Gate way to ……

Report 17 June
By Thecla

Ready to go! Say goodbye to our hosts and ladies and then on our way to Mataranka. It is a big road with few spectacular views. That is why they have drawn the many termite mounds (both round and sharp) probably with T-shirts and other upholstery.In Mataranka we throw the tanks and spare jerrry cans full. We take the Roperweg which is asphalted for the first 150 km with a track. We are in real Aboriginal land. Only we do not see them at all, how strange!
Probably a decorated grave of one of them. After that 150 km it becomes really dirt road with a big washboard, where we can not drive faster than 20 kilometers. Along the way we see here and there some cattle (cows, donkeys walk and sometimes hit horizontally at the edge of the road), but no wildlife at all.

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The beast is loose

Report 16 June
By Thecla

A royal breakfast today with, among other things, an egg sandwich (in the (w) hole and bacon and eggs, then rummaging in the yard, in Katherine.) John drives us to the Woolworth for our mega shopping because we are going through no man’s land in the coming days to drive.
Benno and Dirk put some points on the i at the T Ford, among other things, the starter motor ballast is made of a bendix spring, to bring the aggressive start back to 8 volts. And oh miracle !! It works … A wonderful day flying around and where we also try to update the website. Dirk gets a few license plates from the Northern Territory, and to make the T-Ford somewhat wilder; a bunch of buffalo horns. (The beast is loose !!)

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Maguk campground

Report 15 June
By Thecla

We are being woken up by the many birds and a beautiful song. We leave Maguk campground to get back into the dust and washboard of the dirt road, the T-Ford hopping with pleasure as well as his driver. We try to make some film shots, also with the imposing termite mounds. Today I’m going to drive, to see if I can manage to drive this big box. We have a beautiful winding route today that makes the landscape a lot more interesting. At a roadhouse we get a cup. We continue our journey to Katherine, where there is a lot of traffic (also many cars with caravans or other huts). The last 20 km I have a terribly big roadtrain behind me. But fortunately the Land Rover is also very big and heavy. Still, I am happy when we turn to the house of John and Diana just before Katherine. Here we are warmly welcomed and in the evening we are invited for the BBQ with the local Motor Enthusiastic club.

 

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(Nederlands) Kakadu National Park

Report 14 June
By Benno

Exotic sites usually have a counterpart: either they are as good as unreachable, or they are populated by dying brothers, looking for blood. The latter was the case here in the Kakadu reserve. It forces us to get up early and walk around the area. We see several parrots as lizards, fowls, wallybees, butterflies and finches. In the river we see two cars on their side that probably tried to cross at high water. Also here; however tempting the water looks, crocodiles are lurking. Gradually we arrive at sacred rocks of the Aborigines, where many petroglyphs show themselves on the underside of caves and overhanging cliffs. Above we have a beautiful view of the vastness of Arnhemland. At the end of the day we reach a ground over a red road, where again we see a scandalously beautiful sunset. After a delicious Trudyan meal, Thecla and I again sleep under the stars, under the tears of a Dingo, and Dirk and Trudy in their roof tent.

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On the road up to Kakadu National Park

Report 13 June 
By Thecla

keys for the new team

After the “key transfer” we say goodbye to Leo and the lovely place of the hangar.

departure

 We leave  Darwin. The left-hand drive, the road trains, the crowds on the road, the roundabouts everything is getting used to. But it also feels familiar in the Landrover again.

interested roadworker

crocodile

We drive up the Stuart Highway towards Jaiburu, which lies in the middle of the Kakadu National Park. Here, too, drivers react to the T. model. Wonderful!
When we enter the National Park it is noticeable that they also burn the verges here, where new greenery then comes.

new green

So that’s how incredibly beautiful green color variations arise, which we marvel at.

Yellow fruit

warning

parot

to the campground

Just before Ubirr we finally arrive at a beautiful Merl campground. It looks like a big jungle and we see a dingo running right away.

preparing for the night

trudy and Dirk

What we had not counted on but what was very intense was the amount of mosquitoes and aggressiveness. We eventually go to bed early and use all our protection measures.

