Five Rocks Central Queensland
In true 4WD fashion, we love to get out and about to explore our region. Our latest adventure sees us in a convoy of six heading into Byfield National Park to spend the weekend at Five Rocks (17th & 18th of October 2020).
We set off from Rockhampton in the weary hours of Saturday morning with an aim to beat the traffic jam currently being experienced at Big Sandy. We headed east to Yeppoon and then north to Byfield. Our crew of adventurers were driving vehicles that ranged from a one-week-old brand-new Prado to a fully decked out Rodeo, Navara D22, Hi Lux and an older model Prado.
When travelling into this area of Central Queensland, your vehicle needs to be equipped to perform. This includes having recovery gear on hand as well as a communication method (UHF) because the phone reception is not much chop.
With non-existent wet weather at present (October 2020), the challenge to drive up Big Sandy in powdery sand proved to be an exciting obstacle to start the trip.
Prior to tackling the obstacle, our convoy stopped at an area before reaching sand to let the air down in our tyres. Our usual ‘go to’ for sand driving is 15psi however we had been recommended to drop to 12psi due to the lack of wet weather and known powdery and loose sand on Big Sandy.
As we headed into the approach of Big Sandy, a group of 4WDers had found themselves struggling to make headway. When we asked what they had their tyre pressures at, they responded by letting us know they weren’t quite sure as they didn’t have a gauge.
We sat and watched the group attempt to ascend Big Sandy, which was indeed challenging. We saw a car bury itself in the soft loose sand and shortly realised we couldn’t communicate with the group as they didn’t have a UHF onboard. Using alternative communication channels, aka the ‘foot falcon’ up and down Big Sandy, we eventually had the all clear to climb.
With low tyre pressures, capable 4WD’s and a little skill, we all made it to the top to continue our adventure.
When travelling on one-way tracks, it’s important to have a UHF and look for the signs which state the channel in use in the area. If you don’t have one fitted to your vehicle, a handheld is an alternative solution that can be just as effective and critical.
When leading or tailing a convoy, communication is key. Whether it be to let oncoming traffic know how many vehicles are in your convoy or to warn your convoy of upcoming hazards or directions to take.
Apart from Big Sandy, the tracks to Five Rocks are simple, albeit a little bumpy. Some tracks are boarded to make access a little easier on your gear. There is a lot to explore around Nine Mile Beach and Stockyard Point and the lookout is breathtaking, giving you views of the Capricorn Coast group of islands and forestry.
We had an amazing weekend with our family, we met new people and enjoyed the disconnection offered thanks to the lack of phone and internet service. It’s fantastic to surround yourself with likeminded people who share your passion for 4WDing and adventures and it’s even better when they’re your family.
If you’ve been on an adventure recently, we’d love to hear about it!
Looking forward to meeting you out on the tracks soon.