After reading many books, magazines and online forums, there’s one thing that continued to be reiterated over and over. Be Prepared. The old scout motto rings true when heading into the Australian outback.
I’ve been interested in outback travel since I was quite young but it wasn’t till I bought a Nissan Patrol about 3 years ago that I started aspiring to travel over Australia. There’s been many talks about exploring Australia and it’s taken the full 3 years for things to eventuate.
So when it’s come to preparing for my trip, here’s a few resources that I’ve used to get information and ideas on what I need. Along with some places to check out and visit
Magazines and Books
Books have been a great resource when it comes to planning on places to visit. One particular book that I’ve found quite useful for trip planning is a Book by Steve Parish: The Around Australia Guide. A book filled with great information about locations around Australia along side some amazing photos of those areas. Certainly a worthwhile read when it comes to Australian travel.
Magazines such as Australian Geographic have opened my eyes to the hidden Australian Landscape. Others such as 4×4 Action have provided great advice on 4×4 equipment for touring Australia. These resources when combined with those below has helped me gain a much larger understanding of exactly what I’m getting into as well as the info on how to get out!
Last year, I joined a local 4×4 Club. The club has been great to meet new people and to learn many new things. I highly recommend that you join a 4×4 club if you’re interested in touring Australia. Most 4×4 clubs are not groups full of car enthusiasts. In fact, many are family oriented and focus greatly on environmentally friendly 4x4ing. Most 4×4 Clubs also offer driver training courses that range from everyday 4×4 driving techniques and car knowledge though to more advanced and ‘serious’ off-road training.
The 4×4 club I’ve joined offers the following general training courses:
- Basic Driver Training
- Very Difficult Terrain
- Advanced Recovery
The club also offers specific training courses including Water Crossing, Sand Driving, Mud and Snow, Practical Map Reading, Navigation and Route Planning. Joining a club should be a give and take environment. I highly recommend that you get involved with club activities and contribute to the club.
Websites and Forums
If you’re more interested in online resources, there are plenty of web based resources and forums full of people that would be happy to help you gain a better understanding of your vehicle and trip preparations you might need to make.
Here are some websites and forums that I’ve found useful:
- www.patrol4x4.com – Nissan Patrol forum, great info on the ‘machine’ side of things
- www.exploroz.com – A collection of Australian travel tips and ideas.
Not only have I used traditional websites and forums to gain ideas and knowledge, I’ve also tried to use social networking as a way to gain some insight and ideas for places to visit and explore. So far, social networking has taken a while to take off but I’m not about to give up yet!
If you’re interested in following me on Twitter or Facebook, you can find the links above 🙂
I hope that the information above is useful to you when it comes to planning your trip across Australia. Whether you plan on staying on the tarmac or heading into the middle of the Kimberly region, these resources are bound to add something new to your knowledge. After all, we never stop learning.