November 6-8: Weekend wrap

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When the solar panels heat up, she sways her hips, with her arms going in the opposite direction. She moved this weekend. Woo hoo! Warm sun!

It was a very social and outdoorsy kind of weekend. Unseasonally warm weather has lulled us into a false sense of hope that we’re heading into summer rather than winter. What glorious temperatures we’ve had for three days!

Friday morning, I went to work at the dojo and now have a lot on my plate with some additional things to do. Not sure how this is going to pan out as I can’t do everything needed to be done just on Fridays, so will have to work at home at nights, after work!! Hmmm … not so sure this is going to work out well. By the end of the year, a decision will have to be made!

Friday afternoon, Iva and I went to visit our friend Kanjana who had a baby boy, Alessio, one month ago. He’s gorgeous, Kanjana is enjoying being a mum, and we had fun ‘falling asleep’ with Alessio on the couch.

 

Saturday morning was spent in the garden, pruning and tidying, and then BAM! These little fellows (below) came out of nowhere! I think they might be Soay Sheep? We have no idea where they’ve come from, but they have ear tags, so they’re a known quantity. They’ve never been to our place before and they’re welcome to come back anytime. Very timid, happy to move along together, not worried about us standing around gawping at their sheepy fur and goaty heads. An hour after they left, three came back into the garden, closer to our house. Such a nice surprise.

It was a glorious day but we had to leave the garden and blue skies to jump in the car to drive two hours to near Zürich for a combined birthday party for Leo’s sister and nephew. A quick stop at the shops, where I saw (but didn’t try) these cute bread figures, called Grittibänz mit Branchli (has something to do with 6 December and St. Nicholas. Gritten means spread legs, which is also a saying for old people, and Bänz is a short version of Benedict, who also has a relationship to St Nicholas. Mit Branchli just means its with this certain brand of chocolate called Branchli, a special addition for what is normally a plain figure with sultana face features. They’re baked from around the start of November until the end of December). Then the frivolity with the family began. Arrived home about midnight.

 

Today, the sun was still shining, with temperatures around 17 degrees, so we walked one of our favourite walks to Aarberg. We did this walk in reverse in March, when we met the lovely dog Luna. This time we walked from home and caught the bus back. Glorious! My hip gave out on the walk from the bus to our house – couldn’t bend it properly so had to walk with a peg leg to get up the hill. Not good. But the views were.

 

Wishing you a wonderful day.

May 15: Injured at home in the dry

I think it rained once today – all day! Thank goodness we were home, warm and dry. It was also five degrees Celsius – a wee bit cooler than the previous four days! Oh the joy of lying on the couch, looking out the window, thinking what could have been! Horrible! Just horrible!

In general, I haven’t had to walk much in bad weather. The worst experience was in the Black Forest in 2013, when I plodded along for a day in non-stop rain. Stupidly, before I set off, I wondered how wet could I possibly get in seven hours? After one, the only dry part of me was my chest.

Water had soaked up my sleeves past my elbows (using walking sticks meant the water had the chance to run up and down my arms), it pooled around my toes when walking downhill and my rain jacket puckered in such a way under my backpack’s waistband that water poured straight towards my crotch. My walking pants weren’t waterproof and hung so low with the weight of the water that after only a few hours I was treading on the cuffs.

That was the day I saw one other walker. We nodded as we passed each other going in opposite directions and after about 20 metres, unprompted, we both turned around to look at each other and burst out laughing. I know we were both thinking, “Phew! I’m not the only idiot out in this weather!” Despite the dire conditions, the spontaneity of that moment is a happy memory.

That was also the day I vowed to always carry an umbrella in the future, to keep the rain off my face. My clothes dried pretty quickly and it took five changes of stuffed newspaper in my shoes for them to dry overnight.

My current right butt cheek injury still has me baffled. I don’t know how I did it, but I could feel a twinge on day two. On day three, after sitting in the buttercup field, it was really hurting. Everything was generally fine yesterday, except for the final hour into Einsiedeln, and I thought it was going to be ok. Plenty of heat-generating cream later, I’m still hobbling and really hope it will be fixed for Monday Runday!

Needless to say no major exercise for me today. I did some push-ups and sit ups but took it really easy and caught up on lots of reading. That’s good mental fitness!

Wishing you a wonderful day.

