You may have read our recent post ‘9 things to consider for the big red bash’, but as someone who has never been camping in quite such a remote locale, I picked up a few tips for my next adventure.
Sure I’ve been camping plenty of times before, but things halfway along the Birdsville track are slightly different to what they are at your local camping grounds. So here are my 7 things I learnt from the Big Red Bash…
1. The scenery.....and animals
I didn’t know anywhere near as much about inland Australia as I thought I did. It’s horrendously cliché but there is simply so much out there to see rather than just the sandy desert I was expecting. I’m still in amazement at the number of different animals and landscapes we saw along the way – I can’t wait to get back up there to see more.
2. The value of an inverter
The scouting purist in me wants to scoff at the suggestion of doing anything which may be considered remotely as ‘glamping’, but whether it be charging the camera, the laptop at one point or most importantly, making some morning coffees, the Pure Sine Wave Inverter was a fantastic stowaway which more than paid for its ride.
3. Wet wipes are amazing
Whilst there are showers at many campsites (or set up at the Bash itself), at times there are literally thousands of other people also trying to use them. Chemical-free water wipes can also be used for a range of other things like cleaning out the much needed coffee mug you ‘didn’t manage’ to rinse after the Scotch and Coke the night before.
4. Bringing a double swag
A single swag is romantic for a few nights, but you’ll likely be keen for a bit of extra room come day 10 (see point 3 above). I’m still a fan of the ease and convenience of a swag, but I think a double swag might be on the shopping list before next year. Also, it sounds soft (pun intended), but bring an extra pillow - your neck will begin thanking you after about day 3.
5. Enjoy disconnecting from the online world
Don’t expect phone reception, even in a larger town like Birdsville. It’s obvious in retrospect; have 7000 people descend on a remote country town and the infrastructure will struggle slightly. At times during the bash it took up to 15 mins to send a simple SMS; forget sending snapchats from the local watering hole.
6. Taking the time out to explore
Factor in time to stop and look at the cool or interesting things along the way. Much of my country driving has always been from Point A to Point B, but on this trip we took a bit more time to explore; The things we came across were incredible and definitely worth the bit of extra time out of the way.
7. Getting an addiction (to 4WD touring that is)
If you aren’t already into 4WD’s or camping – prepare to be. I have a sudden understanding and connection with mum’s side of the family who are bushies. I haven’t even been home a week and I’ve already been in contact with the bank planning to buy a fourby of my own.
Plans for the 2017 Big Red Bash are already underway, and no doubt it’s set to be bigger than ever. REDARC will again be there with all the bells and whistles (and hopefully take me along), so make sure to mark July 4th-6th 2017 in your calendar.
Words by Andre, REDARC Customer Service Technician