TASSIE TRIPPERS 2016
Adrian and Kathy Griffen 68 ZA Fairlane
John and Denise Greenshields 63 MGB
Glen and Pauline Karutz 77 HZ Holden ute
Kym and Carolyn Anderson 79 HZ Holden
Hilton and Liz Trigg 72 VH Charger
Roly and Lorraine Binns 76 VK Charger
Rick and Elaine Price 77 CL Charger
In the first week of April 2016, the above 14 members of the Lincoln Auto Club left Port Lincoln for a two week tour of Tasmania. Apart from Adrian and Kathy Griffen who travelled to Mount Gambier where they collected Kathy’s sister Edna and her husband Dennis, we all met up at Bacchus Marsh on the evening of Thursday 7th April.
The following day we trained it into Melbourne where the ladies enjoyed themselves immensely on the restaurant tram, whilst the men had a more sedate time inspecting some very interesting vehicles at a motor show in the Exhibition Hall. That night we all travelled back on the train to Bacchus Marsh and discussed what was to be a regular quandary for the next fortnight…”Where do we eat tonight?”. The next morning it was off to Melbourne in preparation for the ferry ride across Bass Strait.
The journey into Port Melbourne for two of the couples, became a feat second only to a solo kayak crossing of the Pacific, when the leading driver (who shall remain nameless) took the left freeway exit instead of the right which resulted in the circumnavigation of Melbourne and surrounds before reaching the others, who by that time were fairly entrenched in a Port Melbourne tavern watching the footy and sampling an ale or two. Here we reunited with the crew of the Griffen car who had arrived in Melbourne via the Great Ocean Road.
Loading hundreds of cars onto the Spirit of Tasmania was quite a process. We were joined by 60 plus Porsches going over for the Targa Tasmania, not as ‘real’ entrants as such, but to participate in the ‘tour’ car category of the event. Following our arrival on the Sunday morning we found ourselves at Beaconsfield where, amongst other things, and on request, we took our cars to the local aged care facility. One of the residents had a very keen interest in seeing what vehicles we had. Residents and staff alike, men and women, all gathered on the verandah with their zimmer frames and walking aids, some women in curlers, partway through having their hair done, and all were smiling joyously upon our arrival. It was truly worth our effort to pay a visit. It made their day, and ours. Luckily there was no emergency as we blocked up the car park completely.
The next day we travelled north of Launceston to Georgetown where we watched between 300 and 400 cars competing in Stage 1 of Targa Tasmania through the town’s streets. This was followed by an up close inspection of the Targa cars as they gathered following the day’s competition. We not only enjoyed the cars, but were entertained throughout the day by the performance of a middle aged female CAMS Official who undoubtedly perfected her oral presentations by droving cattle in the Top End!
Whilst staying at Launceston we had lunch one day at ‘The 50’s Diner’ at Deloraine, an American style ‘50’s eatery with ‘garagenalia’ to burn. It was there that we learnt Deloraine had just had a ‘show n shine’ with about 450 cars on display. Naturally a visit to the National Motor Museum whilst in Launceston was something motor enthusiasts have to do. It was at Launceston that an unknown person who, under the cover of darkness, enveloped some of our cars in ‘Do Not Enter’ and other ‘Beware/Danger’ tapes very similar to those which flanked the Targa course at Georgetown. Unfortunately, suspicion is attached to a senior member of the Lincoln Auto Club. CCTV footage of the carpark was accessed to confirm this suspicion.
One night we had the pleasure of the company of Jim Richards, Barry Oliver and their wives at dinner. Jim and Barry have (amongst many other wins) won Targa Tasmania eight times. It was a very enjoyable and entertaining evening. After four days in Launceston it was time to move on. Some of us visited Longford and soaked up the history of the early Australian GP’s, others took the longer coastal route, in making our way to our marvellous B & B accommodation in Swansea. From there we had a nice day travelling out to Coles Bay on the Freycinet Peninsula. Here some of the group went for a scenic flight whilst others, without the aid of Sherpa’s or oxygen, trekked, climbed and struggled to the Freycinet Look-out overlooking Wineglass Bay. A visit to the Devil’s Corner Winery on our way back renewed our energy and outlook on life.
Wrest Point Casino in Hobart was our next stop-over where we were treated like Royalty for four nights. The organizer of our tour and accommodation must have spun them a great story, as we were allocated a fenced off section of the carpark, whilst the Targa teams and other hotel guests were left to fend for themselves! We did the usual things in Hobart – Salamanca Market, cruising, eating and drinking, etc. A night out at The Drunken Admiral on Constitution Dock stood out as a fabulous evening in very characteristic surroundings.
Wednesday 20th saw us meandering through to Queenstown where we stayed for two nights. Whilst there we took the old steam train ride up into the rain forest and Heritage area, along the King River, Lowana, Teepookana, Dubbil Barril and Rinadenna passing over the Quarter Mile Bridge. Arriving back in Queenstown, some of us took the opportunity of having a guided tour of the Railway workshop. Others took the opportunity to tackle the winding road to Strahan on the West Coast and back.
Whilst passing through Zeehan on the following Friday we stopped to chat and have a look at a dozen very nice classic cars which were taking part in the ‘Unique Cars’ rally, also coinciding with the Targa Tasmania event. Then it was on to Cradle Mountain for our final night in Tasmania. We did the usual things like walking around Dove Lake, and checking out the Tasmanian Devil enclosure and other wildlife in the area. It certainly is a beautiful place. The next leg was to Devonport on the Saturday morning via Sheffield, where once again we saw more nice classics against the backdrop of the town’s famous murals. After a visit to the Devonport Maritime Museum it was time to board the Ferry. The procedure once again was quite a lengthy process but you have to admire the staff and crew’s responsibility in getting hundreds of vehicles on and off, day in, day out. It was a good ride back to Melbourne and all were off the Ferry safely. But it was only once ashore that one of the vehicles ‘threw a wobbly’ and refused to start. Because it was Sunday morning, with Anzac Day following, the owner knew that a wait was in store before the problem could be rectified. But no! Hilton had his Jeep and empty trailer in Melbourne (that’s another story), so on the trailer went the offending vehicle and four happy people travelled home with no further problem.
In summary, the weather was mostly fantastic, many other attractions and points of interest were visited, food and coffees were first class, the roads provided for some great driving and the camaraderie was exceptional. A 10/10 trip. Different people did different things at different times, but generally speaking each vehicle travelled a total of about 4,700 kms, about 1,550 of those being in Tasmania. The comments and conversations experienced in the car park, delis’ servos and bars, confirms that wherever a group of classic cars appears, you are certain to generate a lot of interest. Especially in Tasmania!
So if you are thinking of gathering a group of friends together and sharing the joys of classic motoring, we would recommend you adopt the Nike principle and “Just do it!”
Submitted by the 2016 Tassie Trippers