There are many places I call favourites and the Mid North Coast of New South Wales is one of those places. I revisit a fair few of the national parks and communities through here and often walk alone for days along long stretches of this coastline just for the fun of it, because I like it and it makes me feel good.
Some places have official walks, usually these are day walks, but there is no reason you cannot simply connect the beaches, tracks and roads to make your own multi-day walk. It is possible for most of the east coast to walk without using main roads.
Considering the population of the east coast of Australia it is surprising how accessible we are to solitude. I mean real solitude, nobody else in sight, no buildings or vehicles for hours, sometimes days. Just Nature and 1 human passing through. It makes for the best quality walking meditation and mindfulness.
However, this is not the case for every beautiful beach and bushland, I share my admiration with others who also seek the same. I’m cool with that so long as they respect Nature and do the right thing.
Unfortunately, with the increased popularity of certain places like the 4WD beaches between Crescent Head and Port Macquarie I am seeing an alarming increase in environmental damage, wildlife killed by 4WDs and unbelievable quantities of rubbish dumped on the beach, attempts to bury it, glass bottles and cans tossed out windows, bait bags, fishing line, buckets, not to mention all the other flotsam and jetsam washed up in storms from trawlers.
I picked up as much as I could but the rubbish on most beaches could fill a truck and I was already weighed down with my pack. There were days I carried bags and buckets of rubbish bigger and much heavier than the pack on my back. By the time I finished walking in Newcastle it reached a point where I wished never to set foot on another beach for a long time so I could forget just how disrespectful and irresponsible humans are.
It’s everywhere now, our litter problem is critical. Even deep in the coastal and alpine wilderness, kilometers off the track, I am finding rubbish. This is something we ALL need to take responsibility for, even if you do the right thing, we need to do more, even if it is not your rubbish, pick it up.
“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not” The Lorax by Dr Suess