Do I really need an offroad van to do the Big Lap?

Submitted: Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 14:23
ThreadID: 109321 Views:5568 Replies:14 FollowUps:22
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I'm planning my Big Lap next year. Three years ago when I bought my first and current van (a 23' Euro Adria 642UP) I had intended to upgrade to an offroad van in due course. I've now done 25 trips with the Adria (just back from a trip from Sydney to Cooktown on my own - still waiting for my wife to retire - and did 8,300k over five weeks).

The Adria has been so comfortable, is well set-up for free camping and tows so well with my Pajero I've been wondering whether I may be able to do a Big Lap in it. I am happy using it on short dirt and gravel roads (e.g. I've been to Carnarvon Gorge twice and into many national parks) but I can't do river crossings or long sections of corrugations (e.g. to Birdsville).

Doing a Big Lap with the Adria would mean leaving it and driving without it to such places as the Bungle Bungles, El Questro and staying in accommodation or camping. Clearly this is not a problem if there are not many such places. I'm not interested (at least at this stage) in doing the Gibb River Road or going to the top of Cape York. But we will want to see most of the major attractions and do a good bit of bushwalking.

So my question is "how many places am I not going to be able to take a black-top road van?" For example, I've been trying to see how many places along the WA coast between Perth and Broome require an offroad van.

What do readers think? All suggestions appreciated.
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Reply By: Tony F8 - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 14:42

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 14:42
Nice looking van, no you don't need a off road van to do the big lap. it's all blacktop now, and if you do hit the dirt, just drive to conditions, let a little air out of the tyres to help with the bumpy bits. Make sure you have good tyres on it and you shouldn't have any problems.
Cheers.
TonyF8.
AnswerID: 538323

Reply By: steved58 - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 15:14

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 15:14
Offroad van is not required maybe do what I do and take arooftop tent did the cape in my rooftop left the van at cairns and it would be good for the bunngle bunggles etc
AnswerID: 538326

Reply By: pop2jocem - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 15:50

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 15:50
I hope an off road van isn't needed for a "lap of the block" seeing as how we are half way through ours at the moment with our strictly on road Supreme Spirit.
We did the GRR by leaving the van at Derby and going back along the bitumen to pick it up again and continue on the black top. We lived in our slide on camper but a roof top tent would have done the job no worries.
I guess what you have to weigh up is whether you are prepared to leave your van at a caravan park and head off for a day or two just with your 4WD.
We are leaving the Cape York trip for another day because of time constraints otherwise the van would be left behind and taken the 4WD.

Whichever way you go I am sure you will enjoy yourselves.

Cheers
Pop
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Reply By: Member - Barnray (NSW) - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 16:35

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 16:35
My Old Man used a plywood van to do the lap late 60s and did it 2 and a half times and the van was still in good trim early 80's. He built the van in 1952-3. Barnray
AnswerID: 538331

Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:09

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:09
Thanks to all of you for your comments. Most helpful.

I'm thrilled to hear many of your seem to be going around Oz in "normal" road caravan or have done so in the past.

Yes, not too much of a problem leaving the van and heading off in the Pajero (as we did for a few days on Kangaroo Island) but I would not want to be doing it too often (as probably more efficient to get a van that can go everywhere).

I have considered carrying tent and camping gear in the Pajero (although the standard OzTent won't fit behind my cargo barrier) but I'm not convinced my wife will cope with camping!!! (Have to work out a way to test this.)

I was told I could use my caravan to go to Birdsville and back but only providing I didn't ever want to use it again.

Certainly sounds like I can tackle my first lap in the current van.

