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walk like a family TRIPS
“Winter and spring are
ideal for walking on the
Bibbulmun. There’s none
of the baking summer
conditions that can lead
to dehydration, and rivers
are flowing freely”
What to take
If you’re planning an overnight stay, you’ll
need the right gear to be comfortable.
Backpack | Should be made as waterproof
as possible, preferably with an external rain
cover and also a strong plastic inner liner — a
good strong rubbish bag is ideal, with the
drawstrings pulled tight.
Sleeping bag | Rated down to zero degrees,
with a hood with drawstrings.
Mattress | Preferably a self-inflating air
mattresses of the Thermarest type. Air
mattresses are far superior to foam rubber.
They’re more comfortable, and provide a layer
of insulation between your sleeping bag and the
hut’s wooden floorboards.
Stove | The two most common types of stove
are the meths-burning type (make sure you
use methylated spirits and nothing else) and
the gas cylinder type. With kids, the metho
type is probably the best option, as these
stoves come with a set of pots and a frying
pan. With a gas stove you will need to carry
separate cooking pots.
Food | Always consider weight when packing
food. Avoid cans and bottles and dispose of
as much packing material as you can before
setting off. Remember: what you pack in, you
must pack out. It’s ideal if you can dehydrate
the food yourself and prepare whole meals that
you can reconstitute, but that might seem a bit
daunting first time out. There are myriad dried
foods available on the supermarket shelves that
are suitable for walkers. It is important that you
take food that you and your kids actually like.
There’s no fun in discovering that everybody
detests the food you have carefully selected, but
never tasted, so try some out at home first.
Water |Inthewinterthere willbeplentyof
fresh water in the rain tanks at the campsites,
but have the capacity to carry at least two litres
of water per person when you are walking on
the track. Kids often don’t like water on its
own, so take some flavourings in powder form
to encourage them to drink. Hot drinks such
as tea and coffee are standards, and powdered
soups that require just the addition of hot water
provide heat and nourishment.
Wet-weather gear | Rain jackets should be
sitting at the top of your packs. The clothes
that you are walking in must be lightweight
and quick-drying. Kids tire quickly and lose
their body heat very rapidly. Make very sure
that their clothing and gear — especially their
sleeping bags — are up to scratch. Keep their
pack weights down to a minimum, even if that
means Dad has to suffer the extra few kilos.
Extra tips | Carry a first-aid kit just to be on the
safe side, check the weather forecast and take
well worn-in footwear.
Think carefully about what to
take – what you pack in, you
must pack out.
Tailor the difficulty level of your walk
to the capabilities of your family.
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