Recently I have been writing about how to become a grey nomad. This is the final part of the story.
Now the beginner grey nomad has acquired the vehicle, the caravan or camper trailer and all the camping equipment, maps and navigation aids, tools, spares and other travel related gear.
Are they ready to leave home yet?
My answer would be – nearly. There are a couple of other things that would be wise to do first.
Four-wheel drive training course
If you are driving a four-wheel drive for the first time, book yourself in for a course with a four-wheel drive training school. You might never go off road, but learning how the vehicle handles and what it is capable of would be very handy knowledge if you are ever involved in a sticky situation.
A good training course will also include information on the best tyre pressures for different road surfaces – pressure up for the bitumen, lower for gravel. This also applies to the tow vehicle too.
Some four-wheel driver training companies also offer courses on vehicle towing, which might include advice on tow hitches, towing techniques and load level and packing. Reverse parking – a tricky business – and maintenance for your trailer or caravan should also be covered.
Four-wheel drive training companies can be found in each state, or see your local association, e.g. Four Wheel Drive Victoria.
Full service and vehicle checkup
Put your vehicle into your service centre for a full service and checkup before you leave home. It is best to find out if there are any problems now, before you head out there on the road.
A practice run for the grey nomad
Have a trial run before you head off for your extended holiday. Pack your vehicle and caravan or camper trailer and go away for a week or so to see how it all works out.
This is great for discovering where the food will go and where your clothes and other essential items should be. You will find out what works best in your setup and the adjustments you might need to make if you are to live out of a camping environment for a long period of time.
You might discover there is an essential item that you have left at home. Now is the time to add it to your travel list. You might also find there are things that you have taken away that you don’t really need.
- Drive carefully
- Take your time
- Savour the moment and
- Enjoy the adventure