"Walking With A Challenge" - Walk Reviews to Get You Out and About
A Project by Changing Lung Cancer.
Boondall Wetlands Billai Dhagun track (Circuit). Boondall Wetlands Visitor Centre. PaperBark Drive, Boondall (Kids activities, coffee, toilets and bird viewing hut)
Hemmant Quarry Reserve. Circuit Walk. Fleming Road, Hemmant. Brisbane. (Lots of picnic tables, serene and beautiful quarry)
Wynnum North Reserve Circuit. Wynnum North Rd. Wynnum North. Brisbane. (Boardwalk and Bird viewing walk)
Moonee Beach NSW. Walk from Moonee Beach, North Coast Holiday Park to headland view. NSW. (Views of the Ocean and beach)
Lota Boardwalk-Nodosa Track-Lota Creek Circuit, Whites Road Lota entry
VICTORIA POINT FODDER FOREST,312 COLBURN AV, VICTORIA POINT QLD
The Inspiration for this Project
In early 2011 I was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer.
As a result of this disease, and also from the treatments used to treat it I have ongoing physical challenges in regard to exercise.
Before my diagnosis I was very active, and bushwalking was an activity that our family used to enjoy together regularly.
The challenges I have personally faced are: poor lung function/shortness of breath on any exertion, limited stamina, fatigue, heat and sun sensitivity. These symptoms have often acted as barrier to me being able to participate in bushwalking.
I have missed the outdoors, the fresh air and the quality time I had with my family during our walks.
So my wife decided she would try to find bush walks that were within my capability. She found it quite difficult to find the exact information she needed to know if a walk would be okay with my particular challenges or not. Disabled access was not enough to know about - I often found the longer inclines suitable for wheelchairs, challenged my stamina and lungs more than a few steps actually would.
So my wife decided she would trial walks for me. She would do the walk alone first, and then report back to me if it would be okay. If she thought it was okay for me, then I would attempt it. My wife didn't just look at the "grade" of a walk, or its length. This was not enough information for me. She had to look at degree and length of any inclines, places to rest - and frequency or seating along the walk, surfaces/terrain (I have bone metastases - so considering terrain is something I need to know, and soft surfaces like loose sand affect my stamina and fatigue levels), shade levels, number of steps (if any) and of course length.
This lead to us identifying an unmet need, for people like me, who have very specific challenges for bushwalking. We found that the only way I could do a walk, was if my wife did the walk to know what was ahead, in order to know if it could be attempted by me. So I decided to video the walks. So that others could also visualise the walks. I thought this might provide more information to others, and help them determine if a walk might be okay or not.
The walks we review are limited by my capabilities. They tend to be short, well shaded, have either nil or minimal degree short lived inclines, and minimal steps.
Check out the videos.. and decide for yourself if it's suitable for you!
More About My Limitations and Challenges
( My Doctor has said that it is okay for me to do walking that is within my capability and that doesn't exacerbate any of my symptoms)
To prevent falls:
I always wear good supporting shoes, rest if I feel fatigued so I don't drag my feet, and avoid unsealed paths if wet.
To manage sun sensitivity (medication side effect):
I always wear a hat, sunglasses and long, but cool shirts, walk early in the morning or late in the day, or choose a very well shaded walk.
To manage heat sensitivity (medication side effect and disease related):
I actually cannot walk in summer because the heat is far too fatiguing for me even in the early morning or late afternoon. In other seasons if heat is a problem, I choose well shaded walks, often select rainforest walks over bush walks, stay well hydrated and select shorter walks.
To manage fatigue and stamina (medication side effect and disease related):
I rest regularly, stay hydrated, walk only within my limits, always walk with a companion, don't carry anything unnecessary or heavy, and do a walk that matches the season and how I am feeling (For example: I don't walk when I am already feeling fatigued; for me, I only do a walk when I have no other activities planned for that day)
To manage my more limited lung capacity (disease and previous treatment related):
I choose walks that are very low grade, short and within my ability. If I can see a walk is getting beyond me, I don't finish it, I turn around. I always walk with a companion. I let people pass me. I don't ever try and keep up with others and walk at my own pace. I always stop if short of breath, recover, and the re start after a good rest. I always carry a mobile phone with me.
We hope our reviews provide you with a little more information and some visuals to help you decide if a particular bush walk is one that you can consider.
Note: This is in no way recommendation or advice. Just footage of walks we do, and our observations along the way. Our measurements are via the naked eye and are approximate only from our visualisation - unless the length of the walk of written at the start of the walk on a post - which we will photograph.
For more videos: Youtube - Walking with A Challenge Channel