First day on Great Ocean Walk

Friday 09/09/2016 – Day 2 – Apollo Bay to Blanket Bay – 24.53 km

Awoke early and packed the day pack and the headed up for breakfast. Breakfast consisted of porridge, poached eggs and toast, and coffee. The lunch was the prepared with the ingredients for a salad plus ham, with turkish bread and pita bread. It was left to me to construct the lunch as I pleased. After making lunch, wrapping it in glad wrap, and placing it into a container, I then added one apple, two bananas, and an orange, plus a muesli bar. Once all packed it was into the bus for the first leg.

After about half an hour the bus arrived at the start of the Great Ocean Walk in Apollo Bay. After a series of photos were taken, I was even one UHF by Sam and took up my position as tail end Charlie (also called “toilet paper”). Passing along the Great Ocean Road through Apollo Bay and then through the Barham River estuary with the Backwater, the Great Ocean Road entered Marengo. From there the walk followed the coast and into the Marengo Caravan Park. The walk passed through the caravan park to the start of the walking track, with slippery boardwalk. The trail meandered in the vegetation behind the beach passing Swell Point and then entering the beach. After a short stroll along the beach we came to a headland which looked treacherous to pass. Checking the directions, we should have gone up 1A. So we backtracked to the 1A sign and left the beach to follow the path behind the beach. This section took the walkers past Storm Point and then back to the beach. After a short walk along the beach a set of stairs was ascended to a gate. This does not look right. Descended to the beach and continued to the next stairs which was the track of the Great Ocean Walk. Oops!

Once regaining the track, it ascended quickly to Bald Hill Point with its commanding views including seals seen a distance off the coast. This section involved the trekkers passing under low vegetation which contained a koala. A quick descent from Bald Hill Point and the track entered Three Creeks Beach and walked along the beach for 600 m. At the western end was time for a morning tea break. Then the heavens opened. After packing our gear and donning wet weather gear, we headed off.

Being tail end Charlie, I was in company with a person who saw the walk as a real challenge. So far was a battle and I hoped that we would not arrive at the end of this section too late for the rest of the group.

The track ascended quickly from Three Creeks Beach and started to ascend as the Shelly Beach Car Park was reached. From this point the track descended into the Elliot River and then ascended to the Elliot Ridge GOW Campground. By this time, I was far behind the main group but battled on.

The track at this point headed inland ascending all the while to the left turn onto the Elliot Road. Elliot Road was followed up hill to Parker Spur Road, during which leg a lunch break was taken. As I arrived, the leading group then departed. After about ten minutes, we departed. Upon reaching Parker Spur Road, the walk then undulated along Parker Spur to the Johnson Track. This track undulated till its junction with Blanket Bay Track. The Blanket Bay Track had a long slow descent till its junction with the Telegraph Track. Turning down Telegraph Track, the descent became steeper right down to the beach at Blanket Bay.

A short walk along the beach from the steps and then met the rest of the group, boarded the bus and headed back to Bimbi Park.

Off I go

Thursday 08/09/2016 – Day 1 – Travel Day

Woke at 4.30am, and finished packing, had breakfast and had a BGL of 4.4. Woke Sue at 5.30 am and went into the girls room to see if anyone else was coming to the airport.

Departed home at 5.45 am and started a good run. After crossing the Ted Smout Bridge and onto the Deagon Deviation, news of a broken down vehicle came through. On the Gateway Motorway southbound at Nudgee Road. Oh crap! go to get past that! Decided to take the Deagon Deviation to Sandgate Road, after queueing for fifteen minutes and not making much progress.

On Sandgate Road, the traffic was heavy but moving and allowed us to exit to Toombul Road and get onto the Southern Cross Way and then onto Airport Drive and the Domestic Terminal. Picked up my bags, said my goodbyes and then walked to the Virgin Terminal.

Arrived at the check-in at 7.00am, with my flight boarding at 7.25 am. Thank goodness for the early start. How will the others in the group fare? My bag weighed exactly 23 kg, the maximum weight, how about that?!

Collected the rest of my gear, which I had strategically rearranged to the stuff I need in the plane and the rest in the luggage. I made my way to the departure gate, and tried to make up mu mind about buying a coffee. By the time I had decided to do that, there was less time to purchase it than the time left to board.

On the aircraft a Boeing 737-800, found my seat at 15A retrieved my laptop, man bag and folder and sealed in to my seat. I was shortly joined by a couple from Wynnum heading to their daughters place at Torquay. I also managed to remember Kristine’s bear and placed it on my knee at a window and took its photo.

