Top Tips for Strolling along the Great Ocean Walk on the Victorian Coastline

The Twelve Apostles - Great Ocean Walk - Victoria
The Twelve Apostles

Hiking the Great Ocean Walk (GOW) was an amazing experience. Full stop!

It was not easy and I am the first to admit that it was much more physically demanding than I expected. That doesn’t mean it is not worth doing, it just means that you need equal amounts of solid training, packing preparation and gritty determination.

Seriously steep climbs and heartbreakingly soft sand provided endless challenge, but Oh, the beauty. Wherever you gaze is a scenic wonder and most of that landscape can only be accessed on foot. A fair reward for all that effort.

Don’t let me put you off. This is a true adventure and here are my Top Tips for the Great Ocean Walk

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The Great Ocean Walk, Victoria – Day 3

The one good thing about finishing the day climbing up and camping at the top of a steep hill is that theoretically you do not have to face that climb first thing the next day…or that is the theory anyway. Theories can always be tested and proven wrong.

Today was our first normal day i.e. one stage per day. We were determined to have a leisurely start and savoured having the entire campsite to ourselves. We learnt though that starting late means that you lose some of the precious cool hours.

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The Great Ocean Walk, Victoria – Day 1

A grey start to Day 1 on the Great Ocean Walk
Gale force winds, anyone?

After thinking, dreaming and planning for so long, it was exciting to step out on our first real adventure for 2022. The wind buffeted us as we walked away from the protection of Apollo Bay township and the sand, whipped up off the beach, stinging our legs and arms. Loving the early morning views over the beach, the wind gusts hit out fully loaded (overloaded?) backpacks and we stepped sideways grappling with our hiking poles to remain upright.

Our Great Ocean Walk was underway!

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Tackling the Great North Walk – 16 Days Walking Through the Aussie Bush and ‘Burbs.

A few weeks ago I shared an overview of the Great North Walk – a +260km path from Sydney to Newcastle on Australia’s East coast. After a fair bit of reading, researching and scheming, it’s time to share my plan of attack.

Do you have any tips or tricks? Wisdom to share?

Even if you haven’t walked this route before, I welcome any do’s and don’ts when it comes to long hikes through the bush.

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It’s Adventure Time! Planning the Great Ocean Walk, Victoria

It has been way too long between adventures AND blog posts. Covid19 clipped my wings so severely last year that I simply had to stay home in lockdown and I completely lost my blogging mojo.

Setting out on the Great Ocean Walk. Source: visitapollobay.com
Setting out on the Great Ocean Walk. Source: visitapollobay.com

I have now decided that 2022 is going to be a year of domestic adventures and my Year ofYes’. There has been far too much ‘No’ over the past two years (‘No, you can’t do that – No, you can’t leave home – No, your plan has been cancelled’) and that has to change.

So, it is Yes to adventure, Yes to positivity and Yes to new challenges.

Both large and mini-adventures are in the wind, and in the short-term one of the mini ones is a stroll, or more like a clamber, along the Great Ocean Walk trail.

Grab your backpack and your tent, we are off again AT LAST!

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Stepping Down, Down, Down into the Gorgeous Fern Tree Gully, Rylstone

Walking through Fern Tree Gully Reserve

The mist was still hanging low and damp over the paddocks as we drove out of town. Glorious rain had fallen the day before ensuring our walk in Fern Tree Gully would be bright and fresh.

Tie on your walking shoes, we are headed out for a short stroll through the Australian bush.

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Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay Out there in the Wild!

Book Title: Wild By Nature

Author: Sarah Marquis

Book cover of Wild by Nature by Sarah Marquis
Source: Allen & Unwin

Promotional Blurb:The epic story of one woman’s 16,000 kilometre, three year trek from Siberia to Australia.  

Not since Cheryl Strayed’s Wild has there been such a powerful epic adventure by a woman alone.

In Wild by Nature, Sarah Marquis, a National Geographic Explorer, recounts her extraordinary solo hike that took her literally from one end of the planet to the other. Over 1000 days and nights she journeyed through six countries, starting in Siberia and finishing up at a place of special significance for her – a small tree standing alone in the vastness of the Nullarbor Plain in South Australia.

Walking for three years, Sarah overcame almost insurmountable odds to reach her final goal, surviving Mongolian thieves on horseback who harassed her tent every night for weeks, heavily armed drug smugglers in the Golden Triangle, temperatures from subzero to scorching, lethal wildlife, a dengue fever delirium in the Laos jungle, tropical ringworm in northern Thailand, dehydration and a life-threatening abscess.

Sarah’s story is an incredible record of adventure, human ingenuity, persistence and resilience that shows firsthand what it is to journey as a woman in some of the most dangerous and inhospitable regions on the planet, as well as some of the most beautiful, and what it is like to be truly alone in the wild. Source.

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Start Your Day With a Sunrise. Walking Up Tomaree Head, Nelson Bay

Sunrise from Tomaree Head Summit, Nelson Bay

I am taking you on a very short walk today, but it still packs a punch. Or perhaps that should be, jumpstarts the ol’ ticker!

Lace up your sneakers and let’s head out into the early morning light, stepping out on the path up to the very top of Tomaree Head.

Puff, pant, puff, pant…

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Watch out for Ducks! Cycling Around Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra

Canberra is a museum mecca. The Australian War Memorial, National Museum of Australia, the Royal Australian Mint, Museum of Australian Democracy and endless galleries will keep your brain active, mind boggled AND locked inside!

It’s time to get outside into the fresh air and explore Canberra on two wheels. A ride around Lake Burley Griffin, the centrepiece of Canberra, is just the ticket.

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Finding Yourself When You Are Lost in Nature

Book Title: Bewildered

Author: Laura Waters

The cover of the book BewilderedPromotional Blurb: What would move you to ditch your life and take off into the wild for five months? For Laura Waters, it took the implosion of a toxic relationship and a crippling bout of anxiety.

 Armed with maps, a compass and her life in a bag on her back, she set out to walk the untamed landscapes of the Te Araroa trail in New Zealand, 3000 kilometres of raw, wild, mountainous trail winding from the top of the North Island to the frosty tip of the South Island. But when her walking partner dropped out on the second day, she was faced with a choice: abandon the journey, or face her fears and continue on alone? She chose to walk on.

 For five months, Laura battled not only treacherous terrain and elements, but also the demons of self-doubt and anxiety. As the kilometres fell behind her, nature did its work, stripping away her identity and guiding her towards a new way of being. At the end of Te Araroa, it was the hard-earned insights into the power of nature, emotional wellbeing and fulfilling relationships – with others as well as with herself – that were Laura’s greatest accomplishments. She emerged ‘rewilded’, and it transformed her life. Source 

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