one man, one boat, one paddle and one goal!! to kayak the length of england for water aid to raise as much money as possible, some 380 miles along a route which has never been attemted before in a world record attempt. read everything here and view updated pictures for the training and the journey itself as well as the aftermath!! please please make a donation and be part of this with me

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Pinkies Great Australian Adventure Vol.1 07-10-2007

Today we set off on our first Journey in Pinky Flip, a 1980's Toyota Hiace Campervan complete with four speed, located as a shift handle on the steering column, Aircon 290 ( 2 windows wound down at 90km/hr) and a lot of pink attachments courtesy of Wini.

Our aim was to motor West of Brisbane inland to a town called Mitchell which was dubbed "The Gateway to the Outback" which housed an Artesian Spa - our main reason for visiting.

The day started badly with a delay in Brisbane shopping for last minute essentials eventually with us leaving Chermside at 11:00am not the proposed 9am, the Tom Tom then decided to lead Pinkie Flip through the most hilly and windy road sections of Brisbane an otherwise flat city to Ipswich and the highway that would lead us to Toowoomba. As we chugged along the highway we watched in silent worry as the temperature gauge gradually rose until stopping dangerously closely to the warning yellow block on the gauge. as we approached Toowomba there is a long hill that ascends from the range into the mountain town with a steep winding road for some km's. Halfway up the hill we were forced to stop behind standing traffic still dangerously close to the yellow danger zone on the gauge, as we started to pull away again the engine finally overheated and we stopped, a few painful seconds passed by as cars and lorries rounded us before a chirpy fellow in a yute offered to tow us up the hill, thank god we thought as he put us out of our embarrassing misery. He tied us on and as he began to pull away it was obvious our weight would be too much as he struggled to pull us we snapped and jerked our way forward until eventually he gave up and dropped us at the side of the road halfway up the hill along with 3 other cars who were all there with the same problem,]. We all laughed and waited for the cars to cool before another toyota hiace pulled up with the same problem and offered some friendly advice, eventually we made it up the hill and pulled in for petrol.

Unsuspecting I got out the car undid the petrol cap and all I remember after that is becoming blind, soaked form head to toe and tasting the unsavoury flavour of petrol as filled my mouth, I later found out that Hiace petrol tanks work on a vacuum system so the cap must be removed slowly letting releasing any pressure build up. As I dried off we searched for a garage and booked Pinky in for a full service the next day and over a schooner of gold to help numb the taste of fuel booked into Toowoomba motor village for our first nights stop, which turned out to be a lovely site with great amenities from the 1970/80's and friendly staff, over a luke warm pizza we settled down and enjoyed out first night sleeping in Pinky Flip.


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