Friday Feature #8 – “BULLDUST AND BACK ROADS”

Every Friday we will feature fellow binge-explorers/adventure seekers who are living the ultimate Australian dream of exploring the amazing country in a camper. Our aim is to get an insight on the lifestyle of this idolised community. Salty Summits takes no responsibility of severely increased FOMO!

HAVING FULL-TIME JOBS DOES NOT STOP THIS DYNAMIC DUO FROM GOING ON EPIC ADVENTURES AROUND AUSTRALIA! THEY PUT THE BULL IN DUST AND THE BACK IN ROADS 😉

MEET JAMES, TRINITY & THEIR DOG, DOG!

ELIOT FALLS, CAPE YORK, QUEENSLAND

There is nothing like a game of Cards Against Humanity to break the ice 😉 So fill in the blanks with the first words that come to mind:

YOU MUST GO ON an adventure TO find out who you are.

NOTHING FEELS BETTER THAN sand AND salt water on your feet.

Q1 – Now the usual lowdown: who you are, where you call home and why your beautiful dog is named, Dog. I just had to ask ha-ha 😊

Trinity: I’m a Veterinarian from a farm in Victoria originally. I’m currently studying a Master of Information Studies in Data Management – chalk and cheese to what I did before! We currently live in Brisbane, Queensland.

James: I work in construction and have lived here in Brisbane most of my life.

Trinity: Dog is a nearly 5 year old Mastiff Staffy mix who we adopted from the RSPCA at 6 months of age. As I was working as a vet at the time naming him was a bit of a struggle – all the good dog names we considered were taken by my patients! After a month we realised we’d unsuccessfully named our little guy and had been calling him Dog the whole time, so that ended up his name! 😆

James: Dog is super-friendly and wins everyone over – he has even trained the postman to feed him treats on his way past.

Q2 – What is the story behind the name Bulldust and Back Roads?

Trinity: Bulldust and Back Roads came about when we started blogging to keep our family and friends in the loop when we headed off on our Cape York trip. The idea behind the name is pretty simple. As we love to get out of the city and explore some of the more remote parts of the country we thought it summed up our adventures quite well – Bulldust for the outback, and Back Roads for the rest!

Q3 – You both work hard to fund yearly road trips. How long are you on the road for usually and do you plan it all out?

James: While we’ve been working full-time we’ve made the most of our 4 weeks of annual leave each year, heading off on 3-4 week long trips. We plan a lot of it in advance – do our homework to know the rough itinerary we expect to follow, how long it’ll be between servos (which is why we have dual long-range tanks in the Patrol), when we can buy groceries, and where we think we’ll be able to free-camp or will have to pay for campsites.

Trinity: We also research the places we plan to visit. Some towns really surprise you when you get there – Broken Hill was like that for us. We expected to spend a day or two there, and ended up staying for more than half the week! Others have “hidden gems” that are worth hearing about from other travellers. Coongie Lakes near Innamincka was like that – if it hadn’t been suggested to us by travellers we met on the road we wouldn’t have made the trek out to spend a night there. It was one of the best campsites we’ve ever stayed at, I think!

James: I think being flexible is key. Sure, plan ahead of time so you don’t come unstuck or wander about aimlessly, but also be prepared to make changes on the go on good advice or if you stumble across somewhere you really like.

GUNSHOT CREEK, CAPE YORK, QUEENSLAND

Q4 – How many consecutive days have you not showered for? Be honest, we are not judgemental here and plus, this is a reality of camper life, right?!

James: Maybe one week?

Trinity: I’m a bit pedantic about staying clean. I feel icky when I don’t! When I don’t have an actual shower I get creative – baby wipe “showers” work wonders to help you stay fresh when you have limited water, though what I’ll usually do is have a wash in the tent with a little water, soap and cloth. I’ve probably gone about a week without a real shower when we’ve been travelling!

James: Having a shower in the caravan we eventually buy will be a nice change!

Q5 – How do you spend rainy days? Do you pack up and move on or wait it out?

Trinity: It depends. We usually would change plans and use it as an excuse to explore somewhere a little different.

James: One of the reasons we decided to look at caravans for our “Big Lap” trip was because of this. At least then if we get caught in wet weather we can still cook, sleep and relax somewhere dry. Camping in a tent in the rain isn’t particularly fun!

Q6 – What are 3 hot tips that you would give people who are considering traveling with their dog?

Trinity: Number one – know that you will have to make sacrifices. Travelling with a dog does limit you in some ways. You can’t visit most National Parks, for example, at least without making other arrangements for them.

James: We were lucky we had family back in Queensland to take care of Dog for us when we did our Simpson Desert trip, as the desert crossing is nearly all National Park between Birdsville and Mt. Dare.

Trinity: Also make sure you make their health a priority and are aware of the risks. Don’t leave them unattended in a hot car or caravan. Be wary of snakes, crocodiles, etc. Watch for signs indicating 1080 baits have been laid. Be aware of cane toads and ticks, and look at using tick prevention when they’re around. Keep their worming and vaccines up to date. Of course I have to say all this, being a vet!

James: And… you should probably take plenty of dog food or your dog will eat all your food! 😆

Q7 – Salty or Summits?

James: Either… as long as we’re away from the city, I’m happy.

Trinity: For me, its the mountains. I think having grown up in flat country in Victoria, miles from any mountains, there is something about them that spells out “Adventure” for me. They can hold so many surprises – challenging hikes, magical waterfalls, and amazing views. What’s not to love?

Q8 – Where are you really looking forward to exploring?!

Trinity: Can we say everywhere!?

James: This trip around Australia – or as far as we get in the time we have – is one we’re really looking forward to.

Trinity: We put a map up on our lounge room wall and have started marking places we want to visit, like the Kimberley and Broome, Monkey Mia, the Canning Stock Route, Tasmania…

James: We have no idea how far we’ll actually get, but that’s half the fun.

Trinity: One day I wouldn’t mind doing a bit of overseas travel… says the girl without a passport! James isn’t as keen, but I find other cultures – and their food – fascinating, and would love the chance to see it first-hand at some stage.

James: I think we have enough here in our back yard to keep us busy for a while, though!

Q9 – If you had to swap passengers with someone else for the day, who would you choose and why?

Trinity: I have no idea. Keith Urban? At least you could trust him to provide the entertainment, right?

James: I’d say Russell Coight. I reckon we could swap a few tricks.

MUNGA THIRRI, SIMPSON DESERT, AUSTRALIA

FOLLOW THEIR ADVENTURES ON FACEBOOK & INSTAGRAM

WWW.BULLDUSTANDBACKROADS.COM

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