“To get out of the big smoke” is why Andrew Stewart decided to take off on his two-month trip to explore Australia and experience what our great country offers outside of bustling cities, a nine to five grind and traffic jams. Like many other Aussies travellers, he had seen more foreign countries than their own ‘backyard’ which added fuel to his desire to pack his rig, lay down fresh tracks, venture into the Red Centre and traverse our Southern States with two good mates. Enjoy Andrews story.
Name: Andrew Stewart
Where do you live? Sydney, NSW
Describe yourself in 5 words: Enthusiast for Adventure, Photographer and Writer.
Tell us about your recent trip around Australia?
Two-month ‘Figure Eight Tour around Australia’ via the Nullabor, Kalgoorlie, Canning Stock Route, Tanami Rd, Alice Springs, West Macdonnel Ranges, Uluru, South Australia, Great Ocean Road, Riverina Area, Victorian High Country and Tasmania.
How long were you on the road?
Two months between July and August.
Swag, Camper trailer or Caravan?
Pole-less swag on Stretcher. Light weight and not taking up space.
Why did you decide to pack up and travel Australia?
To get out of the ‘big smoke’. To see Australia for what it is. Experience the food, tracks and environment. Girlfriend and I had visited overseas the last five years, with only seeing some of the major Aussie cities. We visited South America before the trip, and I flew back after a 17hr flight commute, hopped in the car 2hrs after landing and headed off right away!
Any TIPS for those people who’d love to pack up and travel Australia like you?
Pack light and pack right. Every time you pack requires two uses. We scheduled to stay at a Caravan every 5/6 days between towns to shower and refresh. Balance out weeks in the bush with city living. Simple foods and low mess/low equipment use.
What was the hardest part of making the decision and ‘doing it’?
1) Working out with the girlfriend between her holidays.
2) Spending the money on an old 80 series Landcruiser or buy a newer car to cross the Canning.
Did you ever miss the luxuries of being at home? If so, what?
We didn’t pack a hot water shower system so; I would say that item. We got adjusted to a spray bottle and old water. We had to just wash the essentials. Underarms and feet mostly. You can live without a shower every night when you camp next to rivers.
One of the most memorable moments you had during your current travels?
West MacDonnell Ranges. The gorges are a true representation of Northern Territory beauty. Watering holes and oasis springs.
Canning Stock Route – 13 days of Remote touring. You don’t realise how vast and remote Australia is until you are 7 DAYS away from civilisation. We stopped in at Kunnawarrujti (Aboriginal Comunity on the CSR) to fill up ($3.40/L) which was the first and only fuel between Wiluna and Halls Creek (2000km distance) We camped at Lake Disappointment where the lake had a full body of water. Wild flowers in bloom and the sun just perfect. That was the highlight of the trip.
The most bizarre experience you’ve encountered on your travels?
I am a qualified HVAC Mechanic, and to save some coin I took on some service work in Bendigo. The old couple were so nice they let me sleep in their Caravan during a large thunderstorm. They paid for my trip into Bendigo through the city, into a gold mine and dinner.
Describe your ideal campsite.
Views and sunsets. Essential for an ideal campsite. Riverside listening to the wildlife.
Biggest mechanical fail?
Canning Stock Route
CSR Corrugation Damage List
Loose GME Aerial. X2 – Well 5/15
Loose Spot Lights – Well 10.
Broken UHF Speaker Bracket – Well 16
Lost Rear Passenger Handle – Well 16
Cracked 10l Water Container – Well 15
Broke Sand Flag – Well 17
Broke Radiator Shroud – Well 23.
Loose High Lift Jack Mount – Well 23
Broke Spot Light Mounts – Well 25
Loose Roofracks – Well 26
Broke Muffler Bracket – Well 27
Loose Radiator Bolt and Loose Swivel Hub Felt Wiper Bracket – Well 32.
Broken Licence Plate holder – Well 33
Favourite dish to cook on the road?
Pasta. You cannot go wrong with pasta and sauce. Bit of salad and plenty of cheese.
What technology do you carry on your travels?
Samsung Tab A running HEMA/Spotify blue toothed to the radio, Mobile Phone, Sat phone (CSR) DSLR and Laptop (Photo editing and blogging)
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