Words and Pictures

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January 8th 2015
Published: January 8th 2015
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Words and Pictures

When we sold Gypsy we asked the new owners if they would keep us in touch with what was happening as far as Gypsy went and as far as the trip and travels where gypsy was used, I appreciate that she no longer belonged to us, but she was really a part of “Our Family” and part of some of the biggest adventures we had had in Australia.

I do appreciate that on our first trip new travelled 66,000 kilometres around Australia in an entry level soft floor camper trailer for 16 months, yet our second trip when we covered about 8,000 Kilometres’ and 4 months from our spiritual home on the farm in Nangus New South Wales to Western Australia it seemed so much more of a bigger trip and, possibly due to the hard work we put in to afford Gypsy, the adventures with her seemed that much special and we saw amazing things such as Ayres Rock (Uluru), the Great Central Road, Giles Weather station and so much more.

We asked Gypsy’s new owners Denis And Jody if they would do a guest blog for Kangaroojack
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with some words and pictures of Gypsy’s first adventure with them, so as soon as she was delivered to Canberra in the Australian Capital Territory, she was being packed for a trip away down on the Murray, so let me hand you over to Denis and Jody our guest bloggers!!

“Well you asked me to write a ‘blog’ of Gypsy’s new life and I promised I would give you a paragraph or two, just to offer you some reassurance that she is still out there having a good time – so here it is…………..

Jody and I are new to the camper trailer thing, we have spent the last 25+ years in tents and swags, so when Gypsy arrived only a couple of weeks before our first trip with her there was some excitement in the air as we packed and prepared. We took a short drive out of Canberra just to check that everything ‘worked’ and that the new brake controller on the Toyota 200 series was going to do the job. This was the first time for me towing with electric brakes, aren’t they a great invention? Over the course of the
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week we started putting in all the things we would need for our first trip. All this extra space and carrying capacity was just amazing. It was good fun checking out the camper but we were keen to spend a week living in it to really work out how we wanted to set it up, and what extras we were going to need that we didn’t already have.

The plan was to travel with Greg, Tammy, Kyle and Jake (the Finlays) to a spot on the Murray River about 70k’s from Echuca, Victoria, where we would meet up with some other friends that we have met through the ACT 4WD club. We met up about 8.00am on the Saturday and spent the next 4 hours travelling along the dual lane high way. This was a boring drive but it was the quickest way to get us to our ultimate location. After a coffee stop and a lunch stop, and just a few dirt roads we were at the river for about 2.00pm, leaving us plenty of time to set up camp. This was exciting for us as we had not had the chance to put up awnings
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or anything at home. This was completely remote camping in very hot weather (35°C+ most days) for 6 or 7 days so everything had to be set up – awning, ensuite, solar etc. Everything worked a treat and was all very easy to set up. We love everything about it. Because it was so hot, we were camped in the shade which meant the solar panel didn’t quite keep up with the fridge, but we fired up the generator on a couple of the days and that was plenty to see us through. I can’t see that we would be camping in those conditions too often. It got to 39°C one day. That is hot!

We spent most of our time just lazing around. We had a fishing rod in the water most of the time and caught a few small Murray Cod. One of the crew caught a large Yellow Belly and cooked it up for all to share – delicious. Every now and then we would take our noodles (floaty thing) and wander about 500 metres up river where we would all jump in and float gently back to camp. Just an awesome way to
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cool down and contemplate the meaning of life, although one was always weary of the submerged logs. I also had the opportunity to try out my new Hobie kayak (this was a trade-off for getting the camper, I can’t tow my boat and a camper!). This was also a lot of fun and with the peddles instead of paddles, soooo easy to move through the water.

I think Jody looked forward each evening to dinner time just so she could use the kitchen. So nice to have some bench space and a cooker at a sensible height. Fresh water on tap….camping can’t possibly get any easier. We finally got to bed quite late for our first sleep in Gypsy, and wasn’t it great. Our queen size swag has a good mattress and we always sleep well in it but there is nothing quite like an innerspring mattress.

It was daylight by about 4.45am and we found the camper to be very bright by that time of the morning but some creative curtains helped us out with that for the next week. I was on holiday and not prepared to be getting up at 5.00am!
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Coming off the tilt tray
We also noticed how light it was outside until late in the evening with Jody was still reading without lights at 9.00 pm one night. Long days are great for holidays aren’t they?

We headed home on our own on boxing day as we were to meet up with the kids at the coast the day after for a week at the beach. The others were staying on the Murray for at least another 5 or 6 days.

Thank you Andy and Caroline for letting Gypsy go, we had a fantastic first experience and expect it to be just the first of many, many trips and weekends away, she will be back to Ulmurra early next month for a weekend and somewhere, as yet undecided, for Australia Day.”

Additional photos below
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A mammoth journey for Gypsy
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Gypsy being delivered to her new home

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