Thanks to all.
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Follow Up By: Member - John and Val - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:49

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:49
Things may have changed but no one used to be able to take a van into the Bungle Bungles anyway, off road or not. So unless you had a camper trailer or a tent the only other option was to use one of the on-site tents. Considering that there are plenty of women, and mature age ladies at that, who are happily travelling using tents or a camper trailer, may this mature aged lady suggest that your wife would probably have few difficulties camping for a few days.
As for El Questro, cant comment as fate has intervened each time we might have gone there. It is now sealed all the way out to the turn-off, so if all else fails you could do day trips from Kununurra.
Cheers,
Val.
J and V
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:59

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:59
Many thanks Val. Yes, you are probably right that my wife would cope in a tent okay for a few days at a time. Her brother and his wife go everywhere camping out of the back of their Prado. They just did Birdsville to Adelaide via the Birdsville Track. Maybe I can get them to come with us to teach us the ropes!!!

El Questro is apparently okay for only some road caravans. Mine has a huge overhang so can't cross rivers unless very flat. I'm pretty sure I won't not get in even if road had been graded. So my van would need to stay at Kununurra which would be fine.

You may well be correct re the Bungle Bungles but one of the other posts mentioned that there is a caravan park on the highway where people are now leaving their vans. Again this sounds fine.

Tx again Val.

Rodney
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 18:24

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 18:24
My take on El questro. Over priced tourist trap catering for overseas tourists. The road in, unless you are lucky enough to encounter it just after a grade is worse than the GRR.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: wozzie (WA) - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 00:04

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 00:04
We took our small "Single" axle Jayco Outback Dove into the Bungle Bungles in 2011, and they were the only ones allowed, single axles that is. There are/were a number of reasonably tight river/creek crossings to negotiate.Took it easy, as you should. Just really have to watch out for the idiots flying around windy corners that are on a time budget. Stay out of there during school holidays, and you should be right. They are correct, there is a new caravan park just as you turn of the highway onto the road in, where you could leave your van, or back at Warmun/Turkey Creek where I believe there is a storage area.


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Reply By: lambo - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 16:46

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 16:46
not really necessary to upgarde. the grr depends on when u get there and how recently its been graded. there are a few creek crossings but in jul/aug u should hv no hassles with water uner 50 cm. you should be able to get into el questro quite easily (we did). bungles is a no no, but you can leave the van at turkey creek for reasonable money.

cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Laurie K (WA) - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 22:21

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 22:21
There are a couple of freecamp areas just outside the Bungles turnoff, and a caravan park with dump point just inside the gate (1km).
cheers
Laurie
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Reply By: CSeaJay - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:01

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 17:01
Astro.
All good replies and comments above, with care and good tyres you can go everywhere you appear to want to go.
Only comment is the rooftop tent, whilst good, is a bit of a drag if you carry all that wind resistance for thousands of km's for only the odd use. A normal and cheap tent will suffice, you wont up,your fuel bill carrying that.
Enjoy, I envy you
CJ
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Reply By: disco driver - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 18:16

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 18:16
Here's a hint.
The minute anything says "Offroad" it automatically increases the price considerably.

The biggest problem with your Adria will be the overhang at the rear.

Changing to the biggest wheel/tyre combo that will fit without rubbing anywhere will lift the van and thus improve the rear clearance.

Otherwise driven with caution, adjusting speed and tyre pressures to suit the conditions where necessary, you should have very few issues in doing your Big Lap.

If you realise that your van is really a lightweight unit and treat it as such, it should do everything that you want.
If conditions are unfit for your van, leave it in a secure place and just explore with your vehicle and small tent only.

Disco.

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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 18:29

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 18:29
Yes Disco - you're correct that the overhang is the big problem. I'll check out the wheel idea. At present it only has 14" (Ford Falcon) wheels. But this will only help a tiny bit I suspect. Will check out.

My caravan repair man has suggested he add some extra strengthening to the chassis. He's already done some of this to add extra water tanks a couple of years ago but has suggested more.

As you say, the word "offroad" seems to make for incredible prices (and weights, often for no increase in payload).

From your comment and that of others it certainly sounds like a tent and camping gear in the Pajero is the way to go.

