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Australian Hiker

Mar 2020

145-Things to do when you can’t hike

It’s early 2020 and Australia has had a hell of a start to the year. First we had a summer full of bushfires that have impacted much of the country, destroying large sections of the bushland that we as hikers spend so much of our time exploring. If that wasn’t enough just as the opportunity to return to the bush presented itself we have the Coronavirus and with it, the ability to access many of our walks has again been curtailed but clearly for a different reason.

There are so many other more mundane reasons within our day to day lives that prevent us from hiking. So when you find yourself unable to hike, what can you do to keep yourself engaged with the outdoors? Let’s look at some options.

Mar 2020

144-Bondi to Manly Walk

The Bondi to Manly Walk was officially opened in December 2019, formalising a pre-existing route into a standalone walk. It showcases Sydney Harbour and includes water views, bushland, residential cut-throughs, historic and Aboriginal heritage, and beach sections. This is truly one of the worlds great urban walks, all within the city confines.

How you choose to walk this trail is up to you and it is very much a ‘choose your own adventure'; you can take as long as you like.  This episode discusses my three day trip, day by day, and to get the best from this podcast follow along with the written review here.

Mar 2020

143-Te Araroa Trail, a catch up

In this episode we catch catch up with musicians Mickey and Michelle who are currently hiking the 3,000km New Zealand Te Araroa Trail, playing gigs as they go. When we first caught up with them in episode 124 they were just about to start this amazing trail and now around five months later they have completed just over 2,200km with around 750 km left. Find out about the trail, the highs and lows, the scenery, and the people as they head towards the finish line.

Mar 2020

142-What to pack for a day hike

It's Saturday morning and the weather is perfect so you decide to head off to a local National Park with friends to do a hike. Nothing complex, but it's more than just a 20 minute walk and you may or may not have a phone signal so you start thinking about what you will take with you. This hike won't require any overnight equipment such as a tent or sleeping bag but you're not really sure what you should take. This is where it can get confusing - take too little or take the wrong things and you may not be comfortable. Take too much and the result is the same.

So what should you take on a day hike?

Feb 2020

141-Catching up with Tangles and Tail: February 2020

In this episode we catch up with Lucy Barnard and Wombat from Tangles and Tail as they make their way from the bottom of South America to the top of North America. This 30,000 km journey will take Lucy around 5-6 years to complete and if successful, she will be the first women to do so.

The last time we caught up with Lucy and Wombat was in September 2019 when they were just about to enter Ecuador. So it's been four months since our last chat with Lucy and she has now completed just on 10,000 km. Today we catch up with her in Tulcan, Ecuador in early March 2020 prior to her last leg in South America before entering Colombia and progressing on to Central America. 

You can listen to our previous episodes with Lucy here:

108-Tangles and tail: an interview with Lucy Barnard May 2019

126-Catching up with Tangles and Tail: September 2019

Feb 2020

140-Everest Base Camp

In this week's episode we catch up with Annie Connor who is a keen Canberra-based hiker and who has spent over 20 years hiking throughout Australia, New Zealand and overseas including treks such the Larapinta Trail and the Annapurna Base Camp.  Towards the end of 2019, Annie completed the Everest Base Camp Trek and as this trek sits on many people’s bucket lists, we wanted to catch up with Annie to find out all about her experience.

Jan 2020

139-Games on the trail

If you hike with children or are just into board and card games then this is the episode for you. There are literally hundreds of choices available for playing games when out hiking and in this weeks podcast episode we look at some options that wont weight you down and are simple to learn and to play. While you wont necessarily take all of these with you on a single hike having one or two of them in your pack may save your sanity if you are tent bound for an extended period due to bad weather.

Dec 2019

137-What’s up in 2020?

In this our first episode for 2020 we take a look at the impacts that the current bushfires gripping many parts of Australia at the time of this podcast are having on hiking and what this may mean for the longer term. In addition, hiking is receiving a boost from state governments so we review proposed walking trails due to open later in 2020 as well as others scheduled for future years and discuss why the NSW Government in particular, is investing in these new trails.

