While many people are familiar with podcasts, to some the term is an unknown. So what is a podcast?
The best way to think of a podcast is as ‘digital radio on demand’. You get to listen to a program of your choice, on a topic of your choice, at a time of your choosing and through your preferred technology e.g. your computer, a smart phone, or a tablet etc. In addition you can listen to the same episode as many times as you like.
There are now over 1,500,000 different podcasts worldwide from which to choose but the exact number is anyone’s guess! Did you also know that the average podcast only lasts around 7 episodes! Australian Hiker has now published over 180 episodes to date in 147 countries with total downloads in excess of 570,000!
Podcasts have the advantage over other types of electronic media in that you can be listening while doing other activities such as driving to work, exercising, or even hiking.
So how do you listen to the Australia Hiker podcast? Read on.
You can access the Australian Hiker podcast through our website. You don’t need to subscribe. Our published episodes are listed below with a brief overview to help you decide if you are interested in a particular topic. Click on the links to take you to a specific episode and click on the ‘play’ icon – after a few seconds the episode will start playing (don’t forget to turn up the volume on your device). This is a good option if you are working on you desktop computer at home. If you feel like listening ‘on the go’ look below for other options.
For many hikers getting out bush and going off grid is a means to get away from all the technology and the constant pinging of your mobile phone. If you aren’t connected for a few days does it really matter? If however you need to power various electronic devices on the trail the type and quantity of your power recharge needs is dictated by whether you can get away with just a single charge, a single set of batteries, or whether you need to have a back up option. In this podcast episode we provide a basic introduction into powering your hike as a hiker (as opposed to a car camper), and look at the pros and cons of the available options.
I’m a bit of an obsessive about some things and one of those is what a typical day on a multi-day hike looks like. In this episode we break it down from waking up at the start of the day to going to sleep and the days end. While the overall structure of a day will be similar for everyone the specifics will be unique to each of us. Knowing what a typical day looks like will make each day easier to plan an easier to walk. So, what does a typical long distance hiking day look like for me?
Over Easter 2021 Gill and I headed out towards the Broken Hill region in far western NSW to hike some of the more remote National Parks. Over a period of seven days we drove over 2000km, visited Mutawintji and Mungo National Parks, and did some hikes that we weren’t expecting to be as good as they were; there really are some hidden gems if you know where to look. This episode consists of a series of on road and on trail recordings as well as our summation of the overall trip. Over the coming weeks we will be releasing several trail reviews so keep and eye out for some doozys!
There are literally thousands of marked or signposted hiking trails across every state and territory of Australia and even the keenest hiker is unlikely to ever hike them all. Having said that sometimes you just want to do something that is just a little bit different. In my case when recently doing a local walk I realised that by being creative I was able to combine two seperate walks into one, creating the opportunity for a different experience that the individual walks didn’t provide individually. In this episode we look at simple opportunities for creating your own hiking adventure that with a bit of basic knowledge and planning almost anyone can do.
Being a relatively small country on the world stage Australia often punches above its own weight in so many areas. One area where we under perform is the product range available in retail stores and this includes hiking gear. Is this because the product doesn’t exist or are manufacturers and importers missing the mark? In this episode we discuss possible reasons.
Whenever we go hiking we make decisions about the equipment we carry. These gear choices can be broken into two broad categories; those pieces of gear that we need from a safety perspective (i.e. the necessities) and those that aren’t really necessary but we want to carry (i.e. luxury items). In this episode we discuss the key luxury items that I see on the trail but having said that this category is endless.
Operation Flinders is an Australian organisation that exists to provide young men and women who have been identified as being at risk, with demanding outdoor challenges and support. The aim of this organisation is to help participants develop their personal attitudes, self-esteem, motivation, teamwork and responsibility, so they may grow as valued members of the community. In today’s episode we talk to Brendan Raets about the Operation Flinders organisation and the programs that they run.
Whether you are new to hiking or have been doing it for years, deciding on what walk you are going to do will depend on a number of factors. Surprisingly the answer you get when you work through these factors may differ each time you have to make this choice. While some of these factors cross over with general hiking planning there are also a number that are purely subjective. In this podcast episode we look at seven main factors to consider when choosing a hike to get the best outcome for all concerned.
