BATHURST Greyhound Racing Club manager Jason Lyne is a month into four months of training for the trip of a lifetime: a trek along Papua New Guinea’s Kokoda Track.
Mr Lyne and a group of mates from Orange will be making the trip in April and have been preparing by hiking daily in the morning and at night.
“We’ve still got a lot of work to do, but it’s a lot better than a month ago,” Mr Lyne said.
“We’re going out four or five days a week, up Mount Canobolas, Clifton Grove and the Bridle Track.
“A few of us make it to each one and there’s someone going every day you can join up with.”
He said the Kokoda Track had always been on his bucket list, and doing it with mates would be a treat.
“We’re all friends through the [Orange] Eight Day Games, so we started talking and it evolved.
“Someone said ‘oh, I’m going to do Kokoda’ and someone else said ‘I’ll do it with you’ and it went from there.
“It’s been a great journey so far and we’ve got plenty more training to go. We’ve all started to get to know each other even more.
“To be over there, we won’t experience what they did, but we’ll walk the tracks they did in the ‘40s and to come back will be phenomenal.”
My Lyne said sweating it out on recent 40-degree days hadn’t just been good for the mind.
“I’ve lost a bit of weight, which is good,” he said.
“We want to get fit so we can go a bit further and see those waterfalls or do that little bit extra.”
We’re going out four or five days a week, up Mount Canobolas, Clifton Grove and the Bridle Track.
The group’s walk will begin on April 20, meaning their rest day in the middle of the nine-day trek will be Anzac Day, which Mr Lyne’s fellow trekker Craig Harvey said was a special connection for many of the group.
“My grandfather served over there and I know Jason’s family served in the war. Most of us have had family over there and it’s such a big part of our history,” Mr Harvey said.
“We all went down and did the dawn service last year and went back and watched some Kokoda documentaries together, so it’s been a 12-month process.”
He and Mr Lyne said they were trying to enjoy the training in the lead-up to the trip because “the nine days will just fly by”.