I'm going to Australia for my first time in January, and I'm wondering what the camping situation is like? I'm going to be backpacking around/working for approx 6 months, and I'm wondering if a lot of backpackers choose to camp.
Having said that, I'm wondering what sort of sleeping/camping gear to bring. Should I bring a sleeping bag? Blankets? Tarp? I am lost!
Any advice would be highly appreciated
Many many thanks,
As a local who camps a bit over the summer in Australia you really don't need a lot. Its hot. You can simply get by with a tarp if thats your style. Otherwise you can get a 2-3 season tent very lightweight will do the job. May wish to have a light sleeping bag but that's about it.
However if you go into the highcountry/highplains areas on the Victorian/NSW border, ie on top of Australia's very small mountains (1800 metres) then the weather can change quickly from sunny to very cold and sometimes snow, people have been trapped up there if not prepared. However it is very beautiful and safe to hike/camp on the highplains... do it if you get the chance.
Otherwise if you're not going up high you don't need a lot. Northern Austrlia has it's wet season this time of year... very humid and rain rain rain... tropics. Better off sticking to the southern half of the country... Melbourne is great this time of year and Perth is glorious! Camping is very safe... don't be an idiot and you'll have the time of your life.
Try http://www.camping.com.au for sites and information.
As JohnF said, it's Summer in January and so quite hot in most of the country (generally speaking).
Make sure you bring or obtain a fair amount of insect repellant; the flies are bad in teh daytime as are the mosquitos at night.
Either bring a tent with you, or buy one locally. The price of reasonable camping gear has come down in price a fair bit over the last few years. Unless you're going into the mountains or somewhere, I wouldn't bother with blankets. A decent sleeping bag would suffice, and even then you'd probaby find yourself sleeping on top of it a lot.
I've done a reasonable amount of camping, and one of the tricks in Summer is to make sure that you don't pitch your tent in a place that will be bathed in sunlight early in the morning, as by say 8am, you'll be frying.
Another thing, I'm suprised at how often I read about people being injured or even dying when a large tree branch falls onto their tent in a storm. I don't read it "often" in the scheme of things, but it must be once or twice a year.
aussie is the perfect camping enviroment its usually pretty warm and dry,you can camp just about anywhere in the national parks and off the road most people are car camping round the place id take a good light sleeping bag a fuel cooker and a mat,pick up a tent when you get here you can get a pretty good one cheap the uv eats them pretty fast so save ya good one for the mountains,
waters usually the biggest hassel if you have to carry it
it get suprisingly cold at night in the desert. the aussies use swags heaps big canvas bags with a matress in them these are bloody good but are too heavy unless youve got a car