List of people who have walked across Australia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Location of Australia
Map depicting the geographical extremes of Australia, and the cities at each point of the compass.

People who walk across Australia can walk from either of the geographical extremes of the continent, or from directly opposed cities on opposite shores. The western-most geographical extreme of Australia is Steep Point, whereas the eastern-most extreme is Cape Byron. Similarly, the northern-most geographical extreme is Cape York Peninsula, and the southern-most is the South East Cape. The distance between the east and west as the crow flies is 4,030 km (2,500 mi), or 3,685 km (2,290 mi) from north to south*. The western-most capital city in Australia is Perth, and the eastern-most capital city is Brisbane. The northern-most city is Darwin, and the southern to the southern-most city is Hobart.

Walkers who choose to circumambulate Australia can follow the National Highway for large sections of their journey. Of the people who have successfully circumambulated the continent, it took a range of 365–897 days to complete. Distances involved are in the vicinity of 14,300 km (8,900 mi)[1] to 17,000 km depending on the route taken.

Only six people are known to have completed solo unaccompanied circumnavigations, passing through all mainland states and territories, without a support vehicle. These include Aidan de Brune, Nobby Young, Colin Ricketts, Andrew 'Cad' Cadigan, Scott Loxely, Mike Pauly and Terra Roam.

*Distance calculated by author utilising the resources of Geoscience Australia.

Completed journeys[edit]

The names of the individuals who have walked across Australia have been listed below in chronological order. Sources for data contained within this table have been listed within the body of the article, or where not readily available, directly from the individual concerned.

Sports and games.png This sports-related list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.
Name Nationality Start date Finish date Duration Starting location Finishing location
Robert Burke  Ireland 20 August 1860 9 February 1861 174 Melbourne Kurumba ‡
William Wills  England 20 August 1860 9 February 1861 174 Melbourne Kurumba ‡
John King  Ireland 20 August 1860 9 February 1861 174 Melbourne Kurumba ‡
Aidan de Brune  England 24 November 1920 21 February 1921 90 Fremantle Sydney
Aidan de Brune  England 20 September 1921 4 March 1924 897 Sydney Sydney
Bob Mossel  Australia 20 May 1973 20 September 1973 124 Port Augusta Burketown
Bill Mossel  Australia 20 May 1973 20 September 1973 124 Port Augusta Burketown
Sue Thompson  Australia 20 May 1973 20 September 1973 124 Port Augusta Burketown
Annabel Douglas-Hill  Australia 20 May 1973 20 September 1973 124 Port Augusta Burketown
Sharka Dolak  Australia 20 May 1973 20 September 1973 124 Port Augusta Burketown
Dave Kunst  United States 3 November 1973 20 July 1974 260 Fremantle Sydney
Robyn Devidson  Australia 2 January 1977 20 September 1977 243 Fremantle Sydney
Dennis Bartell  Australia 1984 1984 unknown Gulf of Carpentaria Gulf St Vincent
Steven Newman  United States 1 July 1985 20 June 1986 293 Darwin Melbourne
Roger Scott  Australia 6 August 1988 22 November 1988 109 Darwin Dover
Ffyona Campbell  Scotland 11 September 1988 14 December 1988 95 Sydney Fremantle
Nobby Young  Australia 1 March 1993 1 March 1994 365 Sydney Sydney
David Mason  Australia 23 March 1998 13 November 1998 236 Byron Bay Steep Point
Andrew Harper  Australia 25 April 1999 10 December 1999 229 Tropic of Capricorn
Polly Letofsky  United States 29 October 2000 22 July 2001 267 Melbourne Port Douglas
Jon Muir  Australia 18 May 2001 22 September 2001 128 Port Augusta Burketown
Dave Mckern  Australia 15 June 2003 8 November 2003 146 Sydney Perth
leigh holderness  Australia 17 October 2003 15 October 2004 365 Seaford Vic Melbourne
John Olsen  Australia 2004 unknown 167 Cape York Peninsula South East Cape
Colin Ricketts  Australia 4 January 2005 17 January 2006 379 Adelaide Adelaide
Jeff Johnson  Australia 5 April 2007 2 September 2007 151 Port Augusta Kurumba
Deanna Sorensen  Canada 2 May 1998 28 October 1998 180 Perth Sydney
Michael Mitchell  Australia 5 May 2008 3 May 2009 363 Cape York Peninsula Wilsons Promontory
Gary Hause  United States 19 May 2008 2 November 2008 168 Cairns Torquay
John Olsen  Australia 18 June 2008 3 January 2009 200 Steep Point Cape Byron
Dave Phoenix  Australia 1 August 2008 8 January 2009 161 Melbourne Kurumba
Dave Leaning  United Kingdom 29 April 2009 21 July 2009 84 Port Augusta Karumba
Mike Pauly  Australia 16 May 2009 19 October 2009 156 Fremantle Melbourne
Mark Gibben  Australia 22 February 2009 18 May 2009 86 Perth Sydney
Leigh Thomson-Matthews  Australia 8 March 2010 3 July 2010 118 Perth Melbourne
Sam Thomson-Matthews  Australia 8 March 2010 3 July 2010 118 Perth Melbourne
Mike Pauly  Australia 1 March 2011 26 June 2011 118 Melbourne Fremantle
Jeff Johnson  Australia 24 April 2011 2 October 2011 162 Cape Byron Steep Point
Axel Raftos  Australia 11 August 2011 4 February 2012 177 Melbourne Fremantle
Jacob French  Australia 20 July 2011 12 April 2012 268 Perth Sydney
Florian Stiegler Weltmichl  Germany 10 October 2011 10 October 2012 365 Darwin, Northern Territory Perth, Western Australia
Andrew Cadigan  Australia 27 December 2010 14 June 2012 536 Sydney Sydney
Matt Napier  Australia 2 February 2013 28 June 2013 147 Perth Sydney
Steve Quirk  Australia 10 January 2014 17 March 2014 67 Wollongong, New South Wales Fremantle, Western Australia
Jimmy Harrington  Australia 19 May 2013 1 June 2014 378 Adelaide, South Australia Adelaide, South Australia
Brendon E.D.Alsop (and Jojo)  Australia 21 February 2013 3 January 2014 317 Geelong Cairns
Scott Loxley  Australia 2 November 2013 15 June 2015 601 Melbourne, Victoria Melbourne, Victoria
Gary Wilmot  Australia 16 May 2015 17 September 2015 124 Perth, Western Australia Brisbane, Queensland
Joe Edwards  Australia 1 July 2015 20 November 2015 143 Cairns, Queensland Melbourne, Victoria
Veronica Hegarty  Australia 28 March 2016 4 November 2016 221 Perth, Western Australia Sydney, New South Wales
John Olsen  Australia 31 March 2016 24 December 2016 269 Cape York Cape Leeuwin
Tracey Humphreys  Australia 19 May 2016 6 August 2017 lots of days Townsville, Queensland Broome Via Darwin
William Soulsby  Australia 19 August 2016 7 January 2015 142 Cairns, Queensland Melbourne, Victoria
Arjun Bhogal  United Kingdom 8 November 2016 3 May 2017 167 Perth, Western Australia Newcastle, New South Wales
Ove Rasmussen Kjaer  New Zealand 5 April 2017 20 July 2017 116 Port Augusta, South Australia Darwin, Northern Territory
Ashok Alexander  Australia 15 April 2017 27 September 2017 166 Darwin, Northern Territory Canberra, Australian Capital Territory
Tristan Harris  Australia 1 May 2017 31 Oct 2017 184 HMAS Stirling, Garden Island, W.A HMAS Creswell, Jervis Bay NSW
Terra Roam  Australia 22 February 2014 2 May 2018 4 years Newcastle, New South Wales Newcastle, New South Wales

