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Old 08-07-2007, 07:03 AM   #1
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RV'ing in Australia

We just returned from a two week tour of Australia's east coast and New Zealand's north island. It was a fabulous trip! I wasn't ready to come home, but I saw enough RVs that I was able to make some observations.

Most of the trailers I saw being towed were around 22' tandem axle stickies, and have a pop-top which allows them a very low profile. Although just as here, all types of vehicles are used for towing, the "king" of tow vehicles there seems to be the Toyota Land Cruiser FJ80. That's the "big" SUV in Australia. The later model Nissan Patrol (a similar vehicle to the Land Cruiser) is also popular as a tow vehicle.

Bear in mind that their fuel runs from AUD$1.30/liter to AUD$1.53/liter. Doing the math with the USD/AUD and liter/gallon conversion, that comes out to something over USD$5.00 per U.S. Gallon. Occasionally you'll see a full-sized U.S. version Ford pickup, but that size vehicle is very rare. I got the opportunity to chat with a couple of "caravan" owners at a park for a few minutes, and we had a nice conversation, although I didn't get photos of their rigs.

I thought I'd post a few photos of rigs we passed or otherwise saw. Forgive the technical quality... they were shot through bus windows, usually at a fairly high closing rate of speed.

Roger
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Old 08-07-2007, 07:15 AM   #2
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A few more

A few more Ozzy "caravans". Note the "Winnebago" motorhome and Jayco travel trailers! The fifth wheel was only one of two we saw the entire trip. The other was a huge triple axle towed by a dedicated cab-over diesel tractor; albeit a smaller tractor than what we see for commercial trucking in the U.S.

Roger
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Old 08-07-2007, 07:20 AM   #3
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And last, a "Caravan Park" that had four transient full-hookup pads, and the rest permanent "cottages", a "Caravan Sales" lot in a rural area, and the Oz version of the weight distributing hitch!

Roger
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Old 08-07-2007, 08:08 AM   #4
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Thanks for sharing your photos. With their gasoline so expensive vintage Airstreams from the US may be a resource to be tapped.

Neil and Lynn
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Old 08-07-2007, 08:43 AM   #5
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That's awesome of you to share your observations! Thank you for giving us a peek into another continent's recreational life!

Susan
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Old 08-07-2007, 12:12 PM   #6
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Need to talk to you!

Roger,

I have been working on the details for a 4-6 week Airstream caravan in Australia in 2010 since the first of the year. I have talked to shipping services, guide services and tow truck rentals companines about the details/cost. I would like to talk to you about your trip, cost, companines you used during your trip. Can you please "pm" me with you phone number so I can give you a call. Any help you can provide would be great. I'm looking forward to seeing Airstreams in Australia. Should be a great trip.
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Old 08-07-2007, 01:18 PM   #7
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GREAT pictures. An interesting perspective on how the other side of the world "caravans". Thanks for taking the time.

Barry
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Old 08-07-2007, 04:21 PM   #8
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But they don't have doors in their "caravans"!




BTW, they would marvel at our Reese Dual Cams and Equal-i-zer hitch systems. Especially the hitch head on my Equal-i-zer.

They'd probably just say something about how we yanks just make things too complicated and muck it all up!
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Old 08-07-2007, 04:25 PM   #9
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Hey, thanks everyone, for the kind comments. It was fun looking at their RV lifestyle as we toured in our 50 passenger bus. Believe me, there were days when I wish I'd had OUR RV!

Tom, you're right... they'd have something to say about it, but it would have been said in Australian... we wouldn't understand any of it!

Paul... the PM is in the mail!

Roger
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Old 08-07-2007, 05:20 PM   #10
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Two pictures shared from Australia from a friend watching my AS project..



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Old 08-07-2007, 07:47 PM   #11
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We saw a couple similar to this one parked at a truck stop along the way. There are a couple of brands that are fiberglass shell with interesting bubble sort of one-piece plastic windows that are hinged at the top and open similarly to those in an Airstream. The caravan owner we chatted with at the park had a very new all fiberglass 24' tandem axle unit that he said he'd paid $50k AUD for and wondered how that compared with U.S. prices. Apparently that is pretty much a top-of-the-line unit there.

Roger
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Old 08-07-2007, 10:25 PM   #12
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New Zealand

Australia and New Zealand are unbelievable. Attached are a few photos from our honeymoon many years ago on the southern island of New Zealand, where we camped in a - what - microbus? Photos in no particular order. The scenery is simply breathtaking - photos do no justice.

As I recall, campgrounds were nice - but fairly small sites, as you might expect. WAY more sheep than people.
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Old 08-11-2007, 03:46 PM   #13
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Brad... great shots... you didn't happen to scan those transparancies backwards did you? The scenery is just as pretty either way! I saw a lot of new iuaM rental mohos downunder as well, so obviously they're still around!

Laurie and I have briefly talked about buying or renting a moho in Oz or NZ and just travel around for six months taking in the sights after we retire... I think it'd be an awesome way to see the world downunder!

Roger
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Old 08-12-2007, 12:34 PM   #14
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I had 35 mm slides made into digital images. Some are reversed as you see - would love to know how to digitally turn them around! Looking at them in a rear view mirror just ins't the same..
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