Packed Like Peanuts

What to pack in a little campervan

Our packing list for a trip around Australia

 If you’re planning a long term road trip around Australia, you’ve probably got some experience with camping or backpacking already.

Prior to this trip, we had more experience with short term ‘backpack camping’ – that is, keeping it small, light and tight. We were all about ‘making-do’ in order to maximise mobility. We’ve since changed our ways a little, as this minimalist approach does not marry so well with comfort (which we think is important over a prolonged period).

Trying to find room for everything was a bit of a challenge, but it’s surprising how much room there actually is in a TroopCarrier.

It’s important to have a particular place for things as it gets really annoying really quick if you’re constantly having to ask each other where this or that has gone! However we do find that over time, certain items have to be relocated when we realise we need them to be more accessible or that we don’t use them as often as we expected.

A few years ago while travelling the Nullarbor a wise friend shared his mindset when it comes to camping. He told us, “I’d rather be looking at it, than for it”.

So here’s what we packed in our Troopy and where we put it

Some of the stuff has been extreamly usefull, so it’s highlited in GREEN. Some things we’ve only used once or twice and are highlited in ORANGE. A few things we’ve never used once and are highlited in RED. This doesn’t count for everything though, spares or recovery gear for example. That’s the stuff you hope you won’t need, but you’re glad you have it just in case.