‡ Kurumba did not exist upon Burke, Wills and King arriving. The site of the town however is widely accepted as the northern-most destination of the Victorian Exploring Expedition.

Robert Burke[edit]

Robert O'Hara Burke was an Irish soldier and police officer, who achieved fame as an Australian explorer. He was the leader of the ill-fated Burke and Wills expedition, which was the first expedition to cross Australia from south to north. The expedition left Melbourne on 20 August 1860 with a total of 19 men, 27 camels and 23 horses. Burke, along with William Wills, John King and Charley Gray, reached the mangroves on the estuary of the Flinders River near where the town of Normanton now stands, on 9 February 1861. Flooding rains and swamps meant they never saw open ocean. Upon returning, the expedition was weakened by starvation and exposure, and was hampered by the tropical monsoon downpours of the wet season. Burke died at a place now called Burke's Waterhole on Cooper Creek in South Australia. The exact date of Burke's death is uncertain, but has generally been accepted to be 28 June 1861.[2]

William Wills[edit]

William Wills was a member of the famous Victorian Exploring Expedition. He was originally appointed as third-in-command, surveyor, astronomical and meteorological observer of the expedition in July 1860 on a salary of £300 a year. The expedition left Melbourne on 20 August 1860 with a total of 19 men, 27 camels and 23 horses. They reached Menindee on 16 October 1860 where Landells resigned following an argument with Burke, where Wills was promoted to second-in-command. Burke, along with William Wills, John King and Charley Gray, reached the mangroves on the estuary of the Flinders River near where the town of Normanton now stands, on 9 February 1861. Flooding rains and swamps meant they never saw open ocean. Upon returning, the expedition was weakened by starvation and exposure, and was hampered by the tropical monsoon downpours of the wet season. Wills died alone at a place called Breerily Waterhole on Cooper Creek in South Australia while waiting for rescue. Burke died soon after. The exact date of their deaths is unknown, but has generally been accepted to be 28 June 1861.[3]

John King[edit]

John King was an Irish soldier who achieved fame as an Australian explorer. He was responsible for the welfare of the camels used during the Burke and Wills expedition who reached the Gulf of Carpentaria. King was the sole survivor of the four men of the expedition, and survived with the help of Aborigines until he was found on 15 September by Edwin Welch - the surveyor in Alfred William Howitt's Victorian Contingent Party. King returned to Melbourne and was hailed as a hero. King never fully recovered from the expedition, and died prematurely of pulmonary tuberculosis on 15 January 1872 aged 33.[4]

Aidan De Brune[edit]

Aidan De Brune was a pseudonym of Herbert Charles Cull, who was born in London in 1874. He married in 1907, but in 1910 he left his wife and infant son Lionel, arriving in Fremantle, Western Australia, in October 1910. On 24 November 1920 he commenced a walk from Fremantle to Sydney, arriving in Sydney on 21 February 1921. He later worked for the Sydney Daily Mail.[5]

One day I wandered into Mr. Gay's offices and announced that I proposed to walk around Australia—and would he pay for articles on the trip? Mr. Gay was blunt. First he told me exactly how many kinds of fools I was to think of such a trip, then came to an agreement with business-like promptitude. Within a few hours I had gathered together what I thought necessary for an 11,000 miles trip, and had left Sydney. Two and a half years later I came to Sydney again, having in the meantime visited nearly every port on the extensive coastline. More to the point, I had proved possible a trip quite a number of Sydney wise-heads had declared to be sheer suicide.

