Saturday, September 1, 2012

Winter camp - the plan

In my previous post I added some winter camping tips to the tips that Coleman have published.  The reason I added go somewhere you can't go in summer is that we have just returned from another outback NSW trip.

I'm not sure what summer along the Oodnadatta Track would be like but I would suggest hot and dry, so the thinking was lets get out there are have a look around while it's winter, while there is water in Lake Eyre and best of all - at a time when we could travel with some friends and there would be other travellers out there as well.

The first thing we did was decide roughly where we wanted to go.  Our mission was to get to The Pink Roadhouse at Oodnadatta from south along the Oodnadatta Track.  Once at Oodnadatta we would then work out where to next.

Our first thing was to do a bit of homework about travelling through the area, where we would bo and what we should see.  To a lesser extent where we would stay.  Enter the Hema Maps Great Desert Tracks map set.  With the map of the area generally on the floor we decided that it was fairly do-able in two weeks.  The plan was sketched out, just the details and the preperation was required.

Naturally the 4WD got a service - oils, filters changed, spares checked, the third roof bar was installed so a second spare tyre could be seet up on them.  The usual recovery gear was put in - snatch strap, tree trunk protector, D shackles, tyre repair kit, tyre deflator, air compressor and a decent tool kit.

The next mission was to set up our water supply.  In the past we had only ever travelled with about 20 or so litres of drinking water - that is usually adequate for a weekend or when not travelling far from drinkable water.  The map, and other people, told us we were going to a desert and most of the water is from a bore.  After a bit of looking around we settled on a big plastic 85 litre tank whick was installed behind the seats against the cargo barrier.  With the water tank in, the tent on the roof all we had to do was load in the fridge and home made shelf/drawer set up and we were ready to go!

So one cold and frosty morning we hit the road for what was ultimately a long trip south, then west, then north, then... You get the picture!

We saw some amazing parts of the country as we travelled, staying at Yanga National Park just outside of Balranald before travelling on to, Renmark, Leigh Creek, William Creek and Oodnadatta.

We made an interesting decision at Oodnadatta.  Over the next few weekends I'll post the story of this amazing trip, and what happened as we made our way along one of the most historically interesting track.  If you stick with me for a couple of weeks you will find out what happened at Oodnadatta and where we went from there.

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