Andamooka Safety Comunications

Submitted: Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 18:47
ThreadID: 24811 Views:1928 Replies:8 FollowUps:4
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Hi.

Got home today after a desert photography trip traveling alone on an ATV (all terrain vehicle). Some digital photos at Laurie's Photos

I hired a satellite phone at a negotiated deal for $300 for ten days. Due to the most welcome rain, I had only two camping trips of two days and three days during this time which meant the phone cost me $100 per night to call in my coordinates and say I'm ok.

I'm wondering whether buying a second hand UF radio would be a better long term method. Are there nice people out there who would write down a couple of coordinates and make a phone call if I failed to call in?

I understand that the VKS people can't provide back-up service. However, perhaps among the dozens of 4x4 travelers there would be one with the mobile equipment turned on and willing. Is that how it works?

Regards,
Laurie.
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Reply By: Member - Luxoluk - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:07

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:07
Hi Laurie
The sat phone vrs HF argument could rage for years. I got over the problem by buying both and I use them for different purposes. If you go HF only just join up VKS737 and make a couple of friends on the network. You can have an email sent by the base operators I think so that may cover your need?? HF is going to be a bit bulky C/w satphone.
Loved your photos of Bill's pub. I used to drink port with Bill at his shack in the 60's before legal age. He was a very generous and welcoming person...lots of tourists and donations collected for the RFDS. Our shack was 100mtrs south of Bill's with a caravan and an ex-Woomera dunny out front! Just sold it but have enduring return/use rights. Aaaaaah...she's real good country!! Cheers
AnswerID: 120810

Follow Up By: Bega Photographer - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:09

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:09
Thanks Luxoluk.

I can imagine a UF would take a bit more to protect from the weather and from getting squashed in my situation. Might just have to grin and bear the satphone cost.

At bill's pub there were a couple of electric leads about and signs of a recent BBQ. Also an outdated sign at the Andamooka/White Dam corner indicating a recent function. I'll bet there'd be some good photos there if one could become known and welcomed by the locals.

Sure is great country! I'd be riding about the desert 20 km from nowhere and find a pile of fresh dirt with an excavator. Such contrasts!

I've seen a photo of what was said to be Bill's pub on the net. It was a caravan and I think it had a Bill's Pub sign, so I was a bit surprised to find such a spacious complex with accomodation and entertaining areas. I wonder if it was, in fact, your caravan in the photo.

I take it your family must have mined opal.

Regards,
Laurie.
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FollowupID: 375881

Reply By: Lone Wolf - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:50

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:50
Laurie, time to change your site I think...

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You see, you are getting a cult following!!

Cheers

Wolfie
AnswerID: 120814

Reply By: Paul - OzRoamer Camper Trailer - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:59

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:59
We hire sat phones every day and I would love to be able to charge $300 for 10 days Hire!!!

Nice negotiating - was the guys name Nerd Kelly?

Next time do an Explore Oz business search and you would be over 30% better off .

Cheers

AnswerID: 120818

Reply By: Paul - OzRoamer Camper Trailer - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:59

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:59
We hire sat phones every day and I would love to be able to charge $300 for 10 days Hire!!!

Nice negotiating - was the guys name Ned Kelly?

Next time do an Explore Oz business search and you would be over 30% better off .

Cheers

AnswerID: 120819

Follow Up By: Bega Photographer - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 11:09

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 11:09
Thanks for that info Paul.

I negotiated down from $40 to $30 a day. Sounds like I should have gone for $20.

Ah well! At least I didn't get attacked by dingos, lost, run out of fuel of get hopelessly bogged.

I'll look out for Ned in future.

Regards,
Laurie.
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Reply By: Willem - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:18

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:18
If you are going to do this sort of thing often they why not buy a Satphone. With the Federal Government subsidy it should not cost you more than $500. Monthly access fees are $30 per month through Telstra and you are allowed a 4 minute call ($10) within the $30 fee.

Search this site for a Satellite Tracking Service. They may be able to help you out as well.

AnswerID: 120823

Reply By: Member - Luxoluk - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:42

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:42
Hi Laurie
Bill initially had a bondwood caravan and built a shed which still remains where he spent the daylight hours and cooked from his wood fired stove. I think the old caravan has now gone and I suspect the rest of the place will be cleared in years to come as it becomes more of a risk. The open shed was once enclosed and now is the main shelter for public gatherings/barbeques by the town people. His grave site at Andamooka cemetary is really something else...just the way he wanted it...a crossed pick and shovel set in the concrete cover...sort of refective of the Eureka spirit.
Our shack with Caravan was about 100mtrs south of Bills place. If you went south a bit you would have passed it.
Lots of opal was pulled out from White Dam. It would be ironic if Bill's dream opal lies below his shack.....now he would bebleep!! Have many memories of Bill's stories about near misses with dynamite and the cats who were not so lucky. Lucky to have made old bones really. He died when the first Adelaide GP was run so its been many years that the shack has been uninhabited. Cheers
AnswerID: 120831

Reply By: Bega Photographer - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 01:39

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 01:39
Yes I would have seen your shack. Quite close to the track. I felt as if I was encroaching on someone elses territory so kept moving.

I saw another "different" grave near Andamooka when I was there in April last year. It was fairly new. A few kilometers, maybe less, east of Andamooka beside an old well. Can't remember what the plarque said but just recall it was something informative about the former miner.

Regards,
Laurie.
AnswerID: 120871

Reply By: Nudenut - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 07:59

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 07:59
i have one for hire
AnswerID: 120877

Follow Up By: Bega Photographer - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 09:36

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 09:36
Well, Nudenut.

This sounds interesting. I tried to send you a private e-mail to do a deal but the message says this function is for members only. Given your post of the other week, looks like you've got me.

What sort of money?
Can I pick it up? Traveling: Mildura, Burra, Port Pirrie, Port Augusta, Pimba etc. around 5 August. Back about 20 August.

Regards,
Laurie.
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FollowupID: 375950

Follow Up By: Nudenut - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 10:02

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 10:02
you could have asked on here? you can certainly pick up ...are you adelaide?
0411703609
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FollowupID: 375953

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