CQ grandmother's 1000km solo walk for cancer
FOR 45 days, Clermont grandmother Colleen Nicholas will pitch a one-man tent and walk over 1000kms alone.
Colleen will lace up her hiking boots and take the renowned Bibbulmun Track from Perth to Albany to raise money for Cancer Council Australia.
Having already accomplished the pilgrim's Camino, The Way of St James walk in Spain last year, she wanted to do this one for a worthy cause.
"I've had family affected by cancer and rural areas have unique challenges when receiving treatment for all forms of cancer,” the grandmother of five said.
"That is where the support of Cancer Council steps in.
"My family, particularly my dad used their support services, so I wanted to give back.”
In preparation for the immense trek, the 60-year-old will get up at the crack of dawn to train. She will be entirely self-sufficient for the entire walk, she will carry all her supplies in a backpack.
"My backpack contains all the items I'll need for the trek, including food, water, warm and wet clothing, a small stove and my tent,” she said on her trek that she embarks on next week.
"All of my training has been done with my complete pack, mostly in the early morning.
"There are basic shelters along the way where I can refill my water supply and make camp.
"For the first twelve days, I'll have with me dehydrated, vacuum-packed food.”
She knows the trek will be torturous at times, but she has the mental strength to get through it.
"I love to challenge myself, but this will test me as I'll be alone the whole time,” she said.
"I will have to be really strong - physically, emotionally and mentally - to get to the end.
"My inspiration will come from knowing this journey will raise funds to help those who have a much greater need.
"My mind will have to be my best friend and I think that's important in all areas of life, whether it's walking or illness.
"Hopefully people will follow my challenge and become aware of the challenges cancer patients face and be motivated to donate.”
She hopes to raise $10,000 in support of Cancer Council Queensland's Do it for Cancer Campaign. You can follow her journey via Facebook by searching for 'Colleen's Walk for Cancer'.
More about Cancer Council Queensland is available at cancerqld.org.au or 13 11 20.