— Aidan De Brune, [6]

An ebook of Record Diary of a Walk Around Australia is available at Project Gutenberg Australia

Bob and Bill Mossel, Sue Thompson, Annabel Douglas-Hill and Sharka Dolak[edit]

This walk was undertaken to raise funds for the Royal Flying Doctor Service and partly followed in the steps of the Burke & Wills Victorian Exploring Expedition, camping at some of the Burke & Wills expedition's dig trees. It is the first documented crossing of the Australian continent entirely by foot and first by a woman. A feature-length movie Feet Across Australia was shown on national television and attracted paying audiences at many venues in Australia. 1973 was a very wet season and mud was a major problem on the Birdsville Track. Food was buried along the route in advance, otherwise all equipment was carried by the 5 team members with a small handcart. A camel from Arkaroola Sanctuary was briefly part of the expedition.[7] There was no support team accompanying the walkers.

Dave Kunst[edit]

Dave Kunst is the first person verified to have walked around the Earth. Kunst's trek began 20 June 1970 and ended 5 October 1974 (the dates in the table reflect his arrival and departure from Australia).[8][9] During their travels, the brothers collected donations to UNICEF. Unfortunately, John (Dave's brother who was also walking with him) was killed when bandits shot him in the mountains of Afghanistan in October 1972. Dave was also shot in the chest during the same attack, but survived by playing dead. After spending 4 months recovering from his injuries, Dave resumed his journey along with his brother Pete, from the spot where John was killed. As they continued their travels, Dave and Pete were denied access to the USSR, so they flew from India to Australia. Pete returned home during the Australia-leg of the trek, where Dave continued on alone, by this time on his 3rd mule. Unfortunately, the mule died and Dave was left hauling his wagon of supplies himself. He was on the verge of abandoning his supplies, when he fortuitously met Jenni Samuel, a schoolteacher from Perth. She helped pull his wagon with her car, while he walked alongside. Dave returned to Australia for a year after completing his journey. Jenni and Dave later married and are still together as of 2008.

Dennis Bartell[edit]

Denis Bartell became the first person to walk across the Simpson Desert unassisted in 1984, whilst walking across Australia from the Gulf of Carpentaria to Gulf St Vincent.[10] He followed the 'French Line' - a route taken by the CGG surveyor Roy Elkins 21 years prior who also completed the walk but with the assistance of a support crew.[11] In recognition of his achievement, he was named the Australian Geographic's Adventurer of the Year in 1995.[12]

Steven Newman[edit]

Listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the first person to walk around the world solo, Steve Newman crossed 20 countries and walked some 15,000 miles during his four-year journey.[13][14] For the Australian leg, Steven flew from Bali and commenced his walk in Darwin on 1 July 1985. He travelled south along "The Track" through Alice Springs, Coober Pedy, Adelaide, and on to Melbourne. He concluded in Melbourne on 20 June 1986, before proceeding onto Vancouver for his American leg of the journey.

Steven later published a book documenting his journey in 1989 called 'Worldwalk'. The handmade cart he used to cross the deserts was named 'Roo' and is currently on display at a museum in the USA. His backpack 'Clinger' and the tattered boots he wore across Australia were temporarily displayed in the Smithsonian after his record-setting solo walk around the world was completed. The 1989 Guinness Book of World Records has a large photo of Steve wearing his 'Clinger' and pulling the 'Roo' and in the Australian outback.

Roger Scott[edit]

Roger Scott departed from Darwin for Dover on 6 August 1988, raising funds for the Top End Life Education Centre and the NT Spastics Association.[15] He walked via Kununurra and Halls Creek, arriving at the Eyre Bird Observatory on the southern coast of South Australia on 22 September 1988 where he encountered Ffyona Campbell on her walk across Australia.[16] He then proceeded on to Adelaide, before catching a flight to Devonport and walking to Dover. He completed the walk in 109 days, and traversed the Great Sandy Desert, Gibson Desert, Great Victoria Desert, and Nullarbor Plain on his journey.[17][18]

Ffyona Campbell[edit]

Starting from John O'Groats on the northernmost coast of Scotland in 1983, then 16-year-old Ffyona Campbell set out to walk around the world. She departed from Sydney on 11 September 1988, and arrived in Fremantle on 14 December 1988 - a journey lasting 95 days.[19] She completed the journey with David Richard, who acted as her support crew and who waited for her every 10 miles.

