As long as the humans have been around we have been looking at ways of improving our lives. But with this improved lifestyle we are progressively becoming a less fit, fatter, more sedentary population, that spends little time exerting any energy. So while our average lifespan is now at its longest our fitness hasn't necessarily improved and this is where hiking comes in. Hiking gets us into the bush and has many positive impacts; physical ,emotional, and mental, and that's what we will be discussing in todays episode.
Have you ever thought about how the trails that we know and love so much come to be? The design and construction of modern day hiking trails is a complex and time consuming process and if done right the trail will appear as if it's always existed.In this episode we interview the Project Manager, and the Architect, for the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail to find out what's involved in bringing a new trail online.
Ever wanted to hike Kilimanjaro, the Himalayas, or the Andes? One of the major considerations on these hikes is the impact of Altitude Sickness which can become very serious; in fact it can sometimes have lethal impacts. In this episode we discuss ways of mitigating the impacts of high altitude on hikes to ensure that we get the best out of our experience.
Drinking coffee when you're out hiking is a quandary. Do you put up with bad coffee just because you're away from your fancy machine, or do you give it up until you are back home? Well maybe you don't have too. This episode discusses options for making coffee on the trail from the 'just Ok' to the 'this is pretty dam good'. We also discuss coffee alternatives if you want your caffeine fix without the hassle of making coffee.
Each year over the Christmas holidays Gill and I undertake a multi-day walk. Over Christmas in 2018 we decided to do the Aussie 10 Walk. This walk, located in the Australian Alps in the state of New South Wales, takes in Australia's 10 highest peaks. This isn't a formal trail but rather a route based on the well known Main Range Track. This episode consists of a series of recordings undertaken over our 2.5 day journey.
One of the biggest transitions that most hikers make is shifting from day hiking to overnight hiking. Transitioning from just a night or two to multi-day trips brings a whole new set of considerations that can seems just as daunting. This podcasts discusses the main considerations for multi-day hiking and hopefully will provide you with some background if you are considering taking this next step.
So, you’ve been hiking for a while and are looking for something a bit different to mix it up a bit; maybe a new trail, or a new location. But what if instead all you need is a new way to view that tired old trail you’ve been hiking for a while? And that’s where night hiking comes in.
This podcast discusses the pros and cons of hiking at night as well as the factors that need to be considered to ensure we do it as safely as possible.
The First Hike Project is an organisation that takes newly arrived immigrant and refugee kids and introduces them to the Australian Bush. Originally the First Hike Project originated in Perth and has now spread to a number of cities around Australia.
In this episode we talk to the Coordinator of the Canberra chapter of the First Hike Project as well as one of the participants about their experiences.
If you ask most people what is their most important sense 'sight' is usually the one that they will name. But just how much thought do we put into looking after our eyes when we head out on the trail? This episode discusses the basics of eye care and what we should be doing to care for our eyes out on the trail.
The Great South Coast Walk can best be described as Australia's greatest coastal walk that very few people have heard of. This walk starts on the outskirts of Sydney at Bundeena, NSW, and winds its way south finishing 660km later in the Victorian town of Mallacoota. In this episode we interview David Briese, one of the instigators of this walk and find out what's so special.
It's that time of the year again when you start to look for presents for that hiking fanatic in your life; or maybe its you. Shhhh we won’t tell anyone. Last year in episode 47 we discussed alternative hiking gifts that carry a lot more sentiment without the commercial crassness as well as identifying some commercial options.
This year we focus on the best and brightest that most hikers would be glad to find under the tree ranging from the inexpensive to the grand gesture. Have a listen to see if you can pick up any ideas.
On 11 November 2018 Australian Hiker celebrated its second birthday. Over the past year we have been building up our online resources to help us make Australian Hiker your 'Go to Hiking Resource'. We realise that we still have a long way to go.
This episode is a reflection on our past year and where we are heading into the future. Gill and I would like to thank all our friends and supporters for helping us to greatly exceeded our expectations; we couldn't have done so without you.
This podcast discusses seven Iconic Australian hiking trails under 150km in length that have so much to offer that they are known world wide. Whether it's the desert, mountains, lush foliage, or views there's just something about them that sets them apart, giving them an Iconic status.
For many hikers care and maintenance of their equipment is limited to the occasional clean and maybe some hole patching but we can be doing so much more to extend the life of our gear and in the process making our hikes that much more enjoyable.
This podcast discusses the basics of gear care and maintenance including how often we should be maintaining our gear.
In this episode we briefly discuss the key pieces of equipment that I used on my recent Bibbulmun Track Journey and provide a broad overview of my reasons for choosing it. A downloadable list of my multi-day hiking equipment is now available on the show notes for this podcast (episode 82)on the Australian Hiker website.
