In Western Australia, the Bibbulmun Track is a very well known hiking trail and is one of the world’s great long distance walking trails. It stretches nearly 1000km from Perth and surrounds to Albany in the south. It is marked clearly by these little trail markers, representing the Waugal – the serpent of Aboriginal Dreaming.
You can read more about the history of the track, all the different track sections, hiking and camping information, and purchase maps from the official site. The track actually starts up in the Perth Hills so I have seen a lot of the little markers. I have also seen them on our travels in Albany, Denmark, and Walpole, which is why my interest was definitely triggered and it had to go on the Hitlist. Well at least a portion of it anyway. Deciding on which portion was the difficult bit but I opted for something close to home and that was recommended as the top hike in the Perth area by Inspiration Outdoors website. The walk I wanted to complete was the Sullivan’s Rock to Monadnocks Campsite portion of the Bibbulmun Track.
After completing the Adventurethon, starting school holidays, and surviving Christmas I was itching to get outside and do something active….time to walk a portion of the famous Bibbulmun track. Now the clock was ticking a little for me to complete this item as the family and I are on holidays in Queensland and then we would be moving way up North to a remote mining town that is a world away from the Bibbulmun track. So even though Summer is not the most ideal time to go hiking I reasoned that if we did a short section of the track (10-15km) and left early in the morning to beat the worst of the heat we shouldn’t be too bad. The other issue that I rushed through in my wish to explore this track was not organising to purchase a decent map of the trail. (You can purchase them here) Instead I found another map which was fine but not very detailed…yeah, sounds stupid now doesn’t it?
The website actually had some good information and quite a detailed description of the walk and landmarks.
Now I don’t want you to think that I take any hike lightly. These are the things that I check off when preparing for a decent hike.
- Fitness level appropriate? I am in good health and have a good fitness level.
- Experience level appropriate? I have been hiking and bush walking pretty much my whole life.
- Map of the Trail? I had a map of the trail (albeit in hindsight not very detailed) The other thing I will admit to is that we had the map saved on the phone, didn’t need signal to access but reliant on battery. Next time I will make sure I have a hard copy map.
- I checked DFES (Department of Fire and Emergency Services) alerts to make sure there were no fires or back burning in the area.
- Checked DPAW (Department of Parks and Wildlife) for any alerts in the area.
- Also checked the weather forecast for the day of the hike.
- I had packed 2L of water each for my friend and I as recommended for this particular walk on one of the websites I had been reading.
- I had food and energy gels
- First Aid Kit? I packed 2 compression bandages but I really should have a basic first aid kit.
- I had a phone, fully charged for once (I know, amazing right); and
- I wasn’t walking alone and my husband knew where my friend and I would be walking.
All set and ready to go. Fully prepared for the walk provided things go right. This is probably the biggest lesson I learnt from this walk, you need to pack for worst case scenario not the average hike. I will stop talking now and let the pictures tell the story….
Not a care in the world…heading up Sullivan’s Rock the start of the day.
Well I am going to leave it there for now, while we were still happy and things were still under control…although a little behind schedule, two and a half hours in. I will go and finish the final part of the story where we realize that we are lost, have no water, and are not quite sure how to get out of this situation.
Linking in with Jess for IBOT and her very random post on her focus points for 2015.