Remote area travel for the inexperienced.

Submitted: Sunday, Jan 27, 2008 at 23:07
ThreadID: 53947 Views:2126 Replies:8 FollowUps:11
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I was just chatting to a mate who did the Madigan last year. Now perhaps the sand wasn't soft, or the spinifex high because, as trip leader, he didn't think it was all that bad. Remote, yes. But they'd done their preparation and were experienced remote area travellers.He used a lot less diesel than he thought he might. Some parts were more difficult than others, but there were wheeltracks. Quite frankly they had a ball.

I asked him about the Hay River run, and he said I'd find it too boring...I don't think so!

The point I'm trying to make is that all trips are subjective. If they had a breakdown, an accident, had the track been different, it could have been a different story. Misadventures can happen close to home, but when they happen in a remote area, well need I say more?

Now I'm no expert but I suspect that some of us are happy to be a long way from others,and some of us aren't. We can be well prepared but if we go bonkers because there's no one around for a long way, then we shouldn't be there, and will only cause strife for others in the party.

And if you're not sure which type of person you are, then a tag a long might be a good idea. The trip leader will probably soon sort you out :))
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Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 08:19

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 08:19
Footloose,

I think that we can fall into a trap of over confidence. One good crossing of the Simpson Desert and you don't know what people are on about saying that it is hard.

If I am asked about a trip I will always talk about the challenging ones so that I don't give anyone the idea that a remote trip is easy every time.
Not to get them to join GDT on a trip but so they don't go with a false sense of security.

This is one of the things as a tag a long tour leader that I can't let myself get complacent with a trip even though I have done it many times before.

Some things that we do not have control over like the wind and the direction that it blows.
Normally that is not a big problem but in the desert if the wind blows the sand is soft, the track gets covered by sand and is hard to see and the shape of the dunes change making the crossing a lot harder. Fuel usage goes up and more strain it put onto the vehicle. More than 18 crossing later I have not had the same conditions twice, some have been "interesting" some "character building".

As for finding a trip boring, I never do.
My wife asked me once if I found doing the same trip over and over boring.
The country does change, look at the Vic High Country over the last 5 years with the fires that have gone through that area.

Taking a tag a long convey away is never boring, I will never get the same mob of characters twice, so every trip is different.

I go to these places not so much for the 4wd challenge but to look at the changing and diverse country.

Footloose, do the Hay River trip, I don't think that you will find It boring.



!MPG:23!

Wayne
AnswerID: 284024

Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:26

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:26
Thanks for that Wayne. I always stress the difficulties that a track can throw at you, while others see it as just an 'old fella' thing.
I've never been the hairy chested type, and have always rekkon that 4wd is there to get you out of strife, and not into it.
I've never been bored in the bush, as you say it changes every time.
I rekkon you'd have to have the patience of Job and the wisdom of Soloman to take a tag a long :))
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Follow Up By: Wayne (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 16:49

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 16:49
Footloose,

With the right attitude and plenty of research before you go you should have a good Hay River trip. If you plan to stay at Batton Camp as most do, don't forget to book in first.
They only allow so many vehicle there at any one time so you just can't drop in.

As for your last comment,

I have the patience of a father of a 15yo daughter and the wisdom from Vic when it comes to doing trips.
A lot of preparation and research before we do a trip and keeping in tough does help while you are out there.

Wayne
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Reply By: Willem - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 08:37

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 08:37
Footy

Do the Hay River on your own. That should keep the adrenalin rushing!!!!..........LOL

If one is well prepared and you don't take silly risks then the chances are that you will have a good journey out there in the bush. And don't worry about "What if"

Remember that Reg Sprigg, Hans Tholstrup, Denis Bartell and others all crossed the deserts solo and unaided in some cases. Recently a young fella walked from the Colson Track to Birdsville via the Geo Centre.


