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

After absorbing Australia’s natural beauty over 12 months, I decided to head back to my home state of South Australia and 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 kilometre Heysen Trail. This epic end-to-end trek transverses coastal areas, regional bushland, national parks, sweeping pastoral land and, of course, the state’s famous vineyards. The journey took me through some of the most scenic and historic parts of the state.

Recognised internationally as one of the world’s greatest long-distance hikes, the trail remains the longest dedicated walking trail in Australia. I set off from the rugged Flinders Ranges in the mid-north, on August 13, 2018, and finished on the Cape Jervis coastline in the south, some two months later.

 

Day 1 – Parachilna Gorge to Aroona Campground

Follow the journey from the beginning with my daily diary entries.

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 hometown. 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.

On top of all my food, camping and safety supplies, I also packed a drone, a DSLR Camera, a GoPro and an iPhone with a lens adapter. 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. Stay tuned for the upcoming documentary!

3. The hike was bigger than just me.

Completing the Heysen Trail was easily my most demanding physical and mental challenge. However, I know this isolated two-month battle was nothing compared to the struggle that people with mental health issues go through every day. Knowing this, it was with enormous pride that I raised funds for the Black Dog Institute while I was on the trail.

The 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. Check out how we contributed to the cause via the donation page.

Supporting Black Dog Institute Logo

Hiking The Heysen - Jervis Bay Marker

These trail markers guided my way for nearly 2 months.

Thank you to my sponsors.

Thank you so much to the organisations that rallied behind the cause. Each of these amazing businesses shared their time and resources while supporting a fantastic cause and a proudly South Australian adventure. I’m incredibly proud to have created a community that shares positive values. Together we spread an inspiring message of personal growth.

Follow the journey.

You can keep track of my journey along the Heysen Trail via the daily diary entries. These posts give you an armchair ride along the trail including images, videos and in-depth descriptions of the scenery along the trail. Interested in the video entries? Check out the Heysen Trail playlist on the Trekking West Facebook page.