Pilgrimage Trail in Japan. This was a trail I hadn’t heard of until talking with Paul and reviewing his book Fighting Monks and Burning Mountains : Misadventures on a Buddhist Pilgrimage but now it’s firmly on my to-do list. This is a great episode that showcases this Japanese pilgrimage trail and provides an insight into Paul’s adventure that is both informative and amusing.
The walk to Schlink Hut in Kosciuszko National Park (NSW) starts at the Guthega Power Station visitor car park. This is a great day walk or as an overnight option and because it contains a series of three alpine huts, you have the option of ‘choosing your own adventure’ to suit your skills and ability.This episode consists of a series of on-trail reviews recorded on our recent two day trip.
The human connection with animals is timeless. First as food, then as working partners that carried our loads, helped us hunt or managed and protected our herds, and then evolved into companions. Animals have become an integral part of our lives in one way or another so it’s not surprising many of us want to include them in our hiking activities. While taking domestic animals on hikes is much more common in the USA, this is also starting to become more common in Australia.
In this podcast episode we look at the options for taking animals on the trail from an Australian perspective.
When it comes to hiking there really is no ‘one way’ to get involved. Some people stick to shorter hikes that can be completed in a day or less. For others it may mean hiking that includes day hikes that expands out to those lasting multiple days, weeks or even months either as a solo or group activity. Even then there is a decision to make about whether you are doing all the organisation and logistics yourself or taking part in a guided hike. In this podcast episode we look at being part of a guided hike including the pros and cons to help you to determine if this is an option for you.
Everyone has their own reason(s) for hiking; exercise, solitude and scenic views are just some.For many people photography also forms a key part of getting out bush. Sometimes this will be the main reason with the focus being to take photos of wildlife and sunrises. At other times it may be a minor reason with the odd photo being taken as a means of remembering the trip but for many its the lure of social media. In this episode we look at the negative impacts of social media and discuss ways in which we can minimise this.
At home we tend to take the availability of water for granted, we walk to the tap, the fridge, or if we are out and about the store, and drink as we need. When we are hiking, particularly in remote areas the availability of water becomes a more complex issue. For short hikes we may just carry a water bottle or we may wait until we get back to the car or trailhead to rehydrate. For overnight hikes we can often carry what we need. The problem arises when we start to do multi-day hikes and it becomes impossible to carry all the water we need for multiple days because of the weight and the bulk. It’s at this stage we need to top up on water as we walk. This requires us to know how to find water which may not always be easy. In this episode we discuss hydration as hikers and then look at sourcing water when we are out hiking.
In November of 2020 Tim commenced his journey on the 260 km Great North Walk which runs between the Australian east coast cities of Newcastle and Sydney. This journey ended up being a very short walk as he pulled the pin on this hike just prior to lunch on day 2 for reasons he discusses in this podcast episode.
In this episode we provide an introduction to this trail, bring you recordings made on 1.5 days on the trail before discussing reasons for halting this hike.
On 11 November 2020 Australian Hiker celebrated its fourth birthday on what has been a difficult year. In this episode we reflect on our past year, a difficult one, and where we are heading into the future.
It’s that time of the year again when you start to consider gifts for the special hiker in your life. In this article we focus on the best and brightest products including those released over the past year. To get the most from this podcast go to https://australianhiker.com.au/advice/christmas-gift-ideas-for-hikers/ to see images and the links to the full reviews on the product that we have discussed.
This podcast episode is aimed fairly and squarely at new hikers and is designed to provide a simple overview of the considerations to get ‘out bush’, in a manner that will hopefully increase your enjoyment, as well as reduce any anxiety/fears that you may have.
2020 is likely to be a memorable for so many reasons! I had planned to be walking the Australian Alps Walking Track in mid November but between the fires and COVID, this track is off the menu and likely to be so for the next few months. The term ‘flogging a dead horse’ comes to mind in my attempt to do this walk. As this podcast goes to air it’s one month out and it’s time to make a decision. In this podcast episode we discuss the planning process for this walk, what I have decided to do and why, and what my November adventure now looks like. I am not alone in this process with so many hikers around Australia going through a similar experience. Is this you?
Most hikers will have an injury or two that they have collected over their lifetimes but when this goes beyond being just a minor issue and becomes a permanent disability the ability to continue hiking can be greatly impacted, or in some cases not even an option. In this week’s episode we interview hiker Jenny Woodhouse who talks about hiking whilst managing permanent spinal disability.
