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Trek the Track makes tracks
The fourth annual Trek the Track is now underway with the group of firefighter friends now past Coober Pedy.
Warrnambool Senior Station Officer David Ferguson is one of the 10 and is travelling as a support person.
“It’s primarily about the guys on the motorbikes and this year there are six of them,” he said. “This year we’ve got a Mitsubishi Pajero and an Isuzu D-Max ute with two BMWs, two KTMs, one Yamaha and one Suzuki.
Read the day-to-day trek experiences at the Trek the Track blog.
The trekkers spent the first night of the 12-day trip at Ned’s Corner in the top corner of Victoria. They planned to explore Woomera but a crack in the chuck wagon treg hitch meant they had to travel on to Port Augusta to get it sorted out instead. Next stop is Maralinga where they have arranged for a ranger escort – the only way to gain access to this British nuclear test site.
“From there we head down to the Nullarbor roadhouse and the head of the Great Australian Bight. We will come back east along the coast from Ceduna and Streaky Bay to Port Augusta again and home,” said David.
‘Home’ variously refers to Warrnambool, Bendigo, Mildura, Dandenong and Oxley Flats.
“One of the themes is ‘off the beaten track’ and we camp in swags for 80 per cent of the time,” he continued. “The Coober Pedy Underground Hotel is one exception worth making. We carry a barbecue in the chuck wagon and a few of us are designated to pre-cook meals.
“It’s a great physical challenge. David Brock and Carl Stibilj started it because they were already into endurance rides and wanted to do them while they still could. You’re a long time when you can’t do these things.”
The group travelled to Lake Eyre in 2011 when it was 70 per cent full and took a joy flight to really savour the experience. They visited the Burke and Wills Dig Tree near Innamincka in South Australia when Coopers Creek was in flood. Last year they travelled Googs Track north of Ceduna and west of Tarcoola.
Two years ago, one of the motorcyclists hit a kangaroo and had to be patched up at White Cliffs northeast of Broken Hill – truly the back of Bourke.
Of course they carry an EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon) but they know that any serious accident on a remote part of the trip would likely mean the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) saving the day.
Last year was the group arranged their first fundraiser for the RFDS. This year they raised $1300 by showing the film of their trip to a sold-out crowd and they are seeking further funds.
Any interested members can donate to the RFDS via the group’s Everyday Hero website.