Into the hinterland and beyond . . .

Host: Lochon Contracting
Written by Tini – Owner, Lochon Contracting.

Off to the desert it is. After a well deserved break over the last weekend, with most of our crew going to the annual Fitzroy Crossing Rodeo, the Lochon mob is heading back to Bulka Station to finish building the yard and holding paddock in the Hills. They will be packing up in a few days at the homestead and make their long way to the hinterland far beyond Haydn and Jane’s stations.

It won’t be the first time Locky has mustered there, as he was catching bulls in the desert a few years ago. Back then I missed out on the job, as I was in Germany for a few months, applying and waiting for my permanent resident visa (Yes, I am not a native to this country, but I would say that I have adapted quite well and definitely grown passionate for this part of the beautiful land down under). This year however, I was set to go to the desert. Locky had been telling me the most amazing stories about the strange but amazing landscape, with dried up supersized lakes, wide open flats, and the biggest bulls he has ever caught.

LOCHON 4.1 copyA monstrous desert bull (photo copyright Hugh Gifford).

They were so big, in fact, that he had to modify his bull catching buggy. The bull bar had to be lifted up higher, so that the point of impact (you need to prod the bull while he and the buggy are both moving at a similar speed) would not be below the spot you need to hit on the bull for him to lose his balance and ultimately ‘roll’. While the bull is rolling the driver quickly but carefully has to park the bull bar (which is extended forward) onto the bull, so that it holds him down and keeps him from getting up, while the driver (Locky) or the strapper (the passenger) straps the bull’s hind or front legs to immobilise him when removing the vehicle.

LOCHON 4.2 copy Locky strapping a caught bull (photo copyright Hugh Gifford).

LOCHON 4.3 copyLocky throwing a bull by the tail (photo copyright Hugh Gifford).

Click here to read more about why Lochon Contracting go “bull catching”

So, not only did the bull bar need to be lifted to match the height of the bulls, it was also necessary to fit the bull bar on top of these obese bulls. Right, so this year I was ready to see it all and do it all. The vast desert with it’s huge lakes and plus size cattle was where I would be with Locky.

However, something greater has intercepted my plans. Locky and I are expecting our first child together. I am only three weeks away from the due date. I have been and am feeling great. In fact, I had been out bush with the crew (on light duties, like counting cattle and cooking campfire meals etc.) until just two weeks ago.

LOCHON 4.4On light duties . . .

I was enjoying it very much and was convinced we would make it to the desert before it is time for me to stay in a safer place and in closer proximity to the hospital. Well, I am NOT out with crew, I am back in Derby, where a much more important challenge lies ahead of me. Since the desert is not just a few, but more like 12 hours away from Derby, I am hoping that Locky will be able to make it in time for our D-day. But obviously I am much more interested in him getting here safely rather than quickly.

By the looks of it I am swapping one adventure for another, a much greater one, a much more rewarding one, realistically a more challenging one. With respect and curiosity I am looking forward to the next phase of our lives. 1+1=3!!! Bring it on!

We have been trying to prepare ourselves for the arrival of the little one as much as we could. To be able to be still living the lives we have been living, contracting on Kimberley stations and moving around a lot, we bought a massive heavy duty caravan that will allow us to be together as a family, but being out bush with enough comfort to counter the harshness of the bush. Nobody says you cannot have a little bit of luxury after having spent the cattle season in a tent for years. Look out for next year’s Lochon blog to find out how we went with our luxury infused bush camp.

LOCHON 4.5Camping in style.