Silver Falls with a Toddler.


Archer at Silver Falls

Archer at Silver Falls

Just over two years ago this little man came into my life and since then I have been awaiting the day that I could share my love of the outdoors with him.

As such this is the beginning of a long anticipated series of walks that I will be sharing with Archer.

Silver Falls, Mount Wellington.

The first part of this walk is along the Pipeline Track departing from Fern Tree on the flanks of Mount Wellington. The suggested walking time is 15 minutes each way, with a toddler allow double that time.

Walk along the Pipeline Track for approximately 15 minutes making sure you pick up all the rocks, sticks and bits of bark that you find and exclaim “ROCK, DADDY ROCK” every 25-30 seconds. You will come to a long bend and a sign post pointing up hill to Silver Falls. Follow this track to the base of the falls, the track can be a bit slippery and for little legs could seem steep.

Take some photos and have a good look around, before retracing your steps back along the Pipeline Track.

With the aim of getting Archer used to carrying his own pack when walking (future proofing) he carried his own Mini Mac Macpac pack which contained some snacks, wipes, 2 nappies and his drink bottle.

Now when ever his pack comes out he says “BUSHWALK” and heads to the car.

Stay tuned for another walk next week!

The Overland Track.

Well, I have just got back from the Overland Track yet again.

Something about this walk just suits me, whilst it’s not hard walking the length of the trip and food to carry can add more of a logistical hardship to the trip.

Below I will share some of my tips for the track in no particular order.

  • Pack light. This year my pack weight when leaving Ronny Creek was 13.7kg. This included all my gear and 10 days worth of food. This resulted in a much easier walk with less fatigue and the only thing I missed was a good book to read.
  • The tent platform anchors you can buy on Ali express are fantastic for helping to secure your tent to the platform.
  • I ditched the typical sleeping bag in favor of a quilt, the Ember 3 from sea to summit. Any time I felt cool, I put on a hat and fleece inside the bag and slept well.
  • Generally the walking days are short, 3 to 4 hour days with plenty of side trips available. Get up early and get moving so you have the freedom to do the side trips.
  • Currawongs will find a way into your pack to get at your food and rubbish. When you drop your pack to do one of the side tracks make sure you secure your pack. A pack cover works well but make sure it’s tight. I saw a Currawong get a pack cover off and pull out a poorly secured rubbish bag. Crafty little buggers.
  • Ear plugs. Snoring. Enough said.

Summit 8000, Andrew Lock


Summit 8000

Andrew Lock


Summit 8000 by Andrew Lock is more than a chronicle of climbs, camps, dates and times it is a window into the mind of a man who continually pushes himself to succeed

Andrew writes with an Australian matter of fact, no bullshit frankness which enables him to tell his story and his philosophy with integrity. It feels as if you are sitting in a kitchen tent with him listening to the story first hand.

Being the first Australian and the first person from the British Commonwealth to climb all fourteen 8000 meter mountains is a huge achievement only made available through decades of striving not only on mountains but in training and planning.

Copies can be purchased from Andrew Locks web site


Non Cessation of Posts

Hi Everyone,

After a busy 12 months of work and no time to get out walking, 3 expeditions that did not get away, a forced redundancy at work and a busy life with a 12 month old son I have decided to call it quits on posting to this site and take a break from the outdoor life.

But not without learning some lessons from it, when I was 15 or 16 I decided that I wanted to make a living from my passion for being outside and exploring new places. I ditched the mainstream subjects at school and focused on the outdoor education classes, my days were full of climbing, abseiling, hiking, kayaking and so forth. I did well in those subjects and my passion grew and when a bit of casual work came my way I jumped at the chance to be able to buy some better gear and plan some epic trips. That casual position turned into a fulltime one and the trips kept coming and the gear piling up.

This was the cycle for years to come, work, trip, gear and repeat. Eventually I got sick of the positions that I was employed for and would leave the job hoping to find employment in the outdoor sector only to end up doing something else again that was so distant from my idea out of necessity.

Its still somewhat the case these days, I plan a trip, gear up, get ready and occasionally I pull them off. However, the cost this cycle has taken on my ability to create an income for my family, the qualifications that every employer looks for these days and the constant battle between trips and finance has led me to the conclusion that this passion has cost me a lot. a lot of money on gear, a lot of missed opportunities and a lot of set backs. It is simply not worth the cost anymore (in my eyes, anyway).

I will leave page up for people to view and use the information.



Well that did not last long, I had only decided to stop hiking for a few weeks and get on with life, so to speak.