The plane then departed Brisbane for Melbourne a flight of 2 hours and 15 minutes. There was about 6 oktas of cloud all the way to Melbourne, so no sights to behold. I instead, after the coffee and muesli bar, entered into conversation with my fellow passenger and then looked out the window, we were over northern Victoria and while working out where we were, we flew past Tullamarine. Hang on are we on a Jetstar flight? After short time however, the plane swung around 180 degrees and we landed at Tullamarine. Looking down I could not believe the amount of traffic at 10.15 in the morning, as heavy as Brisbane’s peak traffic.

After landing, and collecting the heavy bag, hired a Ecart and loaded the bag onto it. If anyone else has a heavy bag I can use this. So I made my way to Hudsons and waited. Not long after, Sam arrived and the start of the new adventure was getting underway. We waited for another two hours while the rest of the contingent arrived. Then we waited for the bus. It was caught in a snarl on the Calder Highway.

Finally the bus arrived at 1.00pm, and the bus driver, Lee, was very hospitable.

So we loaded our luggage, took our seats and began the next phase of the journey. It took three and a half hours to arrive at Bimbi Park; which included a stop in Apollo Bay, to buy supplies and a six pack of Stella Artois; and were given our room allocations. I was given DE2, Deluxe Cabin 2, a 4 person cabin all to myself. So I unpacked, showered, and changed and then made my way up to the dining hall for dinner.

During dinner, proper introductions were made and the plan for the walk, including the time for breakfast. After dinner, I made my way back to the cabin, wrote this blog, studied and watched some TV -at least channel 24. I couldn’t change channels as the remote was playing up. I selected channels on the set top box itself, but to no avail. Oh well, it was time to turn in, and an early day tomorrow.

#GORW2016 Training

Woke early and proceeded to get ready for a training walk with fellow walkers for the Great Ocean Walk 2016 (#GORW2016).

The first thing though was to have breakfast, find my clothes for the walk, and decided how much to take.

Then I had to do the school run first so left at 7.40 am with Lauren and took her to Hercules Road State School. I came back and then took Stacey to Deception Bay High School. Gemma was sick so stayed home. I was early after this chore so went back home to make sure I had everything.

Once I was sure I was ready I drove to Raven Street Reserve and the Downfall Creek Bushland Centre. I met the other walker and we set off with #gavinswaterbottle in tow.
The walk initially followed the concrete track for a couple of hundred metres to the bikeway which traverses the reserve. Turning left we followed this track, passing a scrub turkey’s mound, which had many deep holes in it. It has either been attacked by goannas or the eggs have hatched.

After a few more hundred metres turned left onto an indistinct track and followed this bush track down to a gully, crossed the gully and then followed it out to Raven Street. A shirt distance up Raven Street was the bike path which was then followed to the large bridge over the creek. Just after the bridge, the track to the left was taken and followed to the next intersection, and again turned left. This track was followed to Raven Street, but then a set of stairs were taken as the track paralleled Raven Street out to Hamilton Road. Upon reaching the northern boundary of the Raven Street Reserve. The track was then followed along the boundary to the green bridge and then the green bridge used to cross Hamilton Road and to go into the Milne Hill Reserve.

From the green bridge the road was followed up to the water reservoir and then turned left to go around to the west of the reservoir and to the summit of Milne Hill. This summit gave views across to Moreton Bay and the city.

From the summit the walk descended 75 steps and then three switchbacks to descend to the track that contours around Milne Hill. On the way down we were watched by a swamp wallaby. Turning left onto this track there was more descending to the bike track along Little Cabbage Tree Creek. Turning left once again the bike track was followed to Killarney then kept to the grass following the creek to the entry into Chermside Hills Reserve.

The Giwadha Track was then followed to the left over the bridge and around to the west of the reserve then ascending to Spider Hill. At the base of the hill, the track was taken straight up to the summit. The trees on this summit make viewing difficult. The Stringyark Trail was then followed paralleling Trouts Road before coming out onto Trouts Road. A walkway was then followed through houses down to Roebig Street, which was followed to the roundabout. Going down Steffen Place from the roundabout, the bikeway along Little Cabbage Tree Creek was followed to the Milne Hill Track.

