Wayne Lang 7th July 2021
#ZN617 arriving 11th August. Ruth and I travelled to Gympie (we live in Brisbane) yesterday and undertook the 1 day Caravan Towing and Reversing Training offered by Little John Driving School. It was terrific. We obviously don’t have a set up yet to learn to tow a heavy rig so we took advantage of their option of using their LandCruiser and 20’ Lotus. Tony met us at the Puma Service Centre 18klms south of Gympie. He explained a few things about his setup and questioned us about our towing experiences (just a small box trailer).
Tony gave me the keys and said I was driving. Very nervous but he did instil some confidence in me enabling me to have a go. I drove 10klms to Gympie on the Old Bruce Highway then the extra 8klms on the new highway with all of the traffic that entails. This also included some pretty hairy driving through narrow roadworks. Drove through Gympie and turned off the highway about 10klms north. Ruth took over then and drove the next 10klms to their nice little property where we were met by Helke, Tony’s wife.
We spent some time learning how to reverse in a straight line and then went inside for a light lunch of the freshest sandwiches and coffee.
After lunch Helke took us on a tour of their van to show us some of the tips and tricks they learnt over their 20 years (I think) of caravanning.
Next Ruth and I learnt how to reverse the caravan into a space similar to the size we would expect to find at a caravan park. Tony and Helke were extremely patient with us and kept us repeating the tasks until we were pretty competent. Helke took over after we finished and backed the caravan into their shed with ease. Tony and Helke displayed excellent teaching skills.
The most valuable aspect of the day was the actual towing of the caravan in an authentic traffic situation. Absolutely nerve-wracking to start with but the nerves calmed as did the puls after about 10Kim’s. We were actually booked to do our towing course with Roadcraft but could not get a suitable date.
The course went from 9:30 until 2:00. We thought it was fantastic value for $500 total cost. We now feel a lot less nervous about towing. We took lots of notes which will come in handy after August 11. Lots more to learn.