Astro
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Follow Up By: Member - BUSH CAMPER - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 22:24

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 22:24
We have a 17' Elite Goulburn off road van that has done quite a few outback roads with no problems, fully loaded about 2300 kgs. ( GRR, Merinie loop, OOnadatta track, old Ghan railway, Darling river and many more.)
The good thing about this size, can still be towed by vehicals with 2500 kgs towing capacity and still can get into smaller tight spaces.
It's for sale on this site as we are updating. Very strong and well built.
I would hate to tow the "BIG OFF ROAD" vans they are limited in some areas .
I must admit that some of these big off road owners never take them off the blacktop anyway, but they look good, to heavy for me.
Hope this helps
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Reply By: Crackles - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 19:01

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 19:01
"how many places am I not going to be able to take a black-top road van?"

Directly I'd say you'd miss out on at least 20% of all attractions compared to an off-road van. Indirectly maybe as much as 50%.
The main problem is when you get to a turn off in the middle of nowhere with a 5km rough track out to some attraction you will never go there as in the majority of cases there is simply nowhere to safely leave your van. I found this crossing the Nullarbor when camped at Ceduna. Of the many Grey Nomads I spoke to the furthest any had got off the main road was to the Head of the Bight to see the whales. Over 1000 KM & effectively they made one scenic stop. Even if you do leave your road going van to day trip you'll find some absolutely great spots you could have camped for a week but you wouldn't with just a tent.
Of course anything slightly remote is off the agenda but really for the majority doing the big lap that's not their thing anyway. To see the majority of Oz you ideally need a compact off-road van or camper trailer & to gain access to everything something like a tray-back camper.
But don't let this put you off a Black top Van as that's what the majority out there use & they're all having a great time. It's just they've got no idea what they're missing ;-)

Want to camp here? Sorry no road going vans would get in. If only I bought a Topaz.
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Follow Up By: Member - mike g2 - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 21:04

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 21:04
hey all and crackles, just love all the thoughts on 'off road' vans, I imagine most recommendation is based on sum of experiences, formal advice of authorities and local knowledge. have to be prepared if van falls apart , gets full of dust, grinds the ground , cant turn around or not enough space/facility for several of them at a spot etc... no one likes any of that any rate and hip pocket suffers. add to that liability and insurance issues.

PS: wheres the "here" you speak of assume it's the photo? looks like a really nice spot.
MG.
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Follow Up By: Crackles - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 21:54

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 21:54
Mike 'Here' is part way up the Cape & a bit to the left.
It must be remembered all vans will fall apart at some point. It's a matter of matching build quality with intended use. The better the build & smaller the size the more options you have when travelling. Go with a road van & you pretty much tie yourself to the crowd.(& there's nothing wrong with that either)
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:20

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:20
Thanks indeed Crackles.

Yes, this is the issue for me. I accept I could drive around Oz in a Euro van but I know that I can't go to such places as Birdsville and Arkaroola. I know I can leave the van and go into Bungles Bungles and El Questro and even drive 4x4 to Cape Leveque (and Cape York for that matter).

But you have identified my main concern - what am I actually going to miss out on if I can't take my van to other spots? From what you say I will possibly be rather frustrated if I miss out on great spots simply because my van won't get in. Also, I don't want to be leaving my van too often and camping if I could avoid this by using an offroad van.

Possibly for my first trip I may use the existing van and do a list of the spots I could do on a second trip with an offroad van. (I've just done the Queensland coast from Tin Can Bay to Cooktown and have a list of spots I want to spend more time at on the next trip e.g. Hinchinbrook Island and some of the coastal national parks.)

Many thanks for your comments.

Astro
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Follow Up By: Crackles - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:44

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:44
It's all a compromise Astro. You obviously have a beautifully set up van with heaps of space & every feature right down to the satellite dish. This comfort comes at the expense of being tied to the main roads. If you down size & tow a compact full off-road van then comfort makes way for the ability to stay where ever you want. Possibly you may end up choosing somewhere in between.
Taking your existing van is a great idea as you'll soon work out if it's restricting where you want to go.
Cheers Craig...........
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Reply By: 671 - Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 21:01

Friday, Aug 29, 2014 at 21:01
A regular customer at work turned up one day with a new Land Rover and announced they were going to tow their caravan around Australia with it. There is nothing unusual about that except it was 1962. The type of car and what they intended doing with it as a bit of a novelty back then. There was no such thing as an off road van in those days and not all that many sealed roads well away from the capital cities either.

