They could taste the dust in the air - and it wasn't even windy.
The extend of this unrelenting drought hit everyone on the We Care Road Trip when they set foot in drought-ravaged communities over the weekend.
Photos and videos of the drought had shown them it was bad, but that was nothing compared to seeing the dirt under their feet and tasting the dust in the air.
"The dirt was like fine sand," organiser Anne-Marie Best said.
Forty-seven people went on the trip through several towns to Coonabarabran. Each one walked away with a better understanding of the unfolding crisis in the state's food bowl.
They opened their wallets - and their hearts, and the event soon became a spend-a-thon.
Overall the group spent $28,543.
There was a $1272 spend in Dunedoo and the bus was only there for half an hour. That's a huge injection into a small country town.
The bus load also spent $2251.50 in Coolah in almost 1.5 hours, and a whopping $547.50 in Sandy Hollow in half an hour.
"We spent $11,169 in Coonabarabran, $1477 in Merriwa and $1272 in Dunedoo - and we were only there for 30 minutes," Ms Best said.
"In Gilgandra - we were there for an hour and we spent $1381. In Coolah, we were there for an hour and 20 minutes, and spent $2251.50."
A year ago Ms Best took the first ever We Care Road Trip to Coonabarabran, and unfortunately not a lot has changed.
The landscape looks the same and the whole area is still waiting for a decent deluge.
"By the end of the trip everyone was hugging and kissing each other, it was such a good group of people and they all had a wonderful time," she said.
More pictures online.