Wild Spirit Kokoda

WILD SPIRIT KOKODA

An epic story…
An iconic journey…
Life changing-Empowering…
Achieve something extraordinary…
Wild Spirit Kokoda is about remembering our past and empowering our future.
Wild Spirit Kokoda is a boutique Kokoda trekking company inspired by the spirit of the digger.

 

Walking Kokoda is Empowering and Life Changing.
Walking Kokoda is humbling and inspiring.

Our Big Promise…

Is to provide a superior and unique experience that takes you to the heart and soul of Kokoda – like nobody else can.
We recruit and facilitate only the very best and professional, guides, leaders, facilitators and team members.
We personally research, inspect and test all facets of operations ensuring that we deliver on our promise.
Your safety is our goal – We have developed an extensive risk and safety management procedure, with contingency plans in place, 24 hour back up including satellite phones and medical first aid procedures.
PLUS
Our unique inclusions and extras package make us the best value experience on the market – you will also receive….
Our exclusive life goal program,.. which will inspire and empower you for own personal journey into the future.
Plus our comprehensive pre–Kokoda training and preparation program with exclusive access to our support staff who are there to help and answer any questions that you may have.
It is the vision of Wild spirit adventures to leverage our knowledge, passion, expertise and resources to create a unique, up lifting experience that will inspire and empower you for your own personal journey into the future and this one.
Our business revolves around 3 guiding principles which we believe are the essence of our industry…
To Connect You
To Empower You
To Excite You.
That’s our promise to you!

Why Choose Us

1. WE OFFER THE COMPLETE EXPERIENCE

We walk the WAR TIME TRACK through Kagi not the Eco Track.

We do not walk the track at night or force you to have early 3am starts to get to your days camp site.

Trekking Kokoda with us means you see things as an explorer, historian and adventurer.

We offer comprehensive battle site briefings and dignified services along the track.

Our Guides are passionate and specialists in the Kokoda Campaign history.

Australian Defence Force organisations and Australian Para Military organisations, have chosen and continue to choose Wild Spirit Kokoda for our professionalism and in-depth knowledge of the Kokoda Track and the battles along the Kokoda Track.

While we love working with our Defence Force groups, we do promise not to treat you like a raw recruit or march you in platoon or company size groups like some trekking companies! See what some of them say.

2. WE HAVE THE RUNS ON THE BOARD

We have a wealth of experience, with over 5000 trekker’s successfully and happily trekked Kokoda with Wild Spirit Kokoda. See what some of them say here.

Wild Spirit Kokoda has helped organise and lead several defence force treks along the Kokoda Track including, Australia’s Federation Guard, and the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA) on 3 occasions.

We run trips for the annual Queensland Police Service trek and we are proud of our partnership role, for the past 4 years, in the Kokoda Challenge Youth Program (KCYP).

Wild Spirit Kokoda also continues its relationship with the MASP Youth Leadership Mentoring program in Victoria and has done so for the past four years.

We have also been involved with Jobs Australia and their Indigenous Youth Leadership programs having led a group of Indigenous Leaders and Mentors across the Kokoda Track in their leadership program.

We organise and lead a number of school trips across Kokoda. Our school group’s focus is on the history of the track, community projects, including immersion, humanitarian and student empowerment and leadership projects.

Wild Spirit Kokoda was the chosen trekking company by the Producers of Kokoda the Movie. Other defence force groups have included The Royal Australian Navy, including HMAS Coonawarra and the crews from our Northern Coast Patrol boats and HMAS Darwin and HMAS Newcastle and the 48th Field Battalion and RAAF from Townsville. NRL Team Newcastle Knights

Managing Director Wayne Wetherall was part of the Foundation Committee that assisted in the design and implementation of the trekking companies Code of Conduct. Wayne was also a member of the Kokoda Track Maintenance Advisory Committee.

Wild Spirit Kokoda is proud of their role in working closely with, and trekking alongside Paralympian and Adventurer Michael Milton, Paralympian Kurt Fearnley (Crawling Kokoda), Rugby League Legend, Paul “The Chief” Harragon.

We believe we are the largest and Number 1 trekking company operating on Kokoda since 2008.

In 2011 we believe we took twice as many trekkers across the Kokoda Track than our closest competitor.

Wild Spirit Kokoda also took the CEO of the Kokoda Track Authority Rod Hillman and his family across the Kokoda Track.

All our travel arrangements are completed through Spirit Holidays – Travel Agents License TAG 1611

3. WE LOVE KOKODA

We’re passionate, and we’re respectful of the story of the Diggers, Fuzzy Wuzzy’s and the local communities along the track. We have an excellent relationship and rapport with villages, communities and elders along the track. See why here.

4. NO HIDDEN EXTRAS

We offer competitive pricing on all-inclusive trek packages, including pre and post accommodation and many extras that some other companies may not not mention. We’re reliable and we deliver on our promised services! We stay at the secure 3.5 star Gateway Hotel in Port Moresby, not a lodge! See what’s included.

5. WE HELP YOU PLAN

We provide excellent, friendly pre trek administration and professional advice and fact sheets, with attention to detail in preparing for your trek.

Check out our Trekking Gear lists.

6. WE HELP YOU TRAIN

We provide a comprehensive training program designed specifically for the track.

7. KOKODA ACCREDITATION

We are fully licensed and adhere to the Kokoda Track trekking code of conduct and the laws and regulations of both Australia and PNG, and holding KTA License No.3.

8. LOCAL KNOWLEDGE AND RESOURCES

We have our own office, staff and vehicles in Port Moresby, allowing us to offer excellent service, local experience and peace of mind.

