Well, we're back, and what a doosie of a weekend it was!
Let me just start this report by saying a big thankyou to all that attended, not only for making the effort to take part in ths years trip, but for being a well behaved bunch: it just makes things sooo much easier and so much more pleasant not having to deal with dickheads all weekend.
So, as some of you may or may not know, the expected number for this trip ( excluding those that were down as maybees or had to pull out at the last minute) was 21; out of that 21 the attendance was 19 ... not a bad effort at all I'd say.
Just for the record, at its peak (including those down as interested and some from other sites, had everyone been able to make it we could've ended up with as many as 42 vehicles. Wow!
So just to give you guys an overall picture of how this annual trip's evolving: the first year we had 9 cars attend, the second year we had 7 (some had to pull the pin at last minute so there were a few more originally), and this year we had 19. Not bad for its 3rd year.
Moving on. ...
What a great trip! The trip kicked off on the Thursday with a few of the lucky ones being able to get there early including our first interstaters for this year from NSW Allan and Karen (did I get that right guys?). The driving kicked off around lunchtime on the Friday after more people had arrived, covering some of the closer tracks to camp including Pheasant Creek and Gunns Creek Tracks
Then it was back to camp to sit around the fire, eat cheese and crackers thanks to Nickj and Donna and get to know a little about everyone as the night wore on.
Saturday arrived and what a beautiful day. With a few more people in attendance now having filtered in through the course of Friday night and Sat morning breakfasts were prepared and eaten as once again people congregated around the central firepit to get to know each other.
A little later the maps came out and a game-plan for Saturdays driving was hatched which consisted of leaving camp at Beveridges Station and heading up Mt Murray North Track then left on to Twins Jeep Track, a little detour up to the Mt Murray helipad and then onto the iconic Blue Rag Range Track via the Dargo High Plains Rd.
After having a bite to eat for lunch, admiring the phenominal views and taking countless photos—including the group photo—it was back to camp via the worst (or best) track of the weekend, Gunns Track. Why was it the worst or best track? Depending on whether you're a beginner or a thrillseeker, this track coming off the Great Alpine Rd was nothing short of a goat track, and probably meant for goats come to think of it. It was very rocky and shaley, overgrown and narrow in places, had quite a few steep sections and just for good measure a few small rock steps and holes thrown in; albeit, everyone handled it with aplomb, experienced and beginners alike.
Sunday consisted of a few more arrivals that came in Saturday afternoon / night, including but not limited to, our most distant participant for the weekend, Mick who made the epic journey from Kalgoorlie in WA...yes, you heard that right. Now THAT'S commitment.
Another drive was organised up Mt Selwyn Rd to the helipad amongst other tracks in the area, whilst some packed up and headed off on their journeys home to be ready for the daily grind come Monday morning; then there was the few including myself that chose to just relax at camp for the day.
Come Monday, pretty much everyone had left aside from a handful that stayed Sunday night. After a reasonably early packup a few of the boys dotted out some tracks to meander through on the way back to civilisation, whilst the rest of us took the easy way.
All in all, I would class the trip as a huge success. Once again I would sincerely like to thank everyone for being civilised over the whole weekend, it makes things so much more enjoyable.
I hope that everyone who attended had a great time, made some new friends and maybe even learnt a thing or two along the way. I know I did
Just a few special mentions to end this report:
Applause to those interstaters that were keen enough to risk a weekend down south with us Mexicans, thanks for making the effort.
Also a hugh thanks on my part to Stan, Johnny and Mark for their knowledge, time & effort to diagnose and temporarily repair my car after I somehow managed to bend the idler arm. What can you say about these types of blokes that just jump in and start crawling around in dirt, getting covered in grease and risk skinning most of their knuckles for someone else. ...
NB: Those that have photos or videos of the event that they want to share, please feel free to upload them either in this thread or http://www.4wdtrip.com.au/offroad/trip/photos.aspx?tripid=259
Thanks again all, and keep an eye out for next years trip ;)