I have access to Shinrarta Dezra/Jameson Memorial, finally. Having gotten my Exploration rank to Pioneer (20% ish), mostly through the Quince passenger mission exploit (if I’m honest), I was struggling to get it to go much further in what I consider to be a timely way. So I did the only sensible thing… hit up the Elite: Dangerous Exploration Reddit. I’ve long wanted to do “The Big One” – Sag A*, but I haven’t done anything to prep for it, so I went looking for an Exploration Primer and hit what turned out (for me) to be gold dust – the Road to Riches. It’s a bit like an exploration self-test; a series of over 200 systems (557 planets, to be exact) that are all within easy distance of the bubble, all count as unexplored if you’ve not yet scanned them, and all (for the most part) within 40LY of each other, so you can get away with an exploration ship that doesn’t have great jump range (I’d recommend you have no less than 20LY jump range, but if you don’t mind the odd very circuitous jump, you could probably do it with less). It’s a nice way to practice your exploration skills (scan the A star, refuel and honk all at the same time…) in relative safety since populated star systems are reasonably close, and it gets you a huge payday when you finish, in both credits and exploration rank. I gained over 300M credits (which given I’ve been under 100M for a few months now is most welcome), and Elite Explorer.
I know I can (mostly) do a long exploration trip without dying now. Yes, I had my fair share of “too close” drops, and I had to loop of shame far too often (after 4+ hours of exploring, I get tired), but my Exploraconda did its job admirably, and I didn’t run out of AFMU charges; it was somewhat close, but not too close. Now I can start planning to go to Sag A*.