Where to go????

Submitted: Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00
ThreadID: 1152 Views:2435 Replies:8 FollowUps:5
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I have long service leave due next year and am planning a 6-8 week trip somewhere between May - October 2003. This is such a large country and my 4wd trips so far have been limited to 2 x Vic high country and a few NSW Sth coast weekend trips. I have a GU 3.0lt and will be taking 3 kids under 6yrs and the ball and chain. The vehicle is reasonably well set up with 60lt Engel, UHF and GPS as well as adequate recovery gear. Can anyone help me with a suggested trip that in a 6-8week timeframe I would be able to experience the wonders of this country but also not be driving all day and not seeing the good stuff. I have had a tentative idea about Sydney to Port Augusta, Flinders Ranges, Oodnadatta track, Alice Springs, West Macdonnels, Simpson Desert, Birdsville and then back to Sydney. Is this feasible in the timeframe??


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Reply By: Mal Try - Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00

Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00
Dave, yes it is and you will have seen a bit of just about everything in the center. Regard it as reconnaissance for a bigger trip. Keep us posted as you plan in detail and the one extra item of equipment you need is a HF radio. Have a great trip and enjoy the planning. Mal Try.
AnswerID: 3610

Reply By: Stephen - Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00

Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00
Mal, why does Dave need a HF radio? Even in the Simpson there are sure to be travellers within UHF range. There has to be a good reason to justify a $3000+ purchase and you haven't provided one.
AnswerID: 3625

Follow Up By: Pete - Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00

Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00
Stephen , you took the words out of my mouth!
we are planning an extended trip to kimberley , pilbara ect next year & i'm really curious why I would need a HF , when from all the info i've sourced, there will be plenty of people around.??
FollowupID: 1471

Follow Up By: Werner - Saturday, May 18, 2002 at 00:00

Saturday, May 18, 2002 at 00:00
Last year in June went across the Simpson Desert with 17 other vehicles of the Subaru 4WD club of SA. Even with 3-4 mechanics on the trip, we still hired a HF radio for the "whatif" situation that we couldn't handle. We didn't need to use it but it was good knowing that we had it with us. I would recommend that you hire one particularly if you plan on travelling alone. Enjoy your trip.
FollowupID: 1491

Reply By: Steve - Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00

Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00
Pete, Stev and all the rest : you dont even need a 4wd if you really want to be stupid, an old HK holden will do the trick, ITS ALL A QUESTION OF " what if" and a complete set up is what you need if you want to be independent !! Of course there are people out there without all the " flash gear " who are happy to impose on those who have it all in times of emergency, these people are known in the Australian vernacular as "BLUDGERS" join them if you feel the need
AnswerID: 3630

Reply By: Steve - Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00

Friday, May 17, 2002 at 00:00
Dave, a good trip and not too rushed. Have been on this myself and my suggested trip would be as follows : Syd, Cobar, Willandra N.P. for the kids (a must ) Mungo N.P. , Kinchega N.P.The n fill up at Woolies in Broken Hill for trip toHawker, Wilpena, Parachilna ( for a great feed with the ball and chain ) Oodnadatta, Mt Dare, Andado,and on toAlice Springs. Have a day or two here to wash, refill the Engel, stack the booze , Cryovac your meat at the Butchers in the mall, then head into West Macdonnels and stay at Redbank Gorge (great camp spot ) Kings Canyon, Uluru, Olgas, Mt Connor to Kulgera. Then over to Finke en route to Mt Dare and then over the Simpson to Birdsville. When you have had a cleansing ale and the ball and chain has got the gear all washed and the kids bathed again set off down to Innamincka and then take the Bore road to Tibooburra. Now you are nearly home and a trip east through Wanaaring to Bourke and on to Coolabah (sorry about the black top bit ) and over to Quambone and then on to Coonamble, Coonabarabran, Werris Creek and then all the way back to the big smoke viaScone and you are home !!

Promise you you will have the best trip of your life ... If you don't think this is long enough I can add to it without any bother !