9. TREKS TAILORED TO SUIT YOUR NEEDS

We can organise treks for private individuals, groups, sporting clubs, schools, corporate, defence force operations and more. We can even personally tailor your trek to meet your needs and requirements including options for

  • Trek leaders (PNG trek masters or Australian led groups)
  • Dates – trekking season runs from March to November
  • Direction – beginning or ending at Kokoda
  • Number of trekking days
  • Community projects

Our itineraries are sensible and achievable.

10. EXPERIENCED TREK LEADERS

Our Trek Masters and guides are professional, friendly, knowledgeable and passionate about the track with an exceptional knowledge of the history.

They live and breathe Kokoda!

All our senior staff are First Aid or Wilderness First Aid trained.

11. SAFETY IS OUR HIGHEST PRIORITY

We have developed and adhere to an extensive risk and safety management procedure for our treks. We have contingency plans in place and 24 hour back up, with Satellite phones and first aid kits carried on every trek.

We have a First Aid trained medic/Guide on our treks.

We also provide a comprehensive medical form that must be completed by your Doctor before you trek to make sure that you are in peak condition for Kokoda.

We also carry $10 million in Public Liability insurance.

12. PROPER SUSTENANCE

We have great food, hearty and plenty of it, freshly prepared pastas, stews, rice, potato and vegetable dishes all enhanced with local fresh garden ingredients (not hydrated packages) by our camp chefs! Our meals are designed to ensure you receive plenty of carbohydrates and protein to fuel your body.

Prepare yourself for a gourmet delight, great food, including treats of Pastries, Pizzas and even donuts!

We cater, for Vegetarians, Vegans and Gluten free.

13. YOU WILL LOVE OUR PORTERS AND GUIDES

We pay for Porter flights/transport to and from the Kokoda track or we pay them a walk back wage.

We supply all Porter food and camping equipment and uniform for our staff.

We pay our Trek Guides and Porters well above the industry average and well above the recommended amount specified by the Kokoda Track Authority.

Our Porters carry less than the specified weight recommended by the Kokoda Track authority and less than the International Porters code.

14. WE SUPPORT THE COMMUNITY

Wild Spirit Kokoda believes passionately in responsible travel and promotes this through the development of sustainable eco-trekking along the Kokoda Track. This commitment will enable us to assist the local Koiari and Orokaiva people develop the skills and experience to gain employment and develop eco-tourism business across the Kokoda Track.

Wild Spirit Kokoda is also committed to developing and implementing programs to assist the people across the track.

We believe people who work for Kokoda Spirit should be treated fairly, paid a fair wage, are supplied with adequate trekking gear, have a safe work environment, have access to health and education programs and further career opportunities.

We also believe that we should also learn and respect the culture and the customs of the country we are visiting so that we do not offend local people.

We ensure that local people benefit economically from trekking by employing them as porters, cooks, leaders and guides.

We also train our staff in hospitality, customer service, and first aid and assist them with both education and health.

Wild Spirit Kokoda assists programs across the track to help with the distribution of school books, home readers, gardening products and first aid kits.

Our Projects have included:

  • Village Reader
  • Village Garden
  • Green Fire
  • Lighting up the track (In association with the KTF)

Some of our community groups have included PNG Cricket, Kokoda Village Reader project, PNG Village Gardener project, National Breast Cancer Foundation (Kokoda Chicks), Breast Cancer Care WA, Blind Courage (Guide Dogs Australia), Heart Foundation, Coca Cola, Zing, Victorian RSL, VECCI, Credit Union Foundation Australia (CUFA), Autism Victoria, Aspergers Group, Mission Australia, Centre Stage Management, Qantas, 500 Club, EFM and Centacare Catholic Family Services,ANGLS (Aussie Nurses Giving Life), Cerebral Palsy Centre, Barrick Gold Corporation and Porgera mine. NRL Team Newcastle Knights

Wild Spirit Kokoda also supports and sponsors the Sunshine Coast ‘Give Me 5 for Kids’ program.

We are also Sponsors and Supporters of Smiling for Smiddy which supports the Mater Foundation.

Wild Spirit Kokoda also supports the Kokoda Track Foundation as a Gold Trek Operator Partner.

We are members of the 39th Battalion Association, 2/14th Battalion Association and the 2/16th Battalion Association.

Training Guide

WILD SPIRIT KOKODA CAN SUPPLY YOUR KOKODA CAMPING GEAR PACKAGES AT VERY COMPETITIVE PRICES. OUR GEAR IS TRIED AND TESTED ON KOKODA. SAVE YOURSELF TIME AND BIG BUCKS WITH US!

Training for Wild Spirit Kokoda Adventure Activities

Pre Kokoda Trail Trek Training Program

You will need to get reasonably fit to enjoy your trek.

Why Train for kokoda?

1

Wild Spirit Kokoda has an excellent reputation when it comes to developing the fitness and preparation of our clients. We are proud of the success rate of our trekkers! You do not have to be super fit or an Olympic athlete to complete Kokoda, Everest Base Camp, or indeed any of our tours but you do need to have excellent endurance and stamina along with a strong cardiovascular system and a desire to complete one of the world’s great journeys. The advantage of having the suitable fitness levels lies in your ability to complete the trek, safely, enjoyably and interact with locals, go for a swim or take a side trip to a waterfall AFTER the days trekking is completed.Training also provides enormous health benefits and improves your general well being.

