Big Red Bash - 2015

Submitted: Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 11:12
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After a recent trip to the Atherton Tablelands, I was allowed to head down to Birdsville, for the Big Red Bash.

Arrrived in Birdsville about midday on Saturday, to be met with people, and vehicles everywhere..........there must be something going on? A shower at the Ablution Trailer, then up to the bakery for a couple of "maggot bags". Renigged on the curried camel and rabbit, and stuck with a couple of beef offerings.



Just after midday, there was a noticeable mass departure towards Big Red, so after my pie purchases, I joined the queue. Steady travelling towards the venue, but back to a crawl as we motored along the side of the dune.





Finally got to the entrance to the camping area, where I was directed to go "anywhere you like, as long as you don't go off by yourself". I interpreted this as don't leave the camp area, to find a camp.



After a walk up Big Red, I questioned a marshall about numbers, and he suggested about 4,000 attendees! Camping area, even on late Saturday, was getting very crowded. wonder where the dunnies are?





The performances started each afternoon about 3pm, and continued almost non-stop till around 9pm. They also showed a video of the earlier Big Red Run, a 250km run into, and out of the Simpson Desert, that finished a few days before the entertainment.

A Laser light show, on the side of Big Red, accompanied by an Aussie "Top 30 Hits", was provided by Redarc and ARB Lighting.



A Robinson R44 was on site, and did a brisk trade, every day.



At times people were like ants, over the top of Big Red. Many of the kids had their boogie boards, to surf down the slopes, while others just ran and crashed out, rolling and tumbling, until they were ready for another go.



Plenty of the adults were trying their, and their vehicles skills, on the western side of the dune. As it's all to do with tyre pressure, and momentum, many had to have 2, 3 or more attempts before they were successful. One 200 series just couldn't hack it, without a lengthy run-up, even with those 600 NM's under the bonnet. The most impressive vehicle, to do the job without a lot of fanfare, was a late model Navarra.....maybe it was a V6?

Obviously we can't live without our modern communication devices, so Telstra provided free Wi-Fi for the masses, coming from the unit pictured below.



And plenty of people used the service, including myself(catching up on emails and EO).



Conveniently situated adjacent to the main toilets, one could virtually "Whiz on Wi-Fi".

And speaking of toilets.......! 16 portaloos(spread over 2 locations) and a toilet trailer were barely adequate for the masses. Many people had their porta pottis, and without these I think we'd have been up to our armpits in human excrement! I understand there is to be a review of this before next year's event.

Along with many others. I departed for home, before daylight on Tuesday morning. Pulled up at the Cuttaburra, south of Glengyle station, to make a coffee, and toast some bun loaf for brekkie. Fuelled up at Bedourie(170.9c/L).

Took a look at the Vaughan Johnson Lookout, which is at the Boulia/Diamantina Shire boundary. This lookout was the venue for 2015 Anzac Day celebrations, where they had 100 horseman in attendance, as well as members from HMAS Diamantina. Would have been a moving experience for all those who attended.







Next stop was near Min Min Creek, for a quick sanger, at the western access road to what was our old home for many years. Remainder of the trip past Middleton, and through Swords Range, then over the Diamantina crossing, was uneventful, due to little traffic.

Bob

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Reply By: Member - Bigred13 - Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 11:36

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 11:36
Hi Bob, Thanks for the very informative report ,very well done and weather looked good to,bet it was cold in mornings though.
Thanks John
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 12:17

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 12:17
No worries, John.

About 3 deg on Sunday, and noticeably a little warmer the next two days. Weather was pleasant throughout, with little of the usual winter south easterlies.

Sun didn't come up till about 7.45am, so a good excuse to stay in the bunk till after that. Plenty braved the cold early, to climb, or drive up Big Red. Whether that was for the sunrise, or to use the mobile(from Birdsville cell) would be open for debate? :-)

Afternoons soon cooled down once the sun dropped below Big Red. Definitely gloves, beanies and multiple jackets for the evening performances............

