SUMMER'S here, which means it's a great time to get out and explore. Here are some events coming up in the early-half of 2018:
Based at one of Australia’s iconic outback pubs, this new event, on Saturday, February 24, will feature some of the best from the Aussie country music scene. Hosted by country music star Catherine Britt and husband James Beverley, in combo with Silverton Hotel owners Peter and Patsy Price, the event also features John Williamson, Adam Harvey, The Sunny Cowgirls and more.
You can camp at Penrose Park (just across the river from the pub) or at nearby Broken Hill and catch the free bus out to the festival. Check www.silvertonsunsetsmusicfestival.com for more info.
HIGH COUNTRY BREWERIES TRAIL (VIC)
With summer looming and the Victorian High Country tracks open, it’s the perfect excuse to plan a few days following the High Country Brewery Trail.
This big loop takes in the Bridge Road Brewers at Beechworth, Rutherglen Brewery, Taminick’s Black Dog Brewery, The Social Bandit Brewing Co in Mansfield, King River Brewing in King Valley, Bright Brewery, Dinner Plain’s Blizzard Brewing Co, and Sweetwater Brewing Company in Tawonga South. Enticing? We reckon so. Check out: www.victoriashighcountry.com.au/food-wine-beer/high-country-brewery-trail
MILLION DOLLAR BARRA’ (top end, NT)
It’s always easy to find a reason to head to the Northern Territory’s Top End and fish for the mighty barramundi, but the NT government has just come up with the ultimate excuse: 101 barramundi have been tagged and released across the Top End’s waterways, with 100 of these worth $10,000 if you can catch one.
Then, there’s the big one: somewhere, deep in those crocodile-filled waters, is a barramundi worth $1,000,000. Yep, like we said, any excuse will do – especially this one! Entry is free, so head to www.milliondollarfish.com.au for more information.
EAST COAST HEAVEN (NSW)
With summer upon us, it’s time to check out some of NSW’s fantastic touring destinations. With the mountains of the Great Dividing Range abutting the coastal lowlands, the NSW coast offers a fantastic variety of four-wheel escapes, with the Barrington Tops region (and the nearby town of Dungog) a top option.
The alpine tracks of the national park will be open for the summer period, and the high campsites in this park are awesome. Add in neighbouring Chichester State Forest’s tracks and it makes a great summer destination. See: www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au and www.forestrycorporation.com.au/visit/forests/chichester
ARB TOWN & COUNTRY TYRES STACKPOLE 400 (NSW)
The ARB Australian Off Road Racing Championship kicks off at Griffith in southwestern New South Wales with the Stackpoole 400 running from March 17 to 19. The ARB ORRC runs over four rounds at four different locations during the year. It is a great chance for those looking to get into competitive off-road racing to try it out in a sociable environment.
With eight vehicle classes ranging from production 4x4s through to buggies and everything in between, it’s guaranteed to be an awesome weekend. For more info, see: www.offroadracing.com.au
MAN FROM SNOWY RIVER FESTIVAL (VIC)
Make your way to Corryong on April 5 to 8 for this annual event celebrating Australia’s unique mountain lifestyle. The festival includes the epic Man from Snowy River Challenge horse race, local art exhibits, bush tucker, some brilliant country music, local photography displays and the High Country Ute Muster.
Designed to recreate the big bush gatherings of yesteryear and the Aussie country lifestyle, it is a fantastic four days in and around this pristine alpine village. For event details and to buy tickets, head to: www.bushfestival.com.au
2018 DRIVE 4 LIFE (VIC)
A fantastic off-road tour that helps raise money for the Northcott foundation, which provides support and services to people with disabilities. A $1000 tax deductible donation per vehicle ensures participation. The trip kicks off from Harrietville on Sunday, March 18, and is five days of fantastic Vic High Country touring, before finishing back at Harrietville on Friday, March 23.
Vehicle’s must have low range and be fitted with all-terrain tyres; plus you must be self-sufficient in regards to camping gear, food and water. See www.drive4life.com.au