We just love tinkering with our caravan and improving the usability and functionality of all aspects of the van wherever possible. One modification we did late last year was to custom build a rear bar for the caravan to carry our bike rack. We already had the Shingleback 3-bike vertical bike rack however, there was […]
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/2021-03-21-11.51.40.jpg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2021-03-21 12:26:382021-03-21 13:12:13A bike rack carrier for the caravan
We have lived on the Sunshine Coast for over 20 years. And even though we had passed through this area many times, we never realised this little gem was here. Tucked up in the hinterland is Mapleton Falls National Park. At just 26 hectares,…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/2021-01-03-08.28.28-WATERMARKED.jpg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2021-03-06 12:20:512021-03-06 16:33:07Visiting Mapleton Falls National Park, QLD
"A Peaceful Place"
That is the way that Standown Park is described on their website. And I have to say, I wholeheartedly agree. Standown is a military term for 'rest/relax', and as the website says, this is exactly what you do when you…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/2021-01-23-07.40.55.jpg950713needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2021-03-01 12:37:222021-03-22 17:09:01Camping at Standown Park, QLD
Where in the world have we been? #notravel #downtime
If you are one of our regular followers, you may well be wondering where on earth we have been this last little while.
Towards the end of 2020, I suffered a work-related injury, one…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/2021-02-07-07.54.23.jpg950713needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2021-02-08 18:20:142021-02-08 19:02:04Where have we been? #notravel
We started 2020 out with all the best goals, hopes, and intentions. Our time away in 2020 was very different from what we had anticipated.
In preparation for writing this blog post, I re-read our "Welcome to 2020!" post. We had so many…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Landscape-Al-and-Bec.jpg714950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2021-01-09 18:42:302021-01-09 18:43:52Our Time Away in 2020
Three years ago, our car nearly blew up…that is to say, it nearly exploded. Why am I telling you this? Because that is the reason why we recently spent an extended weekend in the Scenic Rim in southern Queensland.
The background story
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/2020-11-22-08.14.09.jpg633950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-12-06 18:22:452020-12-06 18:22:45Our weekend at the Scenic Rim, Qld.
Travel photos. We all take them, often by the hundreds. They are on our mobile phones, camera, GoPro, drone, and anything else that has a lens and storage. But where do they end up after that? Often, if you are like I was, dumped on…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/2020-11-01-16.27.35-WATERMARKED.jpg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-11-05 00:01:142020-11-05 10:56:14Preservation of your travel photos and videos
There seems to be a natural progression in camping gear - swag --> tent --> camper trailer --> caravan --> motorhome. At least that is what popular culture shows. And while not everyone progresses through to a motorhome, an increasing…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/2020-08-30-07.07.00-4.jpg950713needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-09-21 09:34:182020-09-21 09:38:22The Bush Company – a new roof-top tent and awning
This is Part 6 of a COVID-19 special of what we did during the lockdown – clean the Cruiser.
Read our other COVID-19 lockdown posts.
Time to clean the Cruiser
Well, let’s talk about our beloved 105 series Landcruiser. She has taken…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/2020-04-09-12.51.21.jpg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-06-28 07:23:272020-06-28 07:55:10Clean the Cruiser – COVID-19 brought on unwanted spare time – Part Six
This is Part 5 of a COVID-19 special – what we did during the lockdown and how we went about signwriting the caravan.
Read our other COVID-19 lockdown posts.
Signwriting the caravan
After the drawn-out process of deciding on what sort…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/2020-05-03-16.32.18-1.jpg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-05-29 04:16:002020-05-29 04:30:58Signwriting our Jayco Caravan – COVID-19 brought on unwanted spare time – Part Five
This is Part 4 of a COVID-19 special of what we did during the lockdown - redesigning our Jayco caravan graphics.
Read our other COVID-19 lockdown posts.
What to do with a blank canvas?
For those readers that have been following along…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Caravan-Signage.jpg10151915needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-05-14 00:40:202020-05-14 05:50:11Redesigning the Jayco Caravan Graphics – COVID-19 brought on unwanted spare time – Part Four
This is Part 3 of a COVID-19 special of what we did during the lockdown - time to clean the caravan.
Read our other COVID-19 lockdown posts.