Bob

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Reply By: allein m - Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 12:57

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 12:57
Thanks for your report

yes it has been cold in the outback but I try to look at it this way summer is getting closer each day

I wonder what Burke and Wills or any of the early explores would say if they came over a sand dune and saw the sat dish vehicles ?

things have changed so much in such a short time in the world of communications

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Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 14:13

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 14:13
Sounds like you had a good time Bob.

But about those Curried Camel pies....... they need more curry......LOTS MORE curry!! lol
Cheers
Allan

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Reply By: Member - Odog - Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 15:22

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 15:22
Thanks for the info Bob, and the pics, wife and I have it on the list of things to do... Your comments will help with our preparation... Cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Robert1660 - Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 21:36

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 21:36
We did the Big Red Bash last year. It was a great event and this year sounds even better. However, the toilet issue really should have been foreseen as it was an issue in 2014. Although they made every effort to ensure that the toilets were emptied frequently the pressure of many campers wishing to use them did create problems. I have suggested previously on the forum that it was wise to take your own Porta-Pottie and this appeared to be good advice. Let's hope that 2016 can see another great concert matched with some improved toilet arrangements.
Robert
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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 23:12

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 23:12
Hi Bob

You must have been a very good boy to be able to get away so soon after getting back home from the Tablelands.....lol

Great report and great images, and it is very hard to picture that many people at Big Red at one time.

All the very Best.


Regards

Stephen & Fiona.
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Saturday, Jul 11, 2015 at 08:54

Saturday, Jul 11, 2015 at 08:54
Ha, ha, I work hard on the Brownie points when I'm at home, Stephen.

Think Linda enjoys the peace 'n quiet while I'm away too? And she had to work too.

The campground expanded by at least 30% from when I took these photos. A lot of extras arrived on Sunday, so perhaps a photo on Monday would have given a better view of final "count".

Bob

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Reply By: Member - Michael O (NSW) - Tuesday, Jul 14, 2015 at 20:14

Tuesday, Jul 14, 2015 at 20:14
Well done Bob!

Took the good lady and two kids (15 and 12) to the Bash and can echo most of your remarks.

Camping was remarkably well organised for the masses of people.
The music was great and there was plenty of room.

Things were a bit chaotic at times up on Big Red - not sure if the Ch10 rule is widely known. There also seemed to be a lot of kids wandering around waiting to be run over.

Road out to Haddon Corner was like a highway.

And I did have a camel pie. Shame the son covered it in sauce before I got to it.....
A slab of Carlton Draught cans was $67 in the Pub

Michael O
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Follow Up By: Member - Michael O (NSW) - Tuesday, Jul 14, 2015 at 20:18

Tuesday, Jul 14, 2015 at 20:18


This was taken late Saturday arvo

Michael
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Jul 17, 2015 at 17:01

Friday, Jul 17, 2015 at 17:01
Thanks Michael. Thought I saw you and the Family a couple of times, over the weekend. :-)))

I enjoyed the camping, as I'm used to having more space, and parked near a lovely couple, Mark & Candice, from Yeppoon. While I didn't talk to anyone else, most people were very friendly, giving a "hello" or "morning" as they strolled past.

Noticed a bit of rafferty's rules up on Big Red too,and would have only needed an excess of giggle juice, and some fast cars, for a potential disaster to occur. Reckon some mothers would still be retrieving red sand out of the kids' clothes, and some of their orifices!

As The Boss stayed home this year, and had to work, think we'll be in line again next year. And I've got my camp site picked out already.........:-)

Bob



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Follow Up By: vk1dx - Friday, Jul 17, 2015 at 17:25

Friday, Jul 17, 2015 at 17:25
Good to see that you enjoyed yourself Bob. Too noisy and too crowded for me mate. Avoided it. We even delayed our Madigan line to keep away. Not long now.

Phil
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Reply By: Les - PK Ranger - Sunday, Jul 19, 2015 at 00:54

Sunday, Jul 19, 2015 at 00:54
We were there Sunday arvo, but only for a quick stop and play on BR before heading west :)
Was certainly crowded, but the crowds were great, well controlled, and BR open for business.

Heard the band playing down there, took a few snaps, was an epic looking event.
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