May 14: Swiss Camino Day 5

Well, the final day has come and gone, and my right butt cheek is pretty happy it’s ended, but the rest of me wishes we were walking for longer.

Today we did a shorter stretch of 16km from Rapperswil to Einsiedeln, to finish the first third of the Swiss Camino, but because there was a fair bit of uphill it took us about six hours (with stops). See here if you want a detailed description of our whole journey, written by people from the Camino.

When we walked the middle section of the Swiss Camino in 2012 we started in Einsiedeln, so it was a logical end point for this trip. We can now say we’ve walked across two-thirds of Switzerland.

Leaving Rapperswil, you walk through the city, past the marina and onto a wooden footbridge which crosses the Lake of Zürich. What a great way to start the final day, listening to all the birds nesting on the lake, which is a nature reserve. Once across, we walked along a train line for a while, and then headed up, up, up to St Meinrad, where we stopped for a quick sugary drink and then started, for me, the highlight of the trip.

This section, between St Meinrad and Einsiedeln, is the postcard vision we have in our head of what Switzerland looks like – snow capped mountains, lakes, fields, cows, little wooden houses and glorious greenery. I kept taking photos of the same section of landscape, hoping to properly capture its beauty, but, alas, no picture can portray just how awe inspiring it is. You’ll have to come see for yourself!

Another highlight was being charged by a little cow. Unfortunately I didn’t get any photos of that, but I would have loved a video of him bouncing in front of me, being all threatening, and me running away flailing my walking sticks in the air.

When we arrived in Einsiedeln, home of a very huge monastery, we were shocked by how many people were there, but it is a religious public holiday in Switzerland today, so maybe we shouldn’t have been too surprised! Because of this we didn’t go into the church, as we’d seen it on our previous trip.

We stopped for a much-needed late lunch and then caught the train to Bern and then the bus to Wohlen. It took just over two and a half hours to get home. While walking that 10 minute path from the bus, we felt the first spits of rain, and as I type this, at 10.30pm, it’s raining heavily. Our decision to compress the five-day walk into four days was a good one, because the weather has quickly turned from amazing to miserable.

Signing off for now. The photos once again will tell a better story than me. I think I might start a new section on this blog about walking, with the various hikes we’ve done, but need to work out if the time it takes to set it all up is worth it. Would you like to see more photos of other walks around the UK and Europe?

We haven’t slept well the previous two nights, so hopefully being in our own bed will put everything right again, including that strained butt cheek??

Wishing you a wonderful day.

May 13: Swiss Camino Day 4

Today was tougher than I care to admit, and it was the shortest of the three days we’ve walked so far. Why so tough? Because so much if it – I’m thinking about three quarters of it – was on asphalt. That stuff is a killer, especially when you can see green grass so close by. Walking on a street/sidewalk/footpath is so much tougher on the feet than a natural path and we’re both suffering because of it.

I had my phone interview at 8am which I think was ok (please be good!) and then we left the Hörnli at about 8.45am. Lots of downhill to start the day and then into Steg … and then a very long straight footpath next to a busy road for about an hour. Ugh! Reprieve came in a short grassy path but then it was back onto a narrow road which serviced some smaller villages.

We chatted with another walker in a lovely field of wildflowers and she cracked us up. The first thing she said was the Canton of Zürich, being Protestant, had terrible signs for the Jakobsweg, or Swiss Camino, which is a Catholic pilgrimage. We laughed at first but then we had to agree with her. Not only was this 24km stretch between Hörnli and Rapperswil tough (yes that is the real name of this lovely village on Lake Zürich – I always joke about it being full of rappers), but the signs were pretty non-existent. The woman we spoke with in the field had been on a very long detour thanks to bad signposting, which involved going a long way down only to have to come a long way back up again. She was livid!

Later we spoke with an old woman who ran a little cafe for walkers/pilgrims and she said a few years ago, the canton had ordered all the Jakobsweg signs to be taken down, and because they live on the path, her husband had bought a few of them at the markets and put them up again! They were very helpful, so hats off to him for his foresight!

We struggled slowly into town just after 4pm and I’d lost my sense of humor by the time we found an overpriced hotel. I had a pain shooting from my right butt cheek down my thigh and Leo was also struggling. Why do we do this? Oh that’s right, it’s fun!

We did see amazing snow-covered Alps (the photos don’t really show them so well) and an incredible storm rolling in which thankfully bypassed us, but we were both very happy for the day to hurry up and end.

