For those in the know, Sections of the Great Walk has been closed for the past year and a half due to water inundation from the heavy rains we have had a year and a half ago. To this day a year and a half later those sections of the Great Walk are still closed. Why? I have no idea. Parks & Wildlife Service are a bit slow with the track rebuilding.
Yesterday I returned from a 7 day hike followed by 2 relaxing nights at the Kingfisher Bay Resort on the western side of the island.
I chosen to use the services of Fraser Island Taxi Service. The sections closed due to water inundation I chosen to hike on the 4wd tracks. In total I walked 83km's over the 7 days, 6 nights.
I carried all my supplies in my Gossamer Gear Mariposa 2012 Backpack, a brand new pack for myself and a new pack design, only released a matter of weeks before my trip. I can report that this pack is the most comfortable pack I've ever worn. I thought the Aarn packs where great till I tried this pack. The pack only weighs 750grams. I've had a lot of new gear with me on this trip, a new Esbit cooking kit at only 120 grams, and my GoPro Adventure Camera.
Day one was a nice warm day, Warmer than expected. Total distance covered was 6.6km Day two a long day as the camp grounds where closed in the southern section of the great walk, so I chosen to hike to Central Station. Woke up to find the temp was only 2C. Much colder than expected, but my Hammock Gear 20F Burrow Top Quilt and Warbonnet Blackbird 25F Yeti under quilt kept me very warm inside my Hammock Gear Blackbird Hammock and Warbonnet Superfly. The superfly is soon to be replaced for a Hammock Gear 4-Season Cuben Tarp, this new tarp setup will save a further 400 grams of my pack weight. Day three, a short stretch from Central to Lake McKenzie. At Lake McKenzie I tested out my Camera underwater. Most of the footage taken with my GoPro Camera was in HD video, in the following images I've captured a screen shot of Video Footages. Day four, a very nice stretch from Lake McKenzie to Lake Wabby. Day five, Lake Wabby to Valley of the Giants, and this is when the heaven opened for the first time, I could hear dingoes howling in the near distance. Day six, was a day I battles with leeches, 13 leech bites on my feet by the end of the day. Day seven, into Happy Valley, waited for taxi ride to Resort and relaxed for 2 nights at the resort.
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Taken underwater using my new GoPro Remote
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Hammerstone Sandblow near Lake Wabby
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Valley of the Giants Camp
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Last edited by ULWalkingPhil on Fri 13 Jul, 2012 11:51 am, edited 5 times in total.
For those interested, I thought I might go through some of my gear I had taken with me.
My pack weight at day one including 3.1kg of food for the week and 2 litres of water was 14kg. By the end of my trip, my pack weight dropped down to 10kg.
Having the lighter pack weight made the hike so much easier, I was able to complete each day's hikes before lunch, allowing me plenty of time to explore the area around camp and relaxation before the next days hike.
A brake down of my packs contents
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I had a lot of new items I christened on this 7 day hike including.
Tamroc Zipshot Tripod Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel Goal Zero Guide 10+ GoPro WiFi bacpac and remote Gossamer Gear Mariposa 2012 backpack Driduck Poncho Esbit 750ml Titanium Pot with lid A 12 gram Esbit Titanium cooker Strive Foods Sony digital recorder Merrell Air Master Barefoot shoes
All the above performed brilliantly. It was a bit of an challenge with the solar panel, chasing the sun at camp was a struggle. Next time I'll take just the Guide 10+ with extra batteries. Particularly in a location that see's very little sunlight.
The Gossamer Gear pack is a huge success. I thought the Aarn packs where comfy, till I worn this pack. This is a brilliant pack. I've trying to get my pack weight down as low as possible. I just don't think you need to carry so much weight now. There's quality gear available that are ultralight. Unfortunately not in Australia, I used to own a cooking kit that was classed ultralight by Australia's standard and it was almost a kilo in weight. and they called this ultralight.
I'm still endeavouring in reducing this pack weight further. I've ordered a Cuben Tarp to replace my 580gram Warbonnet Superfly. My new tarp is only 178 grams. A further 400 gram weight savings.
The Strive Foods: not bad. I wouldn't say there brilliant. Portion size is just right for me. Bit of an effort to cook. as the pasta is not dehydrated. it's just normal pasta you see up town. In saying this, to cook a whole meal only taken one and a half esbit fuel tablets.
The Esbit cooking kit was a success. What I liked about the Esbit tablets is there's no excess weight I need to carry, for example my gas cooker, each gas canister weight 357 grams and when empty 160 grams. That's 160 grams I've had to carry back home. I used 160 grams of Esbit tablets during the week. I've tried Metho stoves in the past and didn't find them very fuel efficient. It might have been the Trangia kit I was using, I found it very inefficient.