By necessity, we assume that our clients have little knowledge of how to improve their fitness. If you are already participating in a training regime then the initial phase may not be appropriate and you can move directly into higher levels. For best training results, you should follow the “principles of training” listed below. Stretching before and after training is beneficial in the reduction of injuries; follow our “stretching guide”

Principles of Training

  • Specificity – the type of training you undergo should reflect the activity that you will participate in. In this case a trek involving several hours daily walking up steep ascents and walking down equally steep descents
  • Intensity – The intensity that you expect during the Trek should be reflected in the training program. That is, several hours of walking each day for several days on end.
  • Overload – to gain a training “effect” you must overload the various “systems” within your body. That is, your cardiovascular, muscular-skeletal systems etc. Overload is achieved by increasing distances, decreasing time taken or increasing pack weight.
  • Heart rate is a good indicator of intensity. You should not exceed your maximum heart rate. To obtain your max H/R; Subtract your age from 220; For example . If you are 40 yrs old, then your max H/R is 220 – 40 = 180.
  • Recovery – It is important to allow your body to recover from the stress that hard physical training places on it. Vary the intensity of your training by alternating hard sessions with slightly easier ones. This will help prevent over-use injuries.
  • This program assumes no equipment or Gym membership. If you are a regular gym member, each alternate day could be spent strength / endurance training in the gym.

Prior to embarking on any fitness regime, Kokoda Spirit strongly recommends you have a medical check up with your preferred GP and inform him of your intentions to embark on a trek that WILL involve strenuous exercise for several hours a day for several days in a remote area where evacuation is difficult.

What’s Included

The following are included in the price of your Wild Spirit Kokoda adventure trip:

  • Accommodation 2 nights twin share, at the Holiday Inn or Grand Papua Port Moresby.
  • (Pre and post trek only) Holiday Inn/Grand Papua.
  • Internal flight Port Moresby to Kokoda.
  • Airport/Hotel accommodation transfers.
  • Comfortable two Person Executive mosquito proof tent.
  • Daypack.
  • Solar lights.
  • Plate Cutlery.
  • 3- leg track stool.
  • Sleeping mattress.
  • Camp BBQ nights.
  • Business and Executive focused trek dates and itineraries.
  • Executive Valet, Personal Porter (Available at extra cost)
  • Deluxe, specifically designed nutritious meals, professionally trained cooks and camp staff.
  • We do not use dehydration packs just fresh wholesome food.
  • Snack packs
  • Electrolytes
  • We carry all our food and supplies for the complete trek, avoiding any risky and delayed/cancelled halfway food drops. Plus we get the opportunity to give more work to our Porters for the whole trek.
  • Comprehensive history of the Kokoda Track from our experienced, professional and passionate Australian Guides
  • Kokoda Specific Training Program
  • Comprehensive pre trek information and support package. Experienced support staff to answer your questions and requests prior to your trek
  • 24 hour emergency support network in Port Moresby and Australia
  • Communication and emergency equipment, satellite phones
  • Bus Transport to or from Owers’ Corner
  • Visit to Bomana War Cemetery
  • Port Moresby City Tour
  • Experienced and professionally trained PNG Trek Master and Experienced PNG Trek Leader
  • Our Porters and Guides are exclusively from the Koiari and Orokaiva villages along the Kokoda Track
  • Group Camping and trek equipment
  • We have group medical kits
  • First Aid trained Guides
  • Professionally trained Rope and River crossing specialist.
  • Group porters / Camp porters
  • Village campsite fees
  • Kokoda Track Authority fee and permit
  • Wild Spirit Kokoda Spirit Certificate on completion
  • Wild Spirit Kokoda Spirit Cool Dry shirt and cap
  • We have a Port Moresby office with support staff on hand to assist
  • We pay for Porter flights/transport to and from the Kokoda track
  • We supply all Porter food and camping equipment and uniform for our staff
  • We pay our Trek Guides and Porters well above the industry average and well above the recommended amount specified by the Kokoda Track Authority
  • Our Porters carry less than the specified weight recommended by the Kokoda Track authority and less than the International Porters code

What’s Not Included

The following are not included in the price of your Kokoda trekking adventure trip:

  • International Flights and Domestic Flights (within Australia)
  • Anti-malaria medication and / or inoculations as recommended by your Doctor
  • Personal first aid and personal care items
  • Medical Assessment

(Wild Spirit will provide each person with a Doctors letter to take to your local Doctor)

  • Passport
  • Personal Travel Insurance (Insurance needs to include provision for an emergency airlift out of the Kokoda Track if required)
  • Personal expenses in Port Moresby (eg. telephone calls, drinks, meals, room service etc)
  • Extra night’s accommodation in Port Moresby
  • “Trekking Gear List” items.
  • Personal Porter (to carry your rucksack or backpack – highly recommended)
  • Any expenses relating to a Medical Evacuation (refer to Booking Terms)

About Wild Spirit Kokoda 'The Company

What is the size of the groups?

Our PNG led treks have a maximum group size of 16, with an average size of 12.

Our Australian led treks have a maximum group size of 20, with an average size of 16.

Group sizes will vary for Anzac Groups and private groups and special occasions.

What is the difference between PNG Led and Australian Led Treks?

Both treks walk the same trek, stay in the same accommodation, eat the same food and have the same wonderful PNG porters.  Our PNG led treks do not have the same degree of historical information or commemoration services that the Australian Guided treks do.  Our Australian guides have a great deal of knowledge about the history of the Kokoda Track and a passion for the story.  The Australian guide is also first aid trained to a higher degree and adds that extra touch of security for those not so comfortable in a wilderness situation.