They returned a little over a year later as happy as can be. It can be done but will always require some degree of planning and common sense in some conditions.
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Reply By: Member - Sanantone - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 05:40

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 05:40
We purchased an "off road" van, for the reasons many are giving in this thread.

I don't want to be on the other side of the country (I may not get there again) & get told of the best spot on the planet is just down the road, but couldn't get there because the van may not be up for it. I guess it gives a little bit of insurance.
Tony
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:36

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:36
Thanks Tony.

Yes, that's my concern. I was at Mt Surprise recently and wanted to go to the Cobbold Gorge. My van would have needed to be left at Georgetown (from where I could have taken a bus tour to Cobbold Gorge) but if I'd had an offroad van I could have driven to the Cobbold Gorge caravan park. It was then that I realized that I may be better off with an offroad van.

Also, my wife wants to go to Birdsville at some stage. And I'd like to go to Arkaroola village. Both of these would require an offroad van (or camping).

Tx.

Astro
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Follow Up By: rumpig - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:59

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 09:59
there's cabins to rent at the Birdsville caravan park and the hotel has something like 25 rooms to stay in aswell. You could always leave your van at Windorah in the council run van park and drive out to Birdsville and back again staying a night or 2 in comfort at either of the above places if the wife isn't into camping. I saw a fella with a 5th wheeler van do just that when we were out there last year.
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 10:01

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 10:01
Thanks for that - sounds good. I'll avoid race week. R
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Follow Up By: 671 - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 11:03

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 11:03
Astro
One thing that should be kept in mind when trying to see as much as possible is a car and a big van is not a good combination no matter what type of van it is. My wife and I are both getting too close to seventy yet we spent three months last winter roaming around the central deserts on our own in a home made camper on a single cab 4x4 ute. Some of the "roads?" we drove on are not shown on many maps. We are off again in two weeks for at least a month in parts of the Great Dividing Range.

Our ute will take us anywhere it is possible to take a car and our home will always be with us. We never have to leave it anywhere then go back and get it. Even something as small as a camper trailer or a 12 ft off road van would not allow us to get into some of the places we have been.

If you can get by with something similar to our car then try it. Maybe renting a Troop Carrier camper for a week would be a good way to get the feel of it first. It does mean you have to travel light and you can't have all the wizz bang electronic comforts of home but we don't have any trouble doing and it and it certainly pays off.
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:09

Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:09
As it happens I have been considering an Explorer motorhome (the one that Mal and Laraine Leyland advertise). I even got the brochures and price list. But they are expensive. With a few extras we're talking about $150k all up. This is not out of the question down the track and your ide of renting one is a good idea. I discovered that they rent them in NZ and I've long wanted to do the North Island having previously done the South Island (in B&Bs). So maybe we will give one a try. My hunch is that this will be a bit small for us.

A couple down the road from me upgraded from one campervan to a Sunliner on a Hilux. I remember when it arrived I Googled and was horrified to discover that it would have cost at least $115k and this was a good few years ago. Given the price of a Hilux the van bit was very expensive.

Worth thinking about.

Thanks

Astro
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Reply By: Nomadic Navara - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 12:55

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 12:55
Quote "but I can't do river crossings or long sections of corrugations (e.g. to Birdsville)."

What a load of crap you have been fed. European vans have negotiated the Birdsville Track successfully many times. You may not be able to negotiate deep or very rough river crossings but you will be able to ford water crossings in excess of 200 mm. I have taken my black top van to Birdsville from Windorah and exited north to Mt Isa. High clearance vehicles were definitely not necessary anywhere along that stretch of roads. It's been to Arkaroola as well and down to places like Hungerford.

Places like Cobold Gorge and El Questro can be done by day visits. The Bungle Bungles can be reached from Kununurra as fly-drive day, overnight or longer trips. That's far cheaper than a $60 - 80K upgrade.

