The Pilbara is a truly incredible region. The huge red rocks, amazing gorges and pristine waterfalls are like something from another planet.
This year, we made a commitment to explore more of the Pilbara, given its only about 12 hours drive from our doorstep, and we found some pretty spectacular places.
Coppins Gap was our first destination after Barn Hill Station, heading south towards Perth, and we jagged a pretty amazing camp site overlooking the gap. I have to say I was quite sad about departing Barn Hill, but the Pilbara turned it on and I soon forgot about it!
Where is Coppins Gap?
You’ll find Coppins Gap south east of Port Hedland, roughly 70km from Marble Bar. The gap itself can be seen from a very long way away, with a huge gap in the range sticking out like a sore thumb.
How do you get there, and what’s the road like?
To get to Coppins Gap, you can either head East from Marble Bar, or come from the Great Northern Highway. We took the latter from Barn Hill, and turned off. The first part of the road was fantastic, with well graded sections and the occasional corrugated section
We didn’t even let our tyres down initially, but then the road started to get worse once we approached the main ranges (which are spectacular by the way). We pulled over and deflated after getting more and more stray rocks, and corrugations that were starting to shake things around a fair bit.
We probably sat on 80 – 90km/h for a lot of the road, slowing down for the grids, dips, rises and random humps in the road. Overall, its decent condition but you need to drive accordingly.
Make sure you stick on your side of the road too. We had a private ambulance come flying around one of the bends on our side of the road with limited time to move over which wasn’t the best feeling in the world.
You can take caravans here, and we saw a number of people doing just this, along with a Holden Commodore ticking along the main road.
What are the camp sites like, and what do they cost?
There are a couple of more private camp sites, along with one main area above the gap, and a short walk down. The camp site is free, and there are no amenities provided.
The main camp ground has very limited shade, but some of the other, smaller ones had enough to be more than comfortable. The gap also provides some shade early in the morning, and late in the afternoon.
The cost is a whopping $0 per night. Yep, like a number of the other spots around Marble bar, its completely free.
More on Coppins Gap
We had a lot of fun exploring this great place. The water was freezing, which meant a pretty quick dip, but its clear, clean and beautiful. You can walk through the gap and you’ll pop out on the other side where a heap of cattle graze, but the water was starting to dry up and wasn’t overly inviting down that end.
The entire Marble Bar area blew me away. I probably should have expected more given the other incredible places in the Pilbara, but it was a huge highlight of our trip and I’d be more than happy to do a trip to Marble Bar on its own.
If you haven’t been to this magic location, check it out; its pristine, quiet, free and absolutely stunning.