In this podcast episode we discuss the key considerations for hiking with pre-existing injuries as well as managing any new ones you pick up on the trail.
While this may seem to be an odd interview for a hiking podcast, you may be surprised to learn that one of the programs offered by Soldier On, March On, is all about doing hikes of varying lengths. In this week’s episode we catch up with Soldier On CEO, Ivan Slavich to find out about this organisation and their March On program.
When we think about hiking we create a picture in our mind of what the day looks like and if there is an overnight stay involved the camp forms part of the picture. The thing we need to remember is that hiking is different for everyone and there is no right view of the image we create. How we come to hiking and camping will generate this mental picture. Are we life long hiking enthusiasts that started as part of a family activity? Are we new hikers who have only just started? Are we the occasional hiker who does an adventure every so often and wants to just turn up rather than doing any of the organising or planning? Or maybe we don’t fit into a single style of hiking and will choose our own adventure based on what we feel like.
In this podcast we discuss what the common types of hiking/camping styles. Where do you fit?
Most of us we start life reasonably fit and healthy and as we get older we start to collect various injuries and illnesses along the way. In addition to these pre-existing issues we can also collect new ones when we hike. Dealing with these injuries can be a real learning curve but it’s worth being aware of what they are and how best to manage them, otherwise your enjoyment level will be greatly impacted.In this podcast episode we discuss the key considerations for hiking with pre-existing injuries as well as managing any new ones you pick up on the trail.
Australian Hiker is all about walking and when Jono Lineen, author of the book Perfect Motion, contacted me a few months ago to talk to talk about doing a review for his book ‘Perfect Motion’ it not only made sense to review thebook but also to interview him for the podcast as well. As a keen long distance hiker this book resonated with me in so many ways, particularly in the way that I feel when doing my big hikes. In this episode we talk to Jono about the impacts of walking and find out more about his amazing background, his trip though the Himalayas, as well as discussing his book Perfect Motion.
In our last podcast episode, episode 158, we talked about snowshoeing in the Australian Alps. But for those that want to go a step further there are other options including skiing and snow camping. In this episode we catch up with Gary Tischer and find out about options for skiing, and snow camping away from the resorts. We talk about safety and logistics in the back country in general, including more than you every wanted to now about what to do with toilet waste in the snow! To round off this episode we catch back up with Bruce Easton from Wilderness Sports about options for getting a taster in backcountry.
Hiking, bushwalking, whatever you want to call it is all about hiking outdoors in nature. While Australia doesn’t have the same sort of extreme winters as Europe and North America the Australian Alps are usually covered in snow and for many of us it means some of our favourite hiking destinations have gone to sleep and we need to look for other options. Buy why is that? Recently we tried snowshoeing to see if this ‘walking option’ provided an alternative to hibernation for accessing the alpine regions during the colder months. This three part episode consists of a discussion on the basics of snowshoeing, a series of recordings we made on the day of our snowshoe tour, and finally an interview with Bruce Easton, owner of Wilderness Sports in Jindabyne. For more information read our write up here.
Physical preparation is a part of getting ready for any hike. For shorter easier hikes the training may be almost non existent while for longer and or more complex hikes you may spend weeks if not months preparing. Training for longer hikes involves many different physical aspects including cardio and weight training, as well as lots of walking/hiking both with and without a pack. In this podcast we talk about the do’s and dont’s of pack training to help you get the most out of your hike.
Over the past three years Australian Hiker has attended the annual Outdoor Retailer Australia Show. This 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. Due to the pandemic, the show was cancelled for 2020 but rather than let the opportunity pass us by we managed to catch up with a number of suppliers for an update. This is the second episode in this series in which we bring you a further three interviews. As a follow up to our discussions with the various suppliers, in the coming year we will be reviewing that will be of interest to you. The first episode in this series, episode 155, was released last week.
Over the past three years Australian Hiker has attended the annual Outdoor Retailer Australia Show. This 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. Due to the pandemic the show was cancelled for 2020 but rather than let the opportunity pass us by we managed to catch up with a number of suppliers for an update. In this, the first of two episodes in this series, we bring you two interviews. In our next episode, episode 156, to be released next week, we will bring you our remaining interviews. As a follow up to our discussions with the various suppliers, in the coming year we will be undertaking a number of gear reviews that will be of interest to you.
