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Published April 29th 2016
Walk The Walk With These Tips
Before you start any adventure, make sure you always remember to come prepared and of course to have fun too!
Being in the great outdoors and out in nature is a experience that everyone will enjoy. However, at times things can go wrong and being nature, it is unpredictable! Whether it is from weather or an accidental fall the list below includes top tips for the perfect bushwalk from short easy bushwalks to intense overnight bushwalk hikes.
Always inform someone where you are going e.g. the reception at a Hotel or the place you are staying at, a family member or friend.
Be sure you wear the proper gear for the bushwalk intended as walks can last from a few minutes to hours - see my point below on protection.
Always have medical supplies on hand, you never know when an emergency occurs and it is always best to come prepared as some walks are so remote that there will probably be no phone range or a person in sight for hours - see my medical point for more handy tips on this.
Always follow the instructions given on walking tracks and be wise. Sometimes something will be so awe-inspiring and even trying to get a glimpse of it might cause death or serious injuries. (At times there will be no instructions at remote areas with bushwalks- be smart and do not get close to the cliff edge or follow wildlife into the bushland etc)
Take a mobile phone with you just in case there is an emergency and there is phone range.
Staying on the walking tracks ensures a wonderful bushwalk :)
Sunblock/ sunscreen is vital. In Australia our UV rays are extremely high and protection from the sun is important, so always sunblock all body parts (even parts not exposed e.g tummy and back) and apply again after your walk.
Long sleeves and pants (tucked into your socks) is recommended when bushwalking as this prevents insect bites including ticks and leeches gripping on to you.
Always wear a hat or beanie as this protects you from the sun and from insects getting stuck in your hair and of course bird droppings, or in my sister's case a caterpillar crawling on her hat -certainly did not want that being stuck to your hair strands!
Wear sturdy closed shoes such as sandshoes / joggers or hiking boots, this protects your feet.
Do remember to pack the raincoat too just in case.
A good map never goes astray when you are on a bushwalk. Maps are available online, at information centres and at times at the bushwalk destination- do your research beforehand.
A GPS or compass is a good idea, however, with GPSs it might lose its range and this can become problematic - so a compass is your best bet. (Some smart phones do have a compass app, which can come in handy too).
Always take salt with you on bushwalks, especially at rainforests as this is home to leeches. If a leech happens to grip onto you, pour some salt on it and it will fall right off!
Insect repellent is a great idea to prevent bites and encounters that you certainly do not want.
Always look on the floor below you as you might come across snakes, lizards, bird eggs, spiders etc- they can easily be camouflaged and you do not want to accidentally tread on one.
If an animal does come a bit too close and seems like it is going to attack, stand your ground and never leave your eyes off its eyes- this is intimidating and more than likely it will run off. If a kangaroo approaches, you never place your hand on your belly as this is a signal of attack and they will attack!
Always follow the instructions given on maps and the boards at bushwalks on animal encounter safety.
Never feed birds and wildlife, this can cause a list of problems including death and serious medical problems to the animals and even attacks on yourself as they want more of the food- never do this and always inform children too.
Admiring the mighty tall towering trees on the Depot Beach Rainforest Walk...
6. Food You cannot forget food on a bushwalk! If you are bushwalking less than two hours return, chances are you do not need loads of food, so a few supplies such as water, chocolate/energy bar, lollies or fruit will be fine. For longer walks, including overnight treks, come prepared and stock up on food supplies.
Always take all rubbish / food scraps with you, do not leave anything behind only memories!
7. Enjoy And lastly enjoy yourself, get lost in it all and simply have a good time and do keep an eye out for birds and wildlife in the distance and always stay on the tracks!