If you are intending to travel to this years biggest event, The Big Red Bash, here are a few tips for outback travel that you should take note of.
- Trip planning should be at the top of your list, distance to travel, the route to be taken, fuel use and stops required.
- You should always check on road conditions as you leave, things can change at the drop of a hat.
- Vehicle preparation is critical for outback travel. You should look at servicing and suspension checks, travel gear (like trailers, rooftop tents, grey water tanks and the power you'll need to run everything).
- Always ensure you have tyres that are not only in good condition (above 50% tread depth) but suitable for the conditions of the areas that you will be travelling. Light truck constructed tyres for your 4wd will give you the best protection and minimize the possibility of punctures.
- Always carry some spares: tyres, air filter, fuel filter and zip ties are probably the most important.
- Always carry a tyre pressure guage and compressor for outback trips - they may come in handy for parts of the journey.
- Tyre puncture kit - just in case the worst happens and your spare is also flat.
- Always carry plenty of water when doing outback trips - dehydration can cause serious health issues and you don't want to miss out on all the fun.
- UHF Radios will come in handy when travelling either solo or in a convoy - though we always recommend doing long trips with more than one vehicle.
- Recovery Gear - you never know what kind of situation you (or someone in your convoy, or someone along the way) might get into - it's best to be prepared.
- Always travel during daylight hours to reduce the possibility of any wildlife incidents, they like to get around between sunset and sunrise. Ensure you take a break, get out and stretch every 2 hours at a minimum.
- When travelling on unsealed roads always adjust your tyre pressures to suit the road conditions, use 4wd if required as this will give you better vehicle control. When adjusting tyre pressures always adjust your speed to suit. You can find a handy guide here.
Some essential items that you will need to pack for this year’s event:
- Warm clothing and camping gear are important - Big Red Bash is held in the desert and the nights can get quite cold. Make sure your sleeping gear is rated - it could get as cold as -5C. Protection from the elements is a must. Also think about cover, if you don’t have a tent or caravan, a vehicle awning will serve well. Also a ground sheet or foam mats for your tent or swag will limit the cold earth making you even colder.
- Sun protection: hats and sunscreen are a must, during the day it will be quite warm and sunny. Sunburn can be a real issue at outdoor events.
- A comfy chair, sitting for hours watching and listening to some of Australia’s best artists needs to be done in comfort to make the most of them.
- Food, yes there are food vendors but just to be sure you need to make sure you can feed yourself and crew for the whole event and for some of the travel - it's always a great idea to support local businesses like hotels and bakeries along the way.
- Extra toilet paper for the trip to the Big Red Bash - you shouldn't need it while you're there - but you can never be too careful
- You will want a fly mesh for your hat for once you get to the Big Red Bash.
- Good, comfy shoes. The red dust is soft and you'll be doing plenty of walking - so make sure you have comfy shoes. Boots or good joggers will help.
- If you have the room, a sturdy 4 wheel trolley with wide wheels can make the trip from your campsite to the stage much easier (plus you can fit the kids in there!). You can find these at Bunnings - don't bother with any that have skinny hard wheels, they won't get too far in the sand!
- Something outrageous to wear to the Drag Race!
Just taking note of these few small things can make the difference of comfort during any event. For more information, check out the Big Red Bash website - they have heaps of info to help with preparation and packing!