Monthly Archives: October 2014

Windswept

This pic was taken a while ago but it is still one of my favourites.

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At about 1280m above sea level, this Guest was so taken by the view, he grabbed his iPad and captured the moment.

I was so taken by his reaction, I snapped a pic I call “Windswept and Interesting”.

the mountain we are on is to the east of Bathurst. The view is to the west. We look over the Bathurst plains and although it isn’t visible in the pic, you get a clear view of Bathurst and further west to Orange, Mt Canoblas, Mt Macquarie near Blayney and beyond.

So few know about it, it is usually a quiet place to visit. A place to sit and think, or for some of the Guests I take up there, it is a place to sit and escape the every day rat race with a coffee and biscuit.

Sometimes the simple things in life are really the best things in life.

Cheers, Ian

 

 

a forgotten world

Just returned from an amazing day where we went deep in one of the great National Parks around here. It was especially great as the Guests I had on board had won a Detour Adventures gift Voucher. So I wanted to make it really special for them.

We came across a long forgotten and abandoned bushman’s hut. You could feel the presence of someone there, in the hut and around the cattle yards. You got the sense a hard worker worked alone here… but was never alone in the surroundings. Amazing place.

Forgotten but stories spoke to us in the contents of the hut    Old cattle yards

Nature provided some beauty for us to admire ….

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We saw some long retired machinery ….

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And some great ingenuity ….

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We explored the bush, saw some amazing scenery, clear flowing creeks, steep mountains and deep valleys all around us.

Alone in nature, we didn’t pas another car all day. We had the entire bush to ourselves.

And we travelled along some amazing trails. Have a look at this short clip.

Cheers Ian

 

 

 

Jenolan Caves, Blue Mountains Australia

Jenolan caves is one of my favourite escapes to take Guests. And it is one of great significance to my family. My grandfather was a tour bus driver from 1923 taking happy visitors from Katoomba to Jenolan Caves every day.

Caves House that you’ll see in the videos below, was built in the year of my Grandfathers birth, 1898.

But the caves go back much further. Well known and respected long before white settlement by the indigenous Gundungurra and Wiradjuri people, it was a pursuit by Charles Whalan of an escaped convict (McEwan) that brought this great Caves system to the European world.

The caves history is rich, it is an exciting place to visit and you can’t help but marvel at it’s beauty.

Enjoy the video. Cheers Ian

 

 

The Detour Adventures vehicle – your escape vehicle

How do you get to so many places?

I get asked so many questions about our 4WD vehicle. What is it? it doesn’t look normal what have you done to it? and other stuff along the same lines.

I’ve been driving 4WD vehicles off road for over 30 years. I’ve owned quite a few in that time and the vehicle you see here is the best of the best for what we do. And I’m happy to share my experience and knowledge.

The vehicle pictured below is a Toyota Land Cruiser 200.

Factory standard it rides comfortably and quietly on the roads. It is roomy and has accommodation for 7 Guests in three rows of seats with airconditioning to every row of seats. The PA system ensures everyone hears what I’m saying during our tours. It is luxury on road – a beast off road.

This is a new vehicle specially built for Detour Adventures. For the off road adventures we do, it has lots of stuff added to make it capable off road and safe as well, yet retain is quietness and comfort on road.

Lets take a look at the top 5 mods I’ve done.

  1. Raised suspension and great tyres when combined, work together to clear large obstacles such as rocky outcrops without scraping the underside and keeping positive traction with the ground.
  2. ARB Locking differentials front and rear. This unseen piece of equipment is invaluable. It means we don’t suffer from loss of traction in rocky or muddy conditions (wheel spin). It’s better for the environment if you’re not ripping up the dirt. You can go more slowly and it creates less wear on the vehicle mechanicals.
  3. Bar work front and rear with winch and roof racks. Again, we went to ARB for their expert advice. The Kaymar rear bar is really good as it takes the spare wheel from under the rear of the vehicle and puts it out the back to create more under-body clearance. It also improves the all important departure angle of the vehicle. The roof boxes hold all our recovery gear, tables and chairs. It also make a great platform for some awesome photos.
  4. Heaps of safety gear. Sat phone, EPIRB, Full first Aid kit, Defibrillator and digital mapping. We have it all.
  5. Recovery gear and provisions. Chainsaw, tow chains, recovery straps, high lift jack, exhaust operated air jack, shovel, puncture repair equipment and on-board air compressor to name just a small part of our set up.
Your comfortable day our begins with a comfortable, capable vehicle

Your comfortable day our begins with a comfortable, capable vehicle

So there it is in brief. Detour Adventures. Escape the everyday.

Cheers, Ian

Cathedral Cutting

We were out in the bush the other day, on a special mission; finding and driving along the great Dividing range “watershed”. This is the point on a range where the water falling on one side of the road goes east to the Sydney catchment area and on the other side of the road, it falls to the western water flow eventually ending up in South Australia.

it’s all a bit more complex than that but interestingly (and confusingly) the watershed doesn’t mean the highest point on the Great Dividing Range, or on any range for that matter, instead, it relates to where the water goes, once it falls.

We had fun tacking this watershed from near the Capertee area to the Mt Werong area in NSW, near Bathurst, my home town.

Along the way, we found ourselves in a beautiful quiet and remote canyon. The walls closing in on either side as we drove along. We knew at some point, we’d have to climb back up onto the Great Dividing Range. Here’s a pic of the favourite part of the tour. I have a great video to upload soon.

Cheers, Ian

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Here is one of the video clips we took on the day. More to follow

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Quiet Country Cemetery

Old cemeteries. You either love them or loathe them. Maybe not loathe them but just don’t have an interest.

Here is an old one that I really love visiting. So many life stories; elaborate graves; simple ones; children’s graves; big old pines protecting the silent residents. This particular cemetery dates back to the 1880’s and is about 1200m above sea level. The cool dry climate near Bathurst NSW, Australia (along with it’s little know location) has helped preserve the steel work for great photos like this one.  I’d love to show you.

Cheers, Ian

The only thing you can hear is the wind in the pines

The only thing you can hear is the wind in the pines

 

Another day, another bite

Headed out into the bush the other day, taking Guests to see some of the natural beauty around this area. By the way, home for me is Bathurst, NSW Australia. We are surrounded by beautiful mountains and valleys which are part of the Great Dividing Range, a mountain range that stretches from the top of North Queensland to the bottom of Victoria on the eastern seaboard of Australia.

Bathurst is well know (in car racing circles) for Mt Panorama. In my opinion the greatest car race track in the Southern hemisphere. It is a 6.1km race track that is also a public road. The road speed limit is 60km/h but on race day, the V8 cars reach 300km/h on the well named Conrod straight.

I mentioned the Southern Hemisphere because the greatest racetrack in the world is the Nurburgring in Germany. I’ve been around both tracks at speed and these are two of the greatest tracks in the world.

……… Anyway, on our Detour Adventure the other day, we came across this beautiful tree (an Australian Gum Tree) clinging onto life.

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Clearly it’s been losing it’s grip on the ground for a long while, but over time, its adapted, yes, one day it will fall but it has put all its energy into strengthening the root system that is still well connected and it remains defiant to it’s pending doom.

This beautiful tree screamed out in its actions, “no matter what your adversity, adapt to your changing world, stand tall and proud and never give up”. Well said I reckon.

Cheers, Ian