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My generous sponsors & supporters

September 22, 2010

I am doing Te Araroa – On Veg out of my own pocket primarily. However, a few sweet companies have come onboard and sponsored me with a few pieces of gear I needed – even some food and accommodation. Also I’d like to thank my supporters who have provided things like publicity and their best wishes.



Lightweight tableware (I think “groundware” is a more appropriate term when it comes to camping) is a trivial matter. The range of options is vast and the weight difference negligible. But it seems lightweight and ultra-lightweight trampers are always on the lookout for something that sheds a few extra grams from their pack weight.

Folding plates, bowls and cups came on the market to eliminate pack weight and space. And as something fun to do before dinner in clipping them together, I think. But how do they work, and how good are they?

Fozzils sent me a Solo Pack for my Te Araroa trip and I must say at first glance, they were easy and pretty damn nifty. Everything snapped together in a logical and speedy fashion. There are instructions but you’d be pretty daft to have to use them.

In the Solo Pack there is a bowl, plate, cup and spoon. I don’t know how useful the spoon will be, but the rest are durable and will be sure to get a work out.

So far after a couple of tests, so good. Thanks Fozzils.

Ponsonby Backpackers

When I arrive in NZ I will be spending a week in Auckland to organise food drops, buy last minute gear, and for a spot of sight-seeing – I’ve never been to Auckland before. Ponsonby Backpackers has been kind enough to provide lodging for me for a week, and act as my “home base”. I hear they have WiFi so during my week in Auckland you’re bound to read a lot of posts from me written at my home base.

Thanks Ponsonby Backpackers, in particular Chris.


When I was coming back from Christchurch last year I had the fuel burner for my Trangia Mini confiscated by customs. I merely shook the excess fuel out of the burner rather than burning it off. As such there was still traces of fuel residue. A big no-no according to customs.

Tip: When travelling with an alcohol stove make sure you burn off any fuel prior to flying.

Rucsac Supplies, the Australian distributer for Trangia, have been kind enough to supply me with a replacement burner and fuel bottle for me trip. Many thanks to Mitchell and Rucsac Supplies.

Little Bird Organics

Little Bird Organics has a rather succinct philosophy: raw, organic, goodness. That’s what their products are. And these are things I like the sounds of. Don’t get me wrong, I am not a raw vegan. I like things cooked. But, when I think about it, a decent portion of my diet is indeed raw food.

When snacking I tend to resort to dried or fresh fruit and nuts. I enjoy muesli and oats. I love hommus and my mean white bean dip. I do occasionally resort to a big salad (Seinfeld reference – best show ever!) for dinner. Oh, and Raw Life! chocolate (a great South Australian brand) is to die for.

Little Bird Organics have offered me some of their grawnola (no, that’s how they spell it… cute) and macaroons to try out on my trip. Vegan fuel they call it. And I need all the fuel I can get.

Thanks Little Bird. Tweet tweet.


Thermal underwear are the most versatile piece of clothing I own. Because I am a bit of a dork, I wear the shorts / long-johns combination when tramping, sometimes with a long-sleeve thermal top for its wicking qualities; and I wear a long-john / long-sleeve top combo as my pyjamas. True 24 hour clothing, unless it’s too hot.

Sherpa, an Australian outdoor clothing company, who I have been loyal to for all my thermal needs for years, have kicked in a couple of pairs of their Ant Print stock for my Te Araroa trip. As well as a cap and beanie. I’m sure I will be the laughing stock of the tracks and huts of NZ, but very warm and comfortable laughing stock.

Thanks to the guys and girls at Sherpa.


Everybody loves chocolate. And it’s a fear many people have, that by going vegan they have to give up their favourite snack. This isn’t true.

Many of the dark chocolate options on the market are in fact dairy-free and vegan-friendly. Problem is, many of them taste crap and have a poor range of flavours.

I do like plain dark chocolate but I also like the fruit and nut varieties and Whittaker’s have thought outside the chocolate square (HA) and offer a range of dark chocolates similar to their dairy offerings.

Whittaker’s are my newest sponsor and I thank them for providing me with more vegan fuel to make the tramp possible. A few squares of chocolate at the end of the day, or melted into my porridge for breakfast makes me one happy tramper! Thanks Whittaker’s.

Scouts Outdoor Centre

Another company I have been quite loyal to over the years is the Scouts Outdoor Centre (SOC). Owned by Scouts SA, this store has one of the most comprehensive ranges of outdoor gear in South Australia. They even sell kayaks.

Jamie, their Commercial Manager, was very generous in giving me a helpful discount on a new sleeping bag (the One Planet Sac 3) and a few clothing items. Thanks Jamie.


Adventure Travel Magazine
Vegetarian Life
Vegan Backpacker
Good Magazine
Lisa Dempster
Tasty Trek – Landey, Anders and DM are doing the Te Araroa in 2010
Steve Walk NZ – Steve is attempting a world record on the Te Araroa in 2010
ONE.LIFE – Shalane and Alex are doing the Te Araroa in 2010

Remember, if you’d like to help out in some way, or even just to say hi, email me at

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