We decided to do a day trip from Fitzroy Crossing to Tunnel Creek, about 40km west on the highway, then 70 km of corrugated gravel. Basically it's 750m tunnel with a creek running through it. It's was much larger than we anticipated and once in the tunnel it's pitch black. You have to wade in and out of water and the depth depends on the time of year you visit. The deepest for us was about mid-thigh level, but given it's so dark, it's a bit freaky wading through. Freshwater crocs live in the tunnel buy we chose not to tell the girls this!
The tunnel has an interesting history. It was once the hideout (for about 3 years) of an Aboriginal man, Jandamarra who was wanted by the police. In the end, he was shot and killed at the entrance to the tunnel. After wading back again, we had lunch from the back of the Cruiser before facing the long corrugated drive back to Fitzroy Crossing. If you are just camping, or towing an off-road van/camper, you could continue to Windjana Gorge about 40km away and it's campground and in hindsight, we should have combined the two in a day-trip from Derby instead, however, you often don't come to these realisations until AFTER you've done the travelling! Still, we all agreed the tunnel was something unique and worth the effort.
|About to enter the tunnel|
|Wading through one section of water.|
|This photo gives you an idea of the scale of the tunnel. During the wet season it fills almost to the top.|
|While the tunnel is only 750m long, because it's dark and you don't know where you are putting your feet, it took us about 40 minutes to walk the length of the tunnel.|
|Shows how dark it was inside. Torches are an absolute necessity.|
|The story of Jandamarra.|