Do you have an office in PNG and Australia?

Wild Spirit has an office with administration staff, storage facilities and our own vehicles in Port Moresby, and our Head Office on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland.

About The Kokoda Track Itself

What happens to the rubbish on Kokoda?

It is very important that we all take good care of the Track.  If you purchase soft drinks along the Track, then you need to crush the cans and carry them out with you.  All rubbish is either burnt or carried out.

What do I need to bring?

Kokoda Spirit has a comprehensive Trekking Gear List to help you with your essential items. Refer to our website for the Trekking Gear List requirements.

What are the washing/cleaning/toilets/shower facilities on Kokoda like?

The facilities on Kokoda are very basic at best.

  • Toilets on the Track and villages are known as ‘long drops’ and ‘short drops’.
  • These are simple, deep pits or short pits that have been dug in the ground for use as toilets.  There are no toilet seats.  These facilities have a roof and screen over them for privacy.
  • You do need to take your own toilet paper (2 rolls).
  • The river is used for the shower and washing facilities or in some villages a simple water pipe is used to flow the water onto the trekker for washing.  Washing of clothes is done in the river.  We suggest you bring environmentally friendly soap.
  • Antibacterial Hand Gel is essential.
  • There are no specific changing rooms on the Kokoda Track or villages.
What are the walking times and distances each day?
  • Wake up time on the track is usually around 5.00 am
  • Breakfast on the track is usually served from 6.00 am
  • We usually start walking around 7.00 am
  • There is usually 5-10 minute breaks every 30 mins or so along the track and depending on the size of the hill more often and a stop for morning tea and lunch.
  • The walking pace is best described as the ‘Kokoda Shuffle’ which is a consistent but reasonably easy pace. This can vary depending on the terrain.
  • Each walking day will vary between 5 to 9 hours with 7 to 8 hours being the average. On average arrival times in the camps and villages are around 2.30pm to 3.30p.m.
Villages

Whilst in the villages we recommend you do not give money to anyone, as this does create problems between the village people. They live as a community and money needs to be shared between all in the village.

If you would like to take something to the villages, a gift that they can share is more appropriate, clothes, ball games, colouring in items, books, reading and writing material.

First aid items are also very much needed (and appreciated) e.g. bandaids, antiseptic lotions, strapping etc. We do not recommend leaving your prescription or strong medication with the village people as they are not used to such medications. If taken without supervision they could cause harm.

We also ask our trekkers not to wander around the villages in swimming costumes. Please cover up while walking around the villages, it’s a sign of respect.

Is there an easier direction to trek?

There is no easy way to trek Kokoda.  Both directions have their challenges.  Kokoda to Owers’ follows the direction of the Japanese and the Australians fighting withdrawal.  Owers’ Corner to Kokoda follows the original direction that the Australians walked to engage the Japanese near Awala north of Kokoda and our advance back over the Track.

How do you help the villagers and locals along the Track?

Please refer to our Sustainable Ecotourism strategy policy. It will give you an insight into our philosophy and policy on the Kokoda Track.

Do you abide by the Kokoda Track Code of Conduct?

We were part of the committee that developed the draft policy.  We will continue to support the Code of Conduct to ensure the long-term protection of the track.

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Do we walk the real Kokoda War Time Track?

Yes we do walk the real Kokoda War time Track.

There are multiple tracks and trails that run across the Owen Stanley Ranges.  You will walk in the footsteps of heroes, the same Track as our diggers.

Do we trek at night?

Kokoda Spirit does not trek at night. Our itineraries are designed to ensure you are in camp well before night fall.

Kokoda History

Where did Private Bruce Steele Kingsbury win his Victorian Cross for bravery?

Bruce Kingsbury won his VC at the battle of Isurava on August 29, 1942.

When did the battles for Kokoda take place?

The Australians withdraw to Kokoda July 24, 1942. July 29, 1942 the first battle for Kokoda is lost.

August 8, 1942 the Australians occupy Kokoda unopposed. August 10, 1942 the Japanese retake Kokoda. November 2, 1942, the Australians recapture Kokoda unopposed.

When did the battle of Isurava take place?

The battle of Isurava commenced August 26, 1942 and finished August 29, 1942.

When did the Australians first battle the Japanese?

The Australians first battled the Japanese at Awala just north of Kokoda on July 23, 1942.

When did the Australians commence their walk to Kokoda?

The Australians commenced walking to Kokoda from McDonalds Corner (south of Owers’ Corner, Port Moresby end) on July 7, 1942. The first company was ‘B’ Company of the 39th Battalion led by Captain Sam Templeton and Guided by Bert Kienzle. Captain Sam Templeton was killed in battle and the two crossings over Iora Creek are named in his honour. The Australians arrived in Kokoda on July 15, 1942.

Do you cover the Military History and Cultural aspects of the Track?

Wild Spirit is dedicated to showing and telling the story of the legends on the Kokoda Track to our trekkers.  It is a story that every Australian should know about.

Our guides are passionate about the history and will share their detailed knowledge of the track and its history with you.  We are also dedicated to looking after the villagers and village people along the Track.  Our PNG Guides and Porters are from the track and will share their history and culture with you.

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Safety While Trekking Kokoda

What happens in case of an emergency?

Kokoda Spirit carries satellite phones on all treks; we have an emergency evacuation plan which is implemented. On receiving call for assistance we activate our plan and organise medical, travel insurance and evacuation plans. Contact us if you require further details.

Villages

Whilst in the villages we recommend you do not give money to anyone, as this does create problems between the village people. They live as a community and money needs to be shared between all in the village.

