Camping for the 2020 Season

Skichic2

Part of the Furniture
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Feb 22, 2017
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Ok well next problem, which I suspect will be solved with more $$$. I have an old expedition down mattress with built in pump. Still pumps up with no leaks. However, it has been stored in its bag for many years (can feel the judgement). I suspect it is no longer a down mat, more and air mat with clumps of down.

Salvageable? Or bin?
 

skifree

A disciple of the blessed avi giraffe
Moderator
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Jul 13, 1998
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Ok well next problem, which I suspect will be solved with more $$$. I have an old expedition down mattress with built in pump. Still pumps up with no leaks. However, it has been stored in its bag for many years (can feel the judgement). I suspect it is no longer a down mat, more and air mat with clumps of down.

Salvageable? Or bin?
Test and find out.
 

N0frilz

Addicted
Jul 13, 2015
265
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around
Just spoiled myself with a new Mont bag. Expensive but similar in cost to 3 nights at the LJ in winter :eek: I know which one I prefer.

Now to decide if the back of the Impreza is workable or stick to the swag/tent.
If you're going to sleep in the car you need to make the back flat with the seats down otherwise it sucks.
 

crackson

Part of the Furniture
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Oct 20, 2006
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Do both.

Setting/packing camp late in rain and wind can be very tiring.

Car bed allows you to setup the camp in your own good time and optimal weather.

Tents in storms are ok once setup.

If everything gets wet setting up, tents are no fun.

Having the backup bed in the car also saves your tent because you an drop it when wind is over 100k's.

I've climbed out of the car after many windy nights to see every other tent destroyed and everyone in shock.
 

telecrag

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Oct 12, 2007
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I get a much better sleep (like actually get to sleep) in the van over a tent on a bad night.

Id work out some boards to make a flat base, or get some firm foam blocks cut to purpose. Got to say the foam I got cut for my sleeping mat is unreal. Foam and rubber guy really knows his foams (probably good with the rubber too).
 

Balsta

One of Us
Sep 11, 2012
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I agree, I prefer to sleep in the back of my ute which has a lined metal canopy. Tents on windy nights are very noisy, it’s hard to get a good nights sleep (I’ve never had a 4 season tent though).
 

crackson

Part of the Furniture
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Polarfleece blankets make an excellent insulation layer between air mattress and sleeping bag.

I have a kingsize one that I fold in half and put the sleeping bag inside. Like a calzone. It gives great insulation from underneath and you can easily push it off or pull it over depending on if too hot or cold. Even half asleep.

A sleeping beanie close at hand helps too. It's very hard to wake up and fix being cold so I used to sleep through it and it sucks.

With a blanket and beanie, you can increase your warmth in an instant without having to wake up.
 

Newsteve

Hard Yards
Apr 11, 2020
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Polarfleece blankets make an excellent insulation layer between air mattress and sleeping bag.

I have a kingsize one that I fold in half and put the sleeping bag inside. Like a calzone. It gives great insulation from underneath and you can easily push it off or pull it over depending on if too hot or cold. Even half asleep.

A sleeping beanie close at hand helps too. It's very hard to wake up and fix being cold so I used to sleep through it and it sucks.

With a blanket and beanie, you can increase your warmth in an instant without having to wake up.

A warm head = warm feet!
 
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Skichic2

Part of the Furniture
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Feb 22, 2017
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I reckon I’ll fit in the back of the Impreza. Blanket under the swag mattress to even the surface, esky in the footwell, head to the back of the car. I usually sleep in thermals with a beanie and my new bag has a cool (or warm) collar that you can unclip and pull over your face. Comfort rated to -10c (women) so should be toasty. Keen to try it out.
 

DidSurfNowSki

One of them
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Jan 19, 2014
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Canberra, ACT
Meanwhile, out in the paddock...

242248_a042ca4a15de8d8e4f6a0be16d4fdf3c.jpeg


Can confirm field trip with new sleeping bag, thermarest, backpack and tent passed with flying colours.

And yes, 65l is a bit of a tight squeeze.

19829207-4172-473A-87B0-84222924D773.jpeg
 

Reginald

Hard Yards
Mar 1, 2019
41
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https://www.xswinter.com/pages/traction.html
I hve no association with V2 chains or any retailer - of anything! - I just think they are well made and affordable and a must if driving in and out of 2020 camping sites and on icy alpine roads. I've done a few slides in my 4wds with good tyres on snow and ice so I'm more likely to fit chains when conditions are dicey.
Thanks Goski, sound advice! Wasn't aware of the V2 brand so that was really helpful and they sound like a good value choice. It's a very dull way to spend money, but one I know I need to stop putting off.
 
