OK, We Need To Organise. Advice Greatly Appreciated.

Righto, we need to get sorted. @Onegreenbus and I @UncleChilliMan are within 2 weeks of leaving here. However, we have things we need to decide.

We have our home, the 4WD we lovingly call ‘Jimmy’.

Our 4WD, Jimmy

Jimmy the 4WD, looking after us when we got stranded at Hedlow in November

Now, at present, Jimmy isn’t registered & he needs some TLC to get him roadworthy. I can do the work, & I have another Landcruiser to butcher for good parts. But we don’t have the patience/time to do that. We want to go within 2 weeks.

So, these are the options we thought of. I’d love some feedback from anyone who takes the time to read.

Option 1: Spend some money on hoses etc, replace clutch which is dodgy, & ‘run the Police Gauntlet’ to Gordonvale, then head up to GOF’s place. This option has been discounted. & rejected already. But my ‘Thelma & Louise’ mentality makes it worth mention.

Option 2: Pay to send Jimmy & our stuff packed inside up to my mate Barnesy’s place in Cairns, then hitch & walk with the two dogs, Billy & Jack (the names are an inside joke for us old movie buffs) This could pose some problems though. It is VERY hard to get a lift hitching nowadays, let alone having two dogs in tow. However, Jack & Billy are family so if we had to walk 1200km, so be it. I can’t mention Billy & Jack without introducing them. Billy is the younger of the two:

Billy & Jack

Billy & Jack

Option 3: Leave Jimmy with family here. Buy 2 pushbikes & 2 trailers. Load the trailers up & ride to Cairns/Bloomfield etc. with the dogs running beside us & resting on trailer when they’re buggered. We both like this idea.

Option 4: Do the same as option 3, but get sponsorship from Tuckers Avanti Plus bike shop (bikes & trailers for the trip) or someone else. Then advertise the trip madly through media, both mainstream & social, & raise more money for disaster relief or some organisation that can use the money.

Now, option 4 is not an attempt to get a free ride to FNQ. We’d be happy to pay our way. However, given that travelling North by pushbike is a rarely documented (though common) event, it might generate some interest & raise a few bucks. We’ll be blogging & Tweeting throughout our journey, so it might be good publicity for a business or two, and raise money for some good cause.

This could even be good for raising money for books or computers for remote communities (@AboriginalOz @bitethedust @DotComMob).

Actually, it would make more sense to do that than ‘flood money’. I’m pretty sure the needs of flood affected folk will be met. Raising money to get things to stimulate the minds and creativity of kids in remote communities who might otherwise not get these things is of ongoing importance.

Anyway, we need to decide what to do soon. Whatever happens, we’re out of here within two weeks. Not much time to organise anything I suppose, but hey, that’s the way we roll. By the by, manana, que sera sera. A slow bike ride sounds nice though.



  1. GOF said,

    February 19, 2011 at 5:28 am

    Pity you couldn’t fix Jimmy easily….those things tend to go forever.

    I’d be worried about dog safety on the highway with Option 3.

  2. Tina said,

    February 19, 2011 at 10:46 am

    Jimmy’s ailments aren’t all that bad really. It probably wouldn’t cost all that much more to fix than to buy two good bikes and trailers… something that will get us 1000 ks without falling apart at every second left-turn will not be cheap. We COULD fix and register Jimmy without too much trouble… it’s just the time that it will take that is kind of off-putting there really. And to be honest, we’d like to take our time with this trip. That’s why we’ve discounted flying up… why do it in a few hours when we could take a few weeks and see it all up close. The idea of riding is very attractive to us both… at the moment… ask us how we feel after we’ve been on the road for a week or so 😉

    Dog safety does concern us a bit too. We have a lead system worked out to keep them on the off-side of the road… but if we have trailers the lazy buggers will probably be sitting on top of them all the way up. 😉

    No seriously, I probably wouldn’t entertain the idea if they were any other dogs. They are both fit and love running (that’s the cattle dog and border collie in them), although they’ve been stuck in a yard for a while now and will need a little while to get used to all the running again… but then again, we’re probably a bit soft at the moment too. We’ll all take it easy at the start.

    As for the dogs themselves… Jack I would trust to run loose (although for our own peace of mind, they will be on leads most of the way). He’s very well trained and understands English, so he just knows what we expect from him without much prompting. He’s been with us since birth (nearly 6 years now) and in that time he has learned heaps. He’s been hiking, climbing and caving with us, walked the highway, swum creeks, camped in the bush, and been shoved into a myriad of differing circumstances from hiding in a caravan park cabin to living on a farm… all of which he’s handled well. He’s a very smart dog and adapts to new situations very quickly. He’s like a 10yr old kid… except he usually does as he’s told. There’s a reason we call him Jack the Wonder Dog… I’ve no doubt he’ll manage quite well.

    Billy, on the other hand is still a pup (Brad got himself confused when he said that Billy is the oldest… I’ll change that soon). He hasn’t had much to do with traffic of any kind and gets very excited when he goes for a walk on a lead. He will be a bit of a handful at the start, I’m expecting. However, having said that… he’s also quite intelligent and he mirrors Jack. I’m pretty sure that he’ll get the idea quickly enough.

    Also… we haven’t decided on a route yet. We’re lucky enough to know this area well enough to take some back roads at least part-way up the road. By the time we hit the highway proper, the dogs should both have it worked out. There will be times when it will be difficult, and no doubt many more when it will be inconvenient… but it’ll be an adventure though 😉

    Then again, perhaps we’ll get to Mackay and decide that we’ve had enough, then trade the bikes in for a beat up old bomb and do the midnight run after all. Who knows? 😉

    • GOF said,

      February 21, 2011 at 6:10 am

      That’s going to be a heck of an adventure….hope you get the chance to take lots of photos and blog about it.

      I once had a dream of circumnavigating Australia on a Posties motor bike (top speed about 60 kph). Maybe one day.

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