If you would like to take something to the villages, a gift that they can share is more appropriate, clothes, ball games, colouring in items, books, reading and writing material.

First aid items are also very much needed (and appreciated) e.g. bandaids, antiseptic lotions, strapping etc. We do not recommend leaving your prescription or strong medication with the village people as they are not used to such medications. If taken without supervision they could cause harm.

We also ask our trekkers not to wander around the villages in swimming costumes. Please cover up while walking around the villages, it’s a sign of respect.

How do I minimise my risks on the Kokoda Track?

The best way to minimise risk on the Kokoda Track is to trek with a professional trekking company like Wild Spirit. Wild Spirit has a comprehensive risk management plan and safety procedures.

Our guides are first aid trained for wilderness situations; our Australian guides carry first aid kits and on all treks we carry satellite phones.

It is important that you get yourself a full medical check before training.  Kokoda Spirit requires a full medical clearance from your Doctor before trekking with us.  Proper preparation and training before your trek is absolutely essential.  It is also essential to ensure you take precautions to prevent, dehydration, hyponatremia and overheating.

Travelling To PNG

Where do we stay in Port Moresby?

Our preferred Hotel in Port Moresby is the Holiday Inn.  If not available we will source a similar quality Hotel.  The Holiday Inn is a three/four star Hotel, with pool, restaurant, bar and 24 hour security.

Check-in time is 1.00pm – Checkout time is 10.00am.

When are the best conditions to trek Kokoda?

The conditions on the Track vary due to the changes in the season. The seasons are broken up into the dry season and the wet season. These seasons also have sub seasons which fringe the wet and dry season.
The dry season is normally from late May to late October. Good conditions can still be expected in April and November. It is possible to get rain and consequently mud on the Track during any season or month. Late November, December, January, February and March can be wet and muddy.

The temperature will range from 24-28 degrees under the canopy and up to 32 degrees out in the open areas. The night time temperature will range from 18 degrees in the lower sections down to 8 degrees in the higher areas like Mt Bellamy. Humidity will range between 80% to 95%

What size back pack do I need?

You will need a 70/75 litre back pack for your main pack and a 30/40 litre pack for your day pack.

Note: Day pack is only needed if you have a personal porter. Ladies carrying their own packs may only need a 60 litre pack, depending on their physique.

What happens when we arrive in PNG?

After you pass through PNG Immigration, collect your luggage and then you will go through Customs.

If you are arriving the day before your trek, either a Wild Spirit employee or a Holiday Inn employee will meet you at the airport.  You will then be transported to the Holiday Inn where you will be checked in.

If you are arriving earlier than the day before your trek, you will need to arrange with the Hotel for airport transfers.  We suggest when booking your extra night accommodation that you request the Hotel for airport transfers.

What do I need to bring?

Kokoda Spirit has a comprehensive Trekking Gear List to help you with your essential items. Refer to our website for the Trekking Gear List requirements.

What camping gear do I need?

Our web site has a Trekking Gear List of requirements to trek Kokoda or contact us and we will send the list out to you. We can also supply a range of cost effective camping gear to suit your requirements.

How much money will I need on the Kokoda Track?

On the Track you need to take with you local currency (PNG Kina).  You can organise to buy PNG currency through your local bank before you leave Australia or at the money exchanger at the International Airports.  We would highly recommend that you have PNG currency before leaving Australia.

Most things on the Track will cost K5 – K10 (5 Kina approx $3.00 AUD) i.e. bunch of bananas, photo with Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel, can of Coke.  Around 400 Kina should be plenty.

Please Note:  the local villages do not have change to give you, therefore lots of small change is best.

In Port Moresby Eftpos machines are few and far between.

For your own safety we do not recommend you go into Port Moresby town to the local bank.

Does the Gateway Hotel have storage facilities and safety deposit boxes?

The Gateway Hotel has baggage storage facilities and safety deposit boxes. This means you can leave your non trekking gear in the storage facility while you trek. Make sure you leave passports/travel documents, valuables in the safety deposit boxes. To organise this please ask the staff at the Gateway Hotel reception.

Please leave all non essential valuables at home.

Do I need travel / medical insurance for Kokoda?

Yes, you do need Travel Insurance, it is very important. You are responsible to organise your own Travel/Medical insurance, which can be organised at your Travel Agent.

You will need coverage for medical evacuation; medical, theft, loss etc… speak to your Travel Agent about the inclusions. Travel Insurance MUST include Medical Evacuation (anywhere along the Kokoda Track) and medical expenses including hospital coverage in PNG and Australia. It can be a very costly experience for you if you do not have your Travel Insurance!

We require a copy of your personal, Travel and Medical Insurance no later than 4 weeks before departure. Failure to have travel and medical insurance will prevent you from trekking.

Should you require assistance with your travel insurance, please contact our travel department at spiritholidays@wholesaletravel.com.au

Do I need a Visa for PNG?

PNG VISA NOTICE

As of the 1st March 2014, all holders of Australian Passports will have to obtain a PNG Visa before entering PNG.

There will be no issue of Visas on arrival.

Information for Australians obtaining a visa for PNG from the consulate:

-          A visa application for PNG takes 5-7 days to be processed (process starts once documents are received) providing all paperwork is complete

-          PNG Consulates are located in Sydney, Brisbane and Canberra. A new Consulate office will open in Cairns in the near future.

