New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

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New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby Jodes » Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:48 pm

Hi all,
Thought I'd introduce myself. My name is Jodes and my husband and I have just recently become proud owners of a Jayco expanda caravan. Our plan is to take our 3 children (who will be 11, 8 and 5) on a 3-month caravanning trip, leaving July next year.

Now that we have the caravan, it all feels more real. It's a trip we've been dreaming about doing since we got married over 12 years ago.

It's all very exciting and a little daunting. Between now and then I'll be trying to learn as much as I can (hopefully from other experienced travellers) so that we can make the trip smooth and heaps of fun.

The kids are very excited and we've started a family blog at http://caravan.muxgo.com where they've been writing about the excitement of getting a caravan and our first trip in it (which happened to be to Canberra). We plan to use the blog to communicate with family and friends and anyone else who is interested in following our trip (and the lead up to it).

I'm yet to look around here but look forward to doing so and perhaps getting to know some other avid caravanners. Is there anyone here who has done or is planning on doing something similar?
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby GypsyLady » Wed Oct 22, 2008 9:18 pm

Hi Jodes and WELCOME to the forum. Sounds like you have a great adventure planned.

I am looking at doing a similar thing in a couple of years but it would seem your trip will be well ahead of mine.

One of the things I do now in anticipation of when the big day arrives is 'practice' by getting away for the weekend as often as I can. At least that is my excuse anyhow.

I also read every piece of info I come across, both in magazines and on the net. I only just bought the publication Red Dirt Diaries yesterday and am half way through it already.

I also have and recommend that you purchase the Camp Aust Wide 4 book which has quite a comprehensive list of low cost and free campsites aust wide. If you belong to an auto club, like RACQ, NRMA or the like then purchase it from them and get it at the discounted rate.

You'll find that this particular site has more campers than caravanners but I can assure you that they will be just as keen to give advice and help out where ever possible.

Looking forward to hearing all about your plans.

Cheers Gypsy....
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby Troyk » Wed Oct 22, 2008 9:30 pm

Welcome Jodes. Look forward to following your blog :cheers
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby HGMonaro » Fri Oct 24, 2008 9:24 pm

Hi,

Have you got a plan of where you want to go yet?

We did a 1/2 lap last year and did a website. Have posted it here before but I'll wack it up again :) ==> http://www.nlandgl.com/roundOz/

We recently went to the Flinders Ranges and here's that one ==> http://www.nlandgl.com/flindersranges/

And here's a half completed one of someone from another forum (they are back but haven't finished their blog) but you might find something of interest ==> http://christelowsontheroad.blogspot.com/

Will have a read of your blog later (it looks good.. like your park review!)

CHeers, Nige
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby Blue Bravo » Mon Oct 27, 2008 10:24 pm

Welcome to the forum. Planning the trip is exciting, but can become stressful as the time approaches as you think of all the things you have to attend to. Then its off and away on the adventure :grin:
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby Jodes » Tue Oct 28, 2008 12:49 pm

Thanks for the warm welcome everyone.

Gypsylady - thanks for the book recommendation. It's great meeting people who have done or plan to do something similar. LOVE the "practice" trips. We just did one to Canberra (our first in the caravan). We did contemplate doing the trip in our camper trailer but do like the idea of not having quite so much setting up and packing up to do.

Troyk - thanks. It's a little bit slow at the moment. I have a few more caravan park reviews that just need finishing off and publishing. At some stage I want to start writing about the planning and preparation part of the trip in the lead up to going. Then, of course, we're planning to blog the actual trip.

Nige - thanks for those links. I'm REALLY interested in reading other blogs on this type of topic so will enjoy looking through those. The map looks great. Is something like that hard to do for a non technical person? Looks like we're heading in the opposite direction. We're starting in SA (not all that far from the Flinders) and heading across NSW and then up the NSW and Queensland coasts with a few side trips inland. At least that's the plan at this stage.... plans change.

Blue Bravo - yes, I'm trying to enjoy this period of time now where I have the freedom to think and plan without the busy-ness of all the last minute preparations that need to be done. With a farm to sort out, my DH has already started making moves toward being able to go away. It'll take a while to get that sort of stuff sorted.
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby HGMonaro » Wed Oct 29, 2008 1:41 pm

Jodes wrote:.The map looks great. Is something like that hard to do for a non technical person? Looks like we're heading in the opposite direction.


That is generated out of a mapping program but the easiest way to do a map of your travels is to use Google. By adding start, intermediate and end locations, the 'driving directions' function will draw you a map. Zoom out until you get it all on one page.

Cheers, Nige
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby Jodes » Thu Oct 30, 2008 10:08 am

HGMonaro wrote:
Jodes wrote:.The map looks great. Is something like that hard to do for a non technical person? Looks like we're heading in the opposite direction.


That is generated out of a mapping program but the easiest way to do a map of your travels is to use Google. By adding start, intermediate and end locations, the 'driving directions' function will draw you a map. Zoom out until you get it all on one page.

Cheers, Nige


Thanks Nige. I spent much of the other day reading through your journal of your travels. It's really well written and easy to read. And I loved the way it included your evening meal choices as that's something I really need to work out - what we're going to eat so we don't end up blowing the budget on take away or eating out.
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby GypsyLady » Thu Oct 30, 2008 10:10 am

I totally agree about the meal choices too....just goes to show how easy it is to do rather than eating out all the time.
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby HGMonaro » Thu Oct 30, 2008 10:52 am

hehe! I got a bit of grief from the Mrs for including that but I think it adds a bit of character to it and rounds out the days tale :) We don't eat better when on the road, but we don't do too badly either!

We've actually had several people say the idea of planning your 1st couple of meals has been really good for them.

For many places we've been take-away isn't really an option so you have to cook which is cheaper and better for you! Then when you get the chance, some greasy chips really are special! :)
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby Jodes » Thu Oct 30, 2008 1:50 pm

Speaking of chips, how did your research go? Did you end up posting a summary of your findings anywhere?
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby HGMonaro » Thu Oct 30, 2008 10:35 pm

no I didn't! Sample size was too small to give a statistically accurate conclusion, however I did enjoy what research I did manage! :)
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Re: New To the Forum AND To Caravanning

Postby Jodes » Sat Nov 01, 2008 8:40 am

HGMonaro wrote:no I didn't! Sample size was too small to give a statistically accurate conclusion, however I did enjoy what research I did manage! :)


LOL. I was driving home yesterday with a pizza I bought in town (we live on a farm so take away isn't that often or that convenient but I was already out) and thinking I should flog your idea but with pizzas. What a great excuse for a "Friday night pizza night" - in search of Australia's best pizza's. ;)
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