Four people; John Forrest (Frosty) Tim Martin, Dave Turner (The Pom) and myself, Doug Martin.
Three minis; Ute, convertible and 10 wheeler on a trailer behind falcon ute (overflowing with spares).
A lifetime of hopes and dreams crammed into 12 mini-filled days.
We left Tumut at 7.45am Monday 4th June heading for Dubbo. First stop was Cootamundra where we got a photo at the railway hotel and railway station. Also toped up with fuel at the service station where Tim’s cousin Danno works.
Arrived at Parkes at 12 Noon, fuelled up and headed for the dish. Had lunch at the dish restaurant, which is run by my cousin. We were given permission to use a service road to get closer to the dish for photos (These photo’s were unfortunately lost when Tim’s laptop crashed halfway through our travels, destroying some of the evidence of this trip – did we mention that Tim’s a computer technician)?
We arrived at Dubbo at 2.30pm, all vehicles performing very well on the first day, covering 433km’s.
Tuesday 5th June. Next stop Moree.
We stopped at Gilgandra and Narabri for fuel, at every stop people converged on the minis with stories. Between Gilgandra and Coonabaraban Frosty tried to wipe out a cow, which wandered onto the road. We arrived at the caravan park in Moree at about 1.30pm and were told to lock everything up as things get pinched.
We decided to take the top off the convertible and the four of us went “cruising”. We only made it about 200metres up the road as the tyres were rubbing that much we had to go back and get the ute as well.
Wednesday 6th June.
We left Moree for Warwick – Very uneventful. We fuelled up at Goondiwindi and arrived in Warwick at 12.15pm. It was wet most of the way and we spent the majority of the afternoon reading car books. The mini’s were still going great. 339km’s today.
Thursday 7th June.
Left Warwick for a short run to Brisbane – still raining. We came across roadwork about 50k’s from Warwick and the dirt road that Trucks had dug up pretty well was quite a challenge for the minis.
We arrived at Brisbane at 10.30am. No one could find the caravan park. We were somewhat distracted by the big shiny mini showroom next door….
After parking, we unloaded the truck and put the dual wheels on it, then made our way toward the showroom, called Motorline mini garage.
Friday 8th June.
We met Matt Stewart, the mini salesman at the showroom, who could not do enough for us. He offered the use of the car wash so we could get the minis sparkling for their big day. He also let us park the cars in front of their showroom for photo’s and then suggested we leave them there for the day. He then offered us three new demo minis to take for a couple of hours. We couldn’t bring ourselves to take three of his minis, but took one for about 2 hours for our second attempt at “cruising”. There was no tyre rubbing in this shiny new beast and we had an awesome time.
Tim’s wife Paula and son Zac came to Brisbane to visit Paula’s sister, we would be meeting up with them later in the weekend.
Saturday 9th June.
Met with some other mini people and went on a run to the beach. Had lunch and headed back to our unit. The people were great but the weather was bloody cold!
Sunday 10th June.
Mini Muster – The Big Day. The weather had improved and was a nice warm day. There were approximately 140 minis there and the show was well organised. And again, the people were great. We won 2nd prize for the ute. We had some people from Tumut drop in to see us at the muster, which was very good of them.
The muster finished at about 3.30pm.
Monday 11th June.
Quiet day. Hung around at the caravan park today, organising the trip home. We loaded the 10 wheeler onto the trailer ready for the journey and put 10” rims on the convertible instead of the 13” to improve the handling for tomorrows drive.
Tuesday 12th June.
We left Brisbane at 8am and headed to Ballina for breakfast at 10am. We met up with some fellow mini people, Jodi and Craig at Casino (Jodi used to be a police woman in Tumut). Craig has made a mini ute, which looks great. I think he has the bug.
We had the wheels on the convertible balanced and then headed to Casino Hotel for lunch. After lunch we headed to Tenterfield, arriving there at about 4pm. We stayed in a B&B. It was an old pub.
While here, we visited another mini nut Ron Williams, who does up minis if you have $30 000+.
We also encountered our first problem with the ute, the speedo broke.
Wednesday 13th June.
Left Tenterfield at 8am, it was bloody cold! Had breakfast at Glen Innes and fuelled up. Very uneventful. Arriving at Tamworth at 12.30 we had lunch at the golden guitar and visited the motorbike museum. The guy there was more interested in the minis then the bikes.
We also encountered our first problem with the convertible, the speedo broke.
Thursday 14th June.
We left Tamworth at 7.30am. Another big frost, and with no heating in the minis we quickly gained a newfound appreciation for modern technology. To keep his mind off his freezing limbs, Tim re-created the lyrics to Wet Wet Wet’s song, love is all around me; Replacing the first line with, ‘I’ve got some feeling in my fingers, but nothing in my toes’.
We powered on though, through Scone, past Liddell power station and stopped at Singleton for fuel and food. At Singleton we saw the remains of the floods, fences were down, and grass covering fences 1800mm above the road.
We arrived in Camden at 2pm where we stayed with Dave’s mate, who put on a great dinner and a few drinks.
Friday 15th June.
After having breaky with Dave’s mate Don, we headed for home at 8am stopping at Sutton Forrest for fuel and coffee. We arrived in Tumut at 2pm.
Our road trip to Bris-Vagas was a success and everyone had a fantastic time. Thanks to Dave for keeping a diary of the trip.
Frosty was the only one disappointed, as he still hasn’t seen a cane toad. Just as well, one of those creatures could total a mini!
Some Stats From The Trip.
Dearest Petrol: Cootamundra @ $149.90
Cheapest Petrol: Warwick @ $128.90
Distance Travelled: 3 292Km
Falcon ute & trailer: 560.74L
Mini ute: 247.09L
Cost: $1613.99 (incl. Additives etc)
Accommodation for 4 men at caravan parks for 9 nights: $876.00