Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Home Sweet Home - photos inside the van

Apologies the blog posts have been a little slow of late. I've had a few requests to post photos of the inside of the van. We've started stocking up the cupboards, finding plastic containers which are the correct size and shape to fit all the pantry items in the most convenient places. I think that is going to be a trial and error situation (and an element of just accepting and making the most of a confined space).

Anyhow, here is the inside of the van. We removed the table that was mounted inside to give us more room as we figured we would be eating/sitting in the annex most of the time. Yes gents, the TV can be removed from the inside mount and placed on the outside mount. Awesome, we go travelling to watch tv!! Just joking but it will be nice to watch the news and footy.
 Above photo: main side door to the rear of the van going directly into the kitchen/dining area. To the side of the oven is the ensuite door (LHS when looking at this picture).
 Above photo: looking from the main side door, past the dining area into the bedroom section. QS bed with overhead and side cupboards and drawers. Hard to see but a flat screen tv is wall mounted on the RHS of the photo.
 Above photo: looking from the dining seat, ensuite door is closest to the oven, then the door with the black rim is the fridge/freeza. Thank goodness both are a decent size.
 Above photo: looking from one side of the QS bed, just captures the flat screen tv which can swivel around to be viewed from bed or the dining seat area. Can also be mounted outside for viewing in the annex.
 Above photo: QS bed. Very comfortable I must add.
 Above photo: Ensuite. This shows the toilet with the foldaway basin and mirror cabinet. A latter photo shows the basin folded down for use.
 Above photo: to give perspective as to the size of the ensuite, amazingly I actually don't need to duck down the get my head wet and there's enough room sideways for me to move around a bit without bruising elbows and knees. That's freaky, I just realised the top and bottom photos make me look 10ft tall! I am tall (thanks Dad) but not that tall.
 Above photo: the shower curtain has been pulled across (and also covers the door section) when showering, protecting the toilet and basin area from getting wet. Works really well thankfully as it was something we were concerned about. No water gets into areas you'd prefer to keep dry. Wet bottom = not happy Jan!!
 Above photo: demonstration of the basin pulled down for use, Thin faucet also moves forward for use.
Above photo: I've got no doubt I will be able to take thousands of photos that look identical to this, just with different background views. Doggies desperate to be allowed in the caravan looking in pleadingly. Not happening woofs!

Thursday, 8 March 2012

The van arrived today & registering licence plates from QLD to WA

Well after an anxious wait (not helped by the transit company's terrible communication and poor customer service) our caravan arrived at our front door this morning all safe and sound. Phew!

As the van is registered with Queensland licence plates, we now need to go through the relatively easy process of registering the van in Western Australia. We popped into the licencing centre in Mandurah a few weeks ago for some advice - they were actually extremely helpful. In short the van will need an examination before it can be registered in WA. As the van currently isn't allowed to be towed on WA roads (due to QLD plates) we will need to obtain a 'Temporary Moving Permit' and take the van into the Mandurah inspection/examination centre. If all is okay, it's registered in our names and WA plates are issued. At the same time the QLD plates are handed in and they will give us a plate receipt. We then post the plate receipt to the QLD Dept of Transport and job done. Sounds easy (hopefully!)

Each states licencing requirements are very different but the relevant states Transport Dept websites have been very informative and helpful.
Photo 1: Underneathe view of our Kedron - built solid & tough for offroad
 Photo 2: Our set up minus the dinghy on the roof of the Nissan Patrol. Thankfully the TARE & Gross weight of the van gives us a little tolerance for the Nissan's towing capacity. This was another reason why we had to compromise and get a combined toilet/shower due to length/weight issues affecting the towing capacity. If we went for a longer van as originally planned with a separate ensuite, we would have need a truck to tow it! Well almost as this Kedron is allowed to weigh 3 ton (3000 kg) in total (yes ladies this includes all my clothes, crafty stuff, necessities, oh yes and allowing some weight for Shane's clothes too!!). Thankfully the Nissans towing capacity slightly more than 3 ton but it will still be tight.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Our new home on wheels - Kedron Cross Country caravan with ATV upgrade

After many hours of research and searching we finally have our home on wheels! Yay, I'm just a tad excited!! We narrowed our choice of van down to a Kedron and ended up getting one from Adelaide today. Kedrons are built for off road tough conditions, however there are very few available in Australia let alone WA.  I'm glad to say the search is finally over and a picture is attached of our new home.

For those more technical enthusiasts it's a fully offroad 20ft Kedron Cross Country with ATV upgrade, including a shower/toilet, washing machine, solar panels, QS bed, TV, lots of water tanks and many little extras to make that remote camping experience a little easier. Very happy!!

Friday, 3 February 2012

Camp Cooking ideas or recipes

I'm the first to admit I can't cook, so I'm calling on your help so we don't live on BBQ snags for breakfast, lunch and tea!! If anyone has any 'tried and true' ideas on camp cooking, I'm all ears. I'm interested in camp cooking recipes, but also knowing what "must have" items you take when out camping/caravaning, types of easy meals you have, storage and food freezing tips, etc.

On behalf of Shane - all help is greatly appreciated :)
From Travelling Dobes

Saturday, 21 January 2012

The adventure begins!

An adventure can begin by a simple thought which grows into an idea. Before you know it you've resigned from work, sold the boat, commenced packing up your home and stepping out of the life you once had - the open roads will soon become your new home and way of life. Scary? Yes. Exhilarating? Absolutely!

My partner and I are planning what we hope will be the adventure of a lifetime - a working holiday around Australia for at least 2 years. Our mode of transport will be a 4WD, caravan and dinghy. The catch (and there normally is one) we will have 2 large dobermann dogs onboard (weighing a combined total of 100kg). Insane? Maybe a little. But how fortunate am I to travel our beautiful country, leaving behind the stress and routine of everyday life, meet new acquaintences (hopefully not all of them with blue rinses) and share the adventure with not only my best friend, but my furry best friends too.

It's late January 2012 and the planning has commenced (albeit we need to purchase the caravan, slightly critical). In July/August 2012 we will hit the road driving out of Mandurah, Western Australia heading slowly up the north coast of WA.  We have a ton of reading, phone calls, planning and purchasing ahead of us. But how exciting huh!!??

This blog has been created to keep family and friends up to date of our adventures and whereabouts. Along the way we will share information and pictures of wonderful 'free camping' places to stay including remote places to explore. We will also share some of our learnings on how to survive travelling with 2 large dogs. There is no doubt the dogs will present us with all kinds of challenges, but we are taking the attitude "will never know if we don't give it a go". Plus they are part of our family, so they are coming too - case closed.

The blog posts may be a little slow over the next 6 months whilst planning is in full swing, but from July onwards ... stay tuned and watch this space.

S&A and The Travelling Dobes