What wilderness sports/adventures are you into?
Kayaking, hiking, trailrunning, bouldering, bush survival, hunting and trapping, wilderness navigation.
Other activities /Hobbies?
Martial arts, writing, spoken word poetry, reading, exploring and being outside with my family.
What do you do for a living?
Marketing Manager for a fashion magazine. Finishing my Law degree this year.
Tell us about you? Give us a potted history of your journey so far?
I grew up in a maritime family, in the bush with a giant lake on one side and the ocean on the other. I was strong willed from birth and was hard work for my parents. To their credit (or mine!) they never tamed me and I’m grateful my spirit and strength of mind were never driven out of me through childhood and adolescence.
My father is a martial arts expert and I started training from the age of 3. Living in a national park I was running in the scrub (long before I even knew trail running was a thing!) and learning about the bush as soon as I could walk. When we weren’t in the bush we were on the water fishing and surfing. I’m a pisces and of viking descent so the water has always spoken to me and called me back if I’ve strayed too far.
List your Adventures and achievements so far?
Climbing Table Mountain in South Africa, diving with great white sharks in shark alley, hiking Mt Warning in northern NSW, the Ben Lomond Trail in NZ, a 30km trail race recently, but these are all pretty small pursuits.
The Mighty Clarence will be my first solo unsupported expedition and without realising when I started working toward it, it’s also going to be a record attempt.
How long have you been training at Joe's Basecamp?
About 7 months
whats your favorite training?
Wall and rope climbs, running. I recently did a session with Joe of purely 500 step ups with a 10kg backpack on. I loved it!
Whats the worst thing Joe and his crew make you do?
Nothing. Its all easy and very temperate with no creepy crawlies or weather to contend with compared to what we do when we’re training outdoors! The view isn’t quite as nice but Joe mercifully has no mirrors installed so at least we don’t have to look at ourselves!
What does a training day look like for you?
I’m up at 430am every day and am either training with Joe working on strength and conditioning or on the water kayaking. 3 times per week I run at night to destress (I find it entirely meditative) and to stay light.
Every day I stretch and do a combination of cold water immersion and breathing techniques to keep my body strong. On the weekends I get out in the bush and test my navigation and survival skills. From next month I am going to add in 2 long bush hikes per week with a 20kg pack to build my strength and endurance.
For my expedition I will be hiking with a 13kg plastic folding kayak and some small provisions so I need to be strong enough to handle the weight in the varying conditions with a limited food and water supply.
If you could be stuck on a mountain or in a tent with anybody who would it be and why?
Mike Horn. Not only is he arguably the greatest explorer alive on the planet today but he happens to be a great friend and mentor.
What are your strengths?
I say yes to everything.
What are your weaknesses?
I say yes to everything.
Tell us a secret?
I saved my brothers life when I was 5 and I remember every nanosecond of it. He was going to be run over by a car and I saw it happen before it happened so I moved him out of the way and the car ran me over. He didn't have a mark on him and I was in hospital for 2 months with very serious injuries.
After my own little family, it’s the thing I am quietly most proud of. I would die for my loved ones. I would also live for them. This is the ferocity of spirit that drives me and will guide me home when I set out on my expedition.Another secret? The very first time I went in a kayak I had 50+ sharks surround me!!
What is the key to happiness?
Perception. We always have the choice to be happy right where we are.
What are you reading?
Women Who Run With The Wolves - Clarissa Pinkola Estes
What do you watch?
TED Talks and documentaries on various expeditions and people I admire. Other than that I hate screens. I only look at them when I have to.
What are you listening to?
I listen to music from the moment I wake up and from the moment I go to sleep. I always have, and to absolutely every genre depending on the time of day and the activity involved (except country...cant quite get into country music and I prefer jazz to classical, but other than that its AltJ, Disclosure, Jungle Brothers, The Internet, Banks, and when I need to get really psyched its still the Foo Fighters).
What is the one thing that you always take on an adventure/expedition/trip?
For this trip I will wear a necklace with the gold and ruby cross my father designed and made for me when I turned 18 to keep me safe as I left home and stepped out into the world, a black pearl my husband gave me, and a large tiger shark tooth caught from the Clarence itself, the river I will be navigating.
What is the one piece of advice you would give any would be adventurer?
There is nothing you can’t do but you must be prepared. It is the difference between courage and success and stupidity and failure. Dream as big as you like but prepare, research, work hard, risk manage, work harder. Go. Achieve. Come home. Dream again!
What does living a life of adventure mean to you?
Always walking beyond the comfort zone and never living the same day twice. We are born dreamers. Living a life of adventure means never growing out of it.
What next? What are your next goals?
I’m currently training for a solo unsupported expedition to the source of the Clarence River in northern NSW before kayaking the 400 odd km to the open ocean. After that? Well…I haven't said it aloud (because first things first!)...but deep in my bones there is a soft whisper...the 1126km Sepik River in Papua New Guinea…