Welcome to my Damn Long Walk
This website is designed to keep in contact with my friends and family while I am off wandering. It is also my way of keeping a record of my adventures and to find myself in case I get lost. Do not expect it to be a definite work on any track or trail, or to have the best spelling, grammar and formatting. I am trying to get away from technology as much as possible!!!
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Why walk so far?
Years of working in a stressful career and siting in an office in front of a computer means I need a change every now and then. Walking is easy as I have been doing it since I was a year old so walking for a long time can’t be that hard. Just one step after another. I have found that it is definitely not about the destination. The journey is what excites me but the company are the most important aspect for me.
A bit about me.
I am a New Zealander and the mother of 5 amazing people who I am very proud of. I am also blessed with 5 lovely grand daughters and a grand son. I am an Accountant and have been an active Tramper (New Zealand’s name for a hiker, trail walker, backpacker etc.) for many years now. In conjunction with the New Plymouth Tramping Club I ran a Take A Kid Tramping programme for about 7 years. For this I received a nomination for the New Zealander of The Year and learnt a lot about organising and planning tramps. I hope I have inspired many kids to get out and enjoy the outdoors and maybe one day do the TA. Article about me and Take a Kid Tramping
After successfully launching 5 kids out of the nest I went off for a mid life treat putting a pack on my back and spent 2005 to 2007 traveling the world. I learnt to be comfortable living with my home on my back and being in new situations.
My first damn long walk was the Camino de Santiago back in 2007 – about 800 km in 30 days. About 300,00 people walk this 2,000 year old trail every year across a mostly flat Spain. That was “a walk in the park” compared to my damn long walk in 2019-2020. I walked Te Araora which is 3,000 km down the length of New Zealand over mountains, through mud, thick forests, rivers, valleys farmland, beaches and everything in between. I have also enjoyed cycle touring in the past.
My Favourite Books
What do I take with me?
The answer is quite simple. As little as possible! Because I have to carry it on my back for the whole damn long walks I have been researching this question for months now on the internet. Google makes it all fairly easy to come up with what is best to get. I reckon that I spent at least a dollar fir each gram I have saved. See my gear list for Te Araroa SOBO 2019-2020 here
Being safe and prepared for all eventualities has to be the priority. I have been personally involved in six Search and Rescue events and have always been praised for been fully equipped and doing things correctly . One of my rescues