Planning is now well underway for Raid 2020, with most of the route having been surveyed. The route and start/finish dates are now settled. See separate itinerary for the details. We have subtitled this raid as The Desert Raid as we will be passing through four deserts on the route, namely the Great Victoria Desert, the Tirari Desert, the Sturt Stony Desert and the Simpson Desert.
The Raid will start in Baldivis, Western Australia (just south of Perth) on Sat 1/8/2020 and finish in Gayndah, Qld on Friday 28 August 2020. Gayndah is approximately 300 km north of Brisbane. While it is intended to be a west/east crossing of the continent, we will not be starting and finishing exactly on the coast but we will be close by for those who want to visit these places.
We will travel via Hyden and Wave Rock, Coolgardie, Kalgoorlie, Laverton, the Anne Beadell Highway to Coober Pedy via Ilkurlka and then William Creek, Marree, Birdsville via the Birdsville Track, Bedourie, Boulia, Winton, Longreach, Barcaldine, Emerald, Biloela and Gayndah.
The route has already been surveyed from Perth to Marree and from Boulia to Gayndah and the final part of the surveying, namely from Marree to Boulia will be undertaken in Aug/Sep 2019. At most there might be minor tweaks to the itinerary, but no significant changes.
This Raid will be open to 2CVs and derivatives only, plus a few 4WD backup vehicles. Cars will need to be prepared to the highest mechanical standards for this raid, especially in terms of the chassis, suspension and shock absorbers as we will be travelling on some fairly rough roads. Most of the route will be on dirt roads. 2CVs with rusty original chassis will not be suitable and heavy duty shock absorbers are not recommended, as these can cause breakages elsewhere in the system. There is a comprehensive paper on car preparation elsewhere in this site.
We will form teams of 5 to 7 cars at the start and because of the remoteness of the areas we will be travelling through, it is important that members of those teams stay together and support each other. It is hoped that minor repairs and problems can in most cases be sorted out within the resources of the teams. The Raid will provide some back up, but we cannot guarantee that poorly prepared cars can be fixed in every circumstance.
It is strongly recommended that we travel light for this raid, as there is a stretch of some 800 km from Ilkurlka, Western Australia to Coober Pedy, South Australia where we will have to carry enough fuel and water for the distance. The survey team calculated that for the average 2CV this means carrying a full tank plus an extra 40 litres of fuel.
It is important that cars are equipped with a UHF radio for communication within teams and the rest of the raid. We expect that the Raid will have one or two satellite phones available for emergency communications in remote areas.
Where available we will stay in camp grounds or caravan parks, but much of the raid will involve bush camping. The Raid fee will cover the cost of tent sites at caravan parks, but you can upgrade to motels or cabins at your own expense if so desired and where available. The Raid fee will also cover 4 official Raid dinners, apparel (Tshirts), entry permit fees to parks/restricted areas, car stickers, documentation and various other expenses. There will be no paid officials and all organisers are volunteers.
Most of the Raid will involve bush cooking and in some cases, supplies for a few days will need to be carried. The Raid will provide more detailed notes to participants as to what facilities are available at particular places.
It should be noted that we will be travelling through desert regions in winter time, so there will be some cold nights and good quality sleeping bags will be needed.
This Raid promises to be a real adventure in the spirit of many previous raids.
Bookings are expected to be open in about another 2 months when costs and other details have been worked out and this will be communicated here (Raid Australia website) and on the Raid Australia Facebook page.
Cheers, Chris Bennet July 2019