Glove Box
  • Clean microfiber cloth
  • Multi-tool
  • Insurance and breakdown cover info
  • Bag of $1 and $2 coins – So useful for parking and laundry!
Dashboard and that gap above the windscreen...
  • Hema maps Australia Road & 4WD Atlas 
  • Hema maps Australia Handy Map (one page map of Australia)
  • Various larger scale maps of places we’ve been through
  • Sunglasses
Door pockets
  • Stick on sun shades – Important on long drives!
  • Note book
  • Tyre pressure gauge
  • Grubby microfiber cloth
Centre Console
  • Phones
  • Telstra network sim card (Boost Mobile) and Optus network sim card (Amaysim) – We change these out depending on the coverage.
  • AU key 12v USB fast charger (for phone) – Highly recommended.
  • Cameras
  • 12v camera Charger
  • iPod Classic and USB cable
  • AA or AAA battery charger (USB)
  • Assorted batteries
  • More books
  • Drinking bottles
  • Platypus/Camelbak hydration bladders 
Behind the passenger seat
  • Recovery gear (hand winch, recovery boards, chains, ropes)
    • Hand winch + chains
    • 4x D shackles, rated to four tonne
    • Snatch strap
    • Snatch strap extension
    • Tree trunk protector
  • Long rope
  • Handy hardwood wedge/chock
  • Handy hardwood slab about 25 by 20cm and about 3cm thick – Makes a decent jack base plate amongst other things.
Under or behind the bench seat
  • Extensive Tool kit
    • Rubber mallet
    • Claw hammer
    • Hacksaw and spare blades – Great for large firewood and small fire pits.
    • Hatchet
    • Set of spanners
    • Set of sockets + ratchet
    • 2x shifters (adjustable spanners) in smaller and larger sizes
    • Engineers pliers
    • Adjustable pliers
    • Needle nosed pliers
    • Mole grips
    • Multi grips
    • Various screwdrivers
    • Spring Clamps
    • Multimeter
    • Craft knife
    • Scalpel
    • Cold chisel
    • Battery powered soldering iron and solder
    • Wheel jack
    • Tyre iron
    • Tyre levers/pliers
    • Oil funnel
  • Hardware and spares
    • 2x spare tyre inner tubes
    • Puncture repair kit
    • Slime puncture sealent
    • WD40
    • graphite powder
    • Silicone spray
    • Spare set of belts, hoses, etc.
    • Large assortment of nuts, bolts and washers – Varying sizes between M4 and M12, some nylon locking nuts, some high tensile stuff.
    • Spare fuel cap
    • Spare water tank bungs
    • Various glues and tapes
  • Electrical
    • H4 headlight bulb
    • Indicator /stop /reverse bulbs
    • Internal lighting bulbs
    • Male + female spade crimps
    • Ring terminals
    • Auto cable
  • Portable 2 hob camping stove (In addition to the built in one – We only cook inside if it’s raining.)
  • Solar shower
  • Folding shovel – Important for certain morning rituals when free camping (Also useful for off-roading but a long handled shovel is much easier and safer).
  • Spare 3 person tent – In case we can’t sleep in Bruce for some reason. E.G. Tents only campsite or Bruce is in the garage.
  • 2x self inflating roll mats
  • Tarpaulin
  • Chamois cloth
  • Car washing sponge
  • Windscreen washer fluid
  • 10m drinking water hose for filling the 45L tank
  • Air compressor hose
  • 2 sets of snorkelling flippers
  • Fishing gear (two rods, a hand line, stocked tackle box, filleting knife) – Soft plastic baits are recommended so you dont keep stinky stuff in your fridge.
  • 2x Yabby traps
  • Shrimp trap
  • Inflatable lilos and a pink, beer holding flamingo – Yeah….
Clothes cupboard (tall)
  • Enough clothes to go about a week before washing – Not too many!
  • Shoes
    • Walking boots – Ours are too hot and weighty for the northern climate. We just use our Sneakers most of the time.
    • Thongs (That means flip-flops if you aren’t Aussie!)
    • Plimsolls / Canvas shoes
    • Sneakers / Running shoes
In the sink
  • Handy yellow 10L bucket – great for washing up, sponge baths, fishing…
  • Plastic food tubs in various stacking sizes – Make big meals and have leftovers so you don’t have to cook every night!
  • 6 pack sized squashable cool bag
  • Wire wool
  • Earth Choice Dishwashing Concentrate – it’s a small bottle and it lasts ages.
  • A couple of sizes of plastic sink plugs – Useful in campsite kitchens and laundries
Cupboard under the sink (double doors)
  • Food! – Plenty of tins and other stuff that won’t go off.
  • GSI Outdoors Pinnacle stacking kitchen set (3L and 2L pans with lids, fry pan, 4 plates, 4 bowls, 4 insulated cups with lids)
  • Steel coffee plunger – We don’t do instant.
  • Plastic wine glasses – Totes worth it!
  • Clear plastic tumblers – Nice to drink adult beverages from, but it’s rare we have anything other than wine or beer. The GSI set has cups anyway.
  • Medium mixing bowl (Perfect for mixing damper!)
  • Small measuring jug
  • Two 15L folding water carriers
  • 2 sets of Snorkels and masks
"Kitchen" draw
  • Large and small sharp kitchen knives
  • Small plastic chopping board
  • Medium plastic chopping board
  • 2 sets of cutlery – Forks, spoons, knives, teaspoons.
  • Vegetable peeler
  • Can opener
  • Bottle opener / Cork screw
  • Microplane for grating cheese – Much smaller than a regular grater
  • Oyster shucking knife – Lots of places to harvest delicious oysters around the coast
  • Crab picks – We used these once, I swear! Would use them more if we had a crab pot and a boat….
Medium "Square" Cupboard
  • Our laptops
  • Books
    • Bird book – We weren’t birdwatchers before, but we’ll often spot something beautiful we’ve never seen before and want to know what it is.
    • LandCruiser workshop manual
  • 100 watt inverter – Mainly used for Bron’s laptop as we couldn’t find a 12v charger for it.
  • 240v chargers for all our electronics
  • AAA Battery powered travel speaker
  • Sleeping bags – We used to use these a fair bit in winter, but then we bought another blanket which we prefer.
  • Funnel for filling the water tank if we can’t use a hose
  • Mortein insect spray
  • Cards
  • A bloody golf putting set?!
  • A Poi set
  • Travel chess
  • A card game called Cthulhu Fluxx
Small cupboard 1
  • Spare toilet roll
  • Small box of laundry powder
  • Cleaning stuff
    • Stiff bristled hand brush (awesome for getting bits off the carpet when you don’t have a vacuum)
    • Glen 20 / Febreze spray
    • Mini dustpan and brush
Small cupboard 2
  • Fully stocked first aid kit
    • Plasters
    • Bandages
    • Safety pins
    • Ibuprofen tablets
    • Ibuprofen cream
    • Paracetamol
    • Imodium
    • Indigestion tablets
    • Stingose bite and sting spray
    • Antiseptic cream
    • Liquid antiseptic
    • Salbutamol Inhaler
    • Antihistamines
    • Tweezers
    • Scissors
    • Silicone Gloves
    • Gauze
    • Medical tape
    • Hydralyte
Small draw under the fridge
  • Insect repellent
  • Wash kit/toiletries
    • Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap – Citrus Orange – This is a really handy, all purpose, concentrated soap. We mainly use it as shower gell, but sometimes we use it for washing our clothes or dishes
    • The usual stuff!
    • Electric beard trimmer + charger
  • Head torches
  • Maglite LED torch (2xAA size)
  • Mozzie coils and a metal diffuser
Spare wheel bag / rucksack
  • Heavy duty bin bags
  • Rubber door mat
  • Any wet and dirty stuff like recovery gear
  • Camp fire oven (Actually just an old stainless steel pan with a lid…)
  • Welding gloves – Very handy for stoking the fire or messing with hot engines
  • Pair of Maxtrax recovery boards – Actually ratchet strapped to the spare wheel
Miscellaneous
  • Stubby coolers – Stored in the mesh pocket on the small back door
  • Sponge and 2 tea towels – Pegged on the washing line on the back doors
  • Air compressor – Actually installed under the bonnet but it’s so important for off-roading I though it should be included here.
  • Bat Light LED work torch – Very bright and works as a flood light when you’re up late fixing something!
  • AAA battery powered, clip on LED lights with bendy necks – Very handy
  • 2 x 2kg gas canisters – In gas storage locker built into the side of the car
  • Reusable baking sheet liner (For using on public/campsite barbecues) – Stored in the built in grill
  • Hand sanitizer – In the mesh pocket behind the large barn door
Crudely thrown in the back when we break camp...
  • 2x camping chairs (OZtrail Jumbo Executive, Baby!)
  • Folding table
  • Linen for the bed (set of sheets, two thick blankets, pillows)
  • Beach towels
  • Microfiber travel towels – Small, quick drying and you can wash them with shower gell while you shower, then still dry yourself!