This is the final episode of ontrail podcasts on Tim’s 2018 Bibbulmun Track hike. Listen to this podcast as Tim travels from Dwellingup to Kalamunda to complete his 36 day, 1000km trip.
Over the next two weeks I will be releasing two final podcasts to wrap up this trip as well as uploading two written articles so keep an eye out!
Week four is now over, just a short one with a four day trip from Collie to Dwellingup. In this episode we discuss peoples perceptions on the trail and how this will differ depending on the context. We then go on to briefly discuss the trail amenities prior to our regular recordings and on trail interviews.
Week three of my Bibbulmun Track journey and our longest ever podcast due to 8 days worth of podcasting as I undertake the biggest week of the trip.
In this episode I discuss my typical days and how I make decisions about what I will be doing as well as a series of recordings including interviews of my trip over this period between Pemberton and Collie covering a distance of approximately 250km.
At the end of the second week I have reached Pemberton which means that 40% of the trail is done. I’m actually a day ahead of schedule but am not taking that for granted and now have seven days up my sleeve.
In this episode I discuss the camp infrastructure as well as my journey from Walpole to Pemberton.
On 9 August 2018 I started my journey on one of Australia’s premiere long distance hiking trails, the Bibbulmun Track. Travelling 1000km between Albany and Perth. This podcast provides an overview of a typical week on the trail completing 210km and travelling between Albany and Walpole. Listen to what I and other hikers go through in what has been some extremely taxing conditions.
Over the next 4-5 weeks I will focus on different aspects of this journey to provide you with an overview on what to expect and to hopefully encourage you to consider hiking this amazing trail.
In this episode we will be discussing my expectations, my apprehensions, and my hopes for my upcoming Bibbulmun Track thru hike which I start on 9 August 2018 in what is forecast to be heavy rains. Tomorrow I spend the day on planes heading to the trail head in Western Australia.
Over the coming weeks I will be walking my way back to Perth and as part of the experience I will be recoding a weekly podcast. I will also be interviewing other hikers doing the track as a thru hike, known as an ‘end to end’ on the Bibbulmun, as well as those doing shorter sections to hear how they are going and what they think of the track. So if you thinking about doing this walk listen over the next 6+ weeks to the 'on trail episodes' as well as the round up episodes at the end once I am home.
The Bibbulmun Track is one of Australia’s premiere long trails stretching 1000km (621miles) from Kalamunda on the outskirts of Perth to Albany on the southern western Australian coast. Given the distance covered there is a wide variety of ecosystems represented on the trail from coastal sections in the south through constantly changing forests that highlight some of Australia’s most spectacular flora and fauna.
In this episode we will be talking to Steve Sertis from the Bibbulmun Track Foundation about how the track came about, the role of the Foundation, and some key takeaways on hiking this spectacular trail.
In episode 002 of the Australian Hiker podcast we discussed the concept of ultralight hiking and my goal to greatly lighten my load from my 'traditional' heavy gear. It's now been 18 months since we released that podcast and in this episode we revisit this journey just prior to me commencing a 1000km/ 5-6 week hike on the Bibbulmun Track in Western Australia to see how I have gone.
Whatever type of hiking that you do being fit will ensure that you enjoy what you are doing in addition to keeping happy and healthy on the trail. But what does being fit for hiking mean? This episode provides a brief introduction to hiking fitness and identifies the key aspects that you need to consider.
Planning a long distance hike is really no difference from a shorter hike, isn’t it? In theory the concepts are the same but in reality there are a number of other factors that come into consideration. In this episode I will use my upcoming thru hike of the Bibbulmun Track (1,000km) in Western Australia to provide a broad guide to what you should consider when planning a long distance hike.
Once I have finished my journey towards the end of September I will report back on how I went including how well my planning did, or didn’t, pay off.
On 17-19 June 2018 the Outdoor Retailer Australia Show was held at the Moore Park Exhibition Centre in Sydney. 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 podcast is the second recorded at this show and contains a further 6 interviews. If you want to hear the first series of interviews go to episode 069.
The 2018 Outdoor Retailer Australia Show was held on 17-19 June 2018 at the Moore Park Exhibition Centre in Sydney. 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 first of two episodes.
Every time we head out into the bush for the day the one factor that we must deal with on every hike is the weather. Good or bad, the weather can make or break a hike and if we fail to pay attention to extreme weather conditions it can also present safety concerns.
This podcast discusses factors to consider when planning your hike as well as what to look for during the hike itself.
In episode 066 of the Australian Hiker podcast we discussTechnology on the Trail, specifically options for staying in touch with family and friends at home while on a hike. This topic is one that I have been thinking on for well over a year as I decide what I will use for my own Bibbulmun Track though hike later this year when I will be out of cellular range on a number of days on my 5-6 week hike.