Spare time means time to clean
In a long-ago past life, I used to work as a detailer so when it…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/2020-04-08-12.36.24-1.jpg950713needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-05-03 04:26:172020-05-14 00:49:26Time to Clean the Caravan – COVID-19 brought on unwanted spare time – Part Three
This is Part 2 of a COVID-19 special of what we did during the lockdown - upgrade of the caravan suspension.
Read our Part 1 - COVID-19 Brought unwanted spare time
Our suspension woes...
Over the last 8 months, we have broken a couple…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/2020-04-17-08.03.01.jpg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-04-28 09:26:292020-05-14 00:52:45Caravan Suspension Upgrade – COVID-19 brought on unwanted spare time – Part Two
This is Part 1 of a COVID-19 special - what we did during the lockdown.
I’m sure that you, like us, are hearing about coronavirus everywhere - the news, social media, and even the neighbour or down at the shops (should you be one of the…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/d50f4bdfd2fe4c319fdfa86ab9d43463.jpeg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-04-19 00:11:142020-04-19 03:46:59COVID-19 brought on unwanted spare time – Part One
One of the problems of having a full time job is that time for camping is limited.
One of the problems of being married to someone that travels for their job is that you are in a constant state of envy.
So while I enjoy the drizzly…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Kurrimine-Beach-Holiday-Park-2.jpeg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-04-02 08:16:552020-04-12 02:26:19Kurrimine Beach, Qld
For those that have been following our adventures on social media, you will know that we recently purchased electric bikes as a Christmas present to ourselves. It wasn't a decision we make lightly (electric bikes are expensive!) however we…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Dularcha_Bike-Ride-3.jpeg950950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-02-01 23:53:192020-02-02 03:25:03Dularcha National Park, Qld
We were in the market for a good sturdy bike rack.
Something that preferably would be interchangeable between the car and the caravan.
In the past we had tried many different types and styles, but they just weren't right.
The old story…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Merida_Shingleback-Offroad.jpeg633950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-01-18 12:51:302020-06-18 11:17:11Setting up our Shingleback Vertical Bike Rack
Our Landcruiser is our primary adventure and exploring vehicle, and when we are travelling there is nothing better than having a cold (-1 degrees) beer! But what to do? Our Waeco CFX50 fridge was primarily being used when travelling around…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Landcruiser-MSA-Drop-Slide-5.jpeg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-01-18 10:57:272020-01-18 10:57:27The problem of the Waeco, the MSA drop slide, and our 105 series Landcruiser
We have now said farewell to 2019 and welcomed in a new year.
If you were wondering why we have been MIA for much of the last month or two, don’t worry - you aren’t the only one. While we haven’t been personally affected by the devastating…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Selfie-Al-and-Bec.jpeg760950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2020-01-02 08:28:442020-01-02 20:23:12Welcome to 2020!
Excuse the poor play on words but I couldn’t resist.
When Bec and I first met, we were very set in our technological ways. We were so anti-Apple, with everything either Android or Windows based, that the thought of ever owning a Mac, iPad…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/55213c3ff34945728f21f363b08a0980-e1574246182804.jpeg406950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2019-11-20 10:37:592019-11-24 04:09:28Apple-‘Mac’ing the choice to keep an ‘i’ on the road
We had spent several days camped at Cooper Creek in Innamincka, which we used it as our homebase, leaving the caravan there as we explored the area. However, due to time restraints it was now time to leave and start heading north to Birdsville…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/ec752768d516434ea0775197b75457f5.jpeg600800needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2019-09-29 06:34:492019-10-08 22:00:32Innamincka to Birdsville via Cordillo Downs
Unlike our journey to the Big Red Bash, which took two weeks, our journey back from Birdsville was completed in just three days. On the last full day of our return journey we stopped at the tiny town of Warra on the Warrego Highway for the night.…
On our travels westward towards Innamincka we were fortunate to be able to stop over at the Dig Tree Reserve located on the banks of Cooper Creek for the night. The landscape around the Dig Tree was surprisingly in stark contrast to the red…
We are always on the lookout for new places to explore. So when the opportunity came up to go to Wolvi Grove Farm Camping we jumped at the opportunity.
