Living our dreams

Host: Mudgeacca Station
Written by Claire Britton, Station Manager

I met my partner Ryan, in March 2016, he was on route to his ‘dry season’ job based in Kununurra driving a cattle truck for a family owned business all over the Northern Territory and eastern Western Australia. I was quite content to continue my single, independent life after meeting him but after his persistence and persuasion we decided to lock in a long-distance relationship. In June that year I took time off to drive the 2,000km to visit him and quite literally get to know him better. Kununurra and the Kimberley region stole my heart straight up and I guess Ryan secured mine after the trip.

Ryan’s truck he drove based in Kununurra with the Pinkerton Ranges in the backdrop.

Ryan’s job was indeed living the dream. He was paid to travel through some amazing country, meet great people and most all do what he lives and breathes for, cattle carting. He returned to Mudgeacca for the wet season of 2016/2017 and went back to Kununurra for another dry season in 2017.

It was tough having to go back to Kununurra and go Barramundi fishing on the Ord.

As hard as long distance was at times, I was happy to have another excuse to go back to Kununurra! I trekked the 2,000km one way trip yet again in July 2017, and we were lucky enough to do some tourist things this lap. We got out to Emma Gorge and Home Valley Station, on the trip the year before we went and saw Lake Argyle and did the Lake Kununurra Dinner cruise. It really is its own little world up there, time just seems to slow down and stresses disappear.

Lake Kununurra sunset when we did the Sunset dinner cruise, epic.

On Ryan’s return in November 2017 it was set to be a permanent stay this time. We do work well, although he will probably tell you otherwise. What’s a bit of yelling and cuss words between lovers?? We are getting better, I guess it’s because we have to, but I do remind Ryan we both have been our own bosses pretty well for years so working so closely with someone else was always going to cause a stir.

Ryan and I, it’s a team effort.

We have been lucky enough to have great support, loving and financial from my parents to be able to buy a prime mover and trailers to start our own cattle transport company. Diesel is in Ryan’s veins, and him not driving a truck would be like cutting oxygen to him. He does enjoy all aspects of property life, mustering, yard work and water runs, but trucks are his passions and I’d be silly not to respect that. So Garland’s Cattle Transport is what we are, with just the one truck Ryan can be based here at Mudgeacca.

Our latest pride and joy that makes up what is Garland Cattle Transport based at Mudgeacca, Boulia.

I’ve been told a lot that I’ll have to ‘get used to’ Ryan being away when he gets busy. I just laugh. Two years of long distance, and trying to build a relationship with someone 2,000km away would either make or break a couple. I certainly appreciate the fact he’s closer now and at least I know he’ll be home once in a fortnight and not in another 6 months. We now have the best of both worlds, I get to look after my cattle and do what I love and Ryan gets to tinker with his trailers and truck in the shed and drive. Our passions have collided. We are now living our own dream.

Embracing the trucking life on visits to Kununurra, becoming a good passenger and gate opener.