Dec 2019

136-Apps for Hiking

Mobile apps have become such a familiar part of life that there is an app for just about everything. And hiking is no exception. In this episode we have collected together a range of apps for hikers to make your life easier. Our list isn’t exhaustive by any means with the options only limited by your imagination! Listen to our episode to find out more.

Dec 2019

134-Choosing a Sleeping Bag

The problem when choosing a sleeping bag is the huge range of choice we have available on the market. There are hundreds of bags available in the retail stores and online. When choosing a sleeping bag there are some key considerations that come into the mix and in this episode we discuss what to look for in selecting a sleeping bag for your camping needs.

Nov 2019

133-Light to Light Walk

Located on the far southern coast of NSW the 31 km Light to Light Walk is one that while well known by many, still remains a bit of a hidden gem. Over the weekend just gone we chose to do this amazing walk in a single day but for most people a 2-3 day version is the norm. In this episode you can hear our on trail recordings of how our day went and at the end of the podcast we discuss logistical issues surrounding transport and accomodation and make recommendations on options that will suit all levels of hikers.

We recommend that as you listen to this podcast you follow along with the written version of this walk that contains plenty of images of what we are seeing. The written version complete with images of this walk can be found here.

Nov 2019

132-Outward Bound

If you have been involved in the outdoors for any length of time then chances are you have heard of Outward Bound. Outward Bound has been providing eduction in the outdoors for over 70 years and they don't just teach you about being outdoors, they also help you learn more about yourself as an individual. In this episode we talk to Helen at the National headquarters in Tharwa, on the Southern edge of Canberra city about what they do and the services they offer.

Nov 2019

131-Australian Hiker 3rd Birthday

On 11 November 2019 Australian Hiker celebrated its third birthday. In this episode we reflect on our past year and where we are heading into the future. As the request of our listeners we also provide an overview of some key aspects in getting the Australian Hiker podcast to air.

Oct 2019

129-Going to the toilet on the trail

When you start hiking and camping there is so much to learn. What gear do you buy, how do you deal with food, where are the good walks to do and last but not least how do I go to the toilet in the bush?

In this episode we discuss going to toilet on a hike, the process and the do's and don'ts (pun intended) to hopefully give you a bit of peace of mind if you haven't needed to consider this basic function before.

Oct 2019

127-Dehydrated Food on the Trail

Start talking about food options for hiking and it’s amazing how quickly the conversation becomes heated as individuals passionately defend their preferred meal options and tell you why your choices are wrong. This is definitely a topic I try to avoid when at camp in the evening.

Having said that I do have my preferences and as much as I like cooking and eating well when I’m at home, I prefer to keep things simple when I’m on the trail. While my main meals tend to be freeze dried I also integrate dehydrated food into the mix.

This podcast discusses the pros and cons of using dehydrated food and provides a few suggestions for dehydrating.

Oct 2019

126-Catching up with Tangles and Tail: September 2019

In this episode we catch up with Lucy Barnard from Tangles and Tail who is walking the length of the world from the bottom of South America to the top of North America. This 30,000 km journey will take her around 5-6 years to complete. It's been over four months since we last talked with Lucy and we catch up with her in San Ignacio, Peru where she has a two day journey before she leaves Peru and enters Ecuador.

Oct 2019

125-Choosing what to bring on a hike

If you're anything like me then you have more hiking gear the you are ever likely to use so how then do you decide what to bring on a hike? In many cases there is no one right answer when assembling a set of gear for your upcoming adventure and this this episode we look at considerations for making your choice.

Sep 2019

124-Musicians on the Te Araroa

In this week’s episode we have something slightly different for you as we interview Mickey and Michelle about their upcoming journey on the Te Araroa Trail in New Zealand. This is one of the world’s premier long distance hiking trails starting at the top of the north island and finishing at the bottom of the South Island for a total distance of 3,000km.

In itself this is a big trip that presents many challenges and will take a number of months to complete but if that wasn't enough they have a few other complications to make this trip more difficult. Michelle is only 29 and suffers from Osteoporosis. In addition they are both musicians and deciding that they didn’t want to have such a long period away from music they will be doing a series of concerts along the way as a means of funding their trip and to help raise awareness of Osteoporosis which affects 1 in 3 women and one in 5 men (over the age of 50).

