Preparing for your
Gold Adventurous Journey

Everything you need to be ready to go.

Welcome to Outward Bound Australia and thank-you for choosing us for your upcoming Adventurous Journey. We are excited to be a part of your total Award experience. Before your journey begins, there are a few steps you need to complete to ensure you are safe and ready to go. Please read carefully through each preparation section below and attend to each action as necessary. If you have any questions about getting ready, you can contact us at dukeofed@outwardbound.org.au.

For the Participant
1. Inform your Award Leader

If you have not already done so, inform your Award Leader of your intention to complete your Adventurous Journey. Your Award Leader may also like to be given the link to this website.

2. Set up your Online Record Book

To set up your Adventurous Journey (Practice and Qualifying) and record Preparation and Training activities click on the Adventurous Journey section from the list of sections available on your ORB landing page.

To create your Practice / Qualifying Journey:

  • Click on Practice or Qualifying Journey option from the Adventurous Journey Overview, according to the Journey you would like to create.
  • Insert your Journey details in the pop-up windows.
    • In the Assessor Details section use the following information:
      • Mrs. Caroline Bowman
      • dukeofed@outwardbound.org.au
      • +61448238930
    • In the Supervisor Details section, use the following information:
      • Outward Bound Australia
      • dukeofed@outwardbound.org.au
      • +61262355700
  • Press Setup to finish setting up your Journey.
3. Understand our expectations of you
Behaviour

Completing the hike is only half of the requirements. At all times we expect you to: 

  • Behave respectfully to your peers and Supervisor in both your actions and language.
  • Participate in decision making within your map group.
  • Give the experience 100% of your commitment and ability.
  • Keep a daily log of your trip to assist you with your Adventurous Journey Report.
  • Be responsible for you own rubbish.
  • Respect the environment.
  • Bring only the medication that has been declared in your medical form.
    • No other drugs will be permitted, including alcohol, tobacco etc.

Outward Bound Supervisors will send you home if you fail to meet these standards. In this instance we will not approve your journey and we will not issue a refund. 

Mobile Phones and Music

There is usually limited mobile phone reception on our walks. You can switch your phone to flight mode if you want to use it to take photos, otherwise turn it off and leave it in your pack. You are not allowed to listen to music, so please don’t expect to walk along with earphones in or play music through speakers at camp.  

Toileting

Read your specific itinerary to see what toilets, if any, are available on your journey. If you need to go where there are no toilets you will need to bury your waste. Please bring a sturdy hand trowel for this purpose.

Environmental Care

We follow the seven principles of Leave No Trace. Read up about these principles before leaving home. You might even want to print out the summary as a reminder during your journey.

4. Complete the Participant Consent and Medical Information Form

Ensure the digital Participant Consent and Medical Information Form is filled in and submitted. Your journey dates will be opened in the form 6-weeks before your journey start.

We ask you to complete this no later than seven (7) days prior to your journey’s start date.

If you are 17 years or younger, you will need to have your parent or legal guardian complete and submit on your behalf.

If you are diagnosed as having anaphylaxis or chronic asthma you will be required to provide your management or action plan. If your plan is older than 12 months, please visit your GP to have your documents updated.

5. Get your clothing and equipment

Getting the right gear for you is crucial for your enjoyment of the journey and ensuring you don’t hurt yourself. Be ruthless in your choices and only pack exactly what you need. All of your items should fit inside your hiking pack to avoid damage to both your gear and the environment, this includes your sleeping mat.

Under 18 years-old? For your safety, your pack should weigh no more than one-quarter (25%) of your body weight.

18 years-old or over? For your safety, your pack should weigh no more than one-third (33%) of your body weight.

Click on the image below for our recommended kit list. To help you source everything, we have teamed up with Camp List, who offer many of the items specified for hire and/or purchase. To see what they have available go to www.camplist.com.au and in the central search bar type “Outward Bound Australia”.

6. Prepare your menu

What meals to pack

For your Gold Adventurous Journey, we expect you to provide the following meals as a minimum:

  • x4 lunches
  • x3 dinners
  • x3 breakfasts
  • x4 day’s supply high energy snacks

If you are completing the Thornleigh to Wondabyne 6-day Adventurous Journey, you should provide the following meals as a minimum:

  • x6 lunches
  • x5 dinners
  • x5 breakfasts
  • x6 day’s supply high energy snacks

Enjoy your food, enjoy your journey

The key to a great hike is great fuel. Here are some tips to consider and some food suggestions.

