Submitted: Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 11:04
ThreadID: 5736 Views:1903 Replies:10 FollowUps:11
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Just to let you know that it's now 11:00 a.m. Birdsville time and so far we have had over 1/2 inch of rain, also Mt Dare has had nearly an inch of rain - and in between in the Simpson is very wet. People just out of the Desert spent the whole trip assisting families over sand dunes - with no radio comms, trailers, high trye pressures and no idea! Not just one lot but plenty of them. Rain still coming in and coming across from the western side of the Desert.
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Reply By: Member - Wherethehellawi - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 11:32

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 11:32
This news rain is great for all of AustraliaRichard
AnswerID: 23831

Reply By: Member - Glenn(VIC) - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 12:10

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 12:10
Amazing isn't it. More and more tracks are being closed to 4wdrivers, yet people with no idea are still able to cross the Simpson, destroying it as they go, and making it harder for those of us who do Tread Lightly.

Great that we are getting rain though.Just Do It!

AnswerID: 23837

Follow Up By: Ruth - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 16:05

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 16:05
How very true! Now 4:00 p.m. and Birdsville has had 80 points and still raining. Your photo Glenn - looks like the beautiful sand around here when it rains a little bit. People coming to the outback for desert adventures are getting ALL the challenges today. Funny watching how they cope (or don't cope) isn't it.
FollowupID: 16003

Follow Up By: Steve - Tuesday, Jul 01, 2003 at 21:37

Tuesday, Jul 01, 2003 at 21:37
Glenn; Is that a Tread Lightly photo of your vehicle in the bottom left hand corner or just a shot of one of those hoons that tears up the countryside and complains of tracks closed to 4wd vehicles ?
FollowupID: 16118

Follow Up By: Member - Glenn(VIC) - Tuesday, Jul 01, 2003 at 22:00

Tuesday, Jul 01, 2003 at 22:00
Well my friend, that photo was taken in Toolangi on a track that is heavily used. The entire group that I was leading drove as the conditions allowed and ensured that we all stuck to the track instead of ruining the bush by avoiding it. The speed with which we travelled would have annoyed many bush bashers, as we took our time to ensure minimal damage to both the track and our vehicles.

I have travelled extensively around this great country of ours and have ensured that wherever I go I tread lightly. I never leave rubbish about, even collecting others as I go. I leave no fire smouldering in a rush to reach the next destination.

I am extremely concerned that by the time my son is old enough to drive, there will be very few places for him to enjoy using a four wheel drive for what it was built for. In fact, will there be a need for one at all?

With the closure of tracks in the High Country, the ruination of the Border Track by the environmentalists, and continual damage to areas, that many wish to enjoy, by either inexperience or flagrantly ignoring signposted 'rules', this Great Land of ours is heading rapidly towards and land less travelled. I would hate to have to pays hundreds of dollars to access the Simpson Desert in years to come, but I would if it allowed me to travel it and show others a magical destination. I believe that this is what will happen if the Desert Tracks are continually damaged by ingnorance.Just Do It!

FollowupID: 16122

Reply By: Member - DOZER- Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 16:14

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 16:14
Wish i was able to check it out in a few weeks.
Andrewwheredayathinkwer mike?
AnswerID: 23864

Reply By: Mike - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 17:25

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 17:25
Hi Ruth, no surprise that there are still plenty of 'experts' out there. "I can get my trailer across, wadda ya mean, 'You'll stuff it up for every one else', why should I care".
Birdsville looks great in the rain though, lots better than a dust storm, eh?

Happy trails, Mike.
AnswerID: 23869

Follow Up By: Ruth - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:56

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:56
Hi Happy Trails - we had a "little" dust storm about four days ago - not as good as yours though. I seem to be in trouble tonight - look further down. There were a few wildflowers coming on the WAA line, so we should get some on all lines now after this rain. It's now about 7:45 and still raining - all the roads in and out had just been graded and have all now been chopped up. Rain east as far as the jump up (Shire boundary) on Windorah Road - south to Mungeranie and just getting into Innamincka late this afternoon. A few people out of the Desert late this afternoon with great tales of adventures and slippery dips - Theo busy with pulling people out of bogs - and a few new cars getting good tryouts. Went to Eyre Creek yesterday - it WAS very dry there. Hope to see you in July?
FollowupID: 16014

Reply By: Member - Gary - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:03