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Greasy Day

Report 12 June
By Benno Graas

After we have slept in the kitchen of the hangar, Dirk and I start the T Ford, while the ladies go exploring the city to go shopping for the emptiness of the deserted landscape,

First oil change of engine, gearbox and differential. And then the front tires renewed plus air filters cleaned. Then made the right pin for the spring pin. Although Dirk was eagerly working with the grease gun, the lion’s share disappeared next to the nipple to continue his way along wrists, elbows, legs to the back. Not to ask how lubricated we felt. But the spring pin was still dry. Leo came up with a nipple from his thousand sorting boxes that brought the fat where it had to be. The bliss could no longer be up !! With a tropical 30 degrees it was a lubricated day.

At the end of the afternoon a reporter from the Nortern Territory newspaper came by to marvel at the T Ford and his Edammer Kaaskoppen. That more than cheese is brewed in Edam then became clear to him. He said good-bye with astonishment, saying that the next day, with a big picture in the newspaper.

To top it all off, Ted (just back from The Isle of Man) roared with his Speedster from 1914 to meet Dirk and Trudy. The double carburettor of the Speedster brought Dirk right to the idea of ​​satisfying his insatiable appetite for even more power.

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Darwin, here we come!

Report 11 June
By Trudy

We wake up and still smell the burning air. We pack and then the sunburn-smear moment has arrived. Dirk calls the most beautiful moment of the day.

moment

We drive along the railway towards Darwin.

railway

A lamp does not light up during the lighting check. During the coffee stop Dirk replaces the two lights of the rear lights.

lamp

We are almost with Paul, because he lives in Marlow Lagoon

marlow lagoon

Benno and Thecla came to Paul and Maja yesterday and we are very happy that they arrived as a new crew.

arrived

After a delicious lunch we go to the Hangar. Tom wants to be at my place in the T-Ford and I can ride with Paul in his Chevrolet. Benno and Thecla are in the back.

Tom

Paul

Benno and Thecla

We arrive at the hangar of the club.

And yes!!! The Model T-Ford is allowed on the hoists

workshop

We say goodbye to David, who goes to his wife by taxi and Rick looks for a motel and then returns.
Dirk and Benno are going to work together.

together

Dirk gets a plaque from Paul.

plaquette

Dirk will refresh the oil.

oilchange

What an action, but then we go to the ocean for the barbecue during the setting sun. A beautiful place where you can also see the skyline of Darwin.

BBQ

sunset

It is a pleasant evening with a delicious barbecue during the setting sun.

 

 

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Survival of the fittest

Report 10 June
By Benno Graas

Darwin; If there is a city that is in my imagination of natural development, then this is Darwin. Located in the Northern Territory of Australia. A country with such a clear diversity of exceptional animals compared to the surrounding countries and the rest of the world. It was therefore a relief to arrive here at night and without a lot of sight, to sniff the air, to breathe in the atmosphere of the country.

Outside the airport we were spontaneously offered a lift to the former Quantas Hangar from 1934, where the Motor Vehicle Enthusiasts club is housed. Since everything was still closed, we moved into the adjacent park from where we watched the awakening of the city of Darwin; exotic birds chanted the sun above the horizon of the tropical vegetation. Local passers nodded goodbye.

Not long after, Leo opened the gate of the eldorado of antique engines, cars, trucks and stationary engines; a lust for the eye.

As soon as Paul van Bruggen came to pick us up to stay in his spacious house on the outside of Darwin, in Palmerston. His wife Maja and their sons Wil and Tom received us with a surprising naturalness. Tom led us through the exotic garden explaining what was and what was not to eat. Which animals are interesting and which you can better avoid.

In the shed, Paul showed us his collection of Chevrolets and he also turned out to have an Enfield: “The Fly” a light model motorcycle that was regularly dropped on a parachute during the war.

