The Canning Stock Route is one of Australia’s most popular, challenging and remote 4WD tracks. With the distance of 1,850km, it is the longest historic stock route in the world - running from Halls Creek in the Kimberley area of WA to Wiluna in the mid-west.
The route was created in the 1900’s to transport cattle from the Kimberley region to the gold mining area around Wiluna.
It is pure offroad heaven - typically taking around 10 to 20 days to complete.
The best months to travel are May – September. Due to extreme heat and possible wet and boggy conditions, it is recommended not to travel outside of this season. Be advised to check the weather conditions before heading out.
One important way to prepare for the trip is to get your vehicle professionally serviced at least 3-4 weeks before you plan to go. This way, you should have enough time to fix any issues, order spare parts from your mechanic and save extra money you may need for repairs.
More specifically, here are some easy things you can do to prepare your vehicle:
- Check and tighten any screw, bolt and nut which is not may not be done up properly. Travelling on outback roads may loosen some parts so be sure to check for loose fittings regularly.
- Be sure your car’s exhaust system is fully attached to the vehicle body or chassis because it will need to support it under severe driving conditions
- Remember to check your suspension and replace shock absorbers if they look worn or are starting to leak. You do not want to be stuck stranded in the outback.
- Turn on your lights and make sure they are all functioning, especially if you are planning to tow a camper or a caravan. Even if the lights were working last time you used the caravan, it may not be up and running the next time you hook it up and need it to work.
- Install dual batteries if you are planning on using accessories that require large amounts of electricity like a fridge or inverter
- Even if you do not plan on driving through water, something may come up and you may require a snorkel. Snorkels will also help when you are traveling through the dust.
- Lastly, prepare a workshop manual for your vehicle so if your car runs into a problem, you will be able to fix the issue or get assistance from someone else if you have the proper gear
While you load your 4WD, try not to pack the whole house. Overloading your vehicle is dangerous and may make it harder to maneuverer on the road. Try to keep the weight as low and centrally located as possible to keep balanced. On the track, there are two small settlements where fuel and other supplies may be replenished - Kunawarritji approximately 1,000 km north of Wiluna and Billiluna 173 km south of Halls Creek.
Canning Stock Road is an amazing, unforgettable adventure!