Hey Baz…what’s with this “Baz, The Landy” thing?
Didn’t your parents like you or something?
It is a question I field every so often…
And yes my parents do like me and in fact my mother, Fay, was only saying the other day…
“Be careful out there Baz, you know I worry”.
Mind you she said that as I was heading to work!
Heaven forbid, if she knew what I got up to when I’m not at work…
But what’s in a name I hear you ask…
Go and grab a cuppa and make yourself comfy on the sofa…
…Crikey, that was quick, you still drinking that instant stuff?
Anyway, you see Australia is a diverse country, the driest continent on the planet in fact, but despite this the colour of the outback is spectacular. An endless blue sky kissing the dry, cracked, red earth of the outback in the far off distance…
From the Channel Country, a vast expanse of the Queensland Outback, an area that has spawned more yarns and tall stories than a Friday night at the pub.
A place where the country unfolds to the horizon, featureless apart from the Mitchell Grass that stretches as far as the eye can see, swaying in a light afternoon breeze, mesmerising the senses as you squint to see through the heat haze.
To the deserts of the central region, the Simpson Desert, where the sand dunes cut their way across the salt pans, never ending until you reach a famous oasis on the desert’s fringe, Birdsville and the Birdsville Pub.
And what about up north, strewth, it has got to be some of the best country in the world, a place we call the Gulf Savannah, a place that is thick with red bull dust until the summer monsoon floods the land, quenching the parched earth, breathing life into the flora and fauna that inhabits the region.
Did I ever tell you about Lawn Hill Gorge?
If you never visit anywhere else in our neck of the woods then be sure you make your way up there. We visit as often as we can, there is something refreshing about being up in The Gulf, a place that rejuvenates your soul.
Take a refreshing swim in the spring-fed gorge and don’t worry about the freshies. You know, the fresh water crocodiles, they’re mostly harmless, not like their saltwater cousins, you’ll be right if you leave ‘em alone.
And its worth knowing that just to the south of the gorge is the World Heritage listed Fossil Mammal site, Riversleigh. It is one of the most significant fossil mammal deposits in the world and the richest known in Australia.
I must say, there were a few old fossils running around the gorge last time I was up there, and TomO, the cheeky little fella, reckons one of them was his Dad…
Anyway, I was telling you about how I got the name “Baz, The Landy”.
Well you see, travelling around this great country of ours is all good and well, but to get into some of these remote areas you need a vehicle that can take the pounding that the corrugations on the outback roads can dish out.
If you can call them roads, sometimes there isn’t one.
A vehicle capable of taking all the gear and toys you need to play in the outback.
Our choice of vehicle is the trusty Landrover Defender. They get called many things, a ‘Fender, the truck, some will even say a box of trouble on wheels.
In fact we’ve got two of them and they go by the names of “The Landy” and “Red Rover”...
We designed “The Landy” with long-range remote area travel in mind when we rebuilt it in 2006. It was a stock standard Landrover Defender 130 until we set to work on it.
Equipped with long-range fuel tanks it can travel up to 1,800 kilometres without being refuelled. That’s a long way I hear you say, but mate, let me tell you, the outback is a long way from nowhere.
It carries an inflatable boat and outboard motor for travelling on our inland waterways, and it even has a long-range radio that could put you in contact with someone on the other side of Australia, if you wanted to…
Hey, check out the roof, its got a roof top tent that we can take, if we don’t want to tow our T-Van camper trailer.
I always promised Janet a penthouse to live in…
And it’s even got a fridge to
keep Janet’s wine cool store perishables.
I could rave on about it for ages, but I think you’ve got the picture by now and it has served us extremely well and will continue to do so whenever we venture west of the Black Stump.
“Red Rover” is my stock standard Defender 110 that I rebuilt a few years back and serves as my commute vehicle. It looks splendid in fire engine red and I proudly park it at work, down amongst all the Mercs and Beamers in the car park.
Yep, it makes the trip across the Sydney Harbour Bridge each day and I even gave it a bit of a wrap in my blog some time back, Red Rover – Tale of a Landy Make-over.
But don’t go thinking it is some show pony, far from it, it gets Out and About frequently, and I can’t keep Janet out of it…
Crikey, you’ll be thinking I’ve got a few ‘roos loose in the top paddock.
Wasn’t I telling you about how the name “Baz, The Landy” came about?
Well, every four-wheel drive vehicle I’ve ever owned has been a Landrover Defender, so it seems inevitable that someone was going to end up calling me Baz, The Landy.
Besides, how would it be if I was called “Baz – The Red Rover” – strewth, you might go thinking I was out of some kids fairy tale book, or worse…
But getting back to our island continent, Australia, it isn’t hard to ramble on a bit about how fantastic this country is, you know, the one hidden in the summer for a million years, so why don’t I just leave you with this video that our tourism gurus’ put together to the music of one of our greatest musicians, Iva Davies and Icehouse…
And hey, if you’re ever out here visiting make sure you give “The Landy” a wave if you see it go past, we’re a friendly bunch and I’ll even stop and have a yarn with ya!
I want one.
That is, by far and away, the coolest camping accoutrement I’ve ever seen. Awesome.
And don’t get me started on the photos… again.
Those photos are truly amazing… and you’re so organised!
That Landy is quite something, Baz! We like our outdoor equipment here in BC, but I’ve never seen anything so well equipped as your Landrover! Your photos, as always, are spectacular. Who needs a Board of Tourism with a guy like you selling Aus?
Might be my next job 😉 …and we love The Landy, and Recd Rover of course….
Some toys you have! A thoroughly enjoyable read and some stunning imagery to go with it. Thanks for sharing so generously.
A pleasure…can’t ever have enough toys!
Nice camp set up. Sure is more luxurious than my motorbike 🙂
Love the fab pictures! And now I see why The Landy fits you perfectly…do you keep Vegemite in that cooler next to Janet’s wine?
Crikey, no way, no room! Janet is the boss of the fridge!
Stunning photos as always Baz. I’m very jealous of your landy. I really want a VW Transporter van, but can’t afford it (yet). I can barely fit me, my godson and our camping gear in my little Nissan Micra!
Don’t they drive Nissan Micra’s in that crazy race from London to Mongolia – tried, proven, and tested!
Really? I’ll have to check that out. One advantage is that it’s the only car made in England, so at least parts are easier to get hold of 🙂
I had wondered but not asked the question. So glad you shared this! LOVE the pictures. Makes me want to see Australia some day even more. 🙂 Cheers!
Yeah, come on over!!!
your rides suit you to a tea. i’m going to show mr. icescreammama. he’s gonna want one for himself!
I’m now fairly sure you actually work for the Australian Tourist Board 🙂
Not quite, but I’ll sing the virtues of this great country of ours…log and loud!! 🙂
Awesome video and amazing photo’s! It IS such a beautiful country 🙂
We had a defender, once. Hubby loved it, but I didn’t lol!!!! Just like a big metal box on wheels.
Not the most comfortable of rides 😉
You’re looks super duper all decked out…AND a rooftop tent. My other half would be drooling. 🙂
Love it, Janet likens it to a horse and cart…. 🙂