Her entire journey around the world took a little over eleven years to complete. She completed 31,529 km and raised £120,000 for charity.[20]

Nobby Young[edit]

Through 1993-94, Nobby Young became the only person to walk around mainland Australia, since Aidan de Brune accomplished the feat in 1922-1924.[6] The 16,000-kilometre journey, which took exactly a year to complete, is listed in the Guinness Book of Records.[21] He covered a distance of 14,900 km, whilst raising funds for the 'Life Education Centre'.[22]

David Mason[edit]

In 1998, David Mason walked from Byron Bay to Dalby, where he picked up three camels that would carry his supplies. From there, he walked through the Simpson Desert to Uluru, then across the Gibson Desert to Steep Point.[23] He completed the walk in 236 days, whilst raising money for the Fred Hollows Foundation. In recognition of his achievement, he was named the Australian Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 1999.[12] David Mason wrote a book about the walk that was published in 2014 and titled "Walk Across Australia: The First Solo Crossing".

Andrew Harper[edit]

In 1999, Andrew Harper followed the Tropic of Capricorn from west to east accompanied by three camels to carry his supplies. The desert sections of his journey represented pure desert travel as he did not follow any roads or tracks enabling him to keep as true to the TOC as possible. This included traverses of the Little Sandy, Gibson and Simpson Deserts. The expedition was a fundraising walk for the Royal Flying Doctor Service and as recognition for his achievement, he was admitted as a Fellow to the Royal Geographical Society.

Polly Letofsky[edit]

On 1 August 1999, Polly Letofsky left her home in Colorado on a 5-year journey spanning 4 continents and 22 countries. She started her leg across Australia on 29 October 2000 from St. Kilda Pier on Port Phillip Bay in Melbourne, and concluded on 22 July 2001 after arriving in Port Douglas. On 30 July 2004 she concluded her journey having walked over 22,730 km (14,120 mi), having raised over $250,000 for breast cancer research, and having officially become the first woman to have walked around the world.[24][25]

Jon Muir[edit]

On 18 May 2001 Jon Muir walked across Australia with his dog, a Jack Russell Terrier named Seraphine, from Port Augusta to Burketown. It took him 128 days, spanning a distance of approximately 2,500 km.[26] Jon's walk is unique in that he remained self-sufficient for food and water, hauling, gathering or hunting all of his food for the walk. He filmed his journey and produced a documentary entitled Alone Across Australia. Jon has also successfully climbed Mount Everest, and walked to both the north and south poles.

Deborah De Williams[edit]

Deborah De Williams walked around Australia in 2003/2004. She aimed to break the record set by Nobby Young (who was also on her support team), the first person to walk around Australia back in 1993/1994. She broke the record on 23 September 2004, and raised a total of <TBA> for the Kids Help Line in the process. She is the first woman to walk completely around Australia.[27]

John Olsen[edit]

John Olsen has walked across Australia twice, between the northern and southern-most points, and the western and eastern-most points.

His first journey commenced in 2004. Olsen walked 5,622 kilometres (3,493 mi) unsupported from Cape York to Tasmania in 167 days, and raised a little over $10,000 for a charity working with children with cerebral palsy. On 18 June 2008, John Olsen undertook his second walk, walking from Steep Point, to Cape Byron. He travelled a distance of 4,752 kilometres (2,953 mi), raising $130,000 for the Australian Lions Children's Mobility Foundation (ALCMF) and the Australian Leukodystrophy Support Group Inc (ALDS).[28] He then walked home to Geelong after reaching Cape Byron. Both the ALCMF and ALDS help children with progressive degenerative brain disease, which gives rise to mobility problems. The progress of Olsen's second journey was broadcast by Ian McNamara’s ABC radio Australia All Over program on Sundays. Olsen completed the walk in 200 days, finishing on 3 January 2009.[29]

Olsen's accomplishment was recognised by Sensis when it depicted him on the cover of the Geelong and Colac Yellow and White Pages directories for 2010/2011[30]

Colin Ricketts[edit]

Colin Ricketts walked solo walk around Australia raising money for kids with cancer. He departed Adelaide on 4 January 2005, returning 15,430 km and 379 days later on 17 January 2006. He pushed a three-wheel baby jogger named 'Wilson' and followed National Highway 1 in an anti-clockwise direction.[31]

Jeff Johnson[edit]

On 5 April 2007, Jeff Johnson walked from Port Augusta to Kurumba (Qld) to raise money for the DeafBlind Association of NSW. Motivated by the then recent death of his deaf-blind niece, he raised approximately $5,700 for the charity towards the purchase of a bus for transport of wheelchair bound deaf and blind children.[32] He completed the walk in 151 days, finishing on 2 September 2007.[33]

Deanna Sorensen[edit]

Deanna Sorensen is a Canadian veterinary nurse and motivational speaker.[34] After leaving Perth and crossing the Nullarbor, she travelled south from Port Augusta to Adelaide, along the coast through Mount Gambier to Melbourne, then up the Princes Highway through Eden to Sydney. The total distance of this route, taken from road maps and routemarkers, is 4895 km; with an additional 170 km of additional distance on side-roads and excursions making her total journey a little over 5000 km. She completed her journey in 180 days.[35][36]

Michael Mitchell[edit]

Michael Mitchell left Cape York on 5 May 2008 on his 'Great Australian Cancer Bush Walk'.[37] He aimed to raise $1 million for cancer research, and was motivated to act because some friends and their siblings (Mick and Maree Egan and Michael's mother, Monica) were living with cancer.[38] He followed the National Bicentennial Trail and The Australian Alps Walking Track for a large portion of his journey.[39]

Michael was able to raise $50,000 for the Cancer Council. The walk was completed in the aftermath of the Black Saturday bushfires.[40] He finished on 3 May 2009 upon arriving at Wilsons Promontory, and was greeted by staff and student body representatives from the school where he works, CRC North Keilor.[41]

Gary Hause[edit]

Gary Hause departed from Cairns on 19 May 2008, and arrived in Torquay on 2 November 2008.[42] The leg across Australia was completed as part of his journey around the world on foot. A detailed account of his journey is available on his website.

