When preparing for your next big trek be it Kokoda, Mt Kilimanjaro, Everest Base Camp or wherever your boots are taking you, training is the key. The more you do before you go, the more you’ll enjoy your trek and be able to handle anything that comes your way. While we wouldn’t call enjoying the great outdoors a hardship, those well-known tracks and trails can get a little busy! It’s great to have some alternatives up your sleeve for when you’re feeling training becomes a little repetitive, or you’d just like a change of scenery.
We are so lucky here in Brisbane to have Mt Cootha on our doorstep, sometimes it’s worth changing it up to keep challenging yourself. Thankfully, there are so many great options to choose from in South East Queensland! A great option that isn’t too far out of town is Flinders Peak. Just one hour from Brisbane on the outskirts of Ipswich, this is a challenging 3 – 5-hour hike perfect for training for your next adventure.
If you’re looking for something slightly rougher and less crowded than the 1000 steps on Mt Dandenong, why not try the Glasgow Track (aka Fire Trail)? Located 40km from the Melbourne CBD, this trek is perfect for those who want to get fit for any trek that involves steep ascents or descents. Access the start of the walk at the end of Glasgow Rd in Montrose. Park at the intersection of Glasgow Rd and Sheffield Road.
Sydneysiders are spoilt for choice when it comes to training walks for Kokoda or any other strenuous trek. The Blue Mountains are any easy choice being less than 2 hours away, but with so many options, it can be hard to decide which path to take. We had a trekker recommend to the Rodriguez Pass via Govetts Leap. Spectacular views, waterfalls and lush rainforest – what more could you want!?
If you’ve got a spare weekend and are keen to increase the intensity of your training before your trek, it is worth heading to the Fleurieu Peninsula. The Deep Creek Waterfall Hike from Tapanappa Lookout is a steep, moderate to challenging 6.6km hike with beautiful views, a gorgeous waterfall (when it’s been raining) and year-round waterhole.
Canberra has plenty of fantastic walks located around the city and surrounding nature reserves, meaning you have no excuse not to get out and enjoy nature while preparing for your trek. Our suggestion is the Casuarina Sands Reserve, just 24km from the city. From here, you can take the Murrumbidgee Discovery Track for a 14km trek to Kambah Pool. Plenty of ups and downs to get those legs pumping but it is a one-way trek so be sure to take your mate to enjoy the river and scribbly bark gums.
Kalamunda National Park is a great option for a quiet day trip as its only 30km from Perth. The park is in secluded bushland, has beautiful natural views and rocky tracks. To get the most out of the park we recommend that you take the Rocky Pool and Schipp Road Walk, both just 4km, just be prepared for some steep climbs.
Out at Litchfield, there is the beautiful Tabletop Track covering 39km, however you may need to look at a couple of days to complete this track. Alternatively, with not too many mountains to climb in Darwin, stairs may just be your new best friends. Not exactly hidden, but the stairs at the Waterfront are a pretty good option to do on a repetitive basis, combined with a great cardio workout and some squats and lunges to help get those legs moving. Always be careful to ensure you are doing these correctly to make sure you’re getting the benefits and avoiding injury.