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Goski

One of Us
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Thanks Goski, sound advice! Wasn't aware of the V2 brand so that was really helpful and they sound like a good value choice. It's a very dull way to spend money, but one I know I need to stop putting off.
If budget is an issue, check gumtree, facebook marketplace and ebay. Plenty of chains never get used or only a few times then end up for sale as secondhand.
 

W0nkey D0nkey

One of Us
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Feb 5, 2017
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I know the localz and the bowlo aren’t fond of us camping here, but it’s just so convenient. Skate park, pub across the road.
We aren’t hurting anybody & take our rubbish.
Got asked to move a couple time’s last year but this is our spot almost every weekend.
EAAA7429-359C-454A-90FD-6B63E2958551.jpeg
 

teleroo

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Ski Pass
Jun 19, 2019
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Illawarra
Any intel on the ranger inspections at Island Bend? Managed to snag a legit Fri night campsite for a weekend in August, but Sat night booked out apparently. I have a few other options, but just curious? Also, is the "bookable campground" the bit down by the river, or up by the airstrip? I think I read somewhere that bits of IB were closed off due to asbestos risk.
 

Sage O

Like the herb, cup ramen devotee
Ski Pass
Sep 8, 2017
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Any intel on the ranger inspections at Island Bend? Managed to snag a legit Fri night campsite for a weekend in August, but Sat night booked out apparently. I have a few other options, but just curious? Also, is the "bookable campground" the bit down by the river, or up by the airstrip? I think I read somewhere that bits of IB were closed off due to asbestos risk.

Didn't see the rangers come through last weekend on either Friday, Saturday or Sunday. It was a lot busier than it has been but having said that there was still heaps of space. There is an upper section to the right when you first drive in, a mid section to the left and then the lower section down by the river. With the rate of Covid cases and lockdowns I wouldn't be surprised if cancellation result in some more booking spots opening up.
 

Skichic2

Part of the Furniture
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Feb 22, 2017
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Could you get away with car camping at Sawpit Creek picnic area overnight? Late arrival, early start?
 
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hpsauce

A Local
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Meanwhile, out in the paddock...

242248_a042ca4a15de8d8e4f6a0be16d4fdf3c.jpeg


Can confirm field trip with new sleeping bag, thermarest, backpack and tent passed with flying colours.

And yes, 65l is a bit of a tight squeeze.

19829207-4172-473A-87B0-84222924D773.jpeg
love this approach.
could do with a smaller mat. Once I got on the non-self inflating air cell train (e.g. like the sea to summit light ones)....there was no looking back.
 

skull

One of Us
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Jun 4, 2017
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definitely a lot less people on the campsites than last year.

Ngarigo this weekend, I notice the Teepee from last year is back again.

We were out of the campgrounds before the rangers came through, but on sunday we were mucking around a bit and left a bit later. They didn't actually check if we had a camping permit, just if we had our park access stickers for the vehicle.

The van holds up well in the cold, we had a nice fire going outside. When we went to bed the kids up the top with their anaconda sleeping bags still going strong. I also put a fleece over the top of them. Wife had her new fancy mont bag and I had my ECW bag with silk liners, and we had a doona over the top. Warm all night. The only cold bit was getting up to get dressed.

So the worries of going out with out a diesel heater are not a concern.

Still need to work on our process of packing up to get up to the thredbo car park. This weekend we opted to get dressed, drive up then breakfast in the carpark. We might stick with that, I just need to move a bit quicker getting out of bed and getting the van back into drive mode.

Only issue, which I previously mentioned is the water freezing up. I think just some basic insulation on the tank and the external tanks will sort that out.
 

hpsauce

A Local
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May 19, 2008
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definitely a lot less people on the campsites than last year.

Ngarigo this weekend, I notice the Teepee from last year is back again.

We were out of the campgrounds before the rangers came through, but on sunday we were mucking around a bit and left a bit later. They didn't actually check if we had a camping permit, just if we had our park access stickers for the vehicle.

The van holds up well in the cold, we had a nice fire going outside. When we went to bed the kids up the top with their anaconda sleeping bags still going strong. I also put a fleece over the top of them. Wife had her new fancy mont bag and I had my ECW bag with silk liners, and we had a doona over the top. Warm all night. The only cold bit was getting up to get dressed.

So the worries of going out with out a diesel heater are not a concern.

Still need to work on our process of packing up to get up to the thredbo car park. This weekend we opted to get dressed, drive up then breakfast in the carpark. We might stick with that, I just need to move a bit quicker getting out of bed and getting the van back into drive mode.

