Welcome to a journey along Australia's premier long-distance walking trail.

After absorbing Australia’s natural beauty over the past 12 months, I’ve decided to head back to my home state of South Australia to take up my next challenge; solo hiking the long-distance Heysen Trail.

The Heysen Trail.

There may be no better snapshot of South Australia’s natural diversity than the winding route of the 1,200 km Heysen Trail. This epic end-to-end trek transverses coastal areas, regional bushland, national parks, rugged gorges, sweeping pastoral land and, of course, the state’s famous vineyards. The journey will take me through some of the most scenic and historic parts of the state, including the picturesque Adelaide Hills and Barossa Valley.

Recognised internationally as one of the world’s greatest long-distance hikes, the trail remains the longest dedicated walking trail in Australia. I will be setting off from the rugged Flinders Ranges in the mid-north, on August 13, and finishing on the coastline of Cape Jervis in the south, some two months later.

 

Hiking The Heysen - Adelaide Hills

The trail leads through the beautiful Adelaide Hills region.

Why choose to hike this ridiculously long trail?

1. I’ve wanted to hike the trail since I was a kid.

Having grown up along the route, in Tanunda in the Barossa Valley, the enormity of the Heysen Trail always fascinated me. A strain of SA pride runs through my veins knowing that the trail goes through my little town. As a boy, I would often ride my bike past the trail marker at the end of my street and wonder, one day, what if?

There is an infinity of landscape here, caused by the purity of the atmosphere.
Hans Heysen

2. I’ve always wanted to create a documentary.

In a career spanning ten years as a designer, blogger, copywriter and photographer, the task of storyteller has followed me on my adventures. However, despite my creative juices constantly bubbling, I’ve never had the opportunity to produce a documentary film. So, it’s with great excitement that I’m taking a rucksack full of technology with me on the trail.

Provided I have the adequate space, I plan to pack a drone, a DSLR Camera, a GoPro and an iPhone with lens adapter… I can go without food and water, right? This variety of recording equipment will allow the viewer to experience both the intimacy of the struggling hiker and the perpetuity of the trail in high quality.

3. The hike is bigger than just me.

This hike will easily be my most demanding physical and mental challenge. However, I know that this isolated two-month battle is nothing compared to the struggle that people with mental health issues go through every day. Knowing this, it is with enormous pride that I am raising funds for the Black Dog Institute while on the trail.

Donate to the Black Dog Institute

The Heysen Trail transverses some of the state’s most beautiful rural landscapes; many of which are situated in remote regions, separated from major cities and much-needed support. The Black Dog Institute has made an incredible impact across the country through rural health initiatives and the development of education programs.

Increasing the support and awareness of mental health issues is essential and the Black Dog Institute’s numerous research projects provide an avenue to a mentally healthier world. If you would like to donate to this inspirational cause please visit the donation page.

Supporting Black Dog Institute Logo

Hiking The Heysen - Jervis Bay Marker

These trail markers will guide my way for nearly 2 months.

Interested in supporting the hike?

I am currently on the lookout for awesome businesses and generous individuals to help sponsor the hike. If you would like to share your time and resources with the Hiking the Heysen journey, get in contact at josh@trekkingwest.com

This is your opportunity to support a fantastic cause and a proudly South Australian adventure. Let’s create a community that shares positive values. Together we can spread an inspiring message of personal growth.

Follow the journey.

On top of a post-hike documentary, daily diaries will be posted on Facebook (as long as the internet reception holds out!). These updates will keep you up-to-date on the progress of the journey and the dwindling status of a long-distance hiker.

Other ongoing updates include regular blog and Instagram posts with images and descriptions of the locations along the trail.