WHAT SHOULD I BRING?
The packing list in the Information Pack is the best place to start. You DON’T need anything extra - really!
Washing You WILL go home with a bag full of damp and dirty clothes. No - we really don’t have a washing machine for you to use although if there’s an emergency you can hand wash something. Make sure that you have enough pairs of socks and underwear to make it through the full 10 days.
Why NO COTTON? When you are hiking, cotton clothing that gets wet, stays wet. It isn’t warm and is very uncomfortable. On the first night when we do the gear pack, anything that doesn’t fit the criteria will be sent to the farm with your extra luggage. Choose wool or man made fibres - check out your local op shop, borrow from friends, or at the last resort send us an email. We have quite a “library” of extra clothing and can usually help you out with your missing bits and pieces.
Do I need a hiking back pack? No! We provide your wet weather gear, a sleeping bag and your hike pack. Everything else will be packed into your bag and taken to the farm by vehicle. At the end of the week we’ll do the same thing - you’ll hike with only what you need for 2 days and your bags will meet you at the last campsite. Please bring a “soft bag” - like a duffel - if you can because it is much easier to pack everything into the trailer than hard suitcases.
What about my mobile phone? We’ll take all of your mobile phones / money / head phones / train ticket on the first day and put them into the safe box. On the last day when we return to the station we’ll give them back. If you need any money at the farm (for merchandise shopping) then we’ll allow you to access your wallet - and then return to the box. To make it easier take a small bag or zip lock to put your “contraband” in so that it is all together in the box.
Can I bring a camera? Yes! We’d love you to bring a camera with you - but it needs to be an “old school” camera - not one on your phone.
Snacks? I need my own snacks for the week. - Actually you don’t. We don’t allow you take in any extra food - you’ll need to hand it all over. This makes it easier for any potential allergies that young people have. You need to bring your lunch for the first day and that’s it.
How far do we hike? I’m not very fit….. Over the first two days we hike into the farm - camping in tents overnight. The hike is about 20km in total and you WILL be able to manage. We do it as a group and we want everyone to succeed so you’ll have plenty of help and encouragement. Obviously if you can do some walking / fitness preparation beforehand it makes it a lot easier!
What about hiking boots? If you have hiking boots - that’s fantastic. If you plan to buy new boots, please do so with enough time to wear them in before you come. Sore feet are never much fun so the more time you can wear your new boots the better. We also have a range of boots that you can borrow - if you know that you’ll need some then try and let us know beforehand so we can make sure that we bring the right size.
Where do we sleep? Are we in tents all week? At the Farm we have two bunk rooms with 12 beds in each. You’ll be allocated into groups (depending on how many are on your program) and you’ll share a bunk room all week.
Can I have a shower? We have showers at the Farm that come from our rain water tanks. Most young people have two showers whilst they are at the Farm. Obviously whilst you are hiking in / out there isn’t an opportunity to have a shower.
Do you have “normal” toilets? We think that our toilets are pretty normal - but they might be a bit different to what you are used to! We have composting toilets that are pretty easy to use - you “do your business” and then sprinkle sawdust into the toilet. They don’t smell, they look like “normal toilets” and they don’t waste our precious water. Each toilet has a sign outside so that others know when someone is using it - there’s plenty of privacy and you’ll get the hang of it really quickly.
What do we do at the Farm?
A day on the farm could include activities such as:
Milking the cows
Learning to bake bread
Feeding the chooks, collecting their eggs
Using the cross cut saw and splitter to chop up timber
Cooking meals and snacks over the wood fire stoves for the rest of the group
Blacksmithing door hinges and fire pokers in the forge
Harvesting veggies from the garden
Creating stools, spoons or bowls in the joinery
Pruning trees in the orchard
Going out to help a community member with their garden
Clearing vegetation in the paddocks
All of the activities done at Mittagundi are performed without power tools or electricity and in a fun, safe atmosphere. You will be given the choice over which farm activities you want to undertake during your days on the farm. There are many tasks to choose from and your group will learn to share them out under the value of ‘fairness.’
Can I come back to Mittagundi again? Your 10 day program is a “one off”. If you’d like to return to Mittagundi, you can attend one of our Follow Up programs - there are four each year - as many times as you like until you turn 18. A great opportunity to catch up with your 10 day friends again and also meet other Mittagundi converts!