“Great Scott Marty.”
“If my calculations are correct, when this baby hits eighty-eight miles per hour… you’re gonna see some serious shit. ”
So said Doc in the 1985 movie ‘Back to the Future‘. I think my hubby might have thought a similar thing while we were sand driving last weekend
Our Holden Colorado is not quite the DeLorean but it sure felt like it was flying as we bounced over big sand dunes.
This is where we spent our Easter long weekend, in the Wyperfeld National Park and the Big Desert, the third largest National Park in Victoria.
We left our van at home and strapped our new swag on top of the car. At Greenlake in Ararat we met up with the Werribee four wheel drive group, where we became vehicle number 13 in their tagalong convoy on the Border Fence trip. This is without a doubt the best way to explore this vast and remote region.
But first we had an art trail to explore. This is creativity on a grand scale, a massive art project looking to the future by reinventing the past.
Starting at Rupanyup the Silo Art Trail stretches like a huge open air gallery for 200kms breathing new life into the tiny farming towns of Rupanyup, Sheephills, Brim, Rosebery, Patchewollock and Lascelles.
These “blink and you’ll miss them” communities have been invigorated since once ordinary wheat silos, now painted by national and international artists, have been transformed into enormous works of art.
Each silo is intricate in its detail and impressive in its depiction of local characters.
It’s a worthwhile trip to add to a mallee touring itinerary.
After our cultural start to the trip our first night camping was at picturesque Lake Lascelles near Hopetoun. Dinner that night was at the local pub, where we got to chill out a bit before hitting the outback.
Then it was time to head into the wilderness and enjoy two days of playing tagalong, crossing sandhills and marking corners on our way to campsites and camp fires along the Milmed Rock Track and the Border Track.
With stops at Snow Drift sand dune and lunch at Wonga Campground our days were full.
Back at home now I can’t help thinking how off road driving correlates to tackling life.
Driving across those sand dunes is a bit like facing life’s ups and downs. We mightn’t be hitting real sand dunes every day but sometimes it can feel like it. It can feel like we’re navigating corrugations that often knock us off course. Yet somehow when we focus, we get where we’re going.
For our group the focus was the Border fence which runs south across the states of Victoria and South Australia.
We didn’t make it to Billy Bore on the second night, but the alternative campsite at Round Swamp was just as good (except for the pesky bees).
But then we opened the back of the car and what a mess I found.
The Raspberry jam jar had opened and mixed in with sweet potato dip and had gone through everything in our fridge. And so did the barbecue sauce, which the bees particularly loved. Oh, the joys of camping.
But that’s life. A clean up, dinner cooked over the fire and a few drinks and all was right.
On the third day, after more adventurous driving, we made it to Red Bluff Campground.
We always make it to our destination. The important thing is enjoying everything along the way, challenges and all.
Here’s a question, how are you travelling? Are you heading towards your future with gusto?
Strap yourself in and watch this video, our second attempt to cross this particular sand dune.
On our first try we didn’t make it and we had to reverse down to get back up again.
If you don’t succeed the first time try and try again. That was the unspoken motto of the weekend.
And then, on a big sand dune on the last morning, when we’d broken off from the main group, we ran into strife.
There were two tracks going up and we chose the right hand one. However, at the top the track turned and multiple tracks converged. Hesitating, unsure which direction we should take we lost momentum, for just a second, but that was all it took.
There was no going backwards or forwards. Our car was stuck.
There were a few choice words from the other half before the recovery gear came out. Luckily we still had two other vehicles with us and we were pulled out.
It happens. Dramas inevitably arise when we take chances but at least we weren’t alone.
As I said to the hub much later, “it’s all part of the adventure’.
However it wasn’t the only heart stopping moment over the weekend. At one stage I thought I’d lost hub’s phone in the sand dunes (gulp) and then fellow traveller Greg had the roof rack tumble from the top of his car.
It was all hands on deck as we helped him secure it back on top.
I guess that’s what travelling in a convoy is all about.
Adventure is fun, camaraderie is even better and sharing it all with friends, the highs, the mishaps and the memories is the best.
Here’s to living our dreams, planning for new journeys and being willing to take chances.
Life’s one big sandy adventure. Jump into it and don’t be afraid of what’s over the next hill, wherever that might be.
Expect the unexpected.
Be mindful out on the tracks and take care but always anticipate something great.
There’s a lot of beauty all around us, even in the middle of nowhere.
You only live once.
Live loud, love hard, drive with purpose and enjoy the moment.
Here’s another quote by Doc Brown from Back to the Future
Have an awesome amazing April.
Here’s to more exciting future trips and hills that beckon with new adventures on the other side.
Keep seeking out those extraordinary moments and have fun as we navigate this bumpy journey called life.
Till next time, happy traveling.
In light and love.
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Outanabout YOLO “You only live once”