Brewarrina News September 2020 | Page 8

NEWS KAYAKING FROM BREWARRINA TO BOURKE Welcome to Mike and Derek! Two men from Canberra who are putting kayaks in the river this morning, just past the ochre beds. They’ll be kayaking to Bourke; a river distance of 205kms. Mike has written a book, Murray Darling Journeys, which he co-authored with his daughter Angela. It’s a book we’ve stocked in the VIC for a while about the history of rowing and paddling adventures on the Murray Darling between the years of 1817 and 2016. His own adventures obviously continue. The guys are going to take six to seven days to complete their journey, camping on the side of the river at night time and sitting around the campfire, experiencing a very simple life. Domestic tasks reign, life is stripped back to the necessities and it provides an opportunity to reflect on what is important in life, says Derek. A lot of your time is spent getting your routine sorted out, says Mike. Focussing on basic needs such as food, setting up camp, allowing time to enjoy the late afternoon sunset. The friends are blessed to have good friend Kevin with them, the driver, who has been a part of these adventures before. You have to make camp at 4pm during winter, he says, and you tend to get up much earlier and go to sleep much earlier. And it’s always a nice surprise when you discover you’ve got phone coverage and can send some pics or enjoy a conversation with a loved one. Derek said the opposite—he quite enjoys the quiet. Mike has paddled many of the Murray and Murrumbidgee rivers over the last 25 years. It’s an ongoing joy and sense of achievement and grounding, he says. Many of these trips he has completed alone. I’ve come to really appreciate journeying alone, he tells me. It was in 2018, I was on the Edward River at Deniliquin when I finally realised how much I enjoyed my own company. We tend to worry too much about things, he says, turning philosophical, but if you actually do them, you realise how unwarranted that anxiety was. As long as you’re planned and organised, he goes on to explain, everything is really fine. I did once hear someone say that action can be an antidote to anxiety. :), Go Guys! By the time this goes to print you’ll have completed your trip. We’re looking forward to hearing about the next one. PAGE 8 Story sourced by Leah Grant BREWARRINA NEWS