AnswerID: 3631

Reply By: Cobra - Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00

Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00
Dave, agree with Steve, but be aware of the fruit fly exclusion zone between Broken Hill and Hawker, we got caught a couple of years ago, (maps showing the exclusion zone were not accurate)
AnswerID: 3670

Reply By: Mal Try - Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00

Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00
Steve and Pete, I don't give a damn if Dave gets a HF. However I have camped at Poppel Corner for two days and not seen another vehicle. As much as anything else it is a security blanket for the "boss" and as some one else said for those "bludgers" or inexperienced. If you buy one for $5-800 from the trading post chances are you can sell it for the same when you get back. Anyway Steve and Pete, I apologise for having an opinion and will try to restrain myself in the future. Ma Try.
AnswerID: 3679

Follow Up By: Pete - Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00

Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00
Mal, why are you sorry for having an opinion?
I asked why I would need a HF for my particular circumstances in an endeavour to get as many varied ,honest & intelligent comments as possible .Then I could be confident of making an informed decision on my own.
Is it just me or is this forum going to the pack with so many smart -*@&# "experts" always willing to have a go at or having a dig at anyone asking a genuine question??
This is NOT a shot at you , it just seems there is an element out there now posting on this forum who get satisfaction from imposing their own highly inflated opinions of selfworth on anyone who post 's a simple question.I find this very disapointing as I find this forum is invaluable & have learnt a hell of a lot from it.
(Glad I got that off my chest)
Regards, Pete
FollowupID: 1527

Follow Up By: Stephen - Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00

Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00
Mal, in your reply to Dave you said "...the one extra item of equipment you need is a HF radio". Full stop. If you had said "a HF radio is desirable but not essential unless you travel to remote places" or "they are expensive to buy new but you can get one for $5-800 from the trading post and sell it for the same when you get back" I would have agreed fully. Dave seems to be well set up and probably knows whether he needs a HF or not, but a newcomer might be worried that he lacks an "essential" bit of equipment when he may not need it at all. You could have expanded your reply a bit. And don't apologise for having an opinion - we enjoy a bit of "robust" discussion here.
FollowupID: 1530

Reply By: Ruth - Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00

Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00
I'm in for two-bits. I think Steve's itinerary for you is excellent - except for the bit about the ball and chain doing the washing etc. - in Birdsville, that's a job for the men, that goes for cooking as well. Ho hum. Now, don't forget that you will become very tired of doing long stretches and as you haven't been to most of these places then you really must think about actually seeing something other than white knuckles on the steering wheel, especially if you are travelling with your 'loved' ones. So, every couple of days you need to do a two nighter (cuts down on the washing also) because I see people arrive in Birdsville who have been on the road for 10 days and spend the entire two days in Birdsville washing clothes, cars, themselves (and the fridge etc) when they should be relaxing and enjoying the sights.
About the HF - they take up a lot of room and speaking for the trip into the Simpson Desert, you can hire a satellite phone from the Birdsville Police Station (or Oodnadatta) and drop it off at the other end. I'm sure other places must be doing the same thing.
Gear - don't get too carried away with the things you feel you must take. It's amazing how much you really don't need. You've done some short trips - if you marked every item in the car you used with a felt marker I'd bet only 1/3 of them were used. These are the only things to take - other than recovery/vehicle things that is. You will have a great trip - just relax and try to enjoy it. Look at things and don't rush to get from A. to B.
AnswerID: 3689

Follow Up By: Royce - Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00

Monday, May 20, 2002 at 00:00
I've done a few trips like you describe. Long drives with many good stops of two to three nights make it worthwhile. If you just drive and stop, drive and stop, you see lots of places that you might get to next long service leave but perhaps won't . Luckily, my travels involve taking a travelling science show around and my itinerary makes me stop for days at a spot AND also say g'day to the locals. I always do the "Caravan and Camping Show" tour of each c'van park. You get great ideas and see plenty of interesting characters. My biggest bit of advice is to 'red-eye' it to the furthest point of your trip and then work your way back with big leaps and nice stops. That way you see stuff you wont see on a week-end away and enjoy the trip back. Another small but worthwhile idea is to check out all the van parks before you choose the several-night stops. Even go in and try the showers to see if they have good roses and pressure. This is much more important than you might think. Cheers.
FollowupID: 1534

Reply By: Dave Harrington - Tuesday, May 21, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, May 21, 2002 at 00:00
Thanks to all who have responded. The suggested itineries will be most helpful as will the travelling tips. Although there appears that there will be many people in the areas I am planning to travel I will definitely be hiring either HF or Satphone for nothing more than peace of mind. I may risk a desert crossing by myself without adequate Comms but could not even contemplate the risk with the kids.

Thanks again,

AnswerID: 3697

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