Even though it’s a lovely city, Rapperswil goes on the ‘must-see next time’ list for when we have more energy. We had a quick drink on the waterfront and then pizza near the hotel, where Leo cracked me up. I took a photo of him at the table and he was surprised that the man who refuses to wear sunscreen could be so sunburnt!

It was warm again today, and our decision to make the five day trip into a four day trip seems to be a good one, because bad weather is forecast for Friday, which would have been our last day of walking. Thankfully, tomorrow is our last day and we’ll be home and comfy on the couch when the bad weather kicks in.

Hope you enjoy the photos. No surprises that I didn’t take many photos of walking along the roads and on the footpaths etc. Hardly inspiring stuff!

I’ll post descriptions when I’m home.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

May 12: Swiss Camino Day 3

Another long day with a very steep and arduous hill at the end but the view from the top is worth it!

It was pretty warm today, even I can admit that. I had sweat droplets coming down my face which hasn’t happened for a very long time! We left the accommodation in Tobel at 8.45am (we’re creatures of habit it seems) after a big breakfast talking to the owners and another couple who are walking one more day with their dog.

First came some fields with fresh hay bales, then some flat parts, then some hilly parts, then lunch in Fisherlingen, then some really beautiful forested parts and then finally some open parts which were very, very steep. Leo asked me was it just him or was I suffering on the incline too? I was suffering. We arrived in Hörnli just after 4pm and decided after 28km that was enough for one day. It was time to stop and enjoy that view.

Hope you enjoy the photos. I’ll write descriptions when I’m home.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

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May 11: Swiss Camino Day 2

We set off just before 9am after a hearty breakfast at our hotel in Constance, through the city for about half an hour and then into a lovely forest area next to a stream. After just over three hours we arrived at our intended destination, Märstetten, and thought why stop now? So we went on, for another four hours and made it to Tobel. Just over seven hours of walking and about 26km under our belts.

All up a wonderful day in the sunshine with plenty of spectacular views and animals and hay bales. We’ve had dinner and my hayfever tablet has worn off and my nose is running and I can’t stop sneezing so I’m going to keep this short!

We’re definitely going to feel our legs and feet tomorrow and are worried we may have overdone it on day one! But the weather was too good to stop. Leo has a sore part at the back of his knee and I have a blister on the back of my left heel. Not to worry! We’ll power on tomorrow (we’ll probably be up quite early as it’s 8.15pm and Leo is asleep already!) and see how far we can go.

Enjoy the small selection of photos. I’ll add descriptions when I get home.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

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Travelling Light: Toiletries and make-up

Finally! I can’t believe it’s taken me five months to write about what I take when travelling. I love to pack light – just love it! Some may look at this and think ‘that’s not light’, and I’m cool with that! Everyone’s different, so, without further ado, here’s what’s in my new toiletry bag.

It’s a three-zippered number from deuter, with a capacity of 1.2 litres, weighing 50g when empty.* Until recently, I used a single zippered lightweight case from Eagle Creek (which I can’t find on the internet), but I’m loving the organisation options of the new bag – three compartments for easy access!

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The old … (pen is for size reference)

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… and the new

We’re (hopefully, depending on the weather) going hiking/walking for five to six days next week from Constance to Einsiedeln in Switzerland, which is basically the first third of the Swiss Camino.

We don’t know where we’ll be staying along the way, so I have to assume that some nights may be in youth hostels or basic hotels, where no toiletries are provided.

Sample or travel sizes are your friend (most of these were free!). Here’s what I’ve packed for one week:

  • Toothbrush (very lightweight and slim)
  • Toothpaste (I have two small toothpastes 25ml and 30ml, each about a third full, so will take them both to use them up)
  • Floss (mini)
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Dental things

  • Shampoo (sample/travel size, 30ml)
  • Conditioner (sample/travel size, 30ml)
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Shampoo and conditioner

  • Body and face moisturiser (in orange GoToob, 60ml)
  • Deodorant (spray bottle, 30ml)
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Moisturiser and spray deodorant

  • Contact lenses
  • Contact lens case
  • Contact lens solution (15ml)
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So I can see the pretty scenery!

