to discover one of the many fresh water gorges.
About the Trail
The Gibb, as it is affectionately known, was built for droving cattle from Wyndham to Derby. Today it caters for a steady stream of 4WDs.
Trail signage varies as the area remains privately owned by cattle stations and Aboriginal communities. Every station has a range of beautiful rivers and gorges including; El Questro Station - Chamberlain and Emma Gorges, Mount Barnett Station – Manning Gorge Waterfall Walk, King Leopold Conservation Park – Bell Gorge, Gibb River Station – Barnett River Gorge and Mornington Wilderness Park – Diamond Gorge.
Beware of the fresh and salt water crocodiles. The estuarine crocs inhabit the rivers that meet the sea such as the Durack and Pentecost, whilst the fresh water variety inhabit the likes of the Manning and Barnett.
Need to Know
The Bungle Bungle range in the World Heritage Listed Purnululu National Park is one of Western Australia's most fascinating landmarks and the ultimate place for outback adventure. Here you camp out under the stars, four wheel drive across rugged terrain and hike through gorges millions of years old. The area in the East Kimberley region also has great Indigenous cultural significance which dates back 20,000 years. From the air, the Bungle Bungle range is an awesome site, rising 300 metres out of the plain. The orange and black stripes of these massive sandstone structures are breathtaking best seen from above in a scenic flight. As you sweep over the range, a hidden world of gorges and pools is revealed with fan palms clinging to walls and crevices in the rocks. The park covers nearly 240,000 hectares. Despite being made of soft sandstone the range has survived for more than 350 million years. Tours, including scenic flights, are available from Kununurra and Broome. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Warmun puts you a doorless helicopter flight away from one of the best kept secrets on Earth, the Bungle Bungle Range of National and World Heritage listed Purnululu National Park. Some 350 million years in the making, this curious and captivating range remained hidden from the outside world until as recently as 1983. Also known as Turkey Creek, Warmun is the closest settlement to Purnululu. Take the two hour drive south from Kununurra or the one hour and 40 minute drive north of Halls Creek and swap four wheels for two helicopter blades to take in the full spectacle of the beehive domes and hidden palm-filled gorges of the Bungle Bungle Range from the air. Scenic open door helicopter flights and one or twoday tours depart regularly from Warmun. Another amazing way to admire the rich natural tones of the outback is to pay a visit to Warmun Art Centre. A creative meeting place for senior and emerging contemporary Indigenous artists of the local Gija community, the art centre displays their unique expressions of Gija country and Ngarrangkarni (Dreaming) stories. Throughout the 1800s, Warmun was a regular stop on the old stock route between Wyndham and Halls Creek and the small settlement of Turkey Creek would quench the thirst of weary cattlemen with a 'Kimberley cool' beer. With no other means of refrigeration, the locals packed beer bottles in crates filled with straw, covered by wet a sack and placed them in a breezy spot to cool. Today, the modern Turkey Creek Roadhouse is owned and operated by the Warmun Community, offering travellers the convenience of a general store, fast food, restaurant, motel accommodation and a caravan park.