By now most of you will be aware my new long distance trail for 2020 is the Great North Walk from Newcastle to Sydney at a distance of around 260 km. Personally I find hikes of this length strange. They are longer than ‘normal’ requiring longish days, day after day, but they don’t have the logistical impacts of hikes over 500 km. This change in hikes has meant all my logistical requirements ranging from travel to and from the walk, start and finish points, food carries, and daily distances travelled all have to be recalculated.
Given campers in NSW are still required to fill out a trip intention form due to COVID, it means that unlike my long distance trips I am less likely to ‘wing it’ and will stick to my planned distances making for a very cruisey trip at least from my perspective. Two differences that have come up on this hike is that given I will be averaging 23km per day, I won’t take any rest days on my planned 11 day hike. On my long distance hikes where I average 32km per day, I will take a rest day every 6-8 days. The second issue is that as I need 10 days of food, I will carry everything rather than doing a food drop along the way. Usually I carry a maximum of 8 days of food between resupply. This may sound a lot but that will work out between 6-6.5-7 kg (dried) food for the whole trip with some meals purchased along the way to make up the rest.
One other bonus on this trip from a logistical perspective is that I don’t need to worry about travelling interstate, from a biosecurity perspective, which means I can dry some of my own snacks which its now one of my jobs over the next few weeks leading up to the start of the trip.
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Over the past couple of years I have been planning on walking the Australian Alps Walking Track (AAWT) in November of 2020. In the weekend just gone I finally pulled the pin on this trip due to both COVID and fire damage. I’ve rescheduled this trip for late 2021 so we will see what happens next year. Given I have holidays booked in November I’ve been chasing around over the past few months, just in case, for alternative long distant hikes. The replacement needed to take into account the ability to travel interstate, the impact of the upcoming bushfire season, the length and duration of the hike, and the fact that I’m going to be travelling in late spring/early summer.
Through my research over the past few weeks I narrowed down my selection to two tracks; the Great North Track (260 km) in NSW, and the Tasmanian Trail (480 km). I was definitely keen to walk the Tasmanian Trail but while access from Canberra to Hobart by air recommences in early November, the rules behind air travel are yet to be finalised. It may be OK – I just need certainty so have opted to do the Great North Walk starting in Newcastle and finishing in Sydney.
My timing is working well with sections of the Great North Walk being in burn off mode at the moment that are due to be accessible in the next couple of weeks. I was also planning on doing the Katoomba to Mittagong walk as a follow-on but the impact of last summer’s fires mean that the track is still a ‘no go’.
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Over the past couple of years I have been planning on walking the Australian Alps Walking Track (AAWT) in November of 2020. In the weekend just gone I finally pulled the pin on this trip due to both COVID and fire damage. I’ve rescheduled this trip for late 2021 so we will see what happens […]