Dave Leaning[edit]

Dave Leaning walked south to north leaving Port Augusta on 28 April 2009 and arriving in Karumba on 21 July. This followed the Englishman's feat of skiing the length of Norway. The effort was made to raise funds for the Halo Trust.[43]

Mike Pauly[edit]

Mike decided he would walk from his home in Fremantle to Federation Square in Melbourne via Coolgardie after being diagnosed with osteoarthritis in both knees as a result of being overweight, and reading of Deanna Sorenson's account of walking unsupported across the Nullarbor. He vowed to complete the walk before his 70th birthday, in a bid to raise funds and awareness for Arthritis WA.[44][45]

On 16 May 2009, at sixty-nine years old, Mike set off on his lone 3617 km journey walking across the Nullarbor.[44]

Dave Phoenix[edit]

In 2008, Dave Phoenix walked from Melbourne to Kurumba following the route taken by Burke and Wills in 1860-1. Dave is a postgraduate research student at James Cook University studying for a PhD in Australian exploration history, and is the President of The Burke & Wills Historical Society.[46]

Mark Gibbens[edit]

Mark Gibbens left Perth on 22 February 2009 and arrived at Civic Park in Sydney on Monday 18 May 2009.He walked solo for 5200 km in 86 days using his mate Colin Rickett's buggy named "Wilson". Mark undertook the walk to raise money for research into cancer, and as a tribute to a close friend and mentor who died of cancer in 2007.[47][48] Proceeds from Mark's walk were distributed through cancer research organisations in each state he has walked through, namely the Children's Leukaemia and Cancer Research Foundation in Western Australia, the McGuinness/McDermott Foundation in South Australia, the Victorian Prostate Research Consortium, and the Australian Cancer Research Foundation in New South Wales.[47]

Leigh Thomson-Mathews[edit]

Leigh set off from Perth on 8 March 2010 with his brother Sam.[49][50] Sydney was their original destination, but the two decided to complete their journey in Melbourne, arriving on 3 July 2010.[51][52]

Sam Thomson-Mathews[edit]

Sam set off from Perth on 8 March 2010 with his brother Leigh.[49][50] Sydney was their original destination, but the two decided to complete their journey in Melbourne, arriving on 3 July 2010.[51][52]

Mike Pauly[edit]

In 2011, then 71-year-old Mike Pauly walked from Melbourne to Perth to raise funds for Arthritis WA. This was Mike's second walk across Australia, having previously walked from Fremantle to Melbourne in 2009. Mike completed both journeys despite suffering from Osteoarthritis in both of his knee joints.[53][54][55]

Jeff Johnson[edit]

Jeff Johnson walked 4791 km in 2011, and raised $68,000 for the Newborn and paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS) in the process. This was his second walk across Australia, having recently walked from north to south in 2007.[56][57][58][59]

Jacob French[edit]

Jacob French walked across Australia in 2011-12. He completed the walk wearing the white 'Storm Trooper' armour from George Lucas' Star Wars films, and raised $88,523 for the Starlight Children's Foundation in the process.[60][61][62]

Andrew Cadigan[edit]

Andrew "Cad" Cadigan finished a solo walk from Sydney back to Sydney in June 2012. He walked unassisted via Tasmania, Melbourne, Adelaide, Albany, Perth, Broome, Darwin, Townsville, and Brisbane. Cadigan undertook the walk in honour of Chris Simpson, a friend who had died from complications related to myelodysplasia, and raised over $65,000 - $25,000 for The Cancer Council and $40,000 for the Leukemia Foundation. Tragically, shortly after completing the walk, whilst holidaying and recuperating in Thailand, Cadigan suffered head injuries in a motorcycle accident, and later died in hospital in Sydney, on 5 October 2012. A book, written by his author father Neil, about his walk and tragic death was released in 2014. The Leukemia Foundation has struck a research PHD into myelodysplasia, named in honour of Cadigan and Simpson, with a trust called Cad's Cause continuing to raise funds. The book is available through[63][64][65][66][67][68]

Matt Napier[edit]

On 2 February 2013 Matt Napier set off from Perth to walk to Sydney via Adelaide, Melbourne and Canberra to raise awareness of Global Poverty. Matt's walk was unique in that he bounced an AFL football the whole way to symbolise the important role sport plays in alleviating extreme poverty around the world. Matt went through 6 footballs on his trip and was assisted by his wife Wendy who was his support crew. They finished their 4,501 km journey in Sydney live on Channel Seven's Sunrise Program [1] on 28 June. The trip came on the back of Matt Cycling from Perth to Canberra (3908 km) the year before to also raise awareness about world poverty. More information about the walk can be found at

Steve Quirk[edit]

Steve Quirk departed Wollongong NSW on 10 January 2014, walking via Wagga Wagga NSW, Mildura VIC and Coolgardie WA, arriving at Fremantle WA on 17 March 2014. Steve walked for 67 days covering 3,925 km with Gary Jones as his support vehicle driver. Steve took on this walk to raise awareness and funds for the Cancer Council NSW [2] after losing his stepfather Max Dinte to cancer in 2013. More information about the walk can be found on Facebook [one step at a time for a cure].