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:03
Great to hear that you are getting rain up there. Shame about unprepared drivers though. Hope everything is going well with the Park. You know its two years now that Carolyn, Mikaila and myself were there with Tony and Brenda. Still have very fond memories of the surprise dinnner. Regards Gary from AlburyDead in the City - Alive in the Bush
AnswerID: 23878

Follow Up By: Ruth - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 20:01

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 20:01
How great to hear from you - you had pretty good adventures in the Desert, eh? Postcard from Tony & Brenda last week from Normanton. Tony has 6 stitches in hand - changed flat typre, put tyre on roof rack, slipped broke radio aerial off. Next morning getting something down, slipped again and drove broken aerial into hand. OOOH, hurt. We won't see them until September now. You've got a new car! Happy tripping with the little ones. Ian says G'day.
FollowupID: 16016

Follow Up By: Member - Gary - Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 20:32

Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 20:32
Ruth, Yes have got a new vehicle. Enjoyed our 2001 trip in the Pajero so much decided that we would be doing a lot more trips. The Nissan diesel became available at work so followed through to auction and got it. Tony would not have been happy with his mishap. Did Brenda have to do the stitching. That I would love to have seen. Thought we may been going to Birdsville in late September with the Albury Wodonga 4wd club but both trips clash with my parents 50th wedding annniversary. First time the whole family will have been together for about 12 years. Guess I would not be very popular If i took off and missed the party. Will have to try again next year.Mikaila will be 8 then so will be able to remember more. She did have a great time on the 2001 trip but cannot remember much of it. Regards to Ian. See you later. GaryDead in the City - Alive in the Bush
FollowupID: 16182

Reply By: Tojo 100 - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:27

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:27
Ruth, can’t help noticing on a number of your forum postings, your apparent dislike towards travellers in the Simpson Desert. Might I point out that if it were not for these tourists, you would probably be grumbling about the lack of business in your Caravan Park. I’m sure there are many other businesses in Birdsville & surrounding towns that appreciate the money that the tourists bring in. The Simpson Desert & the Birdsville Races are the two major attractions for Birdsville & without them Birdsville would end up like many other struggling towns in the outback (you're lucky to have them). The Simpson Desert will survive the many tourists it gets with or without trailers, as Mother Nature cleans up after them in the off season.
AnswerID: 23881

Follow Up By: Ruth - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:49

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 19:49
You should read more carefully what I have been saying. At no time have I said anything about "dislike of tourists" - if you knew me you would know that I really enjoy tourists and love people. One of the really good things about living in Birdsville is being able to meet so many people (tourists/travellers) with whom I have so much in common - that is, the fact that they have made the trip/adventure/lifetime want - to come to Birdsville and I would be the first person to tell you how beautiful and wonderful the Desert is, whether wet or dry, windy, hot or cold. It is very difficult to watch what happens to that Desert because of a few "uneducated/can't be told people" who don't, can't, wont do the right thing. Mother Nature doesn't always clean up after them - thank goodness for the Friends of the Simpson Desert who have just taken out truckloads (yes truckloads) of garbage, rubbish, broken trailers, fridges etc out of the Simpson Desert. And then there are the garbage loads of human waste put into the wheelie bins in town, when the first place you come to when arriving in Birdsville (from the Desert) is the tip. At least these people didn't just leave it all in the Desert. As for the trailers and the high tyre pressures - it is not just me - check with SA National Parks who are responsible for the Desert, check with the Exploroz Team, check with many other people who love the Desert like we do and see what they have to say (just go back in this Forum) - I'm not trying to stop people from enjoying the Desert - I just want people to be able to enjoy the Desert.
FollowupID: 16013

Follow Up By: Robert - Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 15:51

Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 15:51
Hi Ruth,

Unfortunately it does tend to come across that you do seem a little anti the tourist and the inexperienced.

By all means have ago at those idiots who are ill prepared and or don't listen at all to advice given. But perhaps it wouldn't hurt to also mention that there are people, who are new travellers to the area, are well equipped and are prepared to listen to reason and learn.

There's a big difference between littering (deliberate vandalism) as compared to doing damage through lack of experience or knowledge. As also there is a big difference between doing damage unknowingly as compared to doing damage simply due to stupidity or total ignorance/arrogance.

