Tackling the Tele – Old Telegraph Track (Day 1, part 2)

After our adventures at Palm Creek it was time to continue on with the rest of the tele track ……. almost immediately after Palm Creek we reached Ducie Creek, followed by South and North Alice Creek. The next crossing, and the largest water crossing so far, was the Dulhunty River.  It’s a pretty area here with plenty of camping spots and a small waterfall, a great place to grab some photos.  It was here that we all decided this would be the perfect spot to stop for lunch and chat about the mornings adventures and wonder what was ahead of us.  After lunch, Lauren and Shelly decided it was their turn to show the boys how to do it and they took the wheel for the next few crossings!

The Dulhunty, although being the largest river crossing so far, was easy. It’s hard rocky bottom made for a very easy crossing.

Soon after Dulhunty you come to Bertie Creek, again a relatively easy crossing with a rocky bottom, but plenty of large holes to navigate around, so this one took a walk-through first to check it out.

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A little further to the north you come to the famous Gunshot (there is a bypass, but we were all keen to do it – or at least check it out, so we continued on).  Now everyone who knows anything about Cape York or the Old Tele Track would have seen or heard about the famous Gunshot.  YouTube is filled with videos of people attempting/accomplishing Gunshot and/or rolling or severely damaging their 4WD at Gunshot!

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The original entry into Gunshot Creek is a near vertical drop and when you see it on the videos, that’s nothing to what it’s like when you are standing there! Now this original entry is pretty much a no go nowadays, but in saying by that, every year people like to try it out to say they’ve done the ‘original Gunshot’.  We all really love our 4WDs and kinda wanted to keep them for the rest of the trip, so we decided against attempting this entry!

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There are now numerous entries going into Gunshot so it’s just a matter of picking the one you want (none are overly easy, but at least you have a choice!). Shelly was really excited to be driving Gunshot, as George had driven it on our last trip. It’s one of those things you get to mark off ‘the list’!

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This year there had been numerous rollovers coming out of the exit of Gunshot so we were all a little nervous about that, but luckily it wasn’t as bad as what it was made out to be. Of course accidents can happen so easily when you are off-road, but a little common sense, walking the tracks beforehand a not being a dickhead really does go a long way!

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Just north of Gunshot is the grave of W.J. Brown, a linesman who died on the Old Telegraph Track in 1945.

Cockatoo Creek required another walk through before proceeding, to point out the large holes hidden under the water. Sailor Creek has a bridge so that wasn’t an issue at all (and this one you really can call a bridge, not like the so-called ‘bridge’ at Cypress Creek!).  After here it’s back onto the corrugated bypass road for a few km before turning back in to head down to Fruit Bat Falls.  We will do a separate post on the falls as they are so beautiful they deserve to be showcased on their own!

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From Fruit Bat Falls it was a short drive to our camp for the night at the Eliot Falls campground …. more on that later.

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