“We’re like tortoises. We have to take our house with us”. ?? source??

Glove Box

  • Clean micro fiber cloth
  • Multi-tool
  • Insurance and breakdown cover info
  • Bag of $1 and $2 coins – So usefull for parking and laundry!

Dashboard and stuffed in that gap above the windscreen…

  • Hema maps Australia road atlas
  • Hema maps Australia handy map (one page map of Australia)
  • Various larger scale maps of places we’ve been through
  • Sunglasses

Door pockets

  • Stick on sun shades – Important on long drives!
  • Note book
  • Tyre pressure guage
  • Grubby micro fiber cloth

Centre Console

  • Phones
  • Telstra network sim card (Boost Mobile) and Optus network sim card (Amaysim) – We changed these out depending on the coverage
  • AU key 12v USB fast charger (for phone) – highly recommended
  • Cameras
  • 12v camera Charger
  • iPod Classic and USB cable
  • AA or AAA battery charger (USB)
  • Assorted batteries
  • More books
  • Drinking bottles
  • Platypus/camelback hydration bladders

Behind the passenger seat

  • Recovery gear (hand winch, recovery boards, chains, ropes)
    • Hand winch + chains
    • 4x D shackles, rated to four tonne
    • Snatch strap
    • Snatch strap extension
    • Tree trunk protector
  • Long rope
  • Handy hardwood wedge/chock
  • Handy hardwood plank/jack base plate

Under or behind the bench seat

  • Portable 2 hob camping stove (In addition to the built in one – We only cook inside if it’s raining)
  • Solar shower
  • Folding shovel – Important for certain morning rituals when free camping (Also useful for off roading but a long handled shovel is much easier and safer)
  • Fishing gear (two rods, a hand line, stocked tackle box, crab pot, filleting knife)
  • Spare 3 person tent (in case we can’t sleep in Bruce for some reason)
  • 2x self inflating roll mats
  • Extensive Tool kit
    • Rubber mallet
    • Claw hammer
    • Hacksaw (great for large firewood in small pits)
    • Hatchet
    •  Set of spanners
    • Set of sockets + ratchet
    • 2x shifters (adjustable spanners) in smaller and larger sizes
    • Engineers pliers
    • Adjustable pliers
    • Needle nosed pliers
    • Mole grips
    • Multi grips
    • Various screwdrivers
    • Spring Clamps
    • Multimeter
    • Craft knife
    • Scalpel
    • Cold chisels
  • Oil funnel
  • WD40
  • graphite powder
  • Silicone spray
  • Tarp
  • Wheel jack
  • Spare tyre inner tubes
  • Puncture repair kit
  • Tyre levers/pliers
  • Spare set of belts, hoses, etc.
  • H4 headlight bulb
  • Indicator /stop /reverse bulbs
  • Internal lighting bulbs
  • Male+female spade crimps
  • Ring terminals
  • Electrical tape
  • Auto cable
  • Large assortment of nuts and bolts, varying in size between M4 and M12, some nylon locking nuts, some high tensile.
  • Spare fuel cap
  • Spare water tank bungs
  • 2 sets of snorkelling flippers
  • Yabbie trap
  • Shrimp trap
  • 10m drinking water hose for filling the 45L tank
  • Air compressor hose
  • Shammy cloth
  • car washing sponge
  • windscreen washer fluid
  • Inflatable lilos + beer flamingo – It’s a thing…