-           The application form and requirements remain the same

-          Cost for a visa will remain the same

  • $0 – Tourist Visa (no application fee)
  • $215 – single entry business visa
  • $435 – Multiple Entry Business visa (12 months period commences on first arrival)

Brisbane

Consulate-General of Papua New Guinea

Level 3, 344 Queens Street

GPO Box 220

Brisbane 4001

Tel: (07) 3221 7915

Fax: (07) 3229 6084

Email: pngcg@kundubne.org (Note: New Office Location – Level 3, 344 Queens Street)

Sydney

Consulate-General of Papua New Guinea

Level 2, Clarence Street

Sydeny NSW 2000

PO Box A2273

Sydney South, NSW 1235

Tel: (02) 9283 9020 Fax: (02) 9283 5424

Email:pngcg@kundusyd.org

Canberra
Consulate-General of Papua New Guinea

Ph: 612 62 733 322

Fax: 612 62 733 732

Email: kundu@pngcanberra.org

If you do not hold an Australian Passport, please contact the Papua New Guinea Consulate for their advice.

Suggestions

If you are travelling interstate, it may be a good idea to arrive the day before your International flight (International flights to Port Moresby depart from Brisbane, Cairns and Sydney).  Sometimes there is not enough time to catch both Domestic and an International flight on the same morning.  Our treks need to run to our date and time schedule, if you miss your flight to Papua New Guinea you will miss your trek.  Unfortunately we are unable to delay trek departure.  Something to think about!

Wear your boots on the plane and bring essential items in your carry on luggage.  Bags do go missing; bags can be left back in Australia.  If you have got your boots, medical supplies and some personal items with you and your bag goes missing, then you still have your basic requirements to trek.

Food And Drink

What food do we eat on the Kokoda Track?
    You will be required to pay for all your meals whilst you are in Port Moresby.
    Kokoda Spirit needs to be advised when booking if there are any particular dietary requirements. We do our best to manage your requirements, but accept no responsibility due to availability. Supplements may be implemented. We are able to supply Gluten Free and Vegetarian menus on request, we do need to be advised at least 6 weeks prior to trek departure.

    Below is a general outline of meals whilst on the trek.

  • The Trek Master and the team organise and cook all your meals. They also take care of the washing up. The porters are also well catered for with food on the Track.
  • Breakfasts we have cereals, usually Weet-Bix or porridge, rice cakes with spread and limited fruits depending on availability, tea, coffee, biscuits, sometimes pancakes and damper.
  • Lunches are often canned meats spam, beef and fish, fruit, cheeses, biscuits, spreads, rice crackers and snack bars (We do not cook lunches)
  • Dinners are fresh local vegies, potatoes, rice and pastas with the cooks special PNG mixes rotated on alternative nights. Pre Dinner snacks is varied may be soup, popcorn, biscuits. Tea and coffee is available.
  • The meals are large filling and very nourishing.
  • Food may vary due to season and/or availability.
  • We recommend you take your own energy treats/snacks e.g. lollies, muesli bars, energy bars, protein bars, trail mix etc for extra supplements. (Enough for the duration of your trek)
  • PEANUTS – when cooking our meals some of our sauces have peanuts traces, our porters and trekkers do eat peanuts, muesli bars and biscuits which may contain peanuts. Upon booking it is a trekkers responsibility to advise Kokoda Spirit if they have any allergy to Peanuts.

Water/Electrolytes

You will need to carry a minimum of 3 litres of water on you. There are many places to fill water bottles along the track. Your porters will advise the best places to fill up your water bottles. The furthest you will walk between water is approximately 4 hours.

It is essential that you take electrolytes/Gatorade/Staminade etc with you. Put in your water, every 3rd litre, it prevents dehydration due to high perspiration losses due to exertion and high humidity. Dehydration, overheating and Hyponatremia can become major issues on the track. It is very important to keep drinking fluids and utilising salt and electrolyte replacements on the track. Because of the higher level of activity, temperature and humidity you will tend to sweat more. With the increased fluid intake and sweating you also tend to flush out of your system essential minerals, salts etc. This is why it is important to use electrolytes, salt replacements and Glucose type products. We highly recommend Endura and salt tablets.

Electrolytes: If unsure please discuss with your doctor.

Water purifying tablets can be taken as a precaution. The water is generally very good along the Track but always check with the Trek Master or Trek Leader about the quality of the water.

With the different environments, conditions, food and water, upset stomachs, vomiting and diarrhoea can occur. Please ensure you bring adequate medication.

Can we drink alcohol on the Kokoda Track?

Wild Spirit has a “no alcohol/no drugs” policy while trekking on the Kokoda Track.  We do enforce this policy.  It is our way of showing our respect for the Kokoda Trail and the Villages; we ask our trekkers to do the same.  Prescribed medication from your GP is acceptable.

Can we bring food into PNG?

Yes you can.  This has not been an issue before.  You must declare your food and advise customs that it is for trekking on the Kokoda Track.

Accommodation On The Kokoda Track

What is the accommodation like on the Kokoda Track?

The accommodation on the Kokoda Track is very basic.  Jungle camps and campsites along the Kokoda Track are basic at best.

The Guest House accommodations are open-air huts with no mosquito protection.  Guest House accommodation is not always available, so we will camp at the best available campsites.  We recommend tents for privacy and mosquito protection.

What camping gear do I need?

Our web site has a Trekking Gear List of requirements to trek Kokoda or contact us and we will send the list out to you.  We can also supply a range of cost effective camping gear to suit your requirements

How many people sleep in each tent? What size are the tents?

Only one person per tent, unless you specifically want to share a tent i.e. partner/friend etc.