Brendon E. D. Alsop[edit]

On 21 February 2013 Brendon E. D. Alsop set off, with his dog Jojo, from Geelong to walk around Australia on the Fatmans Great Aussie Trek. A personal odyssey to lose weight Brendon and Jojo walked unaided, pushing a pram, up the East Coast of Australia. With resources running out Brendon amended his destination to Cairns and completed his 4000 km trek when he dived into the Lagoon in Cairns on the morning of 3 January 2014. Losing 35 kg and raising $12000 for the Australian Cancer Research Foundation and the Andrew Love Cancer Centre in Geelong Brendon dedicated his trek to his father, John Alsop, Nanna, Mary Howard, Aunty Val Howard, Uncle Jack Calderazzo, and friends Richard Beechey, Tim Mahieu, Leny Klupacs and Dr Richard Williams all who lost their lives to cancer. The trek was followed proudly by his mother, Beth Alsop, who lost her fight with cancer only 34 days after Brendon completed his he trek.[69][70]

Jimmy Harrington[edit]

Jimmy Harrington met a young girl by the name of Emily Crook who was suffering from a PNET Brain tumour. Being inspired by her courage, Jimmy started to plan his 15,500 km walk around Australia to raise as much awareness for childhood cancer and brain tumours as possible. All the while raising money for the charity which Jimmy is now Ambassador for, the Brainchild Foundation. Harrington set off from Adelaide on 19 May 2014 at the age of 20. Leaving Adelaide and heading up to Port Augusta and then across the Nullabor. He walked around WA, through NT including Darwin, then made his way across to QLD and went down the east coast. Jimmy also included Tasmania in his travels. Jimmy arrived back in Adelaide 378 days after he left to be greeted by hundreds of people's including Mr Samuel Johnson who Jimmy got close to during his walk as Sam was unicycling at the same time. Jimmy managed to raise over $300,000 for the Brainchild Foundation. Later that year Jimmy was named the Pride of Australia's 2014 Young Leader of Australia and was voted People's Choice medalist as well. Since then the former Queensland based charity Brainchild has now expanded to Adelaide where Jimmy and his family now are on the committee.

Scott Loxley[edit]

On 2 November 2013, Scott left Melbourne and began walking solo around Australia covering every state and territory wearing a Star Wars Sandtrooper costume. Scott is a member of the 501st Legion, Terror Australis Garrison, (TAG), a worldwide Star Wars costuming group who has over 7000 members in 40 countries raising money for varying charities all around the world.

Scott Loxley officially crossed the finish line on Monday 15 June 2015 at the Monash Children's Hospital, after over 15,000 km of walking around Australia to raise funds which exceeded $110,000.

Gary Wilmot[edit]

Hearts Across Australia...

In 2011 Gary Wilmot AKA "No More Mr Fat Guy" was a self-confessed couch potato, a health and fitness disaster zone. The years that followed saw him transform into an avid runner enabling himself to complete 5k, 10k, half marathon and eventually marathon courses.

With his new found zest for living he decided he needed a bigger challenge, something to inspire others and visibly demonstrate that anyone can do anything they set their mind to. was born. With his affinity for parkrun a plan was hatched to run/walk between his home course at Canning River WA via Adelaide, Melbourne, Canberra & Sydney visiting other parkrun courses where practical and finish in South Bank QLD.

His aim to raise awareness and much needed funds for the Heart Foundation was a tremendous success although the unseen flow on implications of his journey have the potential to reach thousands. A special mention should go to his 2-man support crew of Ben Sutton & Ols Nicholls without whom the undertaking of such an arduous journey would not have been possible.

Gary departed Perth 16 May 2015 and arrived in Brisbane 17 September 2015 with a celebratory "free 5k run" taking place on 19 September.

Veronica Hegarty[edit]

Veronica departed from North Beach west of Perth, and concluded at Bondi Beach east of Sydney.

John Olsen[edit]

John walked diagonally across Australia to honour the memory of his late wife Vida, and to raise awareness and funds for leukodystrophy which claimed her life in 2014.

John departed from Cape York on 31 March 2016, and trekked diagonally across Australia through Alice Springs before finishing in Cape Leeuwin on Christmas Eve 2016.[71]

In excess of $40k in donations was raised for Leukodystrophy Australia.

Arjun Bhogal[edit]

Arjun's walk across Australia which began on 8 November 2016 was part of a larger walk across the world from the UK to Australia called Borderwalk. He travelled on foot from Perth, Western Australia, across the Nullarbor and the Golden highway to Newcastle, New South Wales. The walk across the world was raising funds for WaterAid. The walk was unsupported but he credits the Australian people and tourists he met along the way for their kindness and generosity. you can find out more about the walk at

Ove Rasmussen Kjaer[edit]

Ove Rasmussen Kjaer 66 years old Kiwi/Dane, became inspired by his love for the bush, other long distance walkers, and intrepid travels in general.

It became his goal to walk across Australia following the Stuart Highway from Port Augusta to Darwin. The so-called Explorers Highway. The walk was self supported. All personal items, water, food, and camping gear was transported in a purpose build pushcart.