The steps were retraced back into Raven Street Reserve, although on the ascent, we found ourselves meeting the steps about halfway up the flight. Once regaining the Banksia Track, a left turn was made to continue on this track and then a right turn onto the Xanthorrhea Track. This track was then followed to the concrete track leading to Federation Street. This path took us to the fruit bat colony and then we returned to the Creek Track which followed Downfall Creek. This track then returned to the first track and the day use area and car park.

After the walk headed home and had a lazy afternoon catching up on the Olympics. I also dealt with issues with Bushwalking Queensland Inc., Glasshouse Bushwalkers Club Inc., Australian Adventure Activity Standards Technical Working Group, and other matters.

Gloating about the good day I had, I went to bed!

Another fundraiser for Diabetes Qld

Woke early and finished packing for Sam Rowe’s Diabetes Qld fundraiser – a Treasure Hunt at Maroochy Bushland Botanic Garden at Tanawha.

Had breakfast and then changed into my bushwalking pants, Diabetes Qld t-shirt, socks and bushwalking boots. Included was my old mate #gavinswaterbottle.

Woke Gemma up and then we headed off.

Arrived at the Botanic Garden and found Sam and then prepared for the Treasure Hunt. Gemma then pointed out that I had a large hole in my pants. No Not my good North face bushwalking utility pants. I felt back and found the hole. My t-shirt was covering my dignity so all is good. Stop sniggering #gavinswaterbottle!!!

So off Gemma and I went and followed the directions and answered questions. I activated the MapMyHike to track our wanderings. Most of the questions were easy, but a couple of them were really tricky! The amount of sculpture, native plants, natural bushland, watercourses and the like kept the visual senses overloaded. The only downfall was the lack of koalas which would have scored 2 points for each sighting.

After 21 questions, and 4.47 km made it to the morning tea gathering near the Friendship Colonnade. Morning tea was provided and after a rest headed home. Upon changing my boots, I found the tread to be well worn down and did not look like they will make it to the Great Ocean Walk, let alone make it to be replaced after.

As it was lunch time, decided to stop at Subway, Glass House Mountains. On arrival noticed a lot of people there. So on the Hungry Jacks at the same location. This also had a long queue. Entering McDonalds, next door to Hungry Jacks, and there hardly anybody there. Right! Lets see if we can get a proper Chicken ’N’ Pineapple Burger.

Walked out with the real deal. Yay!

Drove home and had the fries on the way home. Once home ate the burger and finished the drink.

After lunch, changed out of my trousers and found the there were many holes in them. Will you stop sniggering #gavinswaterbottle!!!

The rest of the day was spent writing up the club newsletter, and planning and mapping the walks for the next couple of months.

Fundraising adventure

Woke early and did final preparations for a fundraising #gavinswaterbottle adventure. Got a bit of gear for today to promote and collect money from attendees.

Andy was due at 8.00am to collect me, and finally arrived at 8.30am. As the weather was still overcast, I doubted on the number that might turn up, but still got to give it my all.

We arrived at Beerburrum State School just before 9.00 am and was met by 6 others. After collecting the registrations and money ($100 in total), locked them away and put on my gear and off we went on the adventure. More details at Glasshouse Bushwalkers Blog Site

Arrived home at 7.30pm and went and had a shower and put the clothes through the washing machine. Then it was time for hot dogs and to watch “Goosebumps”band then to bed. I’ll deal with the ironing in the morning.

Doin’ my bit for Diabetes Qld

Today was a big day. I have organised a morning tea as a fundraiser for Diabetes Qld #gogreenandgive as part of National Diabetes Week 2016 #NDW2016.
I woke early and planned out the day, should I go in early or just catch the normal transport as per the [23 March post]. After procrastinating it turned out the normal commute was the way in today.

On arrival at work, went to my locker and collected the rest of the diabetes related paraphernalia and then to my desk. I was pumped for the fundraiser so went off to Coles and purchased kiwifruit, apples, pears, celery sticks, carrot sticks, water crackers, avocado, lime and sea salt dip, and herb and garlic dip.

I arrived back at work, blew up the balloons, stuck them to the wall, put up the flyers, map of my walk on the Great Ocean Walk, and previous maps of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail 100km challenge. I placed on the tables donation boxes and then proceeded to prepare the food. A couple of others arrived and assisted me and before we knew it the hungry horde turned up. About 20 people all up turned up as there were other morning teas going on. After going back to work, I emptied the donation boxes and collected $98.00, plus given $40.00 later on. Also another few donations came on line via https://greatoceanroad2016.everydayhero.com/au/gavin taking my tally to $360.00. That’s just under $900 to go to hit my target.

