The road opening

Despite the protest, the road was completed. On 7 October 1984 hundreds of spectators showed up for the official opening of the Cape Tribulation to Bloomfield Road. Many wanted to be among the first to drive the new track which was set to cut hours off the trip to Cooktown. Shire Chairman Tony Mijo and State Environment Minister and Member for Barron River Martin Tenni shared the honours.

Protesters lined the bank above the crowd and jeered and yelled throughout the ceremony. "No road! No road!" they chanted. As Father Newman blessed the road a loud clap of thunder rolled down the valley. The previously clear day turned rainy, as four wheel drive buses and trucks carted groups of eager participants on the maiden trip along the new road. The steep slopes of the Donovan and Cowie ranges became treacherous, and many travellers became stuck until after midnight.

Some people involved in the protest saw some vindication in the disastrous opening day, but it was little consolation as the track was now built.