Only issue, which I previously mentioned is the water freezing up. I think just some basic insulation on the tank and the external tanks will sort that out.
Did you use the fire pits? I have noticed loads of people have difficulty getting them going and are sitting freezing round a miserable little flicker....perhaps cause they are recessed and maybe starved of O2?? I presumed thats why there is always evidence some clowns have just started a fire on the bare ground.
 

telecrag

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Oct 12, 2007
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Did you use the fire pits? I have noticed loads of people have difficulty getting them going and are sitting freezing round a miserable little flicker....perhaps cause they are recessed and maybe starved of O2?? I presumed thats why there is always evidence some clowns have just started a fire on the bare ground.

Its because they bought shit wood from a servo in a bag.
 

skull

One of Us
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Did you use the fire pits?
yeah, never really had a problem. We cheat a little bit I also use hot rocks. So I would put some hot rocks, kindling, then bigger logs.

a servo in a bag.
We tend to use that on occassions, you need a whole bag for one evening though.

When we are organised we get our wood from Whyalla st in Fyshwick. That burns a lot better than the servo crud
 
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telecrag

Old n' Crusty
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Oct 12, 2007
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Friends who like to go for a week or so, organise a delivery from some local. Looks impressive. But if you are not hanging around, these days it would be game on when you came back, and everyone had a nice little blaze going.

I got a bag once, but I am used to using furniture grade. Haha.
 
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Newsteve

Hard Yards
Apr 11, 2020
64
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I first saw those steel surround fireplaces with an arm in SA years ago up in the desert parks. an attempt to keep fires small and manage scarce wood.. They never seem to work for me. A small wall around 3 sides with the back wall a bit higher lets in air, makes cooking easier and puts out more heat for those sitting in front.
The real issue IMO is to stop those huge fires so people delight in.
 

Sage O

Like the herb, cup ramen devotee
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yeah, never really had a problem. We cheat a little bit I also use hot rocks. So I would put some hot rocks, kindling, then bigger logs.


We tend to use that on occassions, you need a whole bag for one evening though.

When we are organised we get our wood from Whyalla st in Fyshwick. That burns a lot better than the servo crud
We also cheat. Used sparingly though to minimize nuisance noise.

B99AE477-DEFD-49F4-A089-172CBF3CA895.png
 

Snow Blowey

Old n' Crusty
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Jan 7, 2004
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Did you use the fire pits? I have noticed loads of people have difficulty getting them going and are sitting freezing round a miserable little flicker....perhaps cause they are recessed and maybe starved of O2?? I presumed thats why there is always evidence some clowns have just started a fire on the bare ground.

I agree - those pits need breather holes in the bottom. Its hard to get wet stuff to start in those pits and i have had to have a fire on the surrounds to get it going and then transfer into the pit later. Bringing wood from elsewhere is cheating.
 

crackson

Part of the Furniture
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Oct 20, 2006
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Parks like to stack snowgum offcuts next to the fires to sabotage tourists.

Ever tried to light snowgum?

Skull, getting dressed in the morning is probably the hardest part. Sometimes I wakeup and start the car and get back in the sleeping bag for 10mins then crank the demisters and heat. Then get dressed and wipe the condensate out first thing.

In storms especially, this lets me start fully warm, dry and waterproof before stepping out into the elements.
 

crackson

Part of the Furniture
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It gets easier with acclimatisation.

In winter I usually wakeup with body temp at 33.5-34.5 and feel totally normal. Everytime I get a covid temp scan on entry they are like wtf. And i'm, no thats normal for me. Then they look at me like i'm some mutant alien.
 
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Sage O

Like the herb, cup ramen devotee
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It gets easier with acclimatisation.

In winter I usually wakeup with body temp at 33.5-34.5 and feel totally normal. Everytime I get a covid temp scan on entry they are like wtf. And i'm, no thats normal for me. Then they look at me like i'm some mutant alien.
Wasn't so much the temp, rather the clear snow falling from the sky LOL
 
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skull

One of Us
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After waking up and poking my head out of the tent on Sunday morning I promptly decided to go back to sleep in my warm sleeping bag. Sometimes its just too hard to leave the warmth LOL
I paid $165 to ski thredbo, I made sure I got my money worth. The boy and I were absolutely drenched by the end, the aldi and assortment of second hand gear didn't rate it
 

Snow Blowey

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jan 7, 2004
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Parks like to stack snowgum offcuts next to the fires to sabotage tourists.

Ever tried to light snowgum?

Skull, getting dressed in the morning is probably the hardest part. Sometimes I wakeup and start the car and get back in the sleeping bag for 10mins then crank the demisters and heat. Then get dressed and wipe the condensate out first thing.

In storms especially, this lets me start fully warm, dry and waterproof before stepping out into the elements.

The transporter takes about 30 minutes at idle to put any warmth out of the heater. I usually set my alarm 30 minutes prior to leaving time. I get out of bed, start the engine and hop back in for another 20 mins. Then 10 mins clearing windows of moisture (on the inside) before the girls get up and we head up to the car park.
 
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