30-Apr-2007 -- Do you know the story of the idiot who heads out to the bush underprepared? Here it is and I'm the idiot.
After doing a confluence that had never before been done the day before, we set out to do just the same. We turned up at a station and Mick, the manager was very helpful. He gave us a map of the 45 000 acre property and showed us how to get there but seemed doubtful we would make it. We were on our way thinking it would take us just a couple of hours. We had about 30 kilometres to cover along the Queensland - New south Wales border and although it was smooth sailing for a while, there were some pretty rough spots.
We got bogged a couple of times. The first time we needed about two hours to get out of there and the second time only half an hour. We finally reached the spot. I was so tired by then and had blisters the size of Tasmania on both hands from all the digging. So we hopped over the boundary fence again and walked the 140 metres to the spot to take the usual photos.
The adventure was far from over though. We got stuck again on the way back, at a different place. After more than an hour of digging and sticking under the wheels, the car was still not moving at all. It was clear that this time we needed help. Another concern of mine was that the fuel gauge indicated that we hardly had any fuel left in the tank. I had foolishly left the full Jerry can back at Mick's place.
With the sun going down, there were no options left. I had to leave straight away to get help or we would all have to spend the night in the bush just to wake up in the same predicament. I took some water and the little food we had with us and started walking. There was about 20 kilometres to go and I wasn't sure whether the GPS batteries would last all the way. As I walked I was hoping Mick would realise we weren't back and would come to pull us out of there. I was also worried about the rest of my family who had to stay back at the car with little food and water and no comfort to sleep in the confined space of the car. With about 4 kilometres to go it got dark and I had to use the GPS light, which meant the batteries were going down even quicker. It was a real race against time.
With half a kilometre to walk, some headlights appeared. It was Mick. He had been gone all day and that's why he didn't make it earlier to our rescue. Anyway I was so relieved I nearly gave him a hug there and then.
We drove back the 20 kilometres to the car and he pulled us out of there. When we got back to his place, Mick offered us to stay at a cottage on the property. Given the fact that we were hungry, thirsty, exhausted and filthy, we didn't hesitate. My legs were also very sore from all the walking. The day after, we gave the car a bit of a clean. I also promised myself I would not head out in the middle of nowhere without being much better prepared. A huge thanks to Mick for his help in many ways and also to my family who is so supportive of me about this strange hobby