The morning tea was engaging as I was able to give information about diabetes and increase awareness.

After ending a thank you email around, I had people saying they will look at it next week. I let Diabetes Queensland know of the donations and need to add the $98.00 to the tally. Just have to transfer the funds to their account. Perhaps leave this till Monday when I will also have the money from the challenge on Sunday.

Rest of the day was a normal work day except for foraging on the morning tea left overs. I was so busy that I omitted to check my blood glucose levels.

Went home on the earlier train than my normal home commute and while on the train a young woman asked what time the train got into Dakabin. I gave the time then realised which train I was on, so after a quick apology, a retraction, I set her straight, along with another passenger. Her main concern was waiting for a taxi at Dakabin Station which is a dark backwater station and the area does not have a food reputation.

She was happy and thanked me for the assistance as she get off the train at Dakabin. When I arrived at Narangba the bus was waiting, so I boarded it, then left it at Government Street to walk home.

Once I made it home (thank God this time I did not activate #pokemongo!!) the kids were surprised to see me and then wanted Hungry Jacks, so I got in the car and drove to Hungry Jacks, bought dinner then put my feet up.

IMG_0646

Where to from here?

Breakfast

BGL: 6.0

Meal: Oats and soy with fruit

Carbs: 23g

Morning Tea

BGL: 4.3

Meal: Muesli bars x 2, apple, 2 bananas

Carbs: 10g

Lunch

BGL: 4.2

Meal: 2 x sausage rolls, almond and fruit slice

Carbs: 60g

Afternoon Tea

Meal: Banana, Apple, sweet tarts

Carbs: 30g

Dinner

Meal: Barra and chips and salad with rum and coke

Carbs: 110g

Day Summary

Woke at 5.30am, had breakfast and cup of coffee then raced off to have a shower, as time was against me yet again. So much for the later start! Due to the tendon in my ankle decided tout a knee brace on my right knee to stop me favouring other parts of my leg and causing the tendon problems.

Arrived at Esk Railway Station at 7.00pm in time for the group photo and to meet Tanya Smith President of the BVRT. Once the photos were over, off we headed south towards Mount Hallen. The knee brace was working a treat, just sore pads on my feet. Suck it up its only for half a day!

Further description is described in #gavinswaterbottle adventures at http//:glasshousebw.wordpress.com

After the walk, went back to the caravan, dropped off the gear and then headed off to the Esk Bakery for lunch. Returned to the caravan, and let Andy pack up his gear into his car and also helped Desley get her gear in the car. Andy and Desley then left and just after they left, noticed a pair of Andy’s shoes had been left behind. Will pack them up with me tomorrow and take them to him at a later date. I SMS’d him anyway to let him know.

After a tidy up, I was concerned about my stick, (shut up #gavinswaterbottle!) and the Great Ocean Walk map which were with the organisers. I decided to head over to the Esk Wivenhoe Motor Inn where they were staying, and fid them in the park across the road, I was then invited to the “drinking corner” at the motel, where I received the stick and map and proceeded to help then get stuck int the leftovers from the three days, plus a couple of rums.

I was so lifted by my achievement and the organisation of the whole event, when the organisers Desley and Jeff mentioned they were looking for new organisers next year and forward. After putting a lot of thought to this, this would be a great opportunity for Bushwalking Queensland in much the same vein is Bicycle Queensland. Also, I was asked if I was interested in doing the Great Ocean Walk next year to lead a different fundraising crew. Mmmm that will take a lot of thought.

Then it was time for dinner, so we adjourned to the Club Hotel in Esk for dinner and after much mirth and laughter, decided to call it a night, and pass accolades around to all who participated.

Back at the caravan, I hunkered down as it was going to be a cold night, caught up on blogs etc. then went to bed. A good night’s sleep tonight I hoped.

Things are looking up!

Another early morning again and it is cold, well not cold enough to have to rug up, but the coldest morning so far this year. Poor Sue is still suffering. She can’t lie down too long before coughing gets her out of bed. Must remember today to contact Frontier Leadership about the course.

Had the chance to get into work early, but that slipped through my fingers, must be due to my routine being disrupted with no oats for breakfast. Had to find an alternative this morning.

So caught the usual transport into work.