Unless you get a proper off road van like a Bushtracker or equivalent you are wasting your money. The lesser off road vans are just standard vans with a bit more clearance and a bit of checker plate. Most of the proper off road vans will be too heavy for your Pajero so it will need to be replaced as well (remember it has a severely reduced tow ball weight when towing over 2.5 t.) If you do manage to get a small one your tug will handle then it will be no where as comfortable as your present van. The off road vans still are limited by having the same PC items in them as standard vans.

If you do really want a van with increased clearance than your current van then get a strongly built standard van and order raised suspension. A lot of the gungho off road vans are so high that you will have difficulty entering them when you get older so you are better off with a standard van with a little extra clearance. The GRR and the road are improving yearly, if you look for the easier routes in the meantime these roads will be OK for your current van by the time you wish to go, just bide your time..

You will probably go around the block several times (I have been twice and will probably take a third trip.) Do a lap or two and see how you go. If you then decide that you must really go and camp in the really remote out of the way places, then upgrade. By that time there will be plenty of cheap second hand vans being cast off cheap by those who have realised they have over invested.
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Follow Up By: philw - Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 17:26

Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 at 17:26
Get yourself a Cameron Concept off road camper and go wherever you like.
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:40

Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:40
Dear Peter

Fascinating reading. I've been on many corrugated tracks in my van but never thought of tackling the trip to Birdsville or Arkaroola. I'm very comfortable doing short visits without the van (as we did to Kangaroo Island for a few days). But the idea of using my current van till it falls to bits is something I've thought of. I'm not going to recover the $$ I've invested getting it to the standard I wanted for free camping. So highly likely I'll keep it at least for the first lap of Oz.

BTW your comment about the Bungle Bungles reminds me of a conversation I had with the owner of a very offroad Otron in Byron Bay when I was there for the Bluesfest last year. I asked where he'd been and he said he was just back from the Kimberleys. I quickly asked if he took his van in to the Bungle Bungles. "Nah mate" he said "we just took a flight over from Kununurra".

I'm glad you mentioned the tow ball problem with Pajero. I did not know of this until last Sunday when the Jayco man told me. I had no idea and have never read of this in any of the reviews. But you are quite correct. This rules out a good number of vans.

I agree with you that if I'm going to bother to change over I need to go to a real offroad van. (I love the look of the Kedron XC3 Compact in the Oct Caravan World that has just arrived. But not sure whether this is big enough for us although it would suit the Pajero.)

As it happens, I stopped at a few caravan shops on my way to and from my holiday house last weekend and saw lots of "semi-offroad" or "dirt road" vans in the Newcastle area. I think my list was Billabong, Crusader X-Country, Dreamseeker, Jayco, JB, Lotus, New Age, Regent, Retreat. They all look the same.

You are correct re pricing. I got the Trakmaster price list and I'd be up for $60-70k to upgrade to a suitable offroad van. To go to a semi-offroad van (e.g. Jayco StarCraft Outback) I'm looking at about $30-40k. And nothing really grabbed me as justifying this expense.

I can pay for an awful lot of El Questro accommodation (or Kimberley cruises and airflights) for this sort of money.

Your comment about doing more than one lap is interesting. I had not really considered this. But I suppose I should have. I've been back to some favourite places a second time already (NSW South Coast, the Murray, Carnarvon Gorge).

Sounds like that the first lap will be in the current van. For no other reason than I'm not going to recover what I've put into it for the trip.

Thanks indeed for your informative comments.

Astro
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Follow Up By: Nomadic Navara - Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 20:12

Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 20:12
Quote "Your comment about doing more than one lap is interesting. I had not really considered this. But I suppose I should have. I've been back to some favourite places a second time already (NSW South Coast, the Murray, Carnarvon Gorge)."

Most of our two laps was not repeat visits. The first lap was down the coast to Perth and then across to Kalgoorlie before heading home. The second one was down the inland road, included the Pilbara to Perth and then around the south coast before heading home. Each trip commenced in early June, a stop over in Warwick with family and a quick trip to Katherine before slowing down. The trip home was fairly fast from Ceduna arriving home mid October.

