Coffin Bay National Park

Coffin Bay National Park

An unexpected extended stay in the Port Lincoln area lead us to explore the National Park in Coffin Bay. For a National Park we never intended to look through. We ended up staying 4 nights and loved it! Cost $12/night to camp (plus National Park fees)

Fun filled days of driving around the coast line and through the rugged bush tracks. Playing on the sand dunes. Fishing and actually catching fish!!! Friendly roos coming to our door, emus and their babies wondering around the campgrounds. Great walking tracks and the highlight being were pretty much the only ones here except for another travelling family with kids the same age 😍.

Kids had the best of times playing together. I must admit we rather enjoyed our time spent with these guys too. Extra bonus as It’s always great having others to go 4WD exploring with.. just incase 👌

I would absolutely love to come back to this place when it’s warmer. The perfectly blue ocean water with stunning white sandy beaches was so worth the hour and half 4×4 drive! It almost made me want to dip my toes in… almost. The freezing icy winds made me think twice pretty quickly! Instead we lit a fire and watched the boys catch some fish. #onedayweshould come back! Would be amazing in summer 😍

IS THIS THE BEST LOW COST CAMPGROUND in South Australia?? We think so!!

IS THIS THE BEST LOW-COST CAMPGROUND in South Australia?? We think so!!

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Picture driving down the road and seeing stunning farm land and white sand dunes in the distance… A sheep or 2 a k-kangaroo. (Yep I went there). This very Aussie ‘Mikkira Station’ had nearly everything. Wild emus, tonnes of Kangaroos and a Koala 🐨 up nearly every tree in the campsite. After just a short walk you’ll find beautiful historic sites and buildings you can even enter. There’s a real toilet and a hot shower for those who need.

This place was well and truly worth the $25/night price tag. A fantastic place for a true blue Aussie outback experience and only 25mins from Port Lincoln!

*Please note- We definitely don’t recommend approaching the koalas. We were lucky enough to stumble across one tame enough for us to touch but these are wild animals.

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Take a look inside our home on wheels

Take a look inside our home

Here’s a look inside our New Age BigRed BR21BS2 (triple bunk with full ensuite) This video is from the day we brought it home. The only thing added at this stage was our carpet runner mat (just a bit of protection for the flooring and warmth as it was freezing in Tassie)

So far we really love our van and haven’t had any major issues. We’ve had a couple small ones but currently being dealt with.

I love the whole van but these things I love especially- The sound system. It’s great. It’s like having surround sound when watching movies and if your listening to music you can easily move the sound to the outside speakers. We have also been lazy lately when it comes to story time. I YouTube #storybooknanny and play the stories through the Bluetooth and move all the sound to the rear of the van! #parentingwin

I love having a bathroom and it all being seperate. The shower is great and has a large lip that acts like a bath for the kids too.

Washing machine- FANTASTIC I didn’t realise this little machine would be a must have for our van but it really is!

Small downfalls- Length of the bed for Gibbo is a little short so we slide the mattress out every night to get that extra room near our heads.

Couch- could have been a club lounge as we just need that one extra seat when stuck inside on rainy days. Our L-shaped lounge isn’t quite big enough for 5 people

Weight- From factory the van only had a 400kg payload so once our 3 water tanks were filled, full gas bottles, and carrying our annex. Most of the weight we are allowed to carry is gone! We’ve since upgraded but definitely something to keep in mind.

*A few additions-

*Solar- 400w and a 30amp controller which all up cost us $350

*We’ve made a couple small changes like moving the magazine holder out of the loungeroom and adding a giant map of Australia vinyl sticker in its place. (Magazine holder is now under our TV and I think it suits that spot much better anyway 😊)

*Small baskets inside cupboards and fridge to stop movement of food items while travelling

*Adding cube storage at the ends of the girls beds as they are only young there was heaps of wasted space at their feet.

*Removable wall bracket to hold our Bugg beefeater BBQ

*Spare wheel removed from back of the van to under our ute. Small box added in its place.

*Carbon Monoxide detector added just in case!

*a lockable ‘glovebox’ for medicine/ firstaid items

I’m sure there’s more but these are a few of the things we did in preparation for our trip!

Why we weighed our caravan before leaving onboard the Spirit of Tasmania?