Amongst other things, he's also crossed Africa on a motorcycle from Zambia via West Africa and the Sahara back to Denmark in 1975 and circumnavigated Australia on a motorcycle in 1996/97.

Ashok Alexander[edit]

Ashok Alexander who is an IT professional & businessman by trade, decided to walk from Darwin to Canberra as part of his personal mission. He faced many challenges in business and had to eventually shutdown his business. It was first of such walks for him to understand and explore physically and mentally. Australia as he claims is a wonderful place with enormous landscape giving many challenges and high level of fulfillment in the walk. He walked pulling a trolley and had been self-sufficient with food, water and shelter.

He took about five and a half month to cover a distance of 4,032 km made of 5,771,768 steps to finally reached Canberra Parliament House on 27 September 2017. To coincide with his older son's birthday, who also walked with him the initial three days.[72]

Tristan Harris[edit]

Tristan "Banger" Harris is an ex sailor serving over 27 years in the Royal Australian Navy as a Paramedic.[73] He walked across Australia from Ocean to Ocean in 2017 raising funds for Legacy Australia.[74] Departing on 1 May 2017 from HMAS Stirling, Garden Island WA completing the journey on 31 October 2017 at HMAS Creswell, Jervis Bay NSW he walked solo, carrying all food, water and shelter in a child walker. The walk took 184 days, walking 4,358 km and raised over $15,500 for Legacy along the way.[75]

Terra Roam[edit]

On the 2nd May 2018 Terra Roam became the first woman to walk 17,200km solo unsupported around Australia. [76] It took 4 years in sections divided between seasons and injuries. The first section was a 1,250km "warm up" lap around Tasmania carrying a backpack. The following 3 sections Terra pushed a custom built barrow she designed and named Dory, with a carrying capacity of 200L for the outback. When Terra reached the east coast she switched back to a backpack for the remaining distance to get away from roads and take the scenic tracks and paths through national parks, state forests and beaches. Not all her breaks were planned, when a truck driver tried running her down from behind on the Barkley Highway she took time off to recover from the trauma and adjusted her route to leave that region. When injuries to her feet and pelvic imbalance were beginning to cause blackouts she took a 6-month break for rehab and after a fall broke and dislocated her ankle only 900km from completing her lap she was forced to take another 6 months off. Longest walking day was 67km, outback average was 45km/day, east coast average was 20km/day. 20 pairs of shoes including 5 pairs of thongs for 2,500km because she couldn't afford shoes. Hottest day was 45'C, coldest night was -5'C, most water drunk in one day was 10L. Terra walked through 2 cyclones, 2 floods, an earthquake, fires, fly plague, heatwaves and a blizzard, faced death threats from a stalker, fought off a wild dog attack and survived attempted murder.[77] [78] [79]


  • Ffyona Campbell (1999). Feet of Clay: On foot through Australia. Firebird Distributing. ISBN 978-0-7528-2603-5.
  • Jon Muir (2001). Alone Across Australia (Film). Australia.
  • Deanna Sorenson (2003). Going the Distance: A walk across Australia. The Radiant Coaching Company. ISBN 978-0-9750021-0-0.
  • David Mason (2014). Walk Across Australia: The First Solo Crossing. Rosenberg Press ISBN 9781922013996

Further reading[edit]

