Another Hike Complete!

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Last Friday, I flew to South Australia to hike the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail. Over five days, my friend and I walked the 61km that make up the trail, which officially opened in October 2016. The trail winds its way along the south-western corner of the island, and provides views of spectacular coastlines and rugged bushlands.

I can’t begin to describe how wonderful it felt to be out hiking again. Sure, every day, my friend and I grumbled about the weight of the pack on our shoulders, groaned about our feet being sore from walking for hours on end and complained about being covered in sand and dust and grime. But at the end of the day, I love the hiking life, and I miss it once it’s over.

What I find myself missing most of all is the peace and quiet that comes from escaping the hustle and bustle of modern life and being surrounded by nature instead. The frantic pace of everyday life definitely gets a bit much for me sometimes and it’s not until I step away from it all that I realise just how overwhelmed I’ve become. Living in a pressure bubble with a constant list of unattainable expectations is just not good for the soul.

Hiking life is so beautifully uncomplicated. All I do is walk, eat and sleep, and yet every day is full of adventure and surprises and breath-taking new sights. It reminds me that when you keep things simple, thereĀ areĀ enough hours in the day after all, and they certainly don’t need to be spent trying to squeeze in as many things as possible from a never-ending to-do list (or procrastinating from doing them, as is so often the case for me). It’s also a welcome relief to be disconnected from social media and the digital world for a while. My senses are suddenly liberated from having to process rapid-fire streams of information, while my mind isn’t weighed down with negativity from the latest news reports providing updates on all the bad things happening in the world at large. When I go out hiking, I’m reminded that the world isn’t all doom and gloom. It’s a beautiful place, actually. It’s just us humans who make it ugly. How nice it is to wander in the wild and find places which are still untarnished and unspoilt by people.

But I digress.

My Kangaroo Island hike was a fantastic adventure, and I’ll be sharing photos and writing about the experience in the upcoming days. There’ll be stories of battling fierce winds that threatened to blow us into the Southern Ocean; a failed rendition of Baywatch- With Backpacks; a face-off with the fattest tiger snake ever; roaming the rocks of a seaside Stonehenge; a match-making cape (or not); river crossings and cotton cloud beaches; tents full of sand, sand and more sand (but thankfully not mice); and how a horse named Kelly discovered some pretty darn cool caves. Stay tuned!

1 Month Until Kangaroo Island

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March is my ‘stay put in Perth’ month but I’m finding that although I’m here, I’m not really here. My time is consumed with planning future adventures, or sorting through the stories and photos of past adventures. I feel like I’m just temporarily stopping over at home, before the world carries me away again. I do wonder, sometimes, what my life would be like if I didn’t live with my head in the clouds, but at the end of the day, I can’t imagine living life any other way.

Today marks exactly one month until my friend and I fly to Adelaide. From here, we will fly to Kangaroo Island to do the 61km Wilderness Trail, which opened on the island at the end of last year. Everything is now officially sorted, with the final ‘to-do’ items- transfers on the island and overnight accommodation in Adelaide- being booked earlier today.

I’m really looking forward to the hike, and getting back on a trail again. By the time April rolls around, it will have been six months since my trek in Nepal, which was my last ‘big walk’. It will be great to get out the backpack and hiking boots- for me, they symbolise a return to the simplest state of living: eat, walk, sleep, repeat. What’s more, I hope it will be an opportunity for my mind to experience something that is currently eluding it- a chance to switch off and live in the moment.