And Wolvi Grove certainly didn't disappoint. After a hectic couple of weeks with work…
On our way out to the Big Red Bash we travelled along the Adventure Way from Cunnamulla through to Innamincka. One of our overnight stops was the great little (big!) free camp on the banks of the Paroo River, known as the Eulo Town Hole, about…
On our travels between Innamincka and Birdsville, we came across this massive stone woolshed, 60 metres long and 13 metres wide. On further inspection it was found to be the impressive Cordillo Downs station woolshed, which is the largest of…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/2019-07-09-133530.jpg675900needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2019-08-08 08:52:402021-03-13 16:30:43Cordillo Downs Woolshed, SA – ReviewNeed Time Away
Cadelga Outstation Ruins is on the Cordillo Downs Road between Innamincka, SA, and Birdsville, QLD. Built in the 1870s, Cadelga Homestead became part of the Cordillo Downs Station in 1903 and used as an outstation until the 1950 when it was no longer required. It is now a fascinating ruins and camping area for travellers on the Cordillo Downs Road.
Mosquitoes and sand flies, the one thing that can put a dampener on any camping trip. We once stayed at a camp ground where the moment you stopped moving, swarms of mosquitoes descended on you. While the camp ground was lovely, the experience…
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/mosquito-719613_1280.jpg631950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2019-06-22 05:21:342019-06-22 05:31:5945 ways to stop Mosquito and Sand Fly bites from itchingNeed Time Away
It was time to try somewhere new, and Kookaburras On Curra was the perfect place.
In the 10 years that I've known Al, this was the first time we had had a whole two weeks vacation together. Normally one of us has to work. so when the opportunity…
If you want to catch a glimpse of Townsville's history, a trip to Kissing Point Fort is a great place to go. This historical landmark at the end of the Strand dates back to the late 1890s. Kissing Point Fort, also known as Jezzine Barracks, was built as part of colonial Queensland's defence plan in 1870 and was designed to protect the north-western approaches to the harbour.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2019-05-28-16.34.04-e1559037523785.jpg23163088needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2019-05-28 10:30:592019-06-11 05:09:40Kissing Point Fort: Things to do in TownsvilleCopyright 2019 Allan and Rebecca Cooke
Since a relatively snap decision several weeks ago to attend this years Big Red Bash in Outback Queensland, we have both been simultaneously excited and worried about the decision. It was definitely a "lets book the tickets before we change our minds" decision, and one that I'm sure will the the experience of a lifetime. However, before we get can leave, there are a number of things that need to be done.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2019-05-19-11.54.54.jpg30244032needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2019-05-20 06:13:002019-06-03 21:25:47Preparations have begun for the Big Red Bash 2019
A visit to Bundaberg, QLD, wouldn't be complete without a visit to the world-famous rum distillery. Bundaberg Rum (my personal favourite) was first distilled back in 1888 when a group of mates came up with a way to use the excess molasses resulting from the local sugar cane production. What they came up with was to become one of the most recognised rums in Australia. The first batch rolled off the production line in 1889, all 22,500 gallons of it.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/2017-07-15-1153-QLD-NT-Roland-Service-Run-1.jpg30244032needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2017-07-15 07:01:172019-06-12 10:19:28Bundaberg Rum Distillery TourCopyright 2016 Allan and Rebecca Cooke
We ended our first adventure on Day 13. Following our stay at the beautiful 'gravel pit' at the side of the road near Yaamba, we headed into Rockhampton where Al attended a customer, then we continued south to Calliope. We were due to stop overnight near Calliope, but the free camp was packed with holidaymakers, so we continued inland about 20 minutes to Futter Creek. It was quiet and peaceful here and well worth the extra 20 minutes in the dark.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/2016-06-30-0755-Roland-Western-QLD-Service-Trip.jpg24483264needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-07-06 17:18:002019-05-30 10:18:38End of the adventure – Yaamba to Home
Although we only traveled just under 400km yesterday (Day 10), it was a really pleasant drive. It was a day of vastly different landscapes. From the vast cane fields up north, to the barren brown landscape where we ended up - it really shows the differences in vegetation in our country. So, here are some pictures of how our day ended, with Al setting up a make-shift office in the gravel pit to do the inevitable emails and office work at the end of the day. I'm absolutely loving this lifestyle 🙂