The tents are 2 person tents.  Couples may prefer to bring a 3-man tent.

Do we have exclusive use of the campsites and guesthouses?

No-one has exclusive use of the campsites or guest houses along the Kokoda Track. It is quite possible that some campsites will be shared by other campers.

Do we carry our own tents?

If you have a personal porter he would carry your tent.  If you were carrying your own pack then you would carry your tent.  Your personal porter will help you to erect, and pack up your tent each day.

Clothing And Footwear For Trekking Kokoda

Is a walking pole necessary?

Walking poles are a must! They are used as a support and braking system for the steep downhill sections.  You can buy walking poles through our office or from camping stores.  It is a good idea to train with the poles.  Some people find one pole sufficient, but it is your choice.

Do we get a completion certificate and a Wild Spirit shirt?

A Wild Spirit shirt will be posted to each trekker prior to your trek departure.  With large groups the shirts are posted to the person who has organised the trek.  Completion certificate will be presented to trekkers on the completion of their trek.

Do I need to wear boots on the Kokoda Track?

It is not essential to wear boots across Kokoda but it is highly recommended. Boots should be of good quality, 100% waterproof, of Gortex construction for quick drying, lightweight and with a good flexible and aggressive grip. Importantly footwear must also be comfortable. Boots that are one size bigger than your normal size should be considered. This can help prevent sore toes on the declines and discomfort if feet swell. The Kokoda Track is harsh on boots so do not risk old or suspect boots.

Do I need gaiters?

Gaiters are a personal choice; you can use the light weight cotton “gardening/mowing” style gaiters to prevent sticks rocks etc from getting into your boots. Refer to our website for your Trekking Gear List requirements.

Health And Fitness For Trekking Kokoda

When are the best conditions to trek Kokoda?

The conditions on the Track vary due to the changes in the season.  The seasons are broken up into the dry season and the wet season.  These seasons also have sub seasons which fringe the wet and dry season.

The dry season is normally from late May to late October.  Good conditions can still be expected in April and November.  It is possible to get rain and consequently mud on the Track during any season or month.  Late November, December, January, February and March can be wet and muddy.

The temperature will range from 24-28 degrees under the canopy and up to 32 degrees out in the open areas.  The night time temperature will range from 18 degrees in the lower sections down to 8 degrees in the higher areas like Mt Bellamy.  Humidity will range between 80% – 95%

What size back pack do I need?

You will need a 70/75 litre back pack for your main pack and a 30/40 litre pack for your day pack.

Note: Day pack is only needed if you have a personal porter. Ladies carrying their own packs may only need a 60 litre pack, depending on their physique.

What are the walking times and distances each day?
  • Wake up time on the track is usually around 5.00 am
  • Breakfast on the track is usually served from 6.00 am
  • We usually start walking around 7.00 am
  • There is usually 5-10 minute breaks every 30 mins or so along the track and depending on the size of the hill more often and a stop for morning tea and lunch.
  • The walking pace is best described as the ‘Kokoda Shuffle’, which is a consistent but reasonably easy pace.  This can vary depending on the terrain.
  • Each walking day will vary between 5 to 9 hours with 7 to 8 hours being the average.  On average arrival times in the camps and villages are around 2.30pm to 3.30p.m.
Water/Electrolytes

You will need to carry a minimum of 3 litres of water on you. There are many places to fill water bottles along the track. Your porters will advise the best places to fill up your water bottles. The furthest you will walk between water is approximately 4 hours.

It is essential that you take electrolytes/Gatorade/Staminade etc with you. Put in your water, every 3rd litre, it prevents dehydration due to high perspiration losses due to exertion and high humidity. Dehydration, overheating and Hyponatremia can become major issues on the track. It is very important to keep drinking fluids and utilising salt and electrolyte replacements on the track. Because of the higher level of activity, temperature and humidity you will tend to sweat more. With the increased fluid intake and sweating you also tend to flush out of your system essential minerals, salts etc. This is why it is important to use electrolytes, salt replacements and Glucose type products. We highly recommend Endura and salt tablets.

Electrolytes: If unsure please discuss with your doctor.

Water purifying tablets can be taken as a precaution. The water is generally very good along the Track but always check with the Trek Master or Trek Leader about the quality of the water.

With the different environments, conditions, food and water, upset stomachs, vomiting and diarrhoea can occur. Please ensure you bring adequate medication.

How fit do you have to be to walk Kokoda?

While you do not need to be an Olympic athlete, you do need to be in great physical condition, with good endurance and stamina.  You need to be able to walk up to 9 hours per day in hot and humid conditions.  The terrain over the Kokoda Track is tough and very steep.  You need a strong heart, lungs, quads, calves and a strong and positive attitude.  A dedicated training program is required.

Contact your fitness professional or contact our office for the training program.  We recommend you consult your medical practitioner before undertaking any new training program.

Please Note:  All trekkers need to be aware that being well above your healthy weight range seriously impacts on your ability to complete the Track.  Should you fall into this category we highly recommend that you concentrate your training on an intensive weight loss/fitness program.  You may like to consider hiring a personal trainer to assist you with your fitness goals.  If you require the services of a personal trainer please contact our office, as we may be able to assist.

Once again we recommend you consult your medical practitioner before undertaking any new training program.

Do you have a training program?

If you would like a copy of our training program we can email this to you upon request.

Do I need travel/medical insurance for Kokoda?

Yes, you do need Travel Insurance, it is very important.  You are responsible to organise your own Travel/Medical insurance, which can be organised at your Travel Agent.