Bungonia National Park is located in southern NSW near the inland city of Goulburn and is an easily accessible drive from both Sydney and Canberra. There are five main designated walking tracks located within the park and they all start from the short spine road that runs from the visitor centre, all within minutes of each other.
This podcast episode consists of a series of recordings taken on the Red Track which as a walk under 6 km, ranks as one of the most physically demanding I have ever done; I’ve had 40 km days that have been easier. We talk about things to consider when hiking the Red Track before briefly touching on the other walks within the park. Read our written write ups on the Walks of Bungonia National Park Here
Peak bagging is the practice of climbing to the summit of a hill or mountain in an attempt to collect peaks in a particular region. I must admit that from my perspective the whole concept is just plain strange. My view on hiking is that I will follow the designated trail and if the trail goes over a summit, I will follow it but if it doesn’t, then there needs to be a really good reason to head up hill. In this podcast episode we look at the concept of peak bagging and discuss some Australian options for those of you who are into peak bagging.
In this week’s episode we continue the theme and talk with Gary Tischer about what it takes to be a contributor of both photography and written articles to the Australian outdoor magazines.
Gary has been contributing to some of Australia’s best known outdoor magazines for nearly 40 years and while you may not know his name, chances are you have read his articles over the years. Today we find out how he became involved in writing and photographing for outdoor magazines, and how the needs of magazines have evolved over the years.
It’s now mid-June 2020 and at long last the restrictions around coronavirus are easing, seemingly at a rapid rate. Pending a second wave of the virus, the ability to travel, while not yet back to normal, has been greatly relaxed and we can now travel further afield and do some longer and more complex hiking. In episode 145 we discussed things we can do when we can’t hike, or our hiking has been greatly curtailed for any reason, but what should we be doing now we can get out and about? In today’s episode we discuss things to consider as you get back into some more serious hiking to ensure you enjoy yourself and stay safe.
In 2004 Liz Byron undertook a 2,500 km journey on the 5,300 km Bicentennial National Trail. As Australia’s longest designated shared trail, her story would not be too unusual until you realise she did her trip with the assistance of two donkeys, Grace and Charley, who acted as her pack animals and her companions. In this podcast episode we catch up with Liz not long after the release of her book, The Only Way Home, that details her amazing journey. This is a great episode and one that provides an unique alternative on the traditional human powered hike.
In today’s episode we discuss the Japanese Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage Trail. This trail, which was included on the World Heritage list in 2004, is a network of several ancient pilgrimage routes that converge on Kumano Hongu Taisha Shrine, in the mountainous heart of Wakayama Prefecture. Apart from the shrines, the landscape itself is one of the key highlights that everyone talks about.
In today’s episode we combine a series of three interviews and each of our interviewees provide a different perspective on this amazing trail system. We hope you enjoy!
Australia like most countries, has a series of legends and myths that form part of our cultural identity. While some of these are based on fact, and others have at least some basis of truth, there are a number that are just downright fabrications. Whatever degree of truth is involved is doesn’t stop us from talking about them and where possible, having fun at the expense of gullible people, mainly overseas tourists.
One of the most common complaints I hear from hikers who camp overnight is the inability to get a good night’s sleep. And while some of this can be put down to gear related issues, more often than not it can be a state of mind. The first time you camp in the bush, in particular by yourself, every little sound is magnified. The slithering or crunching just outside your tent, the movement of your tent when there is no wind, can all combine to make hikers a bit agitated.
In this episode we discuss those issues that impact on our sleep on the trail, focusing on the non equipment related ones, and look at what we can do to get a better nights sleep.
It’s mid April 2020 and already this has been the the strangest year that we have had in a long time and we still have most of the year to go. In this episode we just wanted to provide a bit of an update as Covid 19 is in full swing about how some of the people we have been following, along with the outdoor industry in general, is going.
Its 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.
You can read this podcast in the written form here
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.
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.
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?
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. It’s been four months since we last chatted 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 when she is about to start her last leg in South America entering Columbia and then progressing on to Central America.
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.
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.
In episode 135 we discussed what the life of an adventure photographer/videographer was like. In this weeks episode we talk to Craig Sheather about about being a travel and guide book writer including what’s involved with getting articles and books to print, and how he got into this field.
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.
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.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a professional adventure videographer and photographer? To wander the world and be paid to video and photograph some amazing scenery and individuals doing some amazing things. In this episode we talk to Danyal Taylor whose job is just that and find out a bit of what his life is like and what it takes to do his job.