  • Soap (for face and body, 40g)
  • Toner (love a refreshing spritz of toner, 10ml)
  • Perfume (a sachet and a small sample size (1.5ml) – nice for a few evenings!)
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Soap, toner and perfume samples

  • Tablets (hayfever, vitamins, headache, penicillin (for tonsillitis), gastro-stop (the last two are for just-in-case moments) in a small plastic ziplock bag
  • Cotton buds
  • Toothpick
  • Bandaids
  • Hotel-size sewing kit (for dealing with (hopefully no) blisters). The past four items are all in a small ziplock bag)
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Tablet bag and cotton bud bag

  • Hairbrush (foldable with a mirror inside)
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Folding hairbrush

  • Foundation (sample size, 7ml)
  • Eye and cheek powder (silver duo compact)
  • Eye and cheek brush (small)
  • Eyeliner (mini)
  • Mascara (very thin, light and short)
  • Lip balm
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Make-up items

When it’s all listed out, it looks like so much, but I’ll use everything (except possibly the make-up) every day.

Now it all goes into the three pockets of the washbag:

  • Back zip: Brush, make-up
  • Middle zip: Soap, shampoo, conditioner, toner, moisturiser, deodorant, contact lens things, packet of tablets, packet with cotton buds etc
  • Front zip: Toothbrush, toothpaste, floss
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Back compartment (without the brush)

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Main compartment, with ziplock bags and soap flat at the bottom

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Front compartment

And this is what it looks like when it’s all zipped up. There’s still a bit of room in there, and will gain more as the tablets get taken.

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All zipped up and ready to go. Total weight 620 grams

I’m pretty happy with that total weight, just over half a kilo, and if I didn’t feel the need to pretty myself up at night, I would ditch the make-up completely.

But wait? What about sunscreen, I hear you say! I wear a wide-brimmed hat, neck scarf, long-sleeved top and pants to avoid sunburn (damn thee fair, sensitive skin!) and carry a small sample-size sunscreen, about 7ml, in the pocket on the waistband of my backpack for easy access and regular cheek and nose applications. The lip balm (which also has sunscreen in it) lives in my trousers’ pocket.

So there you have it. In a dream world, where I had 20/20 vision, my skin wasn’t dry and sensitive and I had short hair, I think my toiletry bag would look very different. Eventually, I’d like everything to be eco-friendly plant or oil-based items, but because I have these things already, and most of them were free, it would be crazy not to use them. I’d love to travel with one natural soap for everything, one oil as a face, body and hair moisturiser and bicarb soda as toothpaste and deodorant. One day! One day! (I look forward to writing that post too!)

What toiletries do you like to take when travelling? Do you use sample sizes or take the lot?

Check again soon for posts about my backpack, walking clothes, casual clothes and sundry/miscellaneous items.

* As always there are no affiliate links on this site. I’m just providing you with information and receive no perks or money from the companies and products mentioned, giving me free reign to say if I like them or not.

May 4: The force was strong on Monday Runday

Not only is it Monday Runday, it’s also Star Wars Day … May the 4th be with you.

The fourth, I mean force, was strong today on my 5km run. Apart from stopping to take the odd photo and having to walk 200m to get rid of a stitch (again!), I felt really good and was happy with my time. I think I’m so worried about being dehydrated and getting that weird pain in my ears, I overcompensate and drink too much water before I head out.

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At the beginning of the run, one of these tracks was a little creek

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Looking towards Sariswil

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These calves looked so cute, I had to stop for a photo

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So sweet – they ran over to say hello!

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Maybe I smelt good, but I doubt it

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In the end, they all lined up for their 15 minutes of fame

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Saw a man using a strange machine in the fields, and waved … and maybe ran a little harder! Such a dag

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Rape seed in full bloom

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I startled this heron (?) in the puddle and it flew off majestically

I had thought about taking a longer route, but then chickened out at the last minute. Probably a good thing, as it was really humid (no wind too) and I ended up having to shed top layers and run in my tank top – first time that’s ever happened in Switzerland!

As part of my cool-down, I walked back to the tulip field (I measured it as 550m from our house) but the ducks from yesterday were gone. I bought a bunch of solid hot pink flowers as consolation.

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Magnificent tulip with insects!

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The bunch from yesterday, downstairs

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The new bunch from today, upstairs

The tulips aren’t going to be around for much longer – I’m almost tempted to collect a bunch of beautiful white ones, with pointy tips, tomorrow!

