First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

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First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby Risilva » Tue Apr 13, 2010 12:53 am

Hi,
I've been stalking this forum for a while now trying to get some info as I am planning a camping trip by myself to the Grampians at the end of June. I am an international student studying here and I do not own a car here so I was planning on renting a car to drive up to the Grampians where I would stay for maybe a week or more depending on how much I enjoy myself. I plan on parking the car somewhere safe and hike into the Grampians with whatever I can carry on my back, however I am concerned if I am able to park the car somewhere safe and cheaply outside the national park. Also, as I will be hiking in I won't be carrying jerry cans full of water and I don't intend on staying at the designated campsites for my whole trip, is water scarce up there? And one last thing, can I set up camp anywhere in the park? I know there are certain off limit places but could I possibly pitch my tent on elevated ground overlooking the park? cause that would be awesome.

THANKS!
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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby Redback » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:03 am

Never hike alone!!!

The Grampians is a very large area, also June is an extremely cold time of year so expect snow, you'll need an EPIRB or Satilite phone and you will also need to inform people of when you are going and your expected return date.

Remember this is very rugged country, If I were you I'd contact Vic Parks for information on walking tracks for this area, this is not the place to just wander off where ever you like.

AND most important, what you take in, you bring back out, don't leave your rubbish in there, dig a hole when going to the toilet and burn your toilet paper.

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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby Lin » Tue Apr 13, 2010 2:26 pm

I've never been to the Grampians, but in the National Parks around here (Southern NSW) there is NO drinking water available at all.

I agree that it would be a lot safer for you to find a hiking partner. And even then, you'll have to plan carefully. Call the visitor's office or the ranger and ask about water, maps, etc. You could always just set up camp near the car and then go for day-hikes instead? But if you really do have your mind set on hiking a long distance and carrying your camp on your back, it would be good to talk to people who have done that there and get their advice.

This guide offers lots of information and definitely confirms what Redback wrote: http://www.parkweb.vic.gov.au/resources05/05_1028.pdf
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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby xmasbaby67 » Tue Apr 13, 2010 2:52 pm

I agree with the others here. You should never hike alone!!! Especially in an area that big.

And it will be freezing up there that time of year. Spring would probably be a better and prettier time to do it.

I would try a walking tour group or maybe find a hiking partner or group to go with.
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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby Risilva » Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:26 pm

Thanks for the help! Also I wasn't intending on going very far in, I shouldn't have used the word hike. I was thinking of maybe trekking say 3 to 4km from halls gap. camping there for a few days take in the sights and sounds read a book and maybe explore the nearby areas without going too far. Would that still be too dangerous to attempt alone?
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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby Lin » Tue Apr 13, 2010 4:11 pm

I've definitely gone for walks that distance on my own IF there is a well-defined walking track and signs. And that was when I was camping with other people.
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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby hoadie72 » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:19 pm

Parks Victoria have a pretty useful website, and towards the bottom have details on walking maps etc.

http://www.parkweb.vic.gov.au/1park_display.cfm

It's a spectacular region and there are lots of awesome walks, however if you're traveling solo, my suggestion would be to set up camp at one of the excellent campsites, and do a series of day walks, starting off at say Wonderland or Sundial.

If you do go ahead, the maps list (or at least my map does) instructions, tips etc for Overnight Expeditions, some of which are:

* Take a first aid kit, compass, sleeping bag and tent.
* For safety, walk with at least two others.
* In summer, most creeks in the Grampians are dry. In warm weather each person needs 2-4 litres of water per day.
* Plan your walk. A fit person covers 2-3 km per hour on a gently undulating track, less in steep terrain.
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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby Risilva » Tue Apr 13, 2010 11:09 pm

Thanks for the advice! Its definitely very helpful!
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Re: First time camping solo. Need advice and tips! please?

Postby mytribe » Wed Apr 14, 2010 11:01 am

I got lost in the grampians when on a school camp and doing orienteering(thankfully I wasn't on my own there was a group of 5 girls), it's soo easy to get lost and at that time of the year get's cold very, very quickly.
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