Hankering for a long cruise - What Do You Reckon? 459

By: Glenn Torrens

holden commodore wagon holden commodore wagon

After these troubled times, Glenn Torrens looks forward to a nice long cruise

i’ve always loved travelling and have been lucky enough to do a bit. I grew up in the excellent Scouting scene so as a young bloke, I learned to appreciate camping – and with that, nature and conservation – and these days I grab any opportunity to ‘go bush’ for a night, a weekend, or a week, to enjoy fresh air, sunshine and campfires.

As well as treks with some of my best mates and their families, my magazine/writing work has also allowed me to travel, too. In the past few years, my role with 4X4 Australia magazine has provided me the privilege to do a lap of Tassie, explore the Flinders Ranges in South Oz, cross the Simpson Desert from Alice Springs to the Birdsville Pub, wander around NSW’s south-east forests out of Eden and north-west outback to Tibooburra, climb the Victorian High Country, and experience Qld’s gorgeous Straddie, Moreton and Fraser Islands.

This year, in between lockdowns, I worked for five months on a TV show that blends travel with cars (more about that later!) and a few years ago I helped my mate Tony build an off-road capable VW Bug for those awesome fun, week-long charity outback car treks.

Great times!

Of course, the present problems with the world have put a halt to that. I’m lucky that I live outside the most critical lockdown zones and I have a few cars/toys in the garage to keep me happy during these quiet times.

But… like all of you I’m sure, I can’t wait for this to be f-ing over.

I’m looking ahead to some adventures after covid pisses off. One of my long-held ambitions – ever since I was a kid – is to go around Australia. That simple idea has evolved a bit over the years; as a bright-eyed child I dreamed of doing it in a VW Kombi camper, like what the legendary Australian travellers, the Leyland brothers had on their 1970s travel TV show.

Later, my idea evolved to a 4WD so I could go further into Australia’s stunning remote areas. But after having been to several of those iconic-y, hero-y, gotta-wear-your-aussie-hat-y, must-do-it-mate-y places in various well-equipped 4WDs (my own and others’) my plan has changed again…

Now, I want to do a lap of the map in a cool old Aussie wagon!

Yep, I reckon driving around Oz in a Holden or Falcon wagon, with not much more on board than a sleeping bag, a small stove, a 20-litre water drum, a 12V fridge and maybe a stash of CDs would be epic fun.

I’m not sure when I will do it… or even if I will do this trek. Like many people, I’ll have to put some money back in the bank after a bucks-down couple of years before I seriously consider the idea.

But maybe I’ll wake up one sunny day, buy the first cheap reliable Commodore or Falcon wagon I can find, throw some of my camping junk in it and piss off!


From Unique Cars 459, Nov 2021

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