This morning was rainy and pretty miserable, so while waiting for a break in the weather, I mended the split in the backside of my apple-green cotton trousers. Initially I thought my pants would only be good enough for garden work afterwards, but I think I did such a good job, and the thread matched so well, I can wear them out again. (Can’t believe (and am very thankful) a hotel sewing kit carried that colour!) Then again, I may have been without my glasses when looking in the mirror … And after taking this photo, I’m now having second thoughts. I’ll wear a long top. 🙂

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Maybe my mending effort wasn’t so invisible after all …

All this rain has made our next holiday plans a bit sketchy – from next weekend, we’re planning to walk the first third of the Swiss Camino, from Constance to Einsiedeln. It should take about five to six days of walking, and is only 93km long, but if it’s going to be too wet, maybe we’ll have to rethink our plans. We walked the second (middle) section from Einsiedeln to Thun in 2012 and hopefully we’ll complete the third and final stage from Thun to Geneva before too long.

  • Physically Fit: Monday Runday – 5km jumping across the muddy puddles
  • Mentally Fit: Walking to the tulip field again and talking to the calves
  • Nutritionally Fit: Sixth day of fasting (500 calories) on the 5:2 Diet (and start of the final week perhaps?)
  • Minimalism: Mending the green pants

Have you been out wandering in your neighbourhood recently? I’d love to hear about what you see when you go walking or running.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

Embracing Phase Three by Kate Lehmann

This is the fourth guest post in a new fitfor15in15 series designed to show the pleasant impact that feeling fit, in all its forms, can have on your life. Kate Lehmann has never shied away from a challenge and she’s grabbed her newest passion with both hands, literally. Take it away Kate!

Embracing Phase Three by Kate Lehmann (radiographer in Brisbane, Australia, and lover of outdoor adventure)

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Kate enjoying Phase Three

In 2003, I went from being a regular traveller who followed the usual path – finish uni, work for a bit, save enough cash to travel the world, ticking off “must see” places like the Eifel Tower, Leaning Tower of Pisa, Uncle Ho, Lenin and Mao, and an overland truck adventure in Africa – before embarking on what I can only describe as Phase Two of my life.

Good friends invited me to join them hiking the Overland Track in Tasmania for eight days. Unperturbed by this obvious challenge, I immediately said yes. One of these friends came up with the idea of testing out this “carrying a pack” thing. So we set out one rainy Saturday to walk and camp in the Royal National Park south of Sydney. We didn’t die, but we overcame a lot of challenges – spiders, soggy sandwiches, forgotten dinners, blisters and a lack of water to name a few. We learnt a little bit more about overnight hiking and, more importantly, how a heavy pack can be carried.

The Overland Track is one of the great walks in Australia, and the world, and I couldn’t wait to get there. I spent more time preparing the food for this trip too and thankfully didn’t go hungry again. We set off the week after a record snow dump, so day one was a detour and involved climbing over Hanson’s Peak using chains and carrying a pack that can only be described as looking like a Christmas tree, I had so many things hanging off it. Borrowed gear, a “traveller” pack (the zippered kind), a big puffy fleece and eight days of food just would not fit in.

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With her Christmas tree pack, on the Overland Trail in 2003

That first day wasn’t even the hard one. Stumbling over and through thigh-deep snow for eight hours on day two made me realise that I was the only one who could get me to the hut. There were no cars, no respite-giving kiosks or helicopters – only my determination would get me there. So, suck up the pain and the exhaustion and keep moving, or lie down and die.

Later, much later, I realised how lucky I was to have that experience. Hiking is not a race. It’s set a pace, have the equipment for an emergency, and focus on getting from A to B. Take your time, smell the roses, enjoy the scenery and if in Tassie, keep your eyes out for tiger snakes, leeches and attack wombats. Despite these challenges, a passion for this overnight hiking gig was born.

I got back to Brisbane and booked and walked the Kokoda Track six months later in 2004. By then I was well and truly hooked. After that, I enjoyed multiple trips to Tassie, checking out such wonderful wilderness areas as Frenchmans Cap, Walls of Jerusalem, Western Arthurs, Mt Anne and Maria Island. How good was this walking gig? A lot of preparation in the weeks before goes into your happiness on the trail, but once all the organising is done, just eat what you brought (pack as much chocolate as possible) and relax and unwind from the pressures and stresses of life.