In the afternoon, friends from thirty years ago arrive, so that in the evening we have a delicious dinner and a drink with his tens in “the Mancave”. What a welcome !!

Report June 10
By Trudy

On to Darwin.

For breakfast, Dirk was already grinding the rim of the T-Ford.


We are invited to come and have breakfast on the terrace with Diana and John. Delicious!

breakfast

There is great room to work with John here.
There must be 2 tires around the rims so that we have 2 spare wheels on the T-Ford. Rick also comes to help.

tire

I work on the reports and when Dirk is done with the T-Ford we say goodbye and leave for Darwin. We can also camp with John and Diana next week with our new team. These are the last driving days to the north.
It is busy on this road and also the road trains are passing us again at high speed. Every time we are happy again when the roadtrrain disappears from view. We count the kilometer signs towards Adelaide River. It is namely 200 kilometers and we only left at 1 o’clock.

sign

Even today we see beautiful termite mounds.

termite

We are going close to a forest fire. The sun disappears behind the smoke.

Still further towards Adelaide River there is a larger forest fire. We see large flames close to the road. We go through a huge cloud of smoke, see almost nothing and then we are happily passed by.
At the campsite we get a beautiful place but for safety we have to put the cars in such a way that we can drive away quickly.
Rick bought a bottle of champagne to toast on the driven Gibb River Road.

champagne

 

 

 

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Blow-out!

Report 9 June
By Trudy

In Timber Creek we have not seen crocodiles at the campsite. We pack and leave.

goodmorning

Fortunately it is fast coffee time, because I bought some goodies. Because Rick found the bracket of the feather package I would treat. This was the first day that I could buy some goodies.

celabrate

 

It is very special to see termite mounds throughout Australia. The shapes and the colors are always different.

teramite

We continue and see everything on the way. It is not a boring piece.

on the road

mountain

river

When a road-train comes along, we shake in the T-Ford and when it’s over we stick our thumbs up. Successful again.

roadtrain

They are long roads in Australia.

longway

And then POP, what a blow. “Hold on tight” Dirk shouts and happily sends the T-Ford safely. PFFFFFF.

blow out

save

Then we stand along the road. My heart pounds very hard, but we go into action.

action 1

action 2

The inner tube is folded out and the tire is off the rim. The rim is a bit damaged but fortunately not completely broken. He has to get rid of it. Dirk does another rim with tire on the wheel and the last tire he knot on the T-Ford.

new tire

transport

It went great well and completely back together. Within 40 minutes. Well done Dirk.

very good

When we drive again we see our team follow us. They had driven ahead this time and that’s why they missed this breakdown and repair.

Dirk had agreed that we would arrive in Katherine this afternoon. We were well on time but a car came to meet us, signaled, stopped, turned and John stepped out and welcomed us.

John

He takes us to his house, where Diana also welcomes us. We have a private campsite with all facilities.

campsite

We set up our tents and are invited for a drink at the house. There is a nice sign hanging on the wall.

sign

 

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Up to Darwin

Report June 8
By Trudy

The sun rises above the river, where our bedroom looks out. Good morning! Dirk opens his office on the porch.

office

Bevin had told us last night about his toy box and he showed it to us. Motorcycles, with and without sidecars, are cars and the A-Ford that he had brought us.

toy box

After the delicious breakfast he took me for a ride in his Cadillac. Very nice, his radio played music from the fifties. I enjoyed it.

breakfast

Cadillac

We said goodbye and drove out their beautiful driveway where more than 150 palm trees stand.

depart

We are now only driving on asphalt roads and that’s why Dirk sets the kingpin pins a bit wider, so that the T-Ford steers a bit more smoothly.

king pin

We drive so fast and all of a sudden we are at the sign “welcome to the Northern Territory”.
Just a photo moment.

border

We find a campsite in Timber Creek. There is a sign that there are crocodiles, but they do not come to the campsite (they say).

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