On Sept. 16, 22, and 30 we published Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of Marc Talloen’s story how he travelled 9,000kms through regional Queensland with his Tesla Model S, without a super-charger network. This is the fourth and final part of the series.
Arriving at one of the most iconic spots in Nothern Queensland: Millaa Millaa Falls Area 7) Atherton Tablelands, charging sites and visited places:
When in Mareeba, we heard some good reports about the Mareeba Wetlands. Heading there we drove the 7km unsealed gravel road from the Biboohra turnoff, 4km to the Reserve entry gate, and a further 3km to the Jabiru safari Lodge and Visitor Centre reception carpark. In contrast with the very green tropical scenic views that we had seen around Kuranda, this area is clearly a lot drier and has some characteristics of savannah land as it catches less rainfall. We stayed overnight in one of the well-equipped Safari tents and went for a Safari tour the next morning.
Further we also went to the Emerald Creek Falls and the Mareeba Military Museum.
After a couple more days relaxing in the Palm Cove home exchange place we travelled via Cairns and Gordonvale to Yungaburra, stopping briefly in the Goldsborough valley. Later, we set up base in “The Blue House” for further adventure in the Atherton Tablelands.
Leaving the Goldsborough valley and heading West to Yungaburra the Gillies Highway climbs steeply and there is a 19 km section with 263 bends leading to the Atherton Tablelands nearly 1000m higher.
It was fun driving the Tesla as it sticks very well to the road, handling the bends in style and you have all the torque and acceleration to overtake cars when needed.
Naturally, passengers were getting a little into trouble here and were happy to see the end of this road section and to enjoy the great Tablelands’ scenery before arriving in Yungaburra.
The power consumption over the last 25.3 km was 50% higher than my Tesla’s life time average!
Our charging sites when staying in Yungaburra:
Ever learned about a Platypus, the egg laying mammal? If you like to spot one, the Paterson Creek in Yungaburra is the perfect place! One should do the 3 km beautiful walk along the Peterson Creek, and check the grassy creek edges preferably around sunset time when the Platypus starts its feeding activity.
Yungaburra has so much to offer for tourism; In the immediate neighbourhood we visited Lake Tinaroo, the Barrine- and Eacham Crater Lakes, Curtain- and Cathedral Fig Trees, Malanda & Falls, Bromfield swamp, and Wongabel State Forest. And of course Atherton is nearby and offers more attractions.
There is also a rich choice of places to stay in and around Yungaburra, as well as a variety of restaurants, coffee shops and eateries. Yungaburra also has a perfect location for targeting installation of Tesla Destination Chargers. In case of the Tesla MS 85 with a “typical” range of 400km it is easy to do some day trips to even the more distant places on the Tablelands.
From Lake Barrine to the Cathedral Fig and continuing around the lake leading to Tinaroo Falls Village there is a well maintained unsealed road that partly goes through dense forest before reaching several camping spots next to the lake.
Not every moment was equally enjoyable but sometimes you can learn a bit out of a bad experience…
On our way from Atherton to Yungaburra the Tesla’s windscreen got a chip and I didn’t want to take the risk to wait till our return to Brisbane before getting the windscreen repaired.
From the photos below you can see that we were doing a bit of multi-tasking: during the top-up of the batteries I assisted the specialist to keep the drizzle away from the windscreen while he was repairing the chip, cleaning it thoroughly and filling it with a resin that he later cured with a battery operated UV light mounted on the windscreen.
Another place that is a must to visit is the Historic Village Herberton. Set on 16 acres, this Historic Village is a tin mining town with shops, pub, bank, chemist, grocer, printer and garage. There are more than 50 restored period buildings making this outdoor museum the most significant in Queensland.
You can easily spend the day taking your time to view thousands of genuine antiques, Australian collectibles, vintage machinery and vehicles and more.
After a contact with the owners I have received confirmation that they would welcome EVs to top-up batteries at their place using either 3-phase charging by EVSE or by Tesla Destination Chargers. Further details are to be worked out.
To round off this part 4 and the complete article I will let you enjoy some scenic pictures taken between Yungaburra and Palmerston along the Palmerston Highway, the Millaa Millaa Falls Circuit, the Mungali region and the Misty Mountains:
Finally the sun starts to poke some holes through the drizzly fog clouds.
As a conclusion to this article, I sincerely hope that I have been able to prove you that in case of a Tesla Model S range anxiety is unwarranted and that there are lots of places where you can charge the batteries using renewable energy resources. Doing this travel between Brisbane and Northern Queensland with a family and a fully loaded car, there are many fantastic tourism spot you can visit….
Once more, please let me reiterate that in case you consider buying a Tesla Model S and my report helped you to make a decision….please note that Tesla is currently running a “Tesla Motors Referral Program” offering discounts. When designing and buying your Tesla, please feel free to use my referral link which is http://ts.la/marc4161