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Walking in Tasmania

I consider myself lucky to have such great friends who suggested that first hike and we’ve shared the love of adventure and the great outdoors on many others. People say we’re lucky to have seen so many great places. Not lucky, just making our own luck and grasping a hold of opportunities when they arise. Opportunity sometimes only knocks once, so don’t miss out. Great experiences don’t come without a willingness to get out there and just do it. Have enough determination and it can be done. You meet all sorts of people out there under the stars – old, young, the fit and the slow plodder. You have the time to chat and play cards and write in a diary. Reading it back is like doing the trip all over again … without the dirt slowly accumulating under your fingernails.

After learning the ropes from good friends and mentors, I convinced my sister that she, too, could carry one of these heavy pack things and we’ve had many an excellent holiday together. I’m not allowed to take her to Tasmania to hike – too many leeches – so we’ve stuck to the more coastal areas of mainland Australia.

Our first hike was the Great Ocean Walk. We “double-hutted” the first day to break her into this hiking business quickly. She also learnt heaps, like eating tuna on pita bread for lunch will repeat on you all afternoon (tuna never came on another hike). I also learnt that you should buy a good map and not rely on the free promo one that came in the National Geographic magazine that was, for the most part, WRONG! Thinking you’re nearly there and four hours later still walking is not good for the spirit.

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The sisters on their first adventure together, along the Victorian coast in Australia

Trips to New Zealand (no leeches there) to walk the Routeburn, Milford, Kepler and Humpridge Tracks followed, then a week in the Snowy Mountains in April (it’s a hiking playground up there) and Wilsons Prom – where we nearly packed it in a day early after seeing a massive big brown snake … and a leech!!! Not sure which was worse. After convincing my sister to stay, she then ate all the M&Ms out of my trail mix … slowly … and in front of me.

Our favorite track is Bibbulmun Track in Western Australia. It’s 1000km and we’ve done half of it, going over twice for two hikes of over 10 days. Occasionally you walk through a town, so you really get the time to relax and unwind from work. Combine the stunning scenery with meeting such interesting people along the way and you have a most excellent holiday. Also, for anyone who has a sister you will know they can be very honest – you laugh, you cry and you tell each other off, get on with it and then laugh again.

I no longer have a pack that looks like a Christmas tree. I’ve slowly upgraded my gear and fortunately it no longer weighs a tonne. If you’re not hiking, then looking for and buying hiking gear is almost as much fun. I thought for the rest of my days, as long as I was fit enough, hiking holidays were for me.

That was until 2012 when those same old friends suggested we try something different … “Do you want to cycle from Lhasa to Kathmandu this year?” Of course I said yes. The fact I owned a knockabout bike that only went on the odd bike track didn’t worry me at all. And here began Phase Three …

The tour we booked had a questionnaire where you outlined how much exercise/training you did each week. Um, tap dancing one night a week and doing the odd hike up Mt Coot-tha, in Brisbane, on the weekend didn’t seem to cut it with their “suggested training schedule”.

I also needed a proper bike and had no idea what they were talking about in the shops. “29er, 26er, hard tail, dually.” What were all these words?? I just wanted a bike that would allow me to ride up mountain passes over 5000 metres and tackle some dreadful road conditions in Nepal. I ended up with a 29er Hard Tail and immediately fell in love with it … until I couldn’t clip out and nearly went splat on the bitumen on my first ride. I clearly had a lot to learn.

The trip was great, but since I’ve been back it’s been even greater. Meeting a handsome fella on the tracks of Brisbane’s Gap Creek has also been great. Now my weekends are full of rides and single-track adventures. I’ve also done a lot of fun cross-country racing on the mountain bike. The competitions have different grades, so even if you are new like me you still have fun and occasionally get up on the podium.

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Kate, right, now enjoys mountain bike racing, especially with a podium finish

Combine all that hiking gear I have in the cupboard with the bike and you have “hikling” adventures. Pop a pannier on the back of your bike and you can go further and still camp under the stars. I still go hiking – it’s a different pace altogether – but, for me, being on the bike is loads more fun. There are so many more places you can visit with a bike. Now, if only work didn’t get in the way so much! How do you win lotto?

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On her 40th birthday “hikling” trip to an island off the Queensland coast

Update: Kate enjoyed her first blogging experience so much she now has her own site, showcasing her hiking and cycling adventures around the world. Read more at www.theoutdoordiaries.com. Great work, Kate!