Construction & maintenance of gravel roads, tracks, road batters and walking trails


Dirt, roadbase, deco and gravel roads, driveways, road batters and tracks are all prone to corrugation, pot holing, accumulation of loose gravel and formation of ruts. This deterioration is accelerated by traffic, wind and water erosion.

Conventional techniques repair this deterioration by grading the surface. Grading involves slicing the top and often compacted layer from the road to create fill, which is then spread out to fill erosion and depressions in the road. Whilst grading may leave a level surface, it does not address some of the inherent issues associated with dirt roads. To comprehend how to achieve the best finish on a gravel road, we need to understand what its optimum construction is.

Rock is a vital component of gravel road construction, as it provides a hard wearing and durable surface. However, surfaces with high rock content are often rough, providing poor finish and ride quality. The more significant issue with high rock content surfaces is a lack of cohesion and binding, leading to rapid degradation of the surface, resulting in rutting and the heavy accumulation of loose surface gravel that can be dangerous to drive upon.

High clay content surfaces, whilst being much smoother to drive on, are highly prone to erosion, can wear poorly and are dangerous in wet weather due to a lack of traction.

The answer is to construct a surface that has a balance between clay and rock content. Such a surface combines the benefits of high durability, good wet weather traction and high wear resistance associated with rock, whilst binding this together through the cohesive benefits of clay, significantly improving the durability and wear of the surface.

Traditional grading practices can have difficulty in achieving an optimum mixture of rock and clay. Immediately following grading the surface may appear level, however it will be highly susceptible to wear and rapid deterioration.

The solution:
To address these issues, Total Earthworks are pioneering the use of a soil profiler for the construction and maintenance of gravel roads. Not only does this process offer significant productivity improvements resulting in lower costs, it also allows for the integration of clay with rock components, resulting in the optimum road surface for comfort, wear and traction.

In as little as one pass, we are able to level and grade the surface, removing large rocks, whilst crushing and incorporating smaller rock evenly within the spoil. This process results in high spots being removed, whilst low areas are filled with soil of uniform consistency. Following light compaction, the rock and clay components bind together creating a hard, smooth and wear resistant surface.

So, if you need to re-grade, maintain or construct a dirt, roadbase, deco or gravel driveway, walking track, firebreak, farm road or road batter, we are able to provide you with a far superior process that will result in a more stable and durable surface at a lower cost.

road beforeRoad after

Road surface before profiling - note the loose surface gravel, erosion (at top of hill) and grass incursion. Road surface after one pass profiling - note the smooth and even surface consisting of homogenised rock & clay components.

Surface 1Surface 2

Road surface immediately post profiling - note the even integration of rock, clay and earth components, with the hard compacted surface which results, promoting consistent and wear resistant surface.

Surface 2Surface 3

Road surface 12 months after profiling and intervening moderate traffic flow - note that the road surface remains firm, with no signs of erosion, wear, loose gravel or deterioration.