Trekking the pristine beaches of Victoria’s south coast

By Amy Russell 8 November 2013
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The Australian Geographic Adventure girls and one lucky male head south to walk the talk.

LAST WEEK TEAM AG Outdoor stepped off the radar. Literally. In the name of research, we loaded a new RAV4 with camping gear and supplies and drove south to Mallacoota, a sleepy little town sitting just below the NSW – Victorian border.

We were on assignment with instructions to explore the 100 km long Wilderness Coast Track, that can be found in the depths of Croajingalong National Park. We were told that the track snakes through thick scrub and out onto secluded beaches. Tough gig, right?

On the drive down, the Australian Geographic Adventure team – Josie Sargent, Joanna Egan, honorary recruit Bastian Hartmann and I – admitted that what we were most excited about was venturing into the unknown and escaping the big smoke. And apart from a few mishaps – Bastian fell prey to a tick, Jo broke our coffee plunger, I copped a tent pole to the face and Josie suffered from a nasty chest infection – our trip was full of pleasant surprises.

The most unexpected of which was how invigorating it felt to be free from the technological binds that are so much a part of our everyday lives. No phones. No TV. No internet. No concept of time.

In the mornings the sky brightened to the chorus of native birds chatting companionably to each other from the canopy of branches we were camped beneath. And at night, exhausted from a full day of walking, we sat around our camp fire toasting marshmallows and telling stories. We retired to our tents when our eyes grew heavy and our throats scratchy from laughter and smoke.

And the beaches. Oh, lordy those beaches. Growing up in Sydney’s south, I’m no stranger to a patch of sand and some impressive swell. But never before had I feasted upon such devastatingly beautiful coastline. Each day as we made our way through the ever-changing wilderness scrub, we were rewarded for our efforts when we emerged through the clearings to find pristine, isolated sandy coves.

Ask anyone in our office and they’ll tell you the Australian Geographic Adventure pod can be a little rambunctious – we are girls who tend to have a fair bit to say. But standing alone on those rugged shores, we were literally lost for words.

This trip did for our souls what my Nan’s chicken soup does for a cold. It warmed us from the inside out. And we returned to work this week, eyes brighter and our minds a little quieter, with dirt under our nails and a few stray leaves in our hair. 

To get the full story from Josie, and to see some more of Jo’s mesmerizing images from the trip, pick up the new issue of Australian Geographic Adventure, on sale October 20. And in the mean time, to find out more about the walk take a peak here.