Sealing of Wolfe Creek Crater Road

Is the road to the Wolfe Creek Crater suitable for a 2WD hire car? I had heard they were expecting to seal it by the middle of this year. Has this been done now?

Comments for Sealing of Wolfe Creek Crater Road

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May 04, 2010
Sealing the Crater and Tanami Road
by: Birgit

There has been an economic impact study that shows that sealing the whole Tanami Road would bring long term economic benefits. Costs for regular maintenance would be drastically reduced, there would be cost savings for the mines, freight and also for tourists, and the income from tourism would increase. And all that would more than offset the cost of the sealing.

It would be a great thing for the Aboriginal communities in the region, the benefits for the Kimberley as a whole would be huge.

Yes, the shire would love to seal the road! They made that statement and published the information about the study in March 2010.

But having the crater road sealed within a couple of months???

Sorry, but that won't happen.

Sealing a road costs money. A study showing that sealing the road makes economic sense does not make the money magically appear. First the shire needs to convince the federal government that sealing the road makes sense!

Or, as the shire CEO put it, "the report will form the basis of a funding submission to Infrastructure Australia in due course."

In due course. Funding submission.
The reality is that the Halls Creek Shire will have to fight for this money for years. Currently they are trying to find supporters for the upgrading proposal. And if the Australian government can be won over and convinced to agree to the plan, it will still take a few more years for it to happen, in stages.

The road to the Wolfe Creek Crater will be the first section to be sealed, if or when it happens, but I sure wouldn't hold my breath just yet!

(And that means 2WD hire cars are a no go.)

May 05, 2010
2wd can go on the tanami to WCC
by: Anonymous

Im a little confused. Is the reader referring to the gravel/dirt road off off the main bitumen highway (Tanami) or is he referring to the track off the Tanami to the Crater?

If it is the gravel road then a 2wd is more than capable of getting to the Wolfe Creek turnoff. BUT definitely not capable of the boggy SANDY track to the Crater.

So a little clarification would be great - not necessary for us as we have 4wd but instead for others reading this.

May 05, 2010
Hired 2WD on unsealed roads
by: Birgit

To clarify, we are not talking about what a 2WD car is or isn't capable of. The question was if the road will be sealed so that HIRED 2WD cars can use it.

No company allows their HIRE vehicles to be taken off road. Whether a track is or isn't theoretically negotiable for the vehicle does not come into it.

Since both the Tanami as well as the turn off to the crater are unsealed, HIRED 2WDs are a no go.

Beyond that I agree with your assessment, though I would add the caveat that the road conditions on the Tanami can vary greatly. Anyone attempting the crossing in a 2WD needs to check them at the time of travel.
Also, during the wetter times of the year a 2WD may not be sufficient.

Always get an update about the current conditions first.

Jul 16, 2010
Leave the road unsealed
by: Willow

Not sure why they want to seal the road in the first place, all it will bring is civilisation eg. graffiti, rubbish, destruction of natural environment, loss of Flora & Fauna a few thousand more roos killed by the increase in traffic. Leave it as it is I say, or hire or buy a 4wd if you want to go to remote destinations. Sealing roads for commercial interests is not always a good thing. Leave it alone.


Apr 05, 2013
The Cost Outweighs the Benefit
by: Anonymous

The cost to seal a road is approximately $1,000,000 per km (conservatively) in populated areas. This would be the Australian tax payer's money. The benefit would not be to Australia but to a tiny section of the country. Maintenance would be in the same price bracket.
How can this be seen as economically viable.
The Aboriginal communities in general don't want prying visitors so it would not benefit them.

Your entire premise is fallacious. The study was not conducted by an independent, impartial party.

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