In this episode I announce announce my first long distance Australian thru hike, and also first thru hike and provide an overview on : * My reasons for doing a long distance multi week hike; * Why I picked the trail that I did; and * An overview of my logistics and what I need to consider before I go.
Over the coming weeks I will be releasing further podcasts on my upcoming trip as well as episodes released on the trail. I looking forward to sharing this journey with you.
While many hikers, and non hikers may be aware of trails such as the Pacific Crest Trail and the Appalachian Trail in the USA, or the Camino de Santiago in Spain you may not be aware that Australia has its own long trails and while they may not have the same international media profile (yet) they are progressively making a name for themselves and gaining in popularity.
This podcast episode provides an overview of some of Australia’s better known long distance hiking and multi-use trails (cyclists, horse riders and hikers) over 200km in length.
This week we will be talking to Jacqui Ambrus-Bonazzi from Canberra Fitness Centre about the physical maintenance that we as hikers SHOULD be doing each day on the trail to ensure we maintain our fitness and reduce injuries, something that many hikers take for granted at best, or more typically don’t do at all.
For new hikers it seems like there is so much to worry about. Getting lost, snakes and will you be warm enough are just some of the issues that can all be managed reasonably easily with a bit of practice and development of on-trail skills.
For many new hikers their biggest concern is one of personal safety. How safe will you be when out hiking and do I have to worry about my car at the trail head. This episode discusses these issues and offers some suggestions for minimising personal safety risks on the trail.
Personal hygiene is one of those practices that we are all taught early in life; wash your hands, bathe on a regular basis, and always wear clean underwear. We are used to doing these things in our day to day life and the same rules apply in the bush that apply at home surrounding personal hygiene if we want to ensure that we have a trouble free adventure. However when we go bush we loose all the modern conveniences and with them the flexibility we have at home and have to adjust how we do things. Most practices that relate to hygiene are based around common sense but why then do so many people ignore them when they hike? This article discusses the hygiene basics nessesary to ensure that we have a healthy enjoyable hike. Alternatively you can read the written version of this podcast here.
Issues with feet and lower limbs tend to be a problem that plagues all hikers at one time or another. These issues can be relatively minor and annoying on short hikes and crippling on longer more difficult hikers. Either way they stop us from enjoying our outdoor adventures.
In this podcast episode I talk with Canberra based Podiatrist Matthew Hotchkis from Podiatry Professionals about some of the more common lower limb issues that can cause problems for hikers and discuss ways to minimise their impact as well as prevention and treatment.
The best way to describe Geocaching is as treasure hunting with a GPS/smartphone. Sometimes the kids, or you for that matter, just need that extra little incentive to get outdoors and go hiking and what better incentive than to go treasure hunting!
This podcast provides a basic overview to help get you into Geocaching and hopefully outside more often if you really need an excuse.
The level of navigation skills that you will need as a hiker will vary with the complexity of the walks that you do. If you never leave well marked trails the skill requirement you need, may, but not necessarily, be minimal. The advent of mobile phone apps, as well as the availability of high quality consumer level GPS including some watches has changed hiking forever. Gone are the days when you had no choice but to use a map and compass however having a good grounding in their use should be something we all aspire to.
This podcast episode provides a basic overview of map and compass use that will hopefully add your you kill level as a hiker and inspire you to learn more. To get the most out of this podcast follow along with the written version which has the related images.
For most hikers feeding themselves on short camping and hiking trips, even for a few days, is something that we can easily manage without too much problem. But what happens when we undertake big excursions ranging from strenuous single day trips to multi-week trips. In this podcast episode I talk with Canberra based nutritionist and dietician, Lisa Donaldson from FEED Inc about nutrition on the trail and what we can do to look after ourselves.
Whether your a day hiker or are into extended multi night hikes ensuring that you have correctly assembled all your gear into some sort of order in your pack will make your trip run just that much smoother. But what it the right order? Is there such a thing?
This episode looks at packing your backpack and discusses developing a systematic approach to our packing that will ensure you always know where that bit of gear or food is.
In January 2018 I spent two days in the Kosciuszko National Park (NSW) hiking the Main Range Walk as well as undertaking the Mount Kosciuszko Summit Walk, both starting at Charlotte Pass. These two days of hiking also involved a nights camping on Mt Kosciuszko. This Episode is designed to give you an idea of what to expect when hiking in this amazing area.
In this episode we look at where the future of hiking appears to be heading. We discuss trends as they relate to hikers, changes we are likely to see in trail design and use, the impacts of social media on the trail, notable gear trends and the use of technology on the trail, both good and bad.
Our final episodes in our Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail series. In this episode we revisit our initial expectations of this trip and compare them to the reality of the trail. In addition we discuss the good and bad points of the trail and make some suggestions for those of you looking at doing this trip.