After a guest in our campsite and a VERY cold night we were up at the crack of dawn (literally) to prepare for an expedition along the Bibbulmun Track. After a hearty breakfast of bacon, eggs, rolls, cereal and fruit we packed our bags and jumped on the bus to be driven out to our starting point approximately 15kms away from the camp site. Once we arrived, the Student Leaders took over and directed the rest of the group along the track….in the wrong direction. Some students questioned, but didn’t communicate their concerns to the leaders. Mr Ryan and Mrs Kingdon where discussing how to tell them to allow them to realise their own mistake when Mrs Kingdon stepped beautifully on a honkey nut which allowed her to face plant, 100 metres into our walk. As Mason described it “she was walking behind me, I heard a noise, turned around and she was on the floor!” Whilst first aid was given to Mrs Kingdon, the rest of the group discussed the selection of direction. Once Mrs Kingdon was all patched up, we turned around and headed in the right direction to our first pit stop, the Camel Farm.
The first section of the track was nice and flat, though we did have a couple of problems with people going really fast and leaving others behind. It was our first walk like this so we had a lot of learning to do. It didn’t help that Mr McGough walked to meet us midway through the section and scare us!
We got to our first pit stop and the familiar cry of “Can we eat?” was heard. After food and a toilet stop the walk continued with our new Student Leaders. We were now heading to Hewitts Hill, which we nearly missed as we weren’t paying attention to the signs. Once again Mrs Kingdon and Mr Ryan came to the rescue and we stopped for more food and a long break. We also took the time for a photo at the campsite where all Bushies before us have been. It was here that we realised Period One was just starting and we had already walked the first two sections of our walk.
Section three saw us heading to South Ledge and a good drop. We had another change in leaders and they had a big challenge… the first major hills of the day. They were big hills. Some counted the steps together as they went up the hill, others ran and then regretted it later. Calves were hurting in section three.
Once at South Ledge, Mr McGough had cold water and food! More food! We stopped for lunch at half past 10… it didn’t seem like half past ten to us though! South Ledge was another great photo opportunity. This was for the Bibbulum Track Foundation so they can update the photo in their presentation for next year’s Bushies!
Section four could have been a nightmare – we had a major road to cross and we had to pray the Mundaring Wier wall was open so we didn’t have to climb lots and lots of stairs. We had all been praying hard that the dam wall would be open and our prayers were answered. We had a nice walk across the wall but it was starting to get hot and the flies were beginning to arrive.
As we walked by the Mundaring Hotel we started on section 5… our last one! Thanks to a short cut (another track that intersects the Bibbulum Track) we were able to arrive back at our camp site two hours ahead of schedule! We had set a blistering pace, the fastest ever.
Our blistering pace started to have an impact as we packed up our camp site to head down to Rockingham and the coastal part of our camp. We have had an amazing time at Perth Hills Discovery Centre. Our hosts Roy and Flo were amazing and very chatty. They gave us glowing reviews to the teachers too.
We are now sitting on the bus heading to Rockingham. Half the bus is asleep, which will make for great pictures at Graduation! Tonight we will have a pizza dinner to celebrate our achievement, and cake for dessert to celebrate Mr Ryan’s birthday tomorrow… but shhh, don’t tell him!
Our feet hurt, we have had to learn to do things for ourselve and we are tired, but we are alive! Until tomorrow.
Year 8 Bush Rangers