Why we weighed our caravan before leaving onboard the Spirit of Tasmania?

We are always being asked why we weighed our van before we left to go on our trip around Australia. We found most people assumed it had everything to do with going on board the Spirit of Tasmania. When in fact, it didn’t.

It’s taken many, many times for Gibbo to explain all the caravan weights to me to get to a point of ‘basic understanding’ as it gets extremely technical with so many different weights to take into account so here’s my ‘simplified version’ of explaining caravan weights without getting ‘too technical’. All these weight specifications are a legal requirement set by manufacturers for everyone’s safety!

Tare Mass- When you buy a caravan empty (no water onboard, no kitchenware, no clothes, no equipment etc). Your empty weight is your tare mass (eg. 2400kg)

ATM (Aggregated Trailer Mass)- The most your van can ever weigh (eg. 3000kg)

Payload- the difference between those^ two weights is the amount of weight that can be added (clothes, food, equipment, water, gas etc) so in this case, it would be 600kg worth of ‘stuff’ allowed – a very generous payload in most cases. *Most new vans we looked at were a 400kg payload.

Tow Ball mass- When you hitch/connect your van to your car some of the weight is then transferred to your tow Ball which makes it part of you cars weight. Gross Trailer Mass (GTM) is the most load you can have on the wheels of the caravan when hitched to your car.

You then have to look at your car/utes Tare Mass and GVM (Gross Vehicle Mass- same as ATM but for a car/ute)

Your Car can’t be over its GVM –

Your Van can’t be over ATM –

and then it also can’t be over the Gross Combined Mass (GCM) – the overall weight of the car and the van together

This is why it was so important for us to weigh our car and van before we left. 😊

*There’s a bunch of other weights to take into account such as your vehicle maximum tow rating, aggregated trailer mass, tow ball weight, towbar capacity, maximum axle group ratings but that’s when it all starts going over the top of my head and I leave it up to Gibbo 😉

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5. The Overweight Caravan

With 9 days left till we set off on our lap around Australia 😱 we decided to do the dreaded weighing of the caravan.. and just like we figured WE’VE OVER PACKED. We’ve gone over our payload for the Van. So tonight we’ve had the fun task of sorting out what we can make do without and weighing them as they get thrown out the door!!! Some surprisingly heavy items that have been sacrificed-

* 1kg YES 1KG of excess plastic shopping bags 😱 and we still have a bunch left.

* 3.7kg for our spare doona (we have a sleeping bag so the extra one was just completely unnecessary).

*large tubs under the bed (to help with sorting) came in at a whopping 3.6kg and that’s just for the containers with nothing in them!!!

*9kg for the Thermomix 👋👋👋👋 was nice knowing you 😭😭😭😭

*3.3kg worth of coins in the kid’s money boxes…. Definitely, need to just get that in notes 💵 😬😬

*5.8kg in excess clothing… I know, I know…Just because it fits doesn’t mean we need them!👋

 

 

4. Our Simple Caravan Hacks

When travelling in a caravan you soon realise it’s the #littlethings that annoy you! For instance the kids bunk beds!! I couldn’t stand the kids beds looking so messy and daggy thanks to single bed doonas being too wide and bulky to tuck in. So after just a few days of owning our van I pulled my sewing machine out of our ‘get rid of pile’ and trimmed down the doonas to suit! So happy with the results! And saved my sanity.. (for now)

* I trimmed down their current single doonas to save buying new and the kids also wanted to keep their same doona covers BUT we found you can also halve a queen doona/cover which makes x2 perfect bunk sized.

*Have also found toddler bed/cot doonas are a perfect width but lack in length. This didn’t bother us as we’ve put storage cubes at the girls feet which makes the toddler size doona perfect for us too!

*Storage cubes fit perfectly x2 across in our New Age BigRed- we purchased large cubes from Bunnings 😊👍

Here’s our finished results 😍

 

3. The Magical Washing Machine

I thought when we bought our caravan this washing machine was going to be a waste of space, extra weight in the van and never get used. But… I’m loving it. Granted it’s not huge, but it only takes 29mins to do a load. So a quick load or 2 a day we can keep up to date with our washing and then dry it for free using the sun! We had a backlog of washing before heading off on our travels and we spent $68 in $1 coins just to catch back up. That was until I finally used our machine! So glad our van came with one. It was definitely not on my original list of must haves when searching for a caravan but it should have been! So handy when living on the road full-time with 3 kids!

