I leave Balingup around 7:40am and my mind is churning. I am hitting Collie on Friday for a rest day and my preference is to get in around lunchtime to maximise my town time but according to my plan I have a big day planned for Friday which would get me to town at the end of the day. I decide to ‘double hut’ it today and reach Noggerup campsite which will make for a 44km day. I know from my training I can do this but if I’d planned this I would have left earlier.
The day progresses well, raining on and off as usual (I’ve now been told that not only was July the wettest in over 50 years but that August is now the same). I get to Noggerup around 7:00pm with night hiking for around 50 minutes.
One thing I discovered was that the Wagual signs are actually easier to see at night time where as during the day they can blend in a bit with the surrounding environment. I surprise a hiker with my late arrival and I discover the next day that’s it’s ‘Pack Animal’ (a well known trail identity). He’s definitely a character and we get chatting about all things hiking. He has very strong opinions about the adverse effects of social media on the trail so I don’t tell him who I am and what I’m doing.
I’m not thrilled about Noggerup campsite, the shelter itself is OK but is very dusty and very easy to get dirt everywhere without even trying. Most of the shelters in this section are also near creeks, rivers and dams and as such the air is very damp and when I wake up all my gear feels damp.
I have never had this much facial hair in my life. It won’t last long after this trip