FollowupID: 16166

Reply By: Steve - Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 23:33

Monday, Jun 30, 2003 at 23:33
Ruth : You are Spot on .. too many 'Turkeys' who won't be told... REDUCE TYRE PRESSURES .....CLEAN UP YOUR bleep ..... Leave the place better than u found it ... (it's not real hard ) ...
AnswerID: 23916

Follow Up By: kezza - Tuesday, Jul 01, 2003 at 21:24

Tuesday, Jul 01, 2003 at 21:24
have to lend my full support to Ruth on this one I was there in early may and cant agree more about tyre pressures and leaving no mess behind - any where!!

FollowupID: 16117

Reply By: Steve - Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 19:24

Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 19:24
Ruth, you are quite right with what you say. Anyone venturing into this area should have done their homework, and you should know that you must have some type of radio contact with the outside world, eg HF radio or satphone, know that you have to reduce your tyre pressure etc. It is these people that are ill prepared are the first ones to cry out for help when a little common sence and knowledge of the outback would save so track damage. This is a great place and people should respect the outback and not take it for granted. We are planning another trip accross the Simpson in early August, so we look forward to seeing you in Birdsville.
Regards, Stephen,
Clare SA
AnswerID: 24059

Reply By: Member - Gary - Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 20:24

Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 20:24
Have to add my support to Ruth. There are far tooo many people who just buy a 4wd and then head off. In Coober Pedy last September I was asked my advice on the best way across the Simpson by 4 german tourists. Two brothers, travelling in an old landrover and their parents travelling in a Britz campervan. They had 9 days to travel from Cooober Pedy, through the Simpson, across to Brisbane and then to Sydney so the oldies could fly home.

When told that it was impossible they said that it would only take one day to cross the Simpson because it was only about 400kms. They had a leaking radiator, 20 litres water, no extra fuel (thought there would be service stations along the way), no radio (apart from the commercial radio) and no EPIRB. I told them that I would not even show them the directions as they would probably get stranded and maybe die. They had no idea about reducing tyre pressures or desert driving techniques. Ran into them at Uluru a couple of days later and they had changed their mind. Were going to Alice and then back down the Stuart to and then to Sydney. They would not have seen too much in their rush to get there. But they probably got there alive.

I know these people were tourists but unfortunately a lot of aussies seem to be the same.

By Ruth giving people advice, as her and Ian do, they are saving lives and the Desert.

AS for Ruth not liking tourists that is garbage. In my travels I cannot remember having meet a more amenable person as her and Ian.

Dead in the City - Alive in the Bush
AnswerID: 24064

Follow Up By: Ruth - Friday, Jul 04, 2003 at 16:24

Friday, Jul 04, 2003 at 16:24
Thank you Steven and Gary both - I was having a little blonde weepy fit there for a minute but I've bucked up now. I really do like people - not turkeys though, eh? Nice mob in at the moment - all have spent 3-4 days bogged on the Birdsville Track or Cordillo Road in the mud, mud, glorious mud. Thanks for the support, much appreciated.
FollowupID: 16284

Reply By: Tojo 100 - Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 21:26

Wednesday, Jul 02, 2003 at 21:26
Mother Nature changes & moulds the desert as it pleases in its own time, always has & always will. You’re always going to get a small percentage of people that won’t let their tyres pressure down, but really every vehicle that drives through that desert is doing its share of damage even with it’s tyre pressure reduced. If driven correctly, a vehicle with a trailer should do no more damage than one without. As for the rubbish people leave behind, unfortunately this happens all over Australia & it can never be policed in isolated areas. Unfortunately it’s just a fact of life & we all have to pay for the clean up. Hence the increasing costs of the Desert Parks Pass.
AnswerID: 24068

Follow Up By: Robert - Thursday, Jul 03, 2003 at 13:05

Thursday, Jul 03, 2003 at 13:05
Tojo 100,

Your Comment “ Unfortunately it’s just a fact of life & we all have to pay for the clean up. Hence the increasing costs of the Desert Parks Pass.”

Perhaps I’m just cynical, but I wonder how much of this money really goes into looking after these areas. After all as Ruth said “thank goodness for the Friends of the Simpson Desert who have just taken out truckloads (yes truckloads) of garbage, rubbish, broken trailers, fridges etc out of the Simpson Desert” – I assume that these people (Friends of the Simpson Desert) are unpaid volunteers.
I believe also that if you break down and therefore need towing out, that this is not a free service, but instead you will face a hefty recovery bill.

I think you are probably correct in the assumption that even if trailers are banned, then damage will still continue and will get worse simply due to the increasing numbers of tourists.

Be interesting to know how many of these desert passes are sold per year.
FollowupID: 16214

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