Having been back for a few days, and having the opportunity to reflect on our achievements of the past 10 or so days I can genuinely say I could never imagined actually doing the the trail let alone completing it. I still cannot believe what I have just done and am so grateful for the experience and am also equally grateful for being able to share it with my new 12 lifelong friends.
From the very outset of getting the show on the road with respect to gear purchasing, flight details and training and assessing the physical strengths of the group – you cared from the outset to ensure the whole experience was a enjoyable one for not only me but for the group.
You made what was at times a physically trying and emotional experience into an uplifting and enjoyable experience. Your intimate knowledge of Papuan customs and procedures only enhanced both mine and the groups experience. You kept repeating ” expect the unexpected” and I can now understand why. Nothing is what it seems in Papua New Guinea and our environment changed rapidly, whether it was the unpredictable weather patterns or falling a day or so behind due to the weather, you took it all in your stride and moved onto the plan b,c, and d.
Unlike alot of comparative trekking companies who take away groups of up to a 120, by you capping group sizes to 20 ( and in our case 13 ) really made our team a team. We were all in it together and having a group so personal in size made us all work and live together as one tuned unit.
Wayne, you made the group “click” with your easy going attitude and put everyone in the group at ease with the conditions, there at times physical state and were often the counselor for the emotional roller coaster we were all on. Your local knowledge on Wartime history relating to battles, artifacts was also great in enhancing the overall feel of the trip and just added to the already high level of respect for the fallen and the sacrifices made on the track.
Our trip was highlighted by the moving Dawn Service at Isurava on Anzac Day and was a great time to reflect on the sacrifices our forefathers made for our freedoms of today. Then of course we commenced our final 7 hours of walking to Kokoda to finish.
Having the opportunity to visit the village of Buna was also a highlight.
Being able to float in the warm waters of the Coral Sea and reflect on our achievements as a group was fantastic. This trip to Buna also gave us the opportunity to meet our Carriers families and friends. It was particularly evident as to the level of respect you have ( and now we have ) for the national carriers. What magnificent human beings they are, so caring and prepared to put their own safety second to that of ours. Always encouraging and caring to the very end. Absolutely fantastic !
Once again Wayne, thank you for making my Kokoda experience one that will be with me the rest of my life. i would have no hesitation in recommending Getaway Trekking for anyone or group considering embarking on the spiritual journey of the Kokoda Trail.
Kindest regards,Scotty Wendt,
Words can not really describe the time I had in PNG walking the Kokoda trail with you and all the team. I can not thank you enough for what was one of the most memorable weeks of my life. I am so proud to call myself an Australian and this experience is life changing for me. Thank you for the assistance in training and preparation so that I could actually enjoy the time walking.
Again thanks for everything and I will be recommending all that if you want to walk Kokoda see Getaway!
Warmest regards,Craig Schwerdt, General Manager / Sales & Marketing Stafford Group Pty Ltd
“What an experience”
Physically and mentally demanding, and equally as satisfying. A personal highlight for me was Kevin’s thorough knowledge of the war history and the significance of certain areas i.e. battle fields etc. That made the trek a living history lesson.
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed the entire experience (even the food and accommodation – but not the toilets).
We had a fantastic group, and the small size (16) allowed us to walk together as a group which helped create a great support base – for those times when it was needed (and there were plenty of those.) The size of the group also made it a lot easier to get to know each other and that helped pass the time, and added to the total experience.
Kevin’s patience, experience and strong leadership provided a level of comfort that is hard to find in remote, hostile environments.
Thanks again for a wonderful experience
Regards,Tony Kenna, National Client Service Director
Not long after meeting Kevin I found myself on board to hike the ‘gruelling’ Kokoda Track which, although I didn’t know it yet, would end up having a significant impact on my life.
We commenced our training to prepare for the upcoming hike in June. I was a bit hesitant to begin with about being able to reach a high level of fitness in such a short period of time and with no real hiking experience behind me. Kevin encouraged me every step of the way through a tough training regime. He gave me the motivation and determination needed to get through the trip.
The trip far outweighed my expectations. I was supported and educated by Kevin the whole way along the Track. With no real prior knowledge of the 1942 campaign, I now have a new found respect for what our soldiers must have gone through. I have become very passionate about Kokoda and used my experience to educate others.
Hiking the Track was an experience of a lifetime and by far my greatest achievement. It has been a life changing experience in so many ways. I now have the motivation to achieve anything I want to in life and quite often remind myself that ‘If I can do Kokoda, I can do anything’.
Now at the age of 22 I am a member of the Victoria Police Force, an outdoor leader with an adventure company, a proud house owner and a much more confident volunteer fire-fighter.
Kev, thanks mate! You really have had a huge impact on my life!
For a life changing experience I would recommend Kevin, Wayne & Getaway Trekking to anyone!Sarah McDonald , Constable 35084 Nunawading Police Station