Navigation on the Heysen Trail is pretty much like any other trail you will hike. In many cases paying attention and following the trail markers will cover most of your needs. Having said that when I hiked the Bibbulmun Track
in 2018, I went off track twice. The first time was because I failed to look two metres to my right as I stood up after a tea break which ended up costing me an additional 3km for the day to rectify bringing my total for that day to 44km. My fault entirely and not something I wanted to do on such a big day already! The second instance was because a tree had managed to fall perfectly across the management trail and it camouflaged the turn I knew was coming. In this instance I realised what had happened within about 200 metres so no big issue that day.
On the Heysen Trail, just as I did on the Bibbulmun, I will have a number of navigation options available to me:
- Heysen Trail map set and compass
- Mainly used for planning and something that I will use at the start of each map section to familiarise myself with what’s coming. I will end up using roughly around 1.5 maps per week and when I get into town I will send the used maps back home. While I know how to use a compass, I have never needed to navigate back onto trail.
- Guthook Guide Phone App
- For me this is my main form of navigation. It works without a phone signal. However the GPS usage on the phone sucks through the battery so I usually use this app without the GPS only turning that feature on when I have a doubt about my location or want an accurate distance to my next destination. If you are a long distance hiker then the Guthook app is a ‘must have’ – it just makes life so much easier.
- I will have a set of GPX maps loaded onto my GPS and again this is an option I tend not use on the trail but its great as a ‘just in case’.
Navigation on the Heysen Trail is pretty much like any other trail you will hike. In many cases paying attention and following the trail markers will cover most of your needs. Having said that when I hiked the Bibbulmun Track in 2018, I went off track twice. The first time was because I failed to […]