Kokoda Solo?

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Kokoda Solo?

Postby 11640 » Fri 29 Mar, 2013 7:45 am

Hi, I was wondering what your thoughts were on whether it was possible/advisable to do the Kokoda Track in PNG solo in September 2013. (before rainy season and after tax refund)

I am assuming the track is easy to follow considering it is a well worn path.

Assuming you had your water purification tablets, mosquito nets, malaria tablets, general antibiotics, insect repellent, full Travel insurance, and along with all the normal gear one would take such as food/tent/bag/mat/stove and dry clothes for camp/minimal clothes for walking etc... is it done?

Is it the norm to want to do it solo? Or is it just too impractical (I can't see why though)

Are there gas canisters available there or would I need another type of stove such as a metho burner, or can I just take a couple of gas canisters with me on the plane?

Are freeze-dried pre packaged food (Backcountry) allowed to be taken into Papua New Guinea (they say no fruit/vegetables but do they mean the pre packaged dried stuff as well)?

I would imagine that carrying a 20+ kilo pack up and down those mountains will be very taxing on the body, but certainly not unimaginable. I would not want to do it if I only had to carry 5 kilos, that would not seem as much of an achievement. Also going in a group of others is not my thing. I like doing my own thing.

I searched the forum but could not find much recent advice about the Kokoda Track, so I thought I would ask.
Thankyou in advance for any replies.
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Re: Kokoda Solo?

Postby Lizzy » Fri 29 Mar, 2013 8:28 pm

Definitely NO to the gas canisters on the plane. The rest I'm not sure but think you may have to be part of a group??
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Re: Kokoda Solo?

Postby Lindsay » Sat 30 Mar, 2013 9:29 pm

Solo is NOT an option for the Kokoda track. Apart from the natural hazards, there has been a lot of unrest amongst the natives recently over payments to the local villagers and political and cultural issues. There is an extortion racket running and it isn't safe for anyone not in a group that has arranged the right 'permissions'. Without wanting to sound overly dramatic, you would have an excellent chance of being relieved of all your posessions and possibly serious injury or even death.
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Re: Kokoda Solo?

Postby wayno » Sun 31 Mar, 2013 5:42 am

I've read similar
i watched a doco, with charlie borman riding a motorbike through PNG, he was with a guided group. at one point the locals blocked the road and demanded money to let them through there was a stand off for a while until the guide negotiated to let them through, can't remember if they were armed. think they had sticks or slashers, at another point they came across angry locals facing off at night, totally drunk and pretty angry.
from the land of the long white clouds...
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Re: Kokoda Solo?

Postby PTCB » Wed 03 Apr, 2013 9:04 am

Having done the Kokoda Track I definitely agree with Lindsay. But I would also add that the Kokoda Track goes in that many directions that without local knowledge getting lost forever is a very real possibility. The jungle is so thick you could be ten meters of it and never find it again. It is also possible that you may injure yourself quite badly and without help your stuffed! The locals use the track all the time and security in places is very important. We were constantly told to stay together and not to leave anything outside your tent as it may not be there in the morning. Its a very hard walk with no boots!
Groups are only allowed to stop in certain places and permission to do so must be granted. I stayed with one of the men who organises access through the land for one of the companies and found out just how difficult it was.
If you want to do the walk do your research and go with a reputable company, it does cost but that is what you pay for. The track is a serious undertaking in a very undeveloped country a very long way from help if you need it.
There is NOTHING ANYWHERE so every thing must be carried.
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Re: Kokoda Solo?

Postby Billy » Mon 22 Apr, 2013 5:22 pm

Hi, My husband wanted to do what you mentioned and do his own thing, but also found that wasn't possible. He has since started his own company taking treks across the track. The ruling by the Kokoda Track Authority is that you must have a guide take you over the track. The company I'm associated with is Discover Kokoda, and they are establishing a very basic package to cater for people like you that just want to walk over the track with a local guide. Hope this helps!
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