Hike the Razor Edge – LARAPINTA TRAIL

I have loved the outdoors as long as I can remember. As a kid I would play, build, adventure and explore constantly, with the natural environment as my foundation for inspiration and innovation. As I have ‘grown up’ my excitement for the outdoors has not dampened, although many other things have! And this is something I hold close to my heart. I want to share today my recent experience of this natural world, often misused and undervalued, but always astounding!

From the 10th of August this year, to the 21st two of my sisters and I embarked on an approximately 230km hike through the desert in Central Australia. This hike is known as the ‘Larapinta Trail’, which roughly translates to ‘Salty Trail’. It is comprised of 12 sections all with stunning landscape, some almost barren and others teaming with growth. We ran into some problems early on with too much heat and too little water, but with a short rest and some adjustments to our plan we completed 10/12 of the section in our time frame and walked about 200km!

The trail is bi-directional although more commonly walked in an easterly direction. We did it the opposite way! If you are interested in more information about the trail or how we did it? Please comment and i’ll be happy to provide more information! But here are some photographs from the trip:

 

Brinkley Bluff at Sunrise
Brinkley Bluff – Section 4

 (These photographs were taken with a GoPro Hero 4, so not the best quality! Sorry Folks!)

This trail is quickly becoming more and more popular, with last year being the first year that independent walkers dominated the trail (Independent as apposed to supported or with a tour group). And It is no mystery as to why!! Whilst the conditions are harsh and we saw many people give up, the trail is among the most rewarding things I have ever done!

The view from Brinkley Bluff at sunrise was one of those moments that sweat and blisters couldn’t spoil. We had left at 2:40am, leaving from Standley Chasm to arrive there by sunrise! All through the exhaustion, lack of sleep, fumbling along rock faces in the moonlight, and stumbling over each other, the view was better than I had many times tried to imagine!

This trail runs through the ‘West MacDonnell National Park’ and so is a protected land. I strongly recommend to anyone who wants a challenge to attempt this incredible hike! However I would like to advise caution, especially in the heat! Also be respectful towards the indigenous ownership of the land and the many trying to conserve and preserve this unique landscape. Tourism is a great revenue for income and awareness, but often can destroy the attraction. So, if you feel the desire to see this landscape and experience it in a way that I have found only hiking it can give, please be considerate! Many people are doing this walk and I can empathise with wanting to avoid people and straying from the beaten track, but please don’t! And this is true for more than just Central Australia!

The world in which we live is mesmerising beyond measure, but it isn’t immune to the devastation that humanity has proven to often bring. I believe that we, are responsible for so much destruction but I would LOVE to see that change! Let’s do the right thing when we go and explore the dumbfounding beauty of earth! Of course, adventure, explore, quench your thirst in mountain streams and raging rivers alike, but do it kindly!

And always…
Peace,

Wakilele

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