Mt Anne Circuit

  My first attempt at Mt Anne back in undergraduate days left much business unfinished. Not only did I manage to crash a friend’s borrowed car into the embankment, but I didn’t even manage to successfully write it off (indeed, he had to finish it off himself several weeks later, an icy road delivering what…

Mid Winter Feast XVII

We tend to think of seasons as being external – after all, it only snows in winter, and it seems pretty safe to assume that the axis tilt of the earth is both real and beyond our control. Certainly, the earth does tilt, causing the changing lengths of light and dark hours and associated changes…

Nadgee Howe Wilderness

Taking out a spot in Australian Geographic’s Top Australian Bushwalks, and widely considered one of the best coastal walks in the country, the Nadgee Howe Wilderness Walk was something that I had actually never heard of before it was suggested that I walk it. In fact, I barely even Googled the trip before embarking on…

Crowded House on the Tongariro Alpine Crossing

In the world of an arts PhD candidate, living on less than minimum wage, it is worth making the most out of the one extra source of candidature-related finance available: conference funding. Last year I managed to wring enough out of two funds to get to a Victorian Studies Conference and Steampunk festival in England,…

Cat Ba: Exploring Ha Long Bay without a cruiseship

“Well, it’s definitely cheaper. Instead of being locked up on a boat we can choose a new place to have dinner every night!” The speaker gestures at the waterfront strip of restaurants with his 5,000 dong beer*. “And we get to do different things each day, like kayaking and rock climbing and motorbiking. Yeah, being…

Cocktails on the Castle: The Red Promenade

The heat was, once again, oppressive. It seems particularly unlucky that this hike, involving 800m of elevation over 6km, and packs weighing upwards of 20 and even 30kg, had coincided with a heat wave not once but twice in 2014. Still, we napped in the shade before the final ascent and then pushed to the…

On Preparations and Last Minute Snowstorms

Preparing a hike by grabbing a drink bottle and a muesli bar and walking out of the house has certain advantages over arduous preparations. It takes advantage of the current weather, for instance. It means accepting the available resources, rather than painstakingly weighing up (often literally) possible items of gear or nutrients. And it quite…

Blue Waterholes

Categorising my recent trip to the Blue Waterholes presented a challenge: Bushwalking? Canyoning? Caving? All of the above! This picturesque spot on the Cooleman Plains in Kosciuszko National Park seems to offer everything. It started with some brumby spotting (absurdly easy with the high numbers up there at the moment) on the Long Plain Road…