Then yesterday I found myself with free time, before I could realize what was happening I was wandering around Mt Wellington enjoying an audio book and the cool crisp air. It was only a few hours but when I got home my disposition had changed, I was in a great mood. The worries had gone and the knowledge that I have so much life left to live ahead of me and I don’t need to have it all together yet. I can just enjoy now, there is a future that will happen in the, future.
Hiking develops my character and restores me and that will serve me when I come into that future one day.

Boots on people, the future awaits.

Walls of Jerusalem

Below is a summary of a plan to tackle the high number of users inside the Walls of Jerusalem National Park. The Summary is Taken directly from the Parks and Wildlife Website  which can be found Here


The Walls of Jerusalem is a majestic place in the heart of an alpine wilderness. It is the second-most popular backcountry walking destination in the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, with 4-5000 visitors annually, and is a favoured area for beginner to intermediate walkers.

The area of greatest visitation, the 3,283 hectare Recreation Zone, is coincident with very high conservation values. It is a very scenic area which has, to date, remained relatively pristine despite high use. It is also an ecological refugia in light of potential climate change.
The iconic grassy pencil pine forests at Dixons Kingdom, the only such extensive communities in the world, are a good example of the coincidence of high scenic, recreational and conservation values in the Walls of Jerusalem area. Fire is a key threat to the area’s values, particularly the pencil pine communities and the scenic values of which they are a critical part. Hence priority conservation management issues are the exclusion of fire; the maintenance of sensitive natural values in the light of climate change; and maximising the naturalness of the area (including minimising trampling impacts and the maintenance of high water quality).
 Use of the area by commercial guided walking groups is significant and is likely to increase with increasing publicity. School outdoor education programs are also major users of the area. Both these user groups and some private groups can form large parties that can impact the experience of others.
The Recreation Zone contains more than 31 kilometres of walking tracks of which 6.5 kilometres has been hardened with timber or stone. Active deterioration is occurring on some unimproved track sections and campsites. Illegal campfire use is on the rise and, prior to installation of a temporary toilet at Dixons Kingdom, poor toileting practices were frequently noted.
The purpose of this plan is to describe management actions that aim to protect both the area’s high conservation values and the visitor’s experience. These actions include:
Creation of a circuit loop. Relevant sections of the Dixons Kingdom – Lake Ball – Lake Adelaide track will be reclassified and upgraded, creating a circuit of track class T1 and T2. This allows a maximum party size of 13 throughout and creates a loop track option for large groups and commercial trips. This upgrade is a significant change to the present situation, and will require medium-long term track works (campsite upgrades, track re-routes and hardening).
Promotion of three types of Walls experiences. Once track and campsite upgrades are completed, it is proposed to promote specific day walk (to Wild Dog Creek and Central Walls), overnight walk (Wild Dog Creek and Dixons Kingdom) and a multi-day circuit walk (overnights at Wild Dog Creek, Dixons Kingdom and/or Lake Adelaide) experiences. The hardened side routes to the Temple, Solomons Throne and Mt Jerusalem will be incorporated in such promotion but other routes in the Walls of Jerusalem area will not be actively promoted.
New and expanded hardened campsites. The existing hardened camping area at Wild Dog Creek will be expanded and a new hardened camping area will be constructed at Dixons Kingdom. Another hardened campsite at Lake Adelaide is likely to be constructed in the medium term.
No camping in the Central Walls. Once these upgrades are complete, camping in the Central Walls area will be disallowed.
Visitor Management 
Track ranger presence. A track ranger presence is urgently required to redress increasing use of campfires, promote Leave No Trace principles and to educate users.
Education campaign. Appropriate educational messages will be distributed at both a site-specific level and more broadly.
Large group management. To address overcrowding issues, from the 2013-14 summer season, all groups of seven or more members will be required to register to visit or traverse the Recreation Zone.
Web-based booking system. Investigate the business case for a web-based booking system for all users.

La Sportiva Nepal Evo GTX


Just finished a little shopping and have a pair of these in the post ready for my next expedition in April next year, Once I have had a chance to use them I will upload a full review.

Mount Leonora, WA

ImageWell it has been a while since I have written anything and for that I am Sorry, I have spent the last 3.5 months living on the edge of the Great Victoria Desert.

There is not a lot to do out there hiking or mountaineering wise that could be achieved in my one day off per week.

I did however make a regular effort to run up the local “mountain” for want of a better word. so I thought I would share the experience with you.

From the township of Leonora make your way to the goldfields Highway and run in the direction of Kalgoorlie until you get to the turn off for Tower road, turn right onto tower road and follow the road until you see an obvious track leading up the mountain. follow that track uphill until you reach the water tower then follow up a short steep section to the summit. On the way down be careful on the steep section as it can be loose underfoot.