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.
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 of this walk can be found here.
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.
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.
It’s that time of the year again when you start to look for presents for that hiking fanatic in your life; maybe it’s you?
In this episode we focus on the best and brightest that has been released over the past year and those iconic status items that all hikers would be pleased to own ranging from the inexpensive to the grand gesture. Have a listen to see if you can pick up any ideas.
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.
In this episode we review a series of hiking and outdoor movies that we have watched over 2019 as well as some outdoor based books that we have read. If you are into the outdoors and are looking something to do on those non hiking days then consider these options. Leading up into Christmas these books and videos make great options for the hiker in your family even if thats you!
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. This podcast discusses the pros and cons of using dehydrated food and provides a few suggestions for dehydrating.
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.
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.
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.
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!
In this weeks episode we continue with our Hume and Hovell on trail recordings and in this episode we bring you days 4-11
In this weeks episode we listen to our on trail recordings of our first three days on the 426km Hume and Hovell Track. We will post over the next three weeks from the trail as signal availability allows
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. www.australianhiker.com.au
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. www.australianhiker.com.au
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.
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.
Your sleeping pad or 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.
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.
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.
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.
As a hiking blogger who is also interested in long distance hiking, quitting a hiker is always something in the back of my mind. However quitting a hike is not confined to long distance trails and can be a consideration on any hike. Sometimes calling it quits on a hike is just the sensible thing to do.
In this podcast we discuss some of the reasons that we may pull the pin on hike.
Talking about hiking food can get you into a lot of trouble; everyone knows best, and their view is always the correct one! Its not quite in the same category as talking politics over Christmas lunch but it sometimes comes close. Everyone has their food preference and ours is freeze-dried food. In this podcast episode we’re going to discuss why that is.
The Boots McFarland hiking cartoon is the brainchild of Geolyn Carvin. In this episode we get a bit of background on Geolyn and ‘Boots’ and discuss how the creative process for this wonderful hiking cartoon comes about.
In this episode we discuss options for waste reduction and how we can care for the environment as hikers. Now before you switch off thinking we are going to take the moral high ground, be warned that while we are all about minimising our impact on the environment, it’s not as simple as it sounds.
In this week’s episode we interview Lucy Bernard from Tangles and Tail as she attempts her journey from the southern-most point of South America to the northern-most point in Alaska. This is an epic journey, almost solely by foot, covering around 30,000 km in distance. In this episode, we find out a bit about Lucy (Tangles) and Wombat – the ‘Tail’ member of her team, the reason behind her trip, the logistical issues surrounding such a massive undertaking, and how her journey has gone so far.
This is an episode not to miss!
Fire is one of those things to which we all seem to be drawn. It warms us when we’re cold, it was the main method of cooking since cooking began and for whatever reason it creates an emotive reaction in most of us – we can just sit and watch it for hours on end. On the flip side fire can be extremely dangerous causing massive damage to the environment, to property and occasionally loss of life. In this episode we discuss fire and hiking looking at the do’s and don’ts to help you create the best experience when dealing with fire on the trail.
Pick any activity that you do and no matter what it is there are costs associated with it; hiking is no different. Costs for gearing up and for undertaking trips can be almost negligible but at the opposite end of the scale they can also add up costing many thousands of dollars. Where you sit on this budgetary scale very much depends to a great extent on your personal preference but also on the type of hikes that you are doing. In this podcast we discuss options for getting on the trail and look at where you should be targeting your funds to get the best bang for your buck.
Over three days in Easter 2019 I walked the 112km from Kiandra in the Snowy Mountains to Tharwa (a section of the Australian Alps Walking Track). Doing an extreme walk is one of the annual challenges I set myself and this one was also a learning opportunity to do some pre-planning for a planned thru hike of this alpine trail.
This podcast contains a series of recordings over the three days and describes what I was seeing and how I was feeling; I learnt some hard lessons on this hike.
If you live in Australia, or for that matter many other countries in the world, then you will be familiar with with the concept of National Parks. In fact many of the walks that we do as hikers around this country are to be found in National Parks. But what are they and how did they come about? In this podcast we provide a brief overview of the history of National Parks what they mean from an Australian perspective.
