Thursday, 21 July 2011

Day 58: Forster

As you may or may not know the weather has tourned pretty bad down here. BOM issued severe weather warnings for NSW coastal waters. With 35knot winds, damagin 4-5m seas and heavy rainfall I've decided to delay my departure from Forster until Saturday. I'll try to make up some extra ground when the weather fines.

In the mean time I though I would provide you with some info on some really exciting work is Oxfam Australia is doing in Timor Leste'. Last year some friends and I travelled to Timor to volunteer our teaching skills for the local people. Our students raanged from 13years old to 50 years old. Many children and adults have received very little / very disrupted education as a result of the Indonesian invasion in 1975. I was overwhelmed by the desire of children and adult alike to learn so that that can improve their lives. My heart was trully touched by the local people so much so that my time in Timor inspired my to take up my Walk Against Want.

I'll tell a few more stories about my time in Timor but for now provide you with some information about work Oxfam is currently undertaking in Timor. I can assure you the work Oxfam does make a world of difference. Your donations could go to support projects like this in Timor


For more info on Oxfam's work check out their website at
You can donate by following the link: or

By calling Oxfam Australia on 1800 088 110.

Any donation is great or small is sincerely appreciated.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Day 52: Old Bar to Forster

Day 52 hey. the days are ticking by and I'm starting to realise that I'm inching closure to Sydney. I had planned to walk from Old Bar to Black Head today but with a few people offering to help my fundraising efforts I doubled the distance and walked all day until I arrived in Forster. Today was a 28km walk starting at 930am and finishing at 630pm. Before I get on with the details of today's journey I must pay particular respects to Sue and Alan, two warm and hospitalable campers who invited me into their humble caravan and made me breakfast. Porridge and tea. A much more palatable start to the day than dry trail mix! Offers like this really do warm your heart and remind you there are some trully wonderful kind hearted people out there in the world. With a belly full of food I set off for Black Head.
A rather ominous looking start to the day.
 Along the walk I noticed the wild winter weather has made mince meat of the beaches. Several meters of the sand dunes have been chewed away threatening houses and motels stupidly built close to the water. I saw a signs all over town seeking support to build and off shore reef to minimise the erosion. I don't know all the facts but from first glance I find such an approach absolutely ludicrous. Sea has been building and eroding sand dunes for thousands of years on our shores. The beach sands in many places extend several kilometers inland. If people and councils are stupid enough to build houses on moving sands then it is their problem and responsibility for damages incurred.
Severe erosion at Old Bar. Don't build sandcastles in the sky or on sand dunes!
Looking North to Old Bar

A view South to Black Head
Deciding to kick on to Forster the weather quickly turned sour. Clouds built up and the rain set in. I walked the last 10km into Forster in pouring rain.
Here comes the rain again!
I can not tell you how glad I was to arrive at the door of the Sevan Apartments. I am so fortunate that Shane and Zoe kindly provided me with four nights complimentary accomodation. My room was a welcomed luxury and Shane and Zoe went above and beyond to look after me during my stay. I really appreciate this kind of support as it would be near impossible for me to complete the journey without it. Thanks to the Sevan Apartments I shall return when I'm next in Forster.

Many thanks to Shane and Zoe from Sevan Apartments!
The journey is nearing its end and I am a very long way from reaching my fundraising target. I have tried valiantly to raise as much money as I can while on the trip and see as many people around the towns I visit. As one person it is very difficult to find the extra time I need to reach anywhere near the target I had hoped. Again I kindly ask for your support if you haven't already done so.

You can donate by following the link: or
By calling Oxfam Australia on 1800 088 110.
Any donation is great or small is sincerely appreciated.


Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Day 51: Manning Point to Old Bar

Farm on the Manning
I've been trying to stick to the beach for as much of this journey as humanly possibly. I've climbed over headlands and swam across rivers to keep this pledge. However the Manning River is a unique river system with two entrances to the ocean and features a vast delta system with a complex network of branching creeks and swamps. The terrain has consequently forced me to follow the road from Manning Point to Old Bar today. Although walking on bitumen puts the feet under a great deal of pressure the change of scenery was welcome.