On both of those trips we had scant coverage of the south and the eastern gold fields. These areas were so rushed that we considered a third trip necessary. In a full three months we spent 13 days travelling to Norseman and three weeks returning in February to May. The rest of the time was spent in the south and a lap through the gold fields (bypassing Perth.)

A fourth trip to the west is on the cards.
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Wednesday, Sep 03, 2014 at 12:00

Wednesday, Sep 03, 2014 at 12:00
Thanks Peter.

Interesting. Especially as my wife asked me last night where the Big Lap I'm planning goes and when showing her (from Sydney to Mt Isa via the inland then right around Highway One but with a diversion from Tennant Creek to Alice Springs and back) I realized that there are so many other areas that require separate trips. She has never been to Kalgoorlie for example - I've been there for work. We'd do the Qld coast (which I've just done on my own) on a separate trip.

So thinking about it, as you suggest, I'm sure we'll have a number of trips. We've spent time in Tassie before (B&Bs) but plan to take the van for a few weeks this January. Once my wife retires from work we can do this. Meanwhile I've done 25 trips getting the hang of it.

Best wishes

Rodney
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Reply By: Member - John and Lynne - Monday, Sep 01, 2014 at 09:15

Monday, Sep 01, 2014 at 09:15
If you are spending months in the van you need to think carefully about the level of comfort you really want/need to be happy eg do you want a bathroom? We gave up on tents when struggling with wet canvas (it was always wet for us at pack up time!) became a bore and the ground got to be too far down! We have carried a tent but never used it so seldom bother now. For the cost of an upgrade you could pay for a lot of cabin accommodation or helicopter trips for the few places you can't take your van with due care. One couple we met out in the Centre swore by the idea of signing up for a 4x4 tour to really remote/difficult places and wearing out some one else's vehicle and using some one else's gear! No matter what van you have you will not get absolutely every where in one trip! There is always someone happy to tell you about some place you have missed. It is better to think about all the marvellous places you have found. We have met on road vans in all sorts of places -they just have sensible drivers towing them. We have also met gung ho off road vans in all sorts of trouble! Just enjoy your trip and hang on to your money for a while. Lynne
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Follow Up By: Astro Boy - Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:52

Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:52
Many thanks John and Lynne

Great information. Yes, the comfort is what I'm worried about. My van has a combined shower and toilet which I think is fine. In my recent 37 night trip on my own I only used an amenities block once. But my wife (who has spent only about 11 weeks in the van) has never used the shower - says she needs more room!!! When we've free camped there has always been an amenities block for her!! She would love a new van with a big separate shower.

My wife does like to retire to bed early to watch TV (I got a second VAST box) or a movie if I'm staying up late to watch rugby. Having a door to the bedroom has some advantages. And I particularly like the front club lounge from where I can watch everything that's going on outside.

I love the idea of doing a tour for the tough places. I spotted a lovely group of folks in Cooktown recently heading up the Cape and they were having a ball (even though it was only about 4c for their breakfast before 7am). I've got mates who have done such tours of the GRR this way renting a 4x4 and staying in the organized accommodation.

I think I will do my first trip in the current van with side trips as you suggest. See how we go. If my wife's brother can convince her to camp out for a few nights at a time (as he and his wife do) then we won't have too much trouble using the current van for a trip.

Thanks for your help.

Astro
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Reply By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:55

Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014 at 18:55
Maybe if you're starting to get into the $100k plus region, it might be time to look at a second hand OKA or something similar.

The advantage of a degree of comfort with all the off-road capability.

Just a thought...
AnswerID: 538523

Reply By: The Landy - Wednesday, Sep 03, 2014 at 14:09

Wednesday, Sep 03, 2014 at 14:09
Hi Astro Boy

Is something like a Kimberley Karavan or the Track Topaz an option? They will tick some of you boxes.

Good luck with your deliberations and trip!

AnswerID: 538562

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