‘We picked a bad time to sell up and travel full-time!’

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Selling up to travel full-time
John and Heather sold up to travel full-time in their motorhome.

When John and Heather Walker sold their property on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast to travel full-time in a motorhome, they knew they were in for an adventure … they just didn’t know quite how big!

They headed out in March and were just nine days into their big trip when pandemic induced travel restrictions brought things to a shuddering halt.

Not wanting to potentially put a strain on regional medical facilities, the couple immediately headed back to the familiar surrounds of the Sunshine Coast.

“There was initially some confusion as to our situation but we eventually found that, because

grey nomads and motorhome

All ready to roll!

we were living permanently in our motorhome, we were allowed to spend lockdown in a council-run caravan park at Dicky Beach,” said John. “We were very lucky to be able to lock down in such a lovely location … there were only eight vans occupying the 100 or so sites in the park!”

As fortunate as they were, the couple were still frustrated. When they bought their Mercedes Sprinter based Talvor Murana motorhome and a Suzuki Grand Vitara to tow, the plan most certainly had not been to stay in one caravan park for months on end.

“As soon as Queensland opened up intrastate travel in June we set off once again,” said John. “And the rig proved to be a great combination, giving us option of leaving van at campsites and touring scenic areas by 4WD.”

The couple quickly made up for lost time and took to their new lifestyle like ducks to water.

“We have camped mainly in free or low-cost RV parks relying on the vehicle’s alternator power and have two 160-watt solar panels to keep batteries charged,” said John. “Fellow campers we meet along the way also love the lifestyle, and we feel relatively safe in what is by nature a fairly self-isolated environment.”

Like all grey nomads, the Walkers have been keeping a very close eye on the pandemic, and particularly how changing border restrictions may affect their travels. The couple initially travelled up into north Queensland, before crossing into the NT in July and, having accepted that the WA border was unlikely to open this year, have now headed down the Stuart Highway into South Australia.

In a perfect world, the Walkers would love to head across into New South Wales now, and go back up to the Sunshine Coast for Christmas before venturing out again in the New Year … but there may be a problem.

“The NSW/Qld border is still closed at moment so currently our only road access to Queensland is to go back through NT and back along Barkly Highway to Camooweal – an awfully long backtrack!” said John. “The only other possibility would be to tackle the Birdsville Track, but we are concerned that this would not be suitable road for our motorhome.”

All that notwithstanding, the Walkers are well aware that there are many more wannabe grey nomads who haven’t been as lucky as they have been.

“We have been fortunate to be able to have a fairly large ‘Little Lap’,” said John. “We have had a great trip, with very quiet roads and campsites but while it’s been nice for us, it hasn’t been good for businesses who are doing it tough with the low numbers of travellers.”

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One Response to ‘We picked a bad time to sell up and travel full-time!’

  1. Yes I was in Prague after a quick hangout with cousin Fe in Germany.I wanted to see more of Europe but got stuck. Came home early terrified all countries hace locked down we wont be allowed back if we left Prague. I was scared of missing flight home. Or getting sick and die overseas.xb howebverlll

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