  • A balanced hiking diet includes more fat and sugar than a normal diet.
  • Remove as much packaging as you can and re-pack in zip-lock bags.
  • Package your zip-lock bags by meal rather than individual items and label them
    • e.g. Lunch Day 1
  • Canned food is too heavy and glass bottles and jars may break in your pack, so dispense these foods where possible.
  • Pack breakfast and dinner in one big strong stuff-bag, and lunch and snacks in another of a different colour. This makes it easier to find what you want when you need it.
  • Consider if you really need a bowl, or can you eat from your pot? Do you really need a dinner knife, fork and spoon? 
  • There are often no garbage bins at campsites or on trail so you’ll have to carry out all the packaging you carry in.
  • Bring the lightest food that takes the shortest time to cook.

Be aware that everything has to survive without refrigeration (please don’t bring a cooler bag). Check out the Food Safety Information Council for advice on appropriate foods for camping and bushwalking.

Food Suggestions

Breakfast

Cereals, muesli or instant oats with long life or powdered milk.

  • Long life milk can be found as single-serve poppers
  • Powdered milk is much lighter and only needs water added to it.

Hot breakfast such as baked beans or spaghetti provide great protein but are heavy to carry. You may also need to wake up earlier to cook, eat, and clean up in enough time.   

TIP: Measure out the amount of cereal per day and put in a snap lock bag with powdered milk. 

Lunch

Crackers like Ryvita, Salada, and Vita-weets provide good levels of carbohydrate.

Bread and wraps are ok for Day 1, but can quickly go stale.

Cheese such as Laughing Cow, Dutch Edam or Babybells keep well.

Dried meats including salami and jerky etc. are great forms of protein and salt. It will keep fresher if whole, so remember a knife. Fresh meats are not recommended.

Salad vegetables including carrots, cucumber, capsicum etc. keep well in packs. Also consider deli items like sun-dried tomatoes.

Spreads like Vegemite, hummus, chunky dips and honey make great additions to crackers. 

TIP: It’s better if you don’t have to cook lunch as we may not have time.  

Dinner

Packaged pasta and rice are good options, although may take longer to cook. Couscous is a good choice if you want a speedy meal.

Add a packet tuna, salmon, or ham to get protein and add freeze dried vegetables for nutrition. These are cheap and easy meals. Just remember to look after the rubbish.

Freeze dried/dehydrated meals from brands like Back Country, Campers Pantry and The Outdoor Gourmet Company are a great balance between weight and nutrition but are more expensive to buy.

Snacks

Hard fruits like apples are great. Soft fruits if not protected can go soggy. Dried fruits are your best option.

Make your own trail mix with a selection of sultanas, seeds, dried fruit and chocolate! However, please do not add nuts to your mix. We are a nut-aware organisation.

Packaged bars and snacks like muesli bars, LeSnacks and grain biscuits are good snacks and are generally light. Strip off the bulk packaging at home and keep these foods together in zip-lock bags. 

Packaged soups, particularly if your journey dates will be cold, can be a great treat. 2-minute noodles and all other similar foods are okay for a hot snack, but are not satisfactory for an evening meal due to their limited nutrition.

TIP: Think of your snacks as supplementary to your main meals. Sugary things are okay for a special treat, but not as a source of long-term energy. 

Drinks

When you are walking, water should be your only drink. If the weather is hot, you may consider bringing Hydralyte to help restore electrolytes. Please don’t bring drinks such as Gatorade etc. as they are not designed for the endurance exercise of hiking.

Hot drinks like Cup-a-Soups, hot chocolate, milo, tea or coffee are a lovely treat at camp. Just remember to measure out the quantities needed rather than carry the container. 

7. Start training
Physical Training

We advise you do several training walks in the footwear you will be wearing and carrying your loaded backpack. Walk around the block to start with and build up to hour-long walks over uneven ground. Gradually increase the weight of your pack each time. This will greatly increase your ability to walk and carry the heavy pack, thereby enhancing your enjoyment of the journey. Training in the bush is ideal. 