At work, BGL was 4.2 a tad low…no breakfast!! Anyway completed more files. My supervisor is not at work tomorrow so any files I want reviewed will be put on hold. Oh well! Must keep plugging through.

Charlotte replied to my email about the fundraising success I had developed. She then sent me a letter of authorisation to put with the letters to these businesses as proof of my sincerity in garnering items for fundraising.

That is sorted!

I then received an email from Desley of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail thanking me for my registration and she is eager to talk to Bushwalking Queensland Inc. about bushwalking issues and the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail.

That is sorted!

Received a phone call from Craig of Frontier Leadership. He apologised for taking so long to get back to me, but their computer system needed more work than they anticipated, putting them behind. He said to start a module of my choice and then by the time this one is complete, the rest of the modules will be ready to go. Chose Risk Management module to study, which will be easy as it is an integral part of my current job.

Right that is sorted!

A big file I was working on is becoming completed.

Yay!

So the day ended and I went home and put my feet up and gloated about the best day I have had for quite a long time. I love success!

More fundraising…

Awoke at 3.30am.

Bit better, bit wish I could sleep longer. At least its Thursday,one more night of this then I can sleep in on Saturday.

BGL this morning was 5.2, so at least everything is OK on that front.

Having purchased new walk shoes yesterday, put them on to go in to work. How comfy. Now my feet don’t hurt. Not going to buy that brand of shoe again!

Normal day at work, although Kristine invited me out for a coffee as it was her last day, and she was going to an exam later in the day and have tomorrow off. A pleasant morning tea and I hope Kristine gets out of her secondment everything she is hoping for.

The rest of the day was dealing with my files, as usual.

After lunch, a shower of rain came through, and the alert from Higgins Storm Chasers was for a wet weekend.

Finished the flyer for the walk on Sunday to Somerset Trail, and sent it on, then received an email from Moreton Bay Regional Council with more participants coming. Compiled all the email addresses and sent the details out to these people, plus Andy. I also let them know the walk would proceed regardless of prevailing weather as it is expected to be showers.

Received notification from Sam Rowe of her fundraising in Maroochy Botanic Gardens. Might attend myself. It is a treasure hunt after all.

Received some money for my fundraising and collected all my coins and went to the Commonwealth Bank and deposited it all into the credit card. I then transferred the same amount to the everyday hero.

Went home as usual and what a difference good comfy shoes make.

To bed at 10.30 pm…I give up trying to work out my routine!

Another Tuesday… what else!

Usual Tuesday, up shower, breakfast, dressed and walk to bus stop. Catch the bus to the train and then run like hell to get the train. Translink should have a motto – “Keeping the customers in good running order”. My try and create a meme for it!

On arrival at Central made my way out through the Sofitel entrance under Ann Street and out onto Anzac Square and Post Office Square. Message from Jamie…need coffee as soon as I get in…I am in for another good day!

So get in go to my locker, change into the work clothes and go upstairs to my desk. Might try the stairs again one day, fourteen floors is certainly good exercise.

Once I get my computer and its stand out of the drawer, start it up and settle in, its time for COFFEE. Jamie is ready to go to Asana with me. Long black here I come!

Back at work and time to address these outstanding files. Getting bogged down in one going nowhere, but I need to check that they will be going nowhere, that’s what bogs it down! The first fie attended to could go either way, so I sent it for review, and will discuss it later. The second file, definitely needs no further action – goodbye. The third one and last one for the day, easily spotted that something is not right. Needs to have further investigation. so off for review and hope Kristine agrees with me.

Email from Charlotte about everyday hero and an email about Bushwalking Queensland listed on the Great Ocean Road Walk page. Sent back that I had fixed that, but at times the everyday hero page does funny things. Probably with the traffic on it the updates get lost until a quiet time the system. Charlotte also gave me a few ideas and also let her know of ideas I had.

During this work had a brief break to go shopping to supplement my lunch – multigrain slices and sweet chilli tuna. Need a drink for the chilli, water does not cut it! Also bought apples and energy mix and fruit and nut mix.

So back at work and work on my files while munching on lunch.

An email was received from John Marshall regarding Mount Cooroy and I said that I would look into the issue of it being closed.

So knocked off work, got changed, and walked to Roma Street. Got the 5.23 Nambour train and relaxed. On arrival at Narangba changed to the bus home and then did my 1000th workout on MapMyWalk to walk home.

Tried to contact Karen Ward but left a message…potential for a new club to join Bushwalking Queensland.

That’s it for today.