Daintree Blockade Revisited Perhaps

22Dec

The hot topic in the Daintree is the possible sealing of the 4WD Bloomfield Track.
I’m wondering if we will have a respectable conversation. You know, one where there’s an opportunity to weigh up the pros and cons rationally?
Let’s see. The local Mayor is totally opposed to the idea and has vowed to lead a Daintree Blockade-style protest. Julia says the four-wheel drive experience on the Bloomfield Track is an “outstanding international tourism attraction”.
The Federal Minister says sealing the track is a “no brainer”. Warren reckons that four-wheel drive enthusiasts would still have the CREB Track, which runs parallel to the Bloomfield.
This is where I weigh in to the conversation. Tranquility on the Daintree sits at the bottom of the CREB Track.
Having driven the Bloomfield and walked the CREB Track, I can say while both are 4WD experiences, the two are vastly different. The CREB is punctuated by steep, red clay dirt hills which are as slippery as ice when wet. The ruts can be huge. (I heard two backpackers lost their rented Jucy van in one.)
The CREB requires significantly more driving ability and experience to negotiate than the Bloomfield. (Hence my aforementioned walk). It’s what makes it a challenge, and what travellers look forward to.
So, if the Bloomfield Track is sealed, chances are it will encourage more people past our door. Good for business you say. But is it?
As the track increases in popularity, will increased traffic detract from the experience? Recent guests brought their dirt bikes and explored the CREB track while staying at Tranquility. They loved it and said “we hardly saw a sole”.
So even for our business, the answer is not clear cut.
My prediction is the “conversation” will be as bumpy and as long as the CREB Track.
My other prediction. In 40 years, when congestion on the two-lane highway along the coast from Cape Tribulation to Cooktown gets too much, there will be pressure to seal the CREB track to provide an alternative route.
I wonder if we would then have a CREB Track blockade to preserve the last 4WD experience in FNQ?