  • David Kunst & Clinton Trowbridge (1979). The Man Who Walked Around the World. William Morrow. ISBN 978-0-688-03437-5.
  • Steven M. Newman (1989). Worldwalk. William Morrow & Co. ISBN 978-0-688-07762-4.
  • Ffyona Campbell (1991). The Whole Story - A walk around the world. William Heinemann Australia. ISBN 978-0-85561-424-9.
  • Jon Muir (2003). Alone Across Australia: One Man's Trek Across a Continent. Penguin Books Australia. ISBN 978-0143001263.
  • Jeff Johnson (2009). Gulf To Gulf - The Long Walk. (self-published). ISBN 978-0-646-50878-8.
  • Polly Letofsky (2011). 3mph: The Adventures of One Woman's Walk Around the World. GlobalWalk, Inc. ISBN 978-0-9832085-0-1.
  • Megan Norris (2012). Running Pink. The Five Mile Press. ISBN 978-1-74300-689-4.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Deborah DeWilliam's Town Itinerary" (PDF). 16 June 2004. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 February 2011. Retrieved 4 April 2011.
  2. ^ "Robert O'Hara Burke (1820/1 - 1861)". Retrieved 2011-04-04.
  3. ^ "William John Wills (1834-1861)". Retrieved 2011-04-04.
  4. ^ "John King (1838-1872)". Retrieved 2011-04-04.
  5. ^ The Amateur Tramp by Colin Choat, ISBN 9780646989372, Project Gutenberg Australia, 2018
  6. ^ a b de Brune, Aidan (1924), Record diary of a walk around Australia, Aidan de Brune, retrieved 20 March 2018
  7. ^ Murphy, Catherine (22 August 2013). "Feet across Australia: forty years on from a four-month trek". The Islander. Retrieved 26 February 2018.
  8. ^ "World Walk Travel Adventure". Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  9. ^ "This Day in History: American circumnavigates the globe on foot". Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  10. ^ "Desert Walker: Gulf to Gulf". National Film and Sound Archive. Retrieved 4 July 2011.
  11. ^ "Birdsville or Bust". Simpson Desert French Line. Retrieved 4 July 2011.
  12. ^ a b "AG Society Adventure Awards". 5 July 2010. Retrieved 2011-07-03.
  13. ^ "Seriously Slow: 6 Travelers Who Walked Around The World". 5 March 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  14. ^ "The World Walker". Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  15. ^ "Scott ready to trek". NT News. 4 August 1988. p. 3.
  16. ^ Campbell 1991, p. 202.
  17. ^ "Walker halfway to Dover". NT News. 8 October 1988. p. 4.
  18. ^ "Scott's unforgettable experience". NT News. 2 December 1988. p. 14.
  19. ^ Campbell 1991, pp. 5–271.
  20. ^ "Gone, and (almost) completely forgotten". 22 July 2002. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  21. ^ "Nobby Young Wants to Walk Around the World". 17 January 1997. Retrieved 2011-04-04.
  22. ^ "Nobby Young - Walk Around Australia in 1993". 14 July 2009. Retrieved 2018-07-06.
  23. ^ "Archives: Getting our desert legs once more". 29 May 2011. Retrieved 2011-07-03.
  24. ^ "Polly's GlobalWalk". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  25. ^ "Start Taking the Little Steps to Your Big Feat..." Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  26. ^ "Alone Across Australia: A Story About A Man Who Takes His Dog For A Walk". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  27. ^ "Walk around Australia: A journey for kids". Archived from the original on 21 March 2012. Retrieved 21 March 2011.
  28. ^ Forbes, Richard (27 November 2008). "John Olsen's last leg of epic Aussie charity walk". The Northern Star. Retrieved 2011-03-27.
  29. ^ "Lions Club Australia Monthly Newsletter - Volume 32, Issue 8, p5-6" (PDF). Lions Club Australia. 1 March 2009. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  30. ^ "Courageous Australian John Olsen to feature on Geelong's Yellow Pages and White Pages". Telstra Corporation Ltd. 10 March 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  31. ^ "Start a New Life". n.d. Retrieved 2011-04-04.
  32. ^ "Donations for the DeafBlind Association (NSW) Inc". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  33. ^ "Jeff Johnson". 12 June 2009. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  34. ^ "Radiant Coaching Company". Retrieved 8 June 2011.
  35. ^ "A walk across Australia". Retrieved 2011-08-05.
  36. ^ Sorensen, Deanna (2003). Going the Distance: A walk across Australia. The Radiant Coaching Company. ISBN 978-0-9750021-0-0.
  37. ^ "Cancer Council supporter walks more than 6,000km to raise funds". 23 January 2009. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  38. ^ "Michael Mitchell a bushwalker for all seasons". 27 June 2008. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  39. ^ "The great Cancer walk". 29 October 2008. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  40. ^ "". 27 July 2009. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  41. ^ "Walk is on its last legs". 12 May 2009. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  42. ^ "Australia 2008". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  43. ^ "Ex-marine completes outback walk". BBC News. 22 July 2009. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  44. ^ a b "thearthritisway". Retrieved 2011-08-05.
  45. ^ "Everyday Hero: Mike Pauly". Retrieved 2011-08-05.
  46. ^ "Burk and Wills Walk". Retrieved 2011-04-04.
  47. ^ a b "Making His Mark For Prostate Cancer Research". 8 May 2009. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  48. ^ "The Journey". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  49. ^ a b "Cross-country run". 8 June 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  50. ^ a b "Brothers wandering across Australia". 6 May 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  51. ^ a b "Perth to Sydney 2010". 3 July 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  52. ^ a b "Walker discovers rhythm of road over 3500km". The Age. Melbourne. 29 June 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  53. ^ Willoughby, Jess. "Mike's amazing Nullarbor hike". Perth Now. Perth. Retrieved 2011-08-05.
  54. ^ "Mike Pauly arrives in Fremantle". 4 July 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-05.
  55. ^ "Mike's hike". Perth Now. Retrieved 30 March 2012.
  56. ^ "NETS". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  57. ^ "". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  58. ^ "Jeff's walk for NETS". 24 August 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  59. ^ "Jeff's walk". Retrieved 30 March 2012.
  60. ^ "". Retrieved 2011-08-29.
  61. ^ "Welcome to Troopertrek 2011". Retrieved 2011-08-29.
  62. ^ "Stormtrooper Jacob French completes 5,000km charity trek across Australia". 12 April 2012. Retrieved 2012-04-12.
  63. ^ "". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  64. ^ "Cancer Council Fundraising - Oz on foot". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
  65. ^ "Lone wanderer walks for his mate 'Simmo'" (PDF). 27 April 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-04. |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  66. ^ "Across Australia on foot". 12 May 2001. Retrieved 2011-05-15.
  67. ^ Wallace, Morgaine. "Andrew Cadigan in Port Pirie". Southern Cross News. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  68. ^ "Oz on foot", SportSites. Retrieved 2012-10-13.
  69. ^
  70. ^
  71. ^ Lynch, Jacquie. "Rare brain disease that killed partner spurs man onto 5,000km hike across country". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 3 January 2017.
  72. ^
  73. ^
  74. ^
  75. ^
  76. ^
  77. ^
  78. ^
  79. ^

* Steve Newman, Polly Letofsky and David Mason personally contributed information about their respective journeys in the creation of this article. Their contribution is received with thanks from the author of this article.