In its most simplest form, my plan is to complete and entire guide book of walks in one big continuous mission around Tasmania. Although I have done this type of thing before, I have never done it in one big continuous adventure (I've always had breaks and gone back to work & rest & gardening etc.) The book I'm using is called 100 Walks in Tasmania by Tyrone Thomas and Andrew Close.
28-oct-18 - the above shot is taken in my room as I begin the final gear and readiness check. I know that I'm not going to Antarctica or Everest, but I want to be prepared and organised. I also know that there may never be another day where I am completely injury free and the bits of my body that I can cobble together may be as good as it get for the next little while. I'm currently nursing 3 minor ailments or injuries all in some state of recovery, but I generally feel pretty good and 4 more days resting and stretching may not be an altogether bad thing. I had planned to be in super shape and training hard at this stage of things, but I'm now starting to understand more about these types of trips and the requirements or organising everything by myself. There is no one to blame or complain about other than the guy in the shot above.
The walks vary in size from 1 hour to 6 days, so it is quite a mixed bag. They are located across the length and breadth of Tasmania and I live in Victoria. It is now January 2018 and I plan to start this trip in late 2018, so I have around 8-10 months to get my plans and preparation together. Sitting here right now, I don't even know if this is even possible. I currently have a groin injury which has been hanging around for a while now, I'm assuming it will be nicely repaired by October. To get started, I will loosely follow the organisation of the book.
Around a year ago (or more) I mapped all the walks in this book onto a single piece of paper and calculated some numbers, I'll see if I can find that picture now, otherwise I'll be starting from scratch. Hold tight, I'll be back in a moment.
Refer to the above shot: Somehow the Wolfy Mobile just didn't seem ready for the massive trip - it needed something to add to the bonnet art, the sides now just looked a little plain - so I decided to put racy stripes down each side and see if that would improve the speed and aerodynamics of the vehicle, which it did, I'm happy to say - it now feels like it's ready ... well almost, I think the power steering fluid is a little low and I need some oil - all of which I could do in Tassie, but I want to see what it takes to be prepared, that is to have all my gear with me - food is the one thing that is not included in this prep, because of quarantine and dietary issues ... and I'm pretty keen to have as much fresh local produce as I can.
I actually found it in under 5 minutes, miraculous. Anyway, it says on the top that I did it sometime in 2015, so it's closer to 2 or 3 years old in terms of its genesis as an idea. It looks a bit like a treasure map, see below.
I actually did a bit of work to plot out all the major roads and the general walk locations and times to get a sense of what I was up for. So this work will come in very handy 2 or 3 years later when I'm getting a little more serious about my plan. I've also went to Tassie in November 2016 and completed 4 of the walks as a bit of a reconnaissance mission - so I have a rough idea how this could play out.
All up there are 100 walks covering a distance of 1,091km. So let's just say I have 13 weeks to do this all, or 91 days. I take 1 day off in every 7 to wash clothes, restock and rest. So my walking days are 13 weeks of 6 days for a total of 78 days, meaning that I have to cover at least 14 km each day. Of course this won't include any side trips or diversions that I choose to take.
Refer above - this is me in front of the small mountain of gear that I will be taking with me - this is my third run through and I get a very small sense of what it might be like to be the storeman for Captain Scott - that would be very hard core and you cannot forget anything and you need spares for everything - so these are the stores and provisions I will be taking with me on board the Spirit of Tasmania (ie Terra Nova) - almost there.
21 October 2018 Update The above was indeed wishful thinking - although the distance is about right, instead of 13 weeks, I now have 9 weeks and 2 of the days are for travelling on the ferry, another 5 days are reserved for a trip with a mate, which leaves me with 57 days of walking 19km a day over varied terrain - with no rest or washing days currently scheduled. A slightly longer story is that I'm currently injured, 11 days out from departure, so this is quite frustrating, but am working to sort things out and think it will be okay. You can see directly below at how I have jammed it all in.
I set out in 2018 to do some things - I always like this bit where I do a bit of a count to see what has happened. Given that I'm injured now, the lists below will not be added to, so here is the wrap up. I did want a year free from physiotherapy, my last visit was on May the 14th, so still have some way to go, but I would have liked to avoid all medical contact, but that was not to be. My adventure year in numbers:
As my research continued I discovered that there were 18 National Parks in Tasmania (see picture below from Discover Tassie. I should be able to get to all except 1, Strzelecki which is located on Flinders Island.(maybe add Maria Island to that, but I noted that there is a ferry, so we'll see .. oh and South Bruny). Also see the Parks Tasmania List
It is now the 23-March-2018 - I haven't looked at this page for many, many weeks now. I've been particularly concerned about an injury to my groin & adductor area on my right leg. I was reluctant to commit to this trip without some sign of improvement. Although I can walk, ride, climb stairs okay, I'm not confident that I can do this for hour after hour and day after day.
Yesterday I paid a visit to my physio, or one of my physios - I do spend a lot of time and cash fine tuning and repairing myself and my body. Anyway we spent about 40 minutes in the exercise room testing the leg and developing a strengthening program. I found this to be a really valuable session and now feel that I can progress with my ideas. The weakness is in my leg is clear and I have already begun implementing the next stage of the strengthening program, so am confident that this will all now go ahead.
Earlier this week I spoke to my supervisor at work at raised the idea of taking leave for 3 months and this was tentatively approved - the tentative part was me, being reluctant to commit if I was still injured. But I believe I can sort this out now and will continue on with my planning to make this whole trip happen. I want to get a nice big map and start developing my itinerary.
It is now the 12th of May and I finally have initial approval from work to take extended leave, around 5 months - not all of this will be spent in Tasmania. I'm still a bit edgy about this trip as my body continues to get injured - with my help of course - I think I need to get my mind right and stop trying to rush things and do too much - this seems to be a consistent problem for me. I think that I feel that I need to get things done as I have limited time (in life) and also that I've spent a fair bit of my life fucking about doing fuck all.
So from now on I need a steady plan and need to make steady progress, my current injuries include shin splints, right shoulder (weakness in back muscles), right hamstring (but getting much better) and middle back - one of my vertebrae seems to be consistently tight - not sure if this is caused by kayaking and exacerbated by doing weights / walking with heavy pack. My recent foray on the great south west walk proved one thing - that I can push through pain, but it was too big a walk too early in my preparation and has resulted in significant set backs which I'm hoping can be overcome in the next few weeks. My feet are nearly healed, but once again I started rehab too early and went too hard - more to the point is that I just went too hard too early and fucked something else up .... when will I learn?
It is now early June and I've finished the first draft of the plan which has me completing all the walks in 67 days which sounds a little aggressive, yet I've also built in quite a few rest days. Obviously I will check and re-check this plan. Currently has 6 or 7 rest days, probably needs a few more, but I like the shape that it has taken. Over the next few weeks I want to start adding in some side trips, maybe, or maybe I should just leave all this extra stuff for another day, still in two minds. I think I'll add a week to this, up to 74 days which gets me home in mid Jan 2019.
It's now the 1st of September and I've been busy training and exploring and am now getting down to the business end of things with only 8 weeks to go, it's time for me to really switch on my planning brain. Physically all is well apart from a couple of little niggles here and there, nothing that seems out of control. The boat is booked and now I'm in the process of working out my gear.
This part of the page will provide links to websites that I have used to get information, buy items and book tickets etc.
How much did it all cost? The one thing to note in the costs below is that I will be taking my own car and all my own gear and I will be trying to do this lean and mean.
What equipment do I need for all the different locations and the long duration?
No action on this one just yet ..
In this section I begin to lay out the plan for my walks region by region, road by road, kilometre by kilometre.