Nat Geo TV in the Flinders Ranges

News      December 19, 2013      David Wilson

National Geographic TV in partnership with Land Rover have a great competition on at the moment where you can win your own “Great Escape”, a long weekend away at either The Barossa, Daylesford in Victoria or Noosa in Queensland, with flights, accommodation, dining and the use of a Land Rover all part of the deal. Here’s the link to the competition pageĀ

The concept of Land Rover’s “Great Escape” with Nat Geo is a goodie, a chance to see Rover’s products out and about in some iconic and 4WD locations. There’s three films to view, one shot along The Great Ocean Road, another on Fraser Island and the one that caught our interest, The Flinders Ranges. The films are presented by Nat Geo’s roving reporter Nick Saxon, who’s carved out a career as a singer-songwriter and now as a TV presenter.

Adventure 4WD got involved after we were invited to lend the on-gound support and design a drive route that showed off the Flinders at its best. With a limited schedule of just three days it was obvious we couldn’t get in the middle and wander around the ABC, Chace and Druid Ranges near Wilpena, we needed something closer, so the decision became reallly easy and we opted for the Bendleby Ranges and the superb facilities offered by Jane and Warren Luckraft.

The Bendleby Ranges are the focus of our Weekend Walkabout tag-along 4WD training trips which we offer around 4 times a year during April-November. The driving on the property is awesome, the trails twist and turn following the tortured path of the hills and the creeks, home to the dreamtime serpent story of Arkaroo. The gradients are steep so its a trip with plenty of elevation, LOW range is the go and precision the key. Have a look at our past photo galleries to see what we get up to and seek out the pages devoted to “Weekend Walkabout”. For $780 per vehicle (take 10% off if you’re an RAA member) you get 2 days of amazing 4WD’ing, overnight accommodation in comfy shearers quarters and dinner on Saturday night, it’s great value.

The pressure was on back in August as the shoot schedule selected ran right up against the Melbourne 4WD Show. In what turned out to be an epic fortnight for me I had a week’s worth of training leading up to the date, jump on the bird to Melbourne on the Saturday morning at sparrow-fart then back to Adelaide and in bed around midnight, up again at dawn to drive to Clare and meet the crew on Sunday morning and then on to Bendleby for Monday and Tuesday. Of course the balance of that week was hectic too, so no rest for the wicked.

The crew flew in to Adelaide and picked up 2 diesel Discoveries our hero vehicles for the shoot. On Nick’s own admission this was his first real 4WD foray and he can be thankful he got to drive one of the world’s best 4WD wagons, chock-a-block full of technology that makes the job a whole lot easier. Well we bumped across all manner of terrain, up before the sun to capture some great dawn skies, got some big diagonal cross-ups, charged up and down insanely steep hills and had an all-round great time. Have a look at the video shot at the Bendlebys here

Here’s a couple of pics from the shoot.

From left: Nick strumming away atop the North-South Ridge, Navara leads the way, Discos on the trail, “What no phone signal?”, oldie and newbie

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