Long Distance Driving

UBC Day 26

 In Australia, there is plenty of long distance driving.

I like driving long distances.  Perhaps it is because I spent my earlier years travelling back and forth across Australia to see my families.  Though in those days I was only the “back-up” driver, taking over when my then-husband was tiring.

In 2012, I tackled my very first really long distance drive.  I took over four months to circumnavigate much of Australia, driving some 35,000 kms on my own in a Mitsubishi Lancer.  I did take a tent, but spent most nights couch surfing, or staying in caravan park cabins.

A couple of years later I travelled from Brisbane to Tasmania and back to Brisbane via Adelaide.  I can’t recall how many kms that was, perhaps 12,000!! In 2017, in an old 1983 Toyota Coaster, I drove from Brisbane to Uluru – some 7500 kms.  As always, I did it solo.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Generally, I prepare very well.  The car is packed quite neatly and I am a bit fussy where things go.  I have a box for my camera equipment, and another for cables, papers, documents and more.  (I do a lot of writing and photography on my journeys!)  I always travel with a small printer too, as I occasionally get asked to do workshops.

Between Cloncurry and Mt Isa

Travel Tips for Long Distance Driving.

I have some tips:

  1.  Only drive a mechanically sound car, and check oil, water, tyres etc, regularly.
  2. Don’t take too much stuff.  Generally, you can buy whatever you want, except in the outback.
  3. Take an Esky or cooler – for water, milk and other foods that need cooling.  I carry some freezer bricks and put them in the freezer when I have access to a refrigerator.
  4. Take healthy snacks – especially in small bags, so you don’t overeat.
  5. Keep a supply of fresh fruit/vegetables for snacking.  (In Australia you need to be organised with this as there are long distances between shops!)
  6. Take plenty of water.
  7. I often use Diet shakes for lunch.  Shake the powder with water in a shaker – quick, easy, cheap and you can stop anywhere and do it.)
  8. Don’t drive too far each day – stop when you get tired.
  9. In Australia, we don’t like driving late in the afternoon or early morning as this is when the kangaroos and emus can create a danger on the road.
  10. Keep a friend or family member informed of your whereabouts and/or destination.
  11. Keep paperwork in your car glovebox, with your name, address, next of kin, etc so that if anything happens, it makes it easier for emergency personnel to help you.
  12. I also download Podcasts, and music, to a USB stick and play regularly.  In fact, I have my own “program”.  If I am feeling tired I play CD’s or music I can sing to.  It wakens me!
  13. Do anything to keep safe.




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About Di Hill

My business card says "Writer, Traveller, Camera Addict, Bamboo Fan, Workshop Presenter." This website will focus on my writing - and the workshops I present. Workshops on Blogging, Marketing for Writers, and Life Story Writing.
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