You will need coverage for medical evacuation; medical, theft, loss etc… speak to your Travel Agent about the inclusions.  Travel Insurance MUST include Medical Evacuation (anywhere along the Kokoda Track) and medical expenses including hospital coverage in PNG and Australia.  It can be a very costly experience for you if you do not have your Travel Insurance!

We require a copy of your personal, Travel and Medical Insurance no later than 4 weeks before departure.  Failure to have travel and medical insurance will prevent you from trekking.

Do I need a medical kit?

Yes, absolutely.  It is essential that you have an appropriate first aid kit for the conditions. Refer to our Trekking Gear List as a guide.

Do I need a Doctor’s Clearance to trek Kokoda?

Yes.  Approximately 3 months prior to your trek Wild Spirit will post to you a letter for you to take to your Doctor.

We ask that the original Doctors letter be posted to the Wild Spirit office no later than 4 weeks before departure.

It is Wild Spirit’s requirements that every trekker must obtain medical clearance from his or her Doctor.  If we do not receive the original Kokoda Spirit Doctors letter, unfortunately your trek will be cancelled.

There is nowhere along the Kokoda Track to get access to any medications.

 

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Prices And Bookings

When do I make payments for the trek?

Deposit –                 Your deposit payment is due when your booking is confirmed.
Wild Spirit will provide you with a Booking Confirmation letter.

Final Payment -      Final payment is due 8 weeks prior to trek departure.

What are your Booking Terms?

We ask all trekkers to read our Booking Terms. Some of abovementioned points are outlined in more detail in our Booking Terms. These can be found on the website or contact our office and we can send this to you.  Every trekker who books a trek will also receive Wild Spirit Booking Terms upon their booking.

Every effort is made to make your trip as memorable as possible.  Please remember, you are going to a third world country and you may see things and experience things you may have never seen before.

Expect the unexpected in PNG.  Keep an open mind; schedules/itinerary may and can change without notice, internal transfers may be late, planes may be late due to bad weather, please understand it is out of our control.  Schedules work to PNG time, not Australian time.  Patience and a relaxed attitude are essential for an enjoyable trek.  All internal flights are booked and confirmed through our office.  If there is a problem internally we have direct communications with the airline and our staff.  This is no holiday, but a fantastic trekking adventure, it is a trekking experience, a lifetime experience!  Enjoy!

Suggestions

If you are travelling interstate, it may be a good idea to arrive the day before your International flight (International flights to Port Moresby depart from Brisbane, Cairns and Sydney). Sometimes there is not enough time to catch both Domestic and an International flight on the same morning. Our treks need to run to our date and time schedule, if you miss your flight to Papua New Guinea you will miss your trek. Unfortunately we are unable to delay trek departures. Something to think about!

Wear your boots on the plane and bring essential items in your carry on luggage. Bags do go missing; bags can be left back in Australia. If you have got your boots, medical supplies and some personal items with you and your bag goes missing, then you still have your basic requirements to trek.

Relax and enjoy ?

Every effort is made to make your trip as memorable as possible. Please remember, you are going to a third world country and you may see things and experience things you may have never seen before.

Expect the unexpected in PNG. Keep an open mind; schedules/itinerary may and can change without notice, internal transfers may be late, planes may be late due to bad weather, please understand it is out of our control.

Shedules work to PNG time, not Australian time. Patience and a relaxed attitude are essential for an enjoyable trek. All internal flights are booked and confirmed through our office. If there is a problem internally we have direct communications with the airline and our staff. This is no holiday, but a fantastic trekking adventure, it is a trekking experience, a lifetime experience! Enjoy!

How much does it cost to trek Kokoda?

The trek prices do vary according to the choice of trek.  We have 7 and 8 night treks to choose from.  There is also a choice of Australian led treks or local PNG led treks.  If you were unsure which trek would suit your requirements please contact our office for advice.

All treks include pre and post accommodation in Port Moresby (unless individuals request otherwise).

Please refer to our Trek Dates for the various options available.

 

How do I book?

Contact the Wild Spirit office by email info@wildspiritadventures.com or phone us on 1800238368 we will advise you regarding the different options available.

Trekking Guides & Porters

How knowledgeable are your Australian Guides?

Our Australian Guides are first class professionals with a passion and understanding of the history of the Track, the battles, the philosophy and tactics used during the Kokoda campaign.  Being a guide on the Kokoda Track is what they do, this is no part time job for them, and they live and breathe Kokoda.

Our Head Guide and Managing Director Wayne Wetherall has spent over 11 years researching the history of the Track and exploring the many tracks across Kokoda.  He has also spent considerable time interviewing Australian and Japanese veterans about the battles on the Owen Stanley Ranges.

Our guides may not be all ex military, but are all keen students of military history and tactics.
They are also expert track guides and familiar with the culture of the people along the track.

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If I have a Personal Porter do I need to supply a backpack?

Yes. If you are having a personal porter you need to supply your porter with a 70/75 litre back pack which he will carry with your gear. You will be required to carry your own smaller daypack with your personal daily items (see above).

Wild Spirit do hire 70/75 litre backpacks out to our trekkers, please contact our office to arrange this.

How knowledgeable are your PNG guides?

Our PNG Guides are among the best on the track, with years of on the track history training and our unique PNG guide-training program.  Our guides will show you all the historic and cultural sites across Kokoda.

Do we tip the porters?

PNG is a non-tipping society, so tipping your porter is not necessary.  However you may want to reward a job well done, so K100 is a good tip.  Any of your excess clothes or caps, t-shirts etc would be very much appreciated.


Kokoda