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Allan-Working-2.jpeg713950needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-06-28 22:48:002019-05-30 10:16:37End of Day 10 – Airlie Beach to YaambaCopyright 2016 Allan and Rebecca Cooke
Day 9 of our wonderful adventure saw Al off working for the day in Airlie Beach, while I spent the day around the caravan park, doing chores and catching up on work emails. So, here I am, at a luxury caravan resort, chilling out before we begin to head south again tomorrow.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2016-06-27-1603-Roland-Western-QLD-Service-Trip-1.jpg24483264needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-06-27 16:30:002019-05-30 10:15:19Day 9 – a day of R&R
The end of Day 8 sees us at Airlie Beach, staying at the Big 4 caravan park to say the least! The atmosphere here, and 'class' of campers is completely different from the earlier part of the week. Where the first week was very much mud, dirt, country camping, this week will be more refined 'city' camping. Both have their place, but I know which one I prefer.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2016-06-26-1107-Roland-Western-QLD-Service-Trip-2.jpg24483264needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-06-26 10:56:002019-05-30 10:14:12Day 8 of Queensland adventure – Townsville to Airlie BeachCopyright 2016 Allan and Rebecca Cooke
Day 5 saw us leave Emerald, and instead of heading towards home base, we were diverted unexpectedly north to Townsville by Al's work. I guess when you are on a working holiday, you need to expect the unexpected. By the way, the photograph below is how Al has been carrying his tools and parts for his work. Very organised!
Day 4 bought us from Roma to Emerald, a trip of just over 400km. Last nights accommodation at Up'N'Downs Farmstay in Roma was beautiful. Quiet, country, comfortable. If down this way again we'll definitely stop again.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/2016-06-22-0916-Roland-Western-QLD-Service-Trip.jpg24483264needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-06-22 09:21:002019-05-30 10:09:12Day 4 – rolling into EmeraldCopyright 2016 Allan and Rebecca Cooke
Day 3 of our Western adventure started cold, really cold. One could say bitterly cold. I think it was only due to be an overnight low of 8 degrees, but it felt more like minus 8! I have to say, living in Queensland does make you forget what cold really feels like. We woke up in Mungindi - a town that I quite liked. It is a unique little town, part New South Wales and part Queensland, separated down the middle by the Barwon River.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/2016-06-21-1731-Roland-Western-QLD-Service-Trip.jpg24483264needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-06-21 10:43:002019-05-30 10:08:10Day 3 – more adventure that you could imagine
We woke to the sound of rain and heavy mist. It was heaven. Just like a winter morning should be. Al had to work in Narrabri all morning, so I spent the morning doing my own work in the caravan, drinking cups of tea, and generally being much more comfortable than other times when I've been on Al's work trips (and had to wait in the car). Bliss.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/2016-06-20-2052-Roland-Western-QLD-Service-Trip-1.jpg15202688needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-06-20 11:32:002019-05-30 10:05:24Day 2 – Narrabri to MungindiCopyright 2016 Allan and Rebecca Cooke
Yesterday we started a new adventure. Not the "around-the-country" one, but a significant one nevertheless. Al get the go-ahead from his work to take the caravan on a service run through Western Queensland, and upon hearing this, nothing was going to stop me from tagging along. Preparations started for a Narrabri-Roma-Charleville-Emerald run. Packing for this trip was unlike any other we had done. Whilst experts on packing for weekends away camping, this was a business trip.
https://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/2016-06-19-1549-Roland-Western-QLD-Service-Trip.jpg24483264needtimeawayhttps://www.needtimeaway.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Logo-e1577846786577.pngneedtimeaway2016-06-20 11:26:002019-05-30 10:03:22Start of a new adventure
I have been thinking of doing this for a while and, like with many things, have put it aside time and time again. But today is different. Today I put pen to paper (metaphorically) and start writing about my world. It’s not a very big world but I am happy with it. And I’m hoping to share a bit of it with anyone that cares to follow along. If there is nobody out there, then at least it will provide a way of recording my experiences for posterity. Who knows, maybe I’ll become famous one day and this will all become important 🙂