Clothes cupboard (tall)

  • Clothes (not too many!)
  • Shoes
    • Walking boots
    • Thongs (That means flip-flops if you aren’t Aussie!)
    • Plimsoles
    • Sneakers/Running shoes

Cupboard under the sink (double doors)

  • Food!
  • GSI Outdoors Pinnacle stacking kitchen set (3L and 2L pans with lids, fry pan, 4 plates, 4 bowls, 4 insulated cups with lids)
  • Coffee plunger
  • Plastic wine glasses
  • Plastic tumblers
  • Medium mixing bowl (Perfect for mixing dampa!)
  • Small measuring jug
  • Two 15L folding water carriers
  • 2 sets of Snorkels and masks

“Kitchen” draw

  • Chopping board
  • Large and small sharp kitchen knives
  • Small plastic chopping board
  • Medium plastic chopping board
  • 2 sets of cutlery – Forks, spoons, knives, teaspoons
  • Can opener
  • Bottle opener
  • Microplane for grating cheese
  • Oyster shucker
  • Crab picks

Medium “Square” Cupboard

  • Our laptops
  • Books
    • Bird book
    • LandCruiser workshop manual
  • 100 watt inverter – Mainly used for Bron’s laptop as we couldn’t find a 12v charger for it.
  • 240v chargers for all our electronics
  • AAA Battery powered travel speaker
  • Sleeping bags
  • Insect spray
  • Cards
  • A bloody golf putting set?!
  • Poi
  • Travel chess
  • A card game called Cuthulu Flux

Small cupboard 1

  • Cleaning stuff
    • Mini dustpan and brush
    • Stiff bristled hand brush (awesome for getting bits off the carpet when you dont have a vaccum)
    • Glen 20 / Febreze spray

Small cupboard 2

  • Funnel for filling the water tank if we cant use a hose
  • Spare toilet roll
  • Fully stocked first aid kit
    • Plasters
    • Bandages
    • Safety pins
    • Ibuprofen tablets
    • Ibuprofen cream
    • Paracetamol
    • Imodium
    • Indigestion tablets
    • Stingoes
    • Anticeptic cream
    • Liquid anticeptic
    • Butomol Inhaler
    • Antihistamines
    • Tweezers
    • Scisors
    • Silicone Gloves
    • Gauze
    • Medical tape

Small draw under the fridge

  • Insect repellant
  • Wash kit/toiletries
    • Dr Bronners all purpose liquid soap
  • Head torches
  • Maglight torch (2xAA size)
  • Mosi coils

Spare wheel bag / rucksack

  • Heavy duty bin bags
  • Rubber door mat
  • Any wet and dirty stuff like recovery gear
  • Camp oven (Actually just an old stainless steel pan with a lid…)
  • Welding gloves – Very handy for stoking the fire or messing with hot engines
  • Maxtrax recovery boards – Actually rachet strapped to the spare wheel

Miscellaneous

  • 10L bucket – Stored in the built in sink
  • Plastic food tubs in various stacking sizes – Stored in the 10L bucket
  • 6 pack sized squashable cool bag – Stored in the 10L bucket
  • Wire wool and concentrated washing up liquid –  Stored in the 10L bucket
  • Stubby coolers – Stored in the mesh pocket on the small back door
  • Sponge and 2 teatowels – Pegged on the washing line on the back doors
  • Air compressor – Actually installed under the bonnet but it’s so important for off roading I though it should be included here.
  • Bat Light LED work torch – Very bright and works as a flood light when you’re up late fixing something!
  • AAA battery powered, clip on LED lights with bendy necks – Very handy
  • 2 x 2kg gas canisters – In gas storage locker built into the side of the car
  • Reusable baking sheet liner (For using on public/campsite barbecues) – Stored in the built in grill
  • Hand sanitiser – In the mesh pocket behind the large barn door

Crudely thrown in the back when we break camp…

  • 2x camping chairs (Oztrail Jumbo Executive, Baby!)
  • Folding table
  • Linen for the bed (set of sheets, two thick blankets, pillows)
  • Beach towels
  • Microfibre travel towels

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