Photo's - Solo Walk - Billiluna to Kunawarritji 657km

Leica D-Lux 4 cameraThe first solo walk of the 1657km Canning Stock Route began 31 May 2013, from Billiluna. Billiluna is an Aboriginal Community situated off the Tanami Road 'near' Halls Creek in northern Western Australia. It is regarded by many as the northern gateway to the CSR.

Stage one was to walk south along the Canning Stock Route, for 657km to the next desert community, Kunawarritji. I had no idea that bull camels in rut would become my greatest concern after water.

With only 10 of the 51 wells in use today, there are sections of the track without water, the greatest distance being 250km. A good days walking is 21-35km, which meant that supplies of food and water were required to be put in place prior to the walk. These were dug into the ground roughly 21km apart. Would they survive 2-3 months in the ground or would I find them compromised?

26 days later on 26 June 2013, I walked into Kunawarritji. It was raining. Here is my photo story.....

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Photo's - Solo Walk - Kunawarritji to Durba Springs 485km

Solo Walk Kunawarritji to Durba Springs - 485km

Leica D-Lux 4 cameraAfter spending a restful four and a half days in Kunawarritji as a guest in the comfortable local 'tourist motel', I set off into the desert again on the 1st July 2013. Leaving all that comfort and mixing with people was hard.

On the 18th July 2013 I arrived in Durba Springs, a desert oasis and welcome stop for many travellers. I had walked across dry salt lakes, leaving the track on a number of occassions to get the feel of walking in the wild through spinifex and sand.

I saw one of the biggest herds of camel during this time. I also experienced sleeping with a camel and two dingoes. They were so close, the camels regular breathing could be heard into the early hours of the morning.

Whilst I saw more people than in June, the feeling of isolation along this section was overwhelming.

It also offered me moments of my most content.

 

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Photo's - Solo Walk - Durba Springs to Wiluna 515km

Solo Walk Durba Springs to Wiluna - 515km

Leica D-Lux 4 cameraThe last haul.

I headed out from Durba Springs on 20 July 2013. In some ways this section seemed the hardest. I could almost taste the end of a hard walk and when I thought of all the comforts I would be revisiting, being where I was seemed so cruel. Up until this moment I lived one day at a time, wrapped up in the moment, super aware of my surroundings and place within. The days went quickly.

In the last weeks, my pace quickened and the daily distances grew. I was doing well on paper, but approaching empty fast. I was so tired. Fatigue is something I struggled with from day one. Pushing hard towards the end, my body creaked and groaned. I had to tap off in the final days or risk injury. A will too strong for an aging recently damaged body.

On the morning of 5 August 2013, I walked into Wiluna to an audience of One. Andy was waiting for me.

The first solo walk of the Canning Stock Route, 1657km,  done.

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In support of Australian history - www.canningwalker.comWhat is it like to do the Canning Stock Route on foot, by bicycle, motorbike, 4WD or 2WD? What about hitchhiking?

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