Navigation

Your Supervisor will coach you how to use topographic maps with an expedition compass. However, why not start learning now? If you are at school, ask a Geography teacher for a tutorial. There are loads of great videos available online as well.

Equipment

Make sure you know how to use all your gear before you head out. You want to feel confident that you know what you are doing. Find a suitable patch of grass and practice setting up and packing down your tent, until you can do it by yourself easily. Cook up your intended meal/s in the stove you will be bringing so you know how much you can fit in both the pot and your stomach. You don’t want to get to camp and cook up a feast, only to find out you have too much or too little of both quantity and flavour.

8. Prepare for your Qualifying Adventurous Journey Report

If you are undertaking your Qualifying Adventurous Journey, you will be required to submit an Adventurous Journey Report before you can be signed off. Download the suggested template. Bring a small notebook and write the key headings of your report on the first few pages to jog your memory on what to look out for along your journey.

Your AJ Report always looks better when you add pictures, so remember to bring a camera to document your experience.

9. Download your itinerary and map

Go to the next section below and download and print the itinerary, route plan, and map for your relevant journey.

Itinerary

This is the basic overview of your journey. Your parents will want a copy of this so they know where and when to drop your off, and pick you up. To bring on your journey, we recommend printing this as 2-pages to the printed sheet, or as double-sided.

Route Plan

This is the detailed hiking notes for your journey. You must bring a copy of the Route Plan with you. We recommend printing these on A4 paper. You will be writing on this document during your journey, so you will need to be able to protect the pages from damage. Either a zip-lock bag and pen, or laminating the sheets and writing with a very fine tipped permanent marker are suitable options.

You will see that some information has not been completed.

  • The Actual Time column will be completed by you during your journey.
  • The Personal notes and observations column will be completed by you during your journey.
  • Magnetic Bearings have been left blank. You should calculate these yourself. Speak to a Geography or Earth Sciences teacher, or look up an online article on how to convert Grid to Magnetic bearings.
  • Some Grid Bearings have been left blank. Using the Route Description notes and your map and compass, have a go at working out the necessary bearings. Speak to a Geography or Earth Sciences teacher, or look up an online article on how to work out topographic grid bearings. Your Outward Bound Supervisor will also be covering this vital skill throughout your journey.
Maps

You must bring a copy of your map with you. Your maps need to be printed in a very particular way to ensure they are correctly scaled and useable. Each map document in the next section below has specific instructions to ensure the correct quality. We recommend having your maps professionally printed from an Officeworks or similar company.

Your map is one of your most important documents during your expedition, and you should protect your map from damage. Suitable options are to purchase a map-case, or laminate all your map pages individually and bring a very fine tipped permanent marker to draw up your check-points over the laminate.

Itineraries, Route Plans and Maps
Thornleigh to Wondabyne, Great North Walk NSW
Itinerary

GNW-GC Thornleigh to Wondabyne Itinerary

You can also find additional information about your route using the following links:

  1. Thornleigh to Cowan
  2. Cowan to Brooklyn
  3. Brooklyn Ferry service timetable
    1. For Brooklyn to Little Wobby ferry
  4. Little Wobby to Mt. Wonabyne
    1. Use these route notes from the start until the summit of Mt. Wondabyne.
  5. Mt. Wondabyne to Wondabyne Station
    1. Use these notes in reverse order. Start from Mt. Wondabyne (blue box, about 3/4 down the page) and work you way backwards towards Wondabyne Station. (i.e., scroll UP the page).
Route Plan

Fill in the second column, using the itinerary and maps. It is also valuable to write a brief description of what you expect to do or see.
For example, “cross three creeks“, or “go over a saddle before reaching locked gate“.

Remember you must bring a hard copy of this document on your journey. You will also require a pen to fill in your observations.

Journey Log

Map

Remember you must bring a protected hard copy of your map on your journey. You will also require a very fine tipped permanent marker pen to plot your route.

There are two files to be printed. Both must be in colour and at 100% / default scaling.
The Thornleigh to Wondabyne map pages should be printed on A4 paper.
The Little Wobby map should be printed on A3 paper.

Thornleigh to Wondabyne Map Set

Subscribe to 

our eNewsletter