WHAT A TRIP
A girl, her dog and camera tackle 100 days in the Aussie Outback
SHE WAS an adventurer trekking around the Australian outback with a dog, a camera in a 1979 Toyota Landcruiser ... without carrying a single dollar.
It took Edwina “Eddy” Robertson 100 days, over 27,000km, more than five states and some “bloody tough” roads ... but she did it. And now she is back home in Toowoomba, on Queensland’s Darling Downs.
The 30-something bush photographer set out on her lap of the Aussie map with an aim of bridging the gap between bush and city.
Travelling with no money is no easy task. To most it sounds a little crazy but Eddy worked her way from outback station to outback station, using her photography skills as currency.
In exchange for a photo shoot, a family would have to house her for the night, feed her, provide her with petrol and send her safely on her way to her next destination.
While Eddy expected people to be hospitable, she didn’t expect them to go above and beyond. She was gobsmacked by the amount of people willing to go out of their way to help her. However, there was one thing Eddy did underestimate, the physical toll the trip would take on her body. She was constantly exhausted as the trip neared the end but she didn’t give up and in a way didn’t want to even go home, thanks to her “headstrong ways”.
Eddy said the trip was much longer lthan she ever anticipated, with her following on social media reaching over 26,000 people.
Now she’s returned home there is talk of a book and even a move out bush.
“It was much larger than I thought it was going to be,” she said.
“I underestimated how physically exhausting it would be, but it is by far the best thing I’ve ever done.
“As I went along everything changed, my ideas, the reasoning behind the trip as well as what I wanted to achieve.”
Eddy says she has hundreds of ideas running through her head but isn’t exactly sure what is next on the cards for her. Or where she will go.
“I guess it is just the beginning of something, I don’t exactly know what but it’s definitely something,” she said.
“There might be a book, when you try and make these
life decisions when you’re so exhausted, it kind of seems impossible but after a rest I’ll have some clarity.
“However, I do think it would be remiss of me not to write a book because there are so many things I want to talk about that I wouldn’t necessary put on social media. “Some things just need to be explained correctly and in detail.” Eddy said throughout the trip time proved to be a “funny thing” with the bush adventurer wishing she had more of it in certain places. “Many times I wished I had stayed longer with families and had more time on properties but then I wanted to cover as much ground and meet as many people as I could,” she said. “However not having time to rest was hard. And kind of like ground hog day - because everyday you would go to someone's house, you’d meet them, take photos, stay up all night talking and get up at 5am the next morning to drive and do it all again.
“27,000km may not sound much to the average person but it took me eight to nine hours to drive 500km so it was a slow trip and I couldn’t do anything about it, I was really exhausted. Even driving 100km was difficult by the end.” Eddy said despite the rough patches the highs always outweighed what little lows there were.
“I think there were times where I felt I was in areas where I didn’t know many people or have many connections so that was hard.
“But all in all I think the things that happened and all the people I met, and experiences I had, outweighed any low point,” she said.
“It’s normal to have a bad day every now and then but all of the good days outweighed the bad. You have a cry, you get through it and the next day is always better.
“I think I underestimated how amazing people would be. I’ll forever be appreciative to anyone who helped and was a part of the journey.”
While Eddy is glad to be home she does admit she feels a bit sad to be back in urban life. “I got home and realised I’ve lived in my house for 15 months and I don’t even know my next door neighbour’s name and they live five meters away from me,” she said.
“It’s such a weird reality because out there the people you’re staying with knew the people that are 800km up the road. Logistically even though in most places I was really really isolated I felt at peace.”
“I am back in civilisation, reality and I suppose it feels different to when I left.
“Maybe it will be different when I settle back into everything. There is definitely a place for me in the bush. I’ll be searching for where that is, so hopefully I find it sooner rather than later,” she said.
❝ There is definitely a place for me in the bush and I’ll be searching for where that is.” — Edwina Robertson
ADVENTURER: Edwina Robertson talks about the highs and lows of her journey around Australia.
WHAT CUTIES: Eddy captured this pic of the D’arcy family on Lydon Station in Minilya, Western Australia.
“They breed them tough in the bush. When I was four, I still had training wheels on my bike,” Edwina said.
This picture was captured at one of Australia’s biggest watermelon farms in Mataranka in the Northern Territory.
Eddy's 100 day journey has come to an end after touring around outback Australia without money or food.
MAN’S BEST FRIEND: Eddy’s faithful, loving companion Jordie, joined her on the trip.