Source: Greater Taree City Council. Available from:

The Manning River
I rolled into Old Bar around 230pm and set up camp. Close to where I was camped I found a public toilet with this sign on it. The brick building was surrounded by reasonable lush at least very green grass. I should have taken a photo of that too but I found it astonishing that such a sign could even be erected. Its a sad day indeed when games are forbidden to be played. I'm suspecting the sign comes in response to public lawsuits. What ever happened to individual responsibility and common sense? Common sense is not so common these days I hear.  
Really? I never new anyone had the authority to forbid the playing of games. Sorry kids you'll have to go back inside and play on your Xbox!

To Donate:
Call Oxfam Australia on 1800 088 110 and mention my walk or,
Follow this link:

Day 50: Crowdy head to Manning Point.

Good morning from Crowdy Head
I am very lucky to wake up to a beautiful morning like this one at Crowdy Head. Unfortunately I was saddened by the news that the food crisis in East Africa has only become worse and that several rich governments have walked away from promised donations. Over 10million people are reported to be affected by the severe drought. There is not enough water for crops or live stock. There is not even enough water for drinking. Faced with certain death if they stay in their villages, men, women and children are walking for hundreds of kilometers to refugee camps for salvation. The refugee camps have been flooded with people and are struggling to cope with the numbers seeking their support.

Oxfam has launched an East Africa Food Crisis Appeal. People on the ground are working hard to provide water and food for those in need. As I am regularly in contact with Oxfam staff in Brisbane and Melbourne I have noticed the urgency in people's voices while having conversations about how much extra work is being done by people at all levels to help with aid efforts. Please take the time to check ou Oxfam's website and see how they are helping with the public donations to save thousands of lives in Africa.

I've also included a Clip from Save the children foundation which shows some horrific footage of Umi a 3month old girl with severe malnutrition. Any help you can provide is most appreciated and even the smallest of donations goes a long way. Although this clip is sourced from Save the Children, Oxfam has one of the best reputations for ensuring as much of your donation gets to the actual people who need it and is not tired up in administration. I have witnessed Oxfam at work and I know your donations are sincerely appreciated and spent on the people who need it most.

Please donate.

The journey south continues.
The road to Manning Point

A palette of blue and grey. Looking West of Crowdy on a Winters day.

Yours trully is clearly extactic about getting a lift across the manning!
To Donate:
Call Oxfam Australia on 1800 088 110 and mention my walk or,
Follow this link:

Monday, 18 July 2011

Day 46: Laurieton to Crowdy Head

A day of breathtaking views. I'll let the amateur pics speak from the day I had.
Cue sunrise
Horizon on fire
The show's over
Looking North to Camden Head

There were loads more wildflowers but I wont bore you with all the pics.
The arch

Crowdy Head in the background
One of the reasons why I don't have a support crew.
Crowdy Head Lighthouse.

An absolutely magical day!

If you haven't donated yet what are you waiting for?

To Donate:Call Oxfam Australia on 1800 088 110 and mention my walk or,
Follow this link:

Day 45: Lake Cathie to Laurieton

I'm currently sitting here in the main street of Laurieton writing this and thinking about the days events. I'm afraid there's not much to report. Had a pretty ordinary night sleep. It was a freezing cold morning. Toes and fingers became numb. A veil of fog rose from where water meets beach blocking my view out to sea or towards the distant headland where I was to arrive some hours later.

The sun eventually came out to play and warmed things up. I stopped in the quaint little town of Bonny hills. It was no Bonny Doon but as I sat down for a break looking out over the beach and rocky outcrop I couldn't help sigh and think, how's the serenity of it all?

Bonny Hills
A relatively easy days walk followed down the beach to Camden Haven. From memory there is nothing worthy of mentioning. The headland did remind me of the pushed up pointed nose of a great white shark though.

A view of Camden Haven Headlands
Following the Camden Haven River upstream I passed North Haven and eventually settled at the foot of a hill in the small hamlet of Laurieton.

Nestled at the foot of the hills, Laurieton.

Tomorrow it's off to Crowdy Head...thats all folks.

To Donate:
Call Oxfam Australia on 1800 088 110 and mention my walk or,
Follow this link: