Extreme Challenge Unites Ludicrously Enthusiastic Coastrekkers!

BY DI WESTAWAY | CEO and Founder of Wild Women On Top

In an extreme battle against the weather Gods, nearly 2,000 trekkers and 200 volunteers fought gale force wind gusts, torrential rain, high tides, hyperthermia and exhaustion in the Wild Women On Top Sydney Coastrek 50-100km team challenge.

There was a logistical nightmare in the dark at Palm Beach, as the eye of the storm smashed marquees and volunteers preparing the outdoor start on Friday 1st March at 4am. But the 90% female trekkers were undaunted, standing firm against the attack of the wind and rain.

Event organisers, Wild Women On Top, faced the tough decision on whether it was too dangerous to send the trekkers out into the storm. Their route, from Palm Beach to Coogee, bore the brunt of the onslaught as their teams of 4 were required to trek along the soft sand and exposed headlands.

Event Director Lisa Marshall took control, making last minute route changes to prevent trekkers being hit by flying branches. Four hours into the event, all trekkers received an emergency SMS, calling them off the beaches after one was hit by a freak wave at Narrabeen.

Australian Icon Gabi Hollows, and Health Minister Tanya Plibersek, also braved the conditions at Balmoral Beach where 1,300 trekkers, including Radio 702 Mornings Presenter Linda Mottram, finished their 50k challenge.

Ms Plibersek said, “This was a really well organised event. Considering the weather, the trekkers were really positive and enthusiastic. Wild Women On Top have done a great job keeping trekkers safe and supporting The Fred Hollows Foundation in difficult conditions.”

Not only were they impervious – the Wild Women Coastrekkers were later described as “Ludicrously Enthusiastic,” by Senator John Faulkner.

An incredible 87% of trekkers completed the gruelling course supported by kids, husbands, partners, mums, dads, friends and the army of volunteers including St Johns First Aid. The event has already raised over $1.75 MILLION DOLLARS for The Fred Hollows Foundation.

The 100km teams staggered across the Coogee finish line from 1am until 3pm on Saturday 2nd March, with Blind trekker, Ben Phillips, guided by Senator John Faulkner being the final team across the line.

The top fundraising team, Agility Fairs, travelled from Melbourne and has raised $28,025, followed by 7-oh-Toes at $23,600 and Wonderful Walkers at $18,030.

“I am in absolute AWE of the courage, mental tuffness and determination of our Coastrekkers, the kindness & professionalism of our vollies, the loving thoughtfulness from support Teams and the Bloody BRILLIANT performance of our amazing Wild Women On Top Team. Thank YOU ALL. YOU GUYS ROCK! $1.74 MILLION dollars of happiness. Truly AMAZING! :-)” Di Westaway, Founder, Sydney Coastrek

Did you know that for just $25 YOU can restore sight! Donations to support the Fred Hollows Foundation can still be made up until the 19th of Mar 2013 by following the link to www.coastrek.com.au.

Want to be inspired? Sign up to our newsletter.

Share this page

Latest news

Lee-Anne Carson water
Wild Woman Lee-Anne Carson was just eight-years-old when she nearly drowned. The traumatic experience made her absolutely terrified of the water. Even getting near the ocean would send her into a panic. Here's how she overcame her ultimate fear.
20171029_134554.jpg
A breast cancer survivor, a mother of four, a grandmother of three, a keen walker, and a mighty explorer, Julie Towner shares with us her favourite hikes and explains why being a Wild Woman has transformed her life.
If you ‘Google’ Bucket List hikes, you’ll get a list of some of the world’s most famous walking trails. From the Inca Trail to Everest Base Camp, the Appalachian Trail to Mt Kilimanjaro, they’re iconic. But what about those off-the-beaten-track kind of adventures that often go under the radar? They’re usually quieter, more remote, and often more beautiful than their overly touristy counterparts. We asked the Wild Women team to share their favourite adventure, to bring you 20 experiences you absolutely need to add to your bucket list.
Deanna Adams
Deanna Adams has experienced mental health issues for some time. But when her mum was diagnosed with leukemia late last year, her depression turned particularly nasty. After joining Wild Women, Deanna found hiking with women gave her the tools she needed to kick her depression to the curb. For the first time in years, Deanna is excited about life and opening her eyes every day. She is living proof that hiking is a woman's best medicine.
Philio Coastrek.jpg
Philio Georgiades went to bed just like she did every night. Nothing was different or out of the ordinary. The next morning, she woke up completely blind. It was the scariest time of her life. Philio couldn't see shapes or shades or shadows. She couldn't make out figures. And she couldn't see the faces of her husband or her children. After a month of waiting, in complete darkness, Philio was told there was hope. She underwent surgery and the operation altered the course of her life. Now, she's on a mission to give back.