My aim is to travel from the UK to Brisbane for one of my best friends' wedding. Plane travel is so environmentally damaging so I am looking for another way. I also think that by travelling over land and sea I will be able to understand our world better as I will connect with the people and landscapes and not just look at the departure board in the airport. Any tips gratefully received!! Departure date 1st September.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Long Distance Barbara is coming home....(slowly!)

The tent company supplying most of the tents for the festival happen to be trucking a load of tents back to Adelaide, so I check out the options and I realise that it will be the quickest and cheapest way to get from Brisbane to Alice Springs, my next destination. I go and speak to the guys and meet Mal, the proper Aussie truckie and ask for a lift. He says fine as long as I don't argue and I can be ready in 1 hour! I dither for a while and then realise that I really need to get going, away from Woodford, and feel like I am heading home. I quickly pack up and we are off! I wonder about whether hitching is actually carbon neutral as the carbon being produced is actually related to the truck company and I am not supporting their actions just blagging a lift. Anyway this thought spurs me on as I get a free ride 1500km to Adelaide. It takes 48 hours with a couple of short sleeps in the cab on the way. Beautiful scenery, an amazing lightning storm on the Hay Plain and I get to see my first bit of aussie 'Outback'. The colours are amazing, so simple and vivid. Red earth and Blue sky. Mal is a pretty nice guy really and we get on well and have a laugh. We recognise each other for what we are and don't rub each other up the wrong way but have some lively debates! My ankles swell up like balloons and I am finally landed down in the outskirts of Adelaide feeling like a zombie. Somehow I click into gear and get a bus to town and find a hostel and sleep for 14 hours straight. I think the other girls in my room thought I was dead!! I am confused by the time (half an hour early ) but at least I feel like I am heading home, only 9 hours and 30 minutes ahead of GMT!
photos - view from the truck was beautiful going through the Main Ranges, inside the Cabin - Mal was camera shy! and red crocs and big wheels!


At 12:11 pm, January 14, 2007, Blogger LimePulp said...

Hi Babs

The truck needed to go to Adelaide to deliver Tents.. So I don't think you have to worry about the carbon from that truck..

I'm back down at CAT next week for a couple of days, going by train so probable take just as long for me to get there as it took you to get from Woodford to Adelaide. We have had Floods, High winds and Landslides over here to deal with.

Have a great time in Alice Spring..

Loads of Love & Luck

Steve XX

At 12:47 pm, January 14, 2007, Blogger Jen Salmon said...

Hey Babs,
Just found your blog while I was looking for travel stuff. How are you? actually I can see how you are having read some of your postings.So Ijust thought I'd say hello and it would be good to be in touch. Joe and Maeve are doin ok and we're still trying to save ourselves and the planet in much the same way as when you left Devon. Planning some trips later on in th e year - nothing like yours, but I'm thinking of going across land and sea to Portugal with M while Joe's taichi'ing it in Italy. It would be good to hear from you - our new email is
lots of love,

At 7:51 pm, January 21, 2007, Blogger Paunch and Jaded said...

Great to see some photos of what sounds like a wonderful truck trip. Seems like the wrong way to aim for Adelaide but a study of Australia shows that it is probably easier to get up to Alice Springs and on northwards than from Brisbane. I don't think we have any idea of the size and distances.
Hope the WOOFING is going well and you aren't getting flamed out- or burned out even. Take it steady!
England isn't as warm as Oz but it has been at 12 rather than 2 degrees which is worrying. Nice but not natural. All the bulbs are coming up and the birds are starting to sing early in the morning - like 4am!
Thinking about you and your journey. Good ideas will be communicated when we have some.
We're all fine here. Kingswood is close to ready for the next stage. Partial retirement is fun - less work than non-work is great. All our love including Kath. Take care on the next stage of your brilliant journey.


At 1:32 pm, January 23, 2007, Blogger Jessica at Bwlchyrhyd said...

Have been reading your blog since before you left but just spotted that you made the BBC web site today -- well done -- hopefully this will help get the message out to a wider range of people. Like you, I too have made a commitment not to fly. Your journey sounds fascinating and I would love to undertake something similar, but we have chickens and sheep to look after and can't take that much time off, so not flying means staying put, which is fine with me, but I find that my friends and family in America often have difficulty understanding.

At 6:00 pm, January 23, 2007, Blogger Anton said...

Hello Babs!

I read about your story on the BBC News website and I am very impressed! I too question the need for aircraft travel both from an environmental point of view and from a persoanl preference - it's easy to forget how big the world is when you get on a plane in one place and relatively suddenly are somewhere else.

Anyway, I am currently a student at Durham and, having been inspired by reading Jules Verne, and with some vague intention to 'find oneself', have an ambition to travel around the world overland.

I have began to plan the first part of my journey but have hit a dead end in south east asia. How did you sort out getting a boat to Darwin? How easy was it? How much did it cost?

Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated and I wish you all the best for the rest of your journey and have real admiration for your cause!

Please email me: a.d.lazarus at if you can spare a minute.




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