So here we go. I though we would not have this bad luck, but it is a
good reminder of what I always say - our weather is incredibly
unpredictable, which makes any early season trip incredibly risky to plan.
In This Issue:
• A Typical Question from an Early Season Traveller
• A Cyclone to Form over this Weekend
A TYPICAL QUESTION FROM AN
EARLY DRY SEASON TRAVELLER
About five days ago, Zoe sent me this
Thanks for a great website and even
My husband and I
were hoping to leave for the tip next Thursday. It will take us about 3 days to get to
Laura before we wanted to travel into Lakefield National Park first up.
We are getting mixed reports from the
national parks and Cooktown Shire that the PDR is currently closed and
that Lakefield might be too wet.
Are you able to shed some light on
what the road conditions are doing up north?
We don't want to get up there and not enjoy
ourselves because roads further north are closed or we can't get into
Really looking forward to your advice.
Zoe and Danny
Hi Zoe, thanks :-)
The main road up (Peninsula Developmental) is open right now, but the
road through Lakefield National Park is not (as of 22nd of April 2013).
It is very early
in the season with possible more rains (which MAY close the
main road yet with bad luck),
most smaller tracks, including many national parks, are still
The main road, being the largest one,
always opens first, then the smaller ones start opening later, one by
one, as they become driveable (if a road is closed it's impassable, not
just that they decided to close it).
Some smaller tracks, for example Cape
Melville, don't open before August most years. So the later in the
season you travel the more tracks are open for you, and unfortunately in April,
smaller roads are closed and you cannot get all the way into all
All i can say, if you still want to
go now, leave the Lakefield NP for your way back, when chances are it
may be open, and my fingers cross the
main road stays open for you, as you do take a risk in April.
You may well be perfectly fine, it's
dry now, but there is no 100%
guarantee this time of the year.
On the other hand, it is more
adventurous, the nature is greener and the wildlife is more visible, so
there are advantages to make up for the limited access that
you do have this
time of the year.
Your call whether to postpone or not.
postponing a week or two is likely to make a difference as the Wet season
is really finishing now.
I did think to mention that there is a
possibility for a late cyclone, but then I thought, nah, that's
pretty unlikely even though it does
happen (we have had some late ones, including Larry - end of
March 2006, and Monica - end of April 2006, only to mention two
(a cyclone can obviously cause wind damage, but even the weaker ones always bring heaps of
rain, which is the main reason for road closures - they simply get flooded).
A CYCLONE TO
FORM OVER THIS WEEKEND
So watching the local news tonight I was, again, reminded, that the small likelihood for a late April
cyclone means nothing, the possibility is well and truly there,
and it's all cruisy until it happens.
So during this weekend or latest
Monday, there will be a tropical cyclone forming on Coral Sea,
and it will be moving towards Cape York, bringing a lot of wind and
rain mainly to south eastern parts of
the peninsula and also the Daintree - Cairns area, likely closing many roads on the
peninsula, which can easily
include the main road north.
It is predicted to cross the coast of Cape York about Wednesday 1st of May - indeed a very
It is so far only a prediction but these are seldom wrong, and even in
the unlikely case that it didn't form, this newsletter is a very good reminder to all early season
travellers, about how quickly this can happen.
There is no warning longer than a few
days, and the only road up north can get closed and you are NOT
getting up along the Peninsula Developmental Road.
If you do plan a trip in April,
which I never recommend, please do
have a plan B as this is how quickly all you plans can go out
the window, and it would be a real pity if it was your only
So Zoe, next week is NOT a good time to travel to Cape York, unless you
are prepared to get stuck (and when I say that I am only expecting a
lot of rain, we do not know anything about the wind strength of the
cyclone as yet).
Have a great weekend everyone, and I will update you about the cyclone
P.S. I have a whole chapter on the
subject "Climate and When to Go" in the FREE pocket guide,
where I outline the pros and cons of every month.
Do read it,
particularly if you are thinking of planning an early season trip.
I really appreciate any kind of feedback
on the guide book.
me know if you enjoyed it while planning before the trip, and while using the
information once on the trip.
If you get any questions about anything, please feel welcome to contact me.
That's all for this time - happy planning, and, till the next
newsletter if I don't hear from you.
Have a great day :-)
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