In this episode we provide a brief overview of the Te Araroa trail before talking to Mickey and Michelle about their upcoming journey. 

Sep 2019

123-Hume and Hovell Track-a premature end to a thruhike

What started out as a 19 day thru-hike has now been turned in to a section hike due to injury after completing 310km of this 426km trip. In this episode we discuss our last few days on the Hume and Hovell Track, our reasons for cutting the hike short, and where we go to from here. Rest assured there are plans in place to finish this trip off!

Aug 2019

120-Choosing a camping site

I have memories of camping dating back over 40 years and in many cases these memories were positive ones that consisted of some amazing experiences shared with friends and family. On the other end of the scale there were also trips where things went horribly wrong because we chose bad sites to camp. In this episode we discuss things to consider when choosing a place to put you tent to ensure that you have a safe and enjoyable nights sleep.

Aug 2019

119-The John Muir Trail; an Australian perspective.mp3

In this week’s episode we talk with Blair Woodcock who recently completed a thru-hike of the 211 mile (340 km) USA based John Muir Trail. Many backpackers say this trail contains the finest mountain scenery in the United States, and runs (mostly in conjunction with the PCT) from Yosemite Valley to Mount Whitney, in California. In this episode we provide an overview of one of the world’s most spectacular trails and hear a firsthand overview of what a thru hike was like.

Aug 2019

118-Zen and the Art of Hiking

There are any number of reasons why we enjoy hiking; the flora and fauna, the majestic views, the little stuff, the big stuff. While there might be some common themes we all enjoy, there will also be some unique reasons for each of us which are likely to be different. In episode 010 we provided a broad overview of some of these reasons and this week in episode 118 we look at some of the more 'spiritual reason' (for want of a better phrase) behind why we hike.

Aug 2019

117-Hume and Hovell Track: in the footsteps of explorers

Over the next month Gill and Tim from Australian Hiker will commence their end to end on the Hume and Hovell Track. This track, in the state of New South Wales (NSW), travels between the towns of Yass to the north and Albury to the south, for a distance of 426 km.

In this episode we provide some background to one of Australia's lesser known long distance trails, talk about some of the logistics involved, as well as our expectations for this trip.

Once we commence this trip we will be releasing regular social media posts as well as podcasts from the trail. To follow our regular written posts go to

Jul 2019

116-Choosing a Sleeping Mat

Choosing the right sleeping pad/mat can be the difference between a bad night’s sleep and a great night’s sleep.  But it is not as easy as grabbing the first pad you see. Navigating the range of brands and models can be confusing. In this episode we look at the things to consider in selecting a sleeping mat.

Jul 2019

115-Outdoor Retailer Australia Show July 2019 Part 2

This episode is the second in this two part series from the 2019 Outdoor Retailer Australia Show which was held on 14-16 July 2019 at the Flemington Exhibition Pavilion at the Melbourne Showgrounds.  In this episode we talk with a further six companies on new and upcoming product. You can also listen to the previous episode, 114, in this series here.

Jul 2019

114-Outdoor Retailer Australia Show July 2019 Part 1

The 2019 Outdoor Retailer Australia Show was held on 14-16 July 2019 at the Flemington Exhibition Pavillon at the Melbourne Showgrounds. This annual show is a chance for Australia’s outdoor wholesalers and manufacturers to showcase their new and existing products to Australia’s outdoor retailers and allied media. This is the third year that Australian Hiker has attended this ‘trade only show’ as a media representative.

This year has been our biggest yet and we recorded 13 seperate interviews over the 2.5 days of the exhibition with the first seven of these interviews contained in this episode with the remainder to be released in episode 115 to be released in the following week.

From our discussions with the various suppliers at the show we will be undertaking a number of gear reviews over the upcoming year that will be of interest to you. For pictures associated with this episode go to here

Jul 2019

113-European Peace Walk-interview with Lexi Connors

In this weeks episode we talk to traveller and avid hiker Lexi Connors about her recent trip on the European Peace Walk Trail. This trail is relatively unknown but provides and alternative to the heavily used Camino trails. In this episode we discuss the logistics, the ups and downs, and the highlights of this unique trail.