You may have a vehicle that you’ve painstakingly prepared to travel the outback, but that doesn’t mean you’re prepared for the trials and tribulations that await you. Exploring the outback can be an incredible experience, but you need to be sure that you can handle it. You can pack plenty of water, make sure you have clothes for all weather conditions, and pack enough sunscreen to cover 10 elephants, but if you’re not mentally prepared, you won’t be able to handle it.
Doing Your Research
Doing your homework on the outback is the first step. It may seem obvious, but not so obvious that we wouldn’t include it. What is it like to drive the places you really want to visit? What would you do if you drove into deep mud or sand? Do you need new skills that you haven’t already got? What about lighting a fire, or setting up your tent safely? Even a knowledge of first aid can be important. You need to know what equipment you need, how to operate it, and hone your skills.
Getting Mentally Prepared
Exploring the outback will be a completely different experience to anything you’ve ever done. It’s a huge distance, and you’re not going to find shops, services, or the internet wherever and whenever you want it. Will you be able to handle the isolation? How will you feel not seeing anybody for so long? Will you get bored or irritated in a vehicle for that long? If the answer is yes, Outback tours are one option you can look at. This way, you won’t be alone as you explore. However, they won’t do all the work for you. You need to make sure you manage your expectations, that you can cope with the heat and camping, and that you prepare for every eventuality.
If you’ve never driven more than 500 km in one day, then you might want to rethink. It can be exhausting, so make sure your plans are realistic. Knowing how long you intend on spending in each place and how you will deal with breaking up and setting up your camp so frequently is important too. It may be a good idea to visit fewer places for longer so that you don’t have to try to squeeze everything in unsuccessfully.
Honing Your Packing Skills
There are many skills you need to hone, and yes, your packing skills are up there. Packing light and packing well will help you on your journey. Packing too little can also be frustrating, so you need to get the mix just right. Make sure you consider special medicines, just in case.
Even born and bred Australians don’t always travel the outback, or know how. It doesn’t matter where you come from originally, you need to be prepared. You must be realistic when it comes to your abilities, expectations, and plans. Thinking about how you’ll mentally handle this change, rather than just the equipment you have, will ensure you’re ready before you dive right in.