Following up on the things we did right on our last trip, here the..
Top 5 things we hope to do better next time:
1. Plan ahead
This one sounds really silly and yet it´s the most fundamental one. Of course one plans ahead, right? Well, if you are going bush, you need to plan ahead just a little bit more. Especially when you base your expectations on European experience. Where did we fail?
- Outside of the cities you actually need cash, so bring a fair bit of cash.
- The combination of a fully packed 4WD, a big engine, a rather small tank (85l) and rather large distances between service station is not to underestimate. The machine stopped after only 450 km, that´s not much. So, a long range tank or some jerry cans are a must.
- You are going out into the wild, you´ll take it as it comes, right? We almost learned the hard way that certain areas (Steep Point) actually need a permit that people apply for 10 months ahead!! Same goes for camp spots there. So, do your research on the locations that need a booking and book ahead, well ahead.
- The further you go from the Cities, the sparser the supermarkets and the thinner the selection there. The longer and the more detailed you plan your meals, the better you can shop for ingredients, and pack the right amount in parts before leaving. Think about the quantities and how annoying it may be to drag around 1 litre olive oil instead of a small container that is sufficient for the trip.
2. Where to put the rubbish?
You most likely have a superb packing system for your vehicle and you know exactly what goes where. At least when you leave home. Latest after the first night and the first meals you start to carry around a fair bit of waste, likely yucky food waste. We used standard shopping bags and that was not good enough. Especially as you don´t have a “place” for those bags, they fly around in the trunk and the risk for a ripped open rubbish bag is not particularly nice. We hope to find a better solution next time. Suggestions? No, those “4WD-camping-rubbish bags” aren´t the solution either, they are far to big.
3. Laundry management
When it comes to packing and organising your things one issue is often forgotten, where to put the laundry that starts piling up over the days. A proper cloths packing system is crucial with 5 people in one car, sharing two duffle bags for all neccesities. that works all good with these handy zipper-dividing-bags, until you start to accumulate dirty cloths that need to go somewhere. A plastic bag that fits in somewhere in the trunk? Not so good. We actually haven´t yet fully figured out the ultimate hack for this issue. Best we could come up with is an additional, very light and very flexible dividing bag that can separate the laundry from the rest of the clothing items. As the laundry bag gradually increases, parts of the fresh clothes move from one to the other bag (which shrinks in the same time). In the end this would lead to one bag with laundry and one with cloths. Sounds good does it?
This is not such a big issue as campfires aren’t allowed in most of WA and especially in national parks but if you find yourself at a location where it actually is allowed, you can bet that there isn´t any firewood. So, carry it with you! You would´t want to touch that forgotten, small pile of firewood over there anyway, would you? Snakes like such places …
5. Fly-net (for your head)
Yes they look ridiculous but yes these flies can drive you MAD when you have them all over you the second after you step out of your vehicle.
Alright, once we´re at it, here are the top 8 things we shall/want/would like to do to the machine before we head bush next time:
8 Most desired Land Cruiser updates
- Wheel alignment – She´s pulling to much to the left, the left swivel hub needs eccentric bearings to correct the camber (That´s what the no bullshit guys say)
- Rear bumper / dual wheel carrier – In an emergency reverse, the original plastic (!?) bumper got bent. Time to swap for the real thing, with one wheel and one jerry can holder.
- Long range tank – 85 liters is not enough and x jerry cans on the roof rack are wrong
- Drawers – boxes are nice, drawers would be very nice
- Suspension – will need an upgrade after installing the last three items, also one shock is leaking a bit.
- Roof rack storage bags – We have real estate up there that would work fine for snorkelling gear / toys and maybe even sleeping bags
- 3 inch exhaust – For better fuel efficiency, and sound 😉
- Any other suggestions?