Since I have only done one hike with Adelaide Bushwalkers (ABW) before, back in July in Mt Remarkable National Park, and with the new hiking season just started, I thought I would join in on this "beginner's hike". This year I'm doing two weeks with the Friends of the Heysen Trail, but apart from that only 3 other walks with them, and a handful of catch-up walks with friends so I can finish the Heysen Trail on August 16. So I will have more weekends available to hike with ABW, especially after August. I quite enjoy pack carrying, and camping out overnight. Also, there seem to many more young people in ABW than in the Friends of the Heysen Trail.
There were eleven of us, 6 beginners - Debbie, Joyce, Sam, Liz & Steve, and myself (who had hiked once before with ABW) - and the rest regulars. Debbie, Joyce and Sam were all pretty new to pack-carrying and camping out overnight. It was great to meet so many newbies, and I think they found much comfort in each not being the only one.
The hikes were fairly easy, only 3-4 hours each, although a little faster than I would normally walk with a pack. Of course the newbies found them more difficult, carrying a full pack isn't easy. There is also very little in the way of hills around Kuitpo Forest. On Saturday, once we had set up camp at Chookarloo Campground - nice - and I found one of the newbies using a very heavy item to in setting up their tent - no wonder the pack as heavy - we did some orienteering nearby with a map and compass. Pretty cool stuff, although thanks to the work of my secret agent my feet were bloooody painful by now.
Fun times that night cooking our meals, all the regular hikers getting a bit of a laugh watching the newbies try to master their hired trangiers, when we all had easy-to-use fuel cell burners. Cruel trick that. Still being the fire ban though we had no campfire, but sat around a candle instead - seriously - it was the only light though and surprisingly bright.
Sunday was easy hiking too, although Liz dragged it out a bit because we weren't that far from the cars, although that's a credit to the newbies though who were obviously coping well. For lunch we rendezvoused at the bakery in Meadows - nice one.
Hiking with ABW is cheap, the weekend cost us each $3 - the cost of camping in the forest. The newbies who hired their gear from ABW would have paid $3-$5 for each item (pack, tent, trangier) which is also very affordable.
|Stats: Saturday||Stats: Sunday|