Cheers
AnswerID: 284026

Follow Up By: Willem - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 08:53

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 08:53
Trying to get Rig Pic description to display properly. I don't understqand the workings here...lol
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Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:33

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:33
Good points. You don't have to be paranoid I guess, but you do have to be prudent.
Yes I read about that walk, but didnt realize that he went via Geosurveys Hill. That's about two days travel from the Madigan if my memory serves me right?

Yes the Hay River run would be interesting, and I doubt that I'd be bored in the slightest. Especially if I were on my own! Hmm...
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Follow Up By: Joe - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 11:34

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 11:34
Footloose,
When we were on the Madigan Line we estimated the Geosurvey Hill was about 50km away. On that section of the Madigan Line we were covering only 50km for the day as it was rough.We decided against doing a day each way and have saved it as a future trip.
Cheers
Joe
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Reply By: TrevorDavid- Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:29

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:29
Footloose, as Willem said do the Hay River trip on your own, my wife & I did a couple of years back, it was great, saw no one for 5&1/2 days. Remote yes hard not really.

Regards

TDB
dontyajustluvit

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AnswerID: 284054

Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:35

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:35
If it takes 58 1/2 days to do the Hay River run....LOL
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Follow Up By: Hairy (NT) - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 15:12

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 15:12
Might be time to give those glasses a wipe Footy!!!!
Its a "&" not a "8"!!!!!!

ROTFLMAO
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Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 15:16

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 15:16
Hey, my defence is that since I'm half blind I have to go by touch :))
Sadly, I don't think it will fly.
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Reply By: TrevorDavid- Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:47

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:47
Yer OK, I should have put a space between the 5 and the &, or I could have typed five and a half days or I or I could ??

TDB
dontyajustluvit

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Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:53

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 10:53
Sorry, couldn't help myself :))
I might look into doing that run. Hmm....
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Reply By: Joe - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 11:29

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 11:29
We travelled the Hay River twice, before tracks could be easily followed, but it's not a hard trip.
We then decided to do the Madigan Line and Hay River together as one trip.
On the Madigan Line we had no tracks to follow most of the way.
Some days we only covered 50km as the country was so rough, and it became a bit of an endurance effort,but overall not hard.
Being properly prepared and travelling with others for safety/support is the way to go.
Cheers
Joe
AnswerID: 284067

Reply By: LCRUZA (VIC) - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 15:33

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 15:33
It is interesting how things and conditions change!!

In 2002 we did the Madigan Line and it took 11 days from Old Andado to Birdsville and there were basically no track except sometimes we would come across other vehicle tracks. I know of two vehicles in 2007 that went from Mt Dare to Birsdville via the Madigan Line and Peoppel's Cnr in 6 days!!!!

Ron
AnswerID: 284102

Reply By: GO_OFFROAD - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 19:10

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 19:10
joe was on my trip across, and we went point to point, so real track making, not following wheel tracks, which really smooth out the spinifex.

We also went when there had been no rain that year, and the dunes were very very soft.

We caught a group who left 3 days before us, and had alot of trouble, splitting up trying to find ways over the dunes that were easier.

here is a pic of how soft many dunes can be, 6" lift, 37" tyres, 130 rw kw TD and very experienced sand driver.

http://i243.photobucket.com/albums/ff56/assassin_offroad/0780MadiganLine.jpg

You only have to do the desert ofter windy dry sand blowing around once, to realise how difficult the dunes can become.
AnswerID: 284171

Follow Up By: Wayne (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 19:17

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 19:17
Go_Offroad

I hope you don't mind.



Wayne
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Follow Up By: GO_OFFROAD - Tuesday, Jan 29, 2008 at 20:05

Tuesday, Jan 29, 2008 at 20:05
not at all,

that was me dozing that dune, man were some of them soft.
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Reply By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 19:41

Monday, Jan 28, 2008 at 19:41
He's doing a fine job bulldozing that dune!
AnswerID: 284178

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