Tourism Victoria has today launched their latest digital project aimed at detailing the state’s network of trails, Great Trails Victoria.
As a resource, Great Trails Victoria aspires to provide visitors all the information they could need to plan an off-road adventure, whether they plan to travel by bike or on foot. As such, it includes details like interactive maps, GPS data files, journey guides, itineraries and directories for equipment hire, transport, restaurants and accommodation.
Like us, you’re probably wishing that such a resource existed for the entirety of Australia. Well, until it does, we’ve put together a list of ten websites and blogs that together amount to a comprehensive knowledge base. You may be aware of many of them already, but we’re confident there’ll be at least a few you haven’t come across before.
- Bushwalking Australia – Aiming to represent the interests of bushwalkers across the country, Bushwalking Australia is among the better known community hubs, bringing together state-level groups and individuals with a shared passion for the outdoors.
- Bushwalk.com – Or Bushwalk Australia is perhaps best described as the forum-based sibling of Bushwalking Australia. While the two sites are not officially related in any way, the community are bound to find both equally useful, albeit for completely different reasons. In particular, check out the cracking images that are regularly uploaded.
- Australia’s Virtual Herbarium – An important source of knowledge for any adventurer, this digital herbarium can help even the beginner botanist sort the Leptospermums from the lemon myrtles.
- Geoscience Australia – One for the mapping geeks, Geoscience Australia provides reams of downloads and content of maps and related content, including GIS data for those interested in diving deep into the landscape from the comfort of their own homes.
- Australia Museum – Anyone could get lost in the Australia Museum website right from the homepage, but before you do be sure to check out the Dangerous Australians section, which specialises on providing details on all the harmful creatures our country can throw at you.
- Bushwalking Blog – Blending his passions for both the digital and outdoor spheres, Neil Fahey has brought together a great collection of content. Covering gear, destinations and photography, this blog is a prime example of how personal dedication and an active community can take on a life of their own online.
- David Noble’s Blog – A veteran canyoner, Dave Noble provides wisdom and hard-earned experience in spades via his personal blog, which includes Noble’s own photography and prose in abundance.
- The Fat Canyoners Club – Here’s a community group that doesn’t take things too seriously! Fat Canyoners Club provides an often tongue-in-cheek perspective on all things canyoning, bushwalking, paddling and more.
- Wildsight – Run by brothers and regular Wild contributors Alistair and Bruce Paton, this website is a tribute to the pair’s love of wilderness photography and features content that will come as a welcome delight for anyone interested in either the bush or capturing it on film.
- Hiking Fiasco – The man behind the fiasco may not give away many identifying details in his ‘About Me’ page, but this blog provides plenty of insights into the ups and downs that go hand-in-hand with outdoor adventures. Information provided is factual but usually includes plenty of mirth bubbling away beneath the surface.
So there it is is: our pick of 10 sites that the modern adventurer should find useful. Of course, they’re not the only 10 and we hope to feature more of our favourites in the near future.
UPDATE: Several readers have already pointed out that we’ve left off key canoe and kayak-based sites. This is an oversight and we’ll work hard to put together a round up for paddlers in the near future. If you have a suggestion for another blog or website, send us some mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.