*The brand for those asking is a mini Daewoo 😊

2. Tick That Off The Bucket List
We’ve finally made it to one of our bucket list places- The Great Ocean Road. Stopped to check out the pole house 😍 (also on my list!). We decided to free camp for the night so headed off the main highway onto one of those hill climbing, winding, narrow roads. I couldn’t help turning into one of those annoying backseat drivers you know the ones- “there’s a car coming”, “watch out for that”, “careful of the rocks”. Gibbo finally telling me to be quiet, he can actually drive and can see everything that I can see! 😂 After setting up camp I decided to head back down the road and grab a couple things from the shops. I was able to race there and back like Peter Brock in Bathurst.. realising maybe the road wasn’t as bad as I thought and maybe Gibbo was actually capable (not that I’ve admitted that to him…. 🙊). Now to figure out how to stop backseat driving 😬
1. Crossing The Border
Whoops, arrived at the South Australian border and had forgotten about quarantine! Luckily we’d been free camping the last few days and had been eating all our fresh produce so there wasn’t too much waste. Saving a mental note for next time we cross a border to check quarantine rules!! #notetoself #quarantine #crossingborders #Australia #quarantinebinwastage

Meet The Gibbons

We are the Gibbons family (facebook page ‘One Day We Should‘). We are a family of 5 -Kirby, Gibbo, and 3 children aged 5,3 and 2. We are from Tassie. In May 2017 we set off with no set plan, destinations, restrictions or time limit to travel and see Australia! We really are making it up as we go! We cruise about in our bt-50 towing our new New Age BigRed triple bunk with ensuite.

Our decision to travel Australia came after watching Expedition Australias DVD series a couple years ago. We decided ‘why wait? Let’s just do it now’ instead of ‘one day we should’. The biggest challenge for me personally was leaving my family while they deal with my (51yo) dads diagnosis of early onset dementia. This diagnosis has also been a huge motivator to hit the road. There’s always plenty of excuses and reasons why you shouldn’t or can’t but we just outweighed the good with the bad and there is no better time than now! You never know what the future holds for you and your little family. So don’t wait till it’s too late.

We sold our little farm in Tasmania and majority of our belongings (house settled in May but as always it didn’t quite go to plan and settled later than expected). We now own only what fits under our payload! A month before moving out of our farm we lived in the driveway in our caravan while we finished cleaning and sorting the last bits of our house before handover.

So far the kids are loving the adventure, the experience, the learning and exploring we just know we’ve made the right decision. You can’t get this life experience sitting in a classroom.

This whole experience selling and packing up and travelling has already been a HUGE emotional rollercoaster. We love having a goal to work towards and a plan and while we are travelling we haven’t got one. We have no safety net of a house to come back to. We’ve been on the verge of threatening divorce a couple times and that was only a week into the trip. We are all squished in so close to each with nowhere to hide which is a learning experience within its self.

Follow us to see how our trip pans out #thegoodandthebad

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Webpage- www.campersway.com/onedayweshould

Our experience at the 12 Apostles- Great Ocean Road Victoria and what we DIDN’T expect to find there

Driving along the Great Ocean Road and seeing the apostles has always been on our ‘must see list’. So glad we did, the views are breathtakingly beautiful. The colours in the sandy walls, the sound of the harsh and wild waves crashing against them is just something everyone needs to experience in person. Something I never expected to find there was the atmosphere… and not in a good way. It was like being in the middle of the Melbourne CBD. It was crazy busy with hundreds of people, tour bus after tour bus, and multiple helicopters flying overhead constantly. It just felt so commercial. I had this vision in my head of a remote place where there’s nothing but us and maybe a few others and that epic view. Instead, we were walking among hundreds of tourists who were bumping into you because they were too busy walking along staring into their phones (held out on selfie sticks) having no idea of their surroundings. We left feeling overwhelmed and decided to head back at sundown when there were less people and we could fully absorb the beauty of the place. We didn’t have to fight for a spot on the viewing platform, we weren’t bumped into and at times we really were the only ones there. Sunset was just beautiful I definitely recommend holding off till later in the day to capture the true beauty of this place 👌.

 

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