That’s about it for Mt Leonora, I would go early morning before it heats up and watch out for snakes.

“I Chose To Climb” by Chris Bonington

I chose to climb photo from

I chose to climb photo from

With Christmas passing I found myself with a new book to read and that book I couldn’t put down was “I chose to climb” by Chris Bonington.

This book takes you on a down to earth journey with the author through his formative climbing years through to his ascent of the Eiger North Face.

Unlike some mountaineering books where the author takes an almost super human perspective to their exploits Chris Bonington shares his fears and lets you know he faces the same challenges with you. Through out this book you get a sense of the authors growing skill and competence as he climbs with different partners including Don Whilllans (The Villain).

If you are going to buy any book in the next few months add this to your list if you haven’t already read it.


Maurice Herzog

Annapurna by Maurice Herzog - Annapurna First Ascent - Maurice Herzog On Annapurna Summit June 3, 1950June 3 1950 saw the first ascent of an 8000 meter peak, Annapurna in the Himalayas on an expedition lead by Maurice Herzog.

Herzog who was born in the town of Lyon on the 15th of January 1919 developed a love for the mountains at his families chalet in Chamonix France. Maurice served as a rifleman during the war and as an executive post war. It wasn’t until Annapurna that Maurice Herzog became a house hold name.

The expedition in 1950 originally targeted Dhaulagiri, and a great deal of time was spent trying to find a route up the mountain. When it became apparent that this mountain would not be climbed the team switched their objective to Annapurna. The route to the base of the mountain still needed to be found, a suitable climbing route and stocking the route all needed to be done before the upcoming monsoon season.

In a testament to organisation and the skill they pulled off the climb and at around 2pm on june 3 1950 they reached the top. During the ascent and descent Herzog and Lachenal suffered frostbite to their hands and feet. Their repatriation to France took 6 weeks of painful travel.

Herzog wrote the book Annapurna after his return, which has sold over 11 million copies. Ed Viesturs, a famous American mountaineer and the first american to climb all 14 of the 8000m peaks without oxygen cites Herzog’s Annapurna as one of the reasons he got started in mountaineering.

To put the effort of the 1950 climb in perspective, Annapurna repels many climbing team each year and is known as one of the most dangerous 8000m peaks. Viesturs himself took three attempts to climb the mountain and doubted that the peak was inside his level of acceptable risk.

Herzog passed away on the 13th of December 2012 after leading a long and full life

Reinhold Messner

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Reinhold Messner what more really needs to be said? a true icon and revolutionary in the climbing world, his feats are still something modern mountaineers seek to emulate and his philosophy changed the way man kind see the mountains.

Born on September 17 1944 Messner was introduced to climbing by his father at age five where he quickly developed a flair for the sport and being lucky enough to grow up in the Dolomite’s where he could refine his art he progressed quickly. From the age of 13 Messner was climbing difficult routes in the eastern Alps.

Messner became of the first people to climb in “Alpine Style” as opposed to the traditional method of climbing big mountain. Messner did away with the idea that climbing teams needed to stock a mountain with supplies and camps and employ Sherpa’s to carry loads up and down the mountain.

In 1970 Messner climber his first 8000m peak Nanga Parbat a peak that had already seen its fair share of tragedy and heart ache. This trip was no exception, as it was on this expedition that Messner lost his younger brother Gunther. Messner spent a considerable time looking for his brother on the mountain and as a result he suffered severe frostbite to his feet. the event has caused controversy over the years and still continues to do so. Not to be taken away is the feat of climbing Nanga Parbat’s southern wall for the first time.

On the 8th of May 1978 Messner along with long time climbing partner Peter Habeler climbed Everest without the use of oxygen canisters, the first to do so. Many people tried to convince them that it was a bad idea and that they would do themselves permanent damage if they tried.

Messner became the first person to “Close the loop” or climb all 14 mountains over 8000m in height. A feat that is still rare amongst mountaineers.

  • Everest                1978
  • K2                       1979
  • Kanchenjunga     1981
  • Lhotse                 1986
  • Makalu                1986
  • Cho Oyu              1983
  • Dhaulagiri 1         1985
  • Manaslu              1972
  • Nanga Parbat      1970
  • Annapurna 1       1985
  • Gasherbrum 1     1975
  • Broad Peak         1982
  • Gasherbrum 2     1984
  • Shishapangma    1981

Recently Messner has laid the final touches to the “Messner Mountain Museum” spread across various sites in the Alps.

In summary its fair to say that Messner is a remarkable man who has achieved more than most and continues to do so.

“After Messner, the mystery of possibility was gone;
there remained only the mystery of whether you could do it.”

– Ed Viesturs