A 15-DAY trek from the heart of Adelaide to Mount Gambier’s iconic Blue Lake ended yesterday as Hamish MacLachlanLester and George Mamalis took the finals steps of their 440km walking journey.
The two Adelaide men used the adventurous feat to raise $8000 for beyondblue and the Aboriginal Youth Action Committee.
Promoted by The Adelaide Set – an online youth lifestyle service – the fundraising walk garnered a strong following online, with the pair posting about their trip via social media, highlighting towns such as Kingston and Millicent as they journeyed through the region.
The pair praised the country kindness experienced along the way, with residents going as far as bringing a caravan for the two to stay the night in rather than camping on the side of the road.
Arriving at the popular Blue Lake lookout yesterday to a reception from Mount Gambier Mayor Lynette Martin, the two men spoke with The Border Watch about their mammoth journey.
“We were originally going to walk from Victoria Square to Uluru but soon found out that would be a two month walk so we decided against it,” Mr MacLachlan-Lester said.
Mr Mamalis said the Limestone Coast community had thrown its support behind the two throughout their journey.
“The Crown Inn Hotel in Kingston opened their doors for us for the night which was fantastic,” Mr Mamalis said.
“Throughout the entire journey we had tried to stay at as many local hotels as possible so we could help in anyway we can.”
Choosing the Blue Lake as their final destination due to its symbolism, Mr Mamalis said it was the perfect spot to finish an incredible journey.
“We chose to stop in Mount Gambier because of the symbolism of the Blue Lake as blue is the typical colour for mental health and well being as well as for beyondblue and communication,” he said.
“It is a beautiful place and we love it here in Mount Gambier.
“We hope our journey inspires others to think outside the box and see if they can come up with their own kind of walk or anything that can allow them to express themselves, raise money and awareness for those causes.
“At the end of the day it does not matter what race, religion or creed we are as we are all people and need to help each other out.”
Ms Martin congratulated the men on their efforts, stating it was wonderful to see them choose the Blue Lake city as their final destination.
“It is a wonderful effort of the two young men to conceive the idea and execute it is amazing,” Ms Martin said.
“Hopefully their journey will give Mount Gambier some promotion to people who may not be aware of the Blue Lake and especially with the encouragement to have people travelling intrastate is encouraged.
“They are an example of some fine young men and have done this for two fantastic causes.”