In this episode we go beyond the realms of this hiking podcast and are talking with British adventurer, and author, Adrian Hayes about his latest book ‘One Man’s Climb’ which details his account of his first unsuccessful attempt to summit K2, the worlds second highest mountain, also known as the ‘mountaineers mountain’, or the ‘Savage mountain’ in 2013 and his subsequent successful attempt in 2014.
You may never aspire to summiting K2 but Adrian has some key takeaways that are applicable to anyone who is thinking of putting themselves outside their comfort zone to achieve their goals.
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.
‘Packing your fears’ is a way of saying you are carrying items in your pack based on your worries or fears; your worst case scenario. In today’s episode we discuss how to overcome these this tendency to overpack.
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.
We thought that we would try something a bit different and in this episode we are answering a series of questions asked by our listeners.
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 along with some added explanatory commentary post trip.
One of the biggest transitions that most hikers make is shifting from day hiking to overnight hiking. Learning how to camp overnight, cooking meals and go to the bathroom in the bush are all skills that we had to learn at some stage which may have seemed a bit daunting at the time. 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.
This podcast episode reviews some of the most well known hiking/outdoor movies of all time and where available compares them the books. If you are into the outdoors and haven’t seen these movies then add them to your must see list.
Thinking of doing a long distance multi-week hike? This podcast episode discusses the physical and mental impacts of undertaking a thru hike including some considerations that you may not have even thought of.
In this week’s episode we talk to the store manager at well known southern Queensland outdoor store, Wild Earth on Big Agnes tents. The episode showcases three of the newer tents in the range.
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. 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.
The hot weather is fast approaching and with it the need to put a bit more thought into keeping ourselves happy and safe on the trail. This podcast discusses tips for hiking during conditions of hot weather and while we usually think of summertime where you are hiking in extreme heat, hot weather hiking can be a year round issue.
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.
The hot weather is fast approaching and with it the need to put a bit more thought into what were doing to keep ourselves happy and safe on the trail. This podcast discusses tips for hiking during conditions of hot weather and while we usually think of summertime where you are hiking in extreme heat, hot weather hiking can be a year round issue.
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.
In this episode we review Tim’s recent Bibbulmun Track hike showcased in episodes 76-80 to discuss how the reality of the hike compared to the expectations prior to starting.
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 people’s 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 Andrew 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 recording 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.
I hope that you will follow my journey and If you have any questions please send me an email or a message and I will endeavour to respond, although it may take me a little while.
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 Bibbulmun Track 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.
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 (Trade only). For the second year in a row Australian Hiker was lucky enough to attend this as a media representative. Even as a card carrying gear freak I was amazed as some of the new product coming onto the Australian market over the coming year.
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. Part 2 will be released on 27 June 2018.
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.
To view this podcast as a written article go here
In episode 067 of the Australian Hiker podcast we discuss the concept of Hike Your Own Hike (HYOH). Each of us enjoys hiking in a way that is unique to us and when we vary from this pattern the enjoyment can drop off. What does HYOH mean for you?
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.
After 2.5 years in the planning I’m happy to announce I will be doing my first long distance Australian thru hike, and first thru hike, the Bibbulmun Track in Western Australia. This 1003km (623 miles) track runs from Albany on the Southern Western Australian coast at one end to Perth at the other end.
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. 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 necessary 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.
If you have been hiking for a while then chances are you already know how to correctly pack your backpack; but maybe you don’t. In fact there really is no one ‘correct’ way but rather a series of principles that you apply to achieve the best outcome for you as an individual. This podcast discusses these principles and will hopefully provide you with enough knowledge to successfully assemble your pack in a way that is comfortable and workable for you.
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.
This episode provides information to guide your choices on selecting your full sleeping system.
In this episode we:
Australian Hiker episode 041. To play this or any other episode, go to the episode page and click on either the podbean player just below the image or the small player that is visible off the the right hand side if using a desktop/laptop computer. The episode will launch after a few seconds but you will need to ensure that the volume is turned up to a comfortable level
Our podcast episodes are currently hosted on the Podbean Podcasting host. You can listen to our episodes through the various Podbean options.
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Up until mid 2019 our podcast was hosted on Soundcloud and you can still listen to he older episodes on Soundcloud here. Once you go to the Soundcloud link, you can choose your episode. Soundcloud doesn’t require a subscription. Please note that we no longer post new podcast episodes to Soundcloud.
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