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You, Your Safety and the Tasmanian Aboriginal People


Whilst you don't need to be an athlete, ideally you will be in good health, enjoy a reasonable level of fitness and possess a sense of adventure.

If you are not an experienced or comfortable camper we recommend the 3-day experience that is based from the Forest Lagoon standing camp. This facility provides basic amenities such as covered kitchen, dining facilities, accommodation tents with standing headroom and an environmentally sensitive toilet facility. However, it should be remembered that this camp is located in a very remote and pristine wilderness area and that all supplies must be brought in by boat or by plane.

On our 7-day sea kayaking expedition you will need to be a comfortable wilderness camper and to have enough paddling experience to know that you'll enjoy repeated days of paddling.

Your Safety

Taking visitors to Tasmania's remote southwest requires us to have a rock-solid and extensive risk management plan. We are proud to say that over the years Band-Aids have been the only safety items used!

All Roaring 40°s Kayaking's trip leaders hold sea kayaking and wilderness first aid qualifications.

For every trip, standard safety equipment includes:

  • satellite phone
  • Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB)
  • hand-held marine VHF radio
  • flare kits
  • towing equipment
  • group first aid kit
  • equipment repair kit
  • spare paddles

Tasmania's Aboriginal People

Tasmania's Aboriginal people occupied southwest Tasmania for 30,000 years or more. Indeed during the last Ice Age they may have been the most southerly people on earth.

The Needwonnee Aboriginal people were one of four bands that made up the Southwest nation in Tasmania. The Needwonnee lived in villages of huts, close to fresh water and food. To paddle the myriad creeks, rivers and lagoons dissecting their homelands, they built canoes from the fibrous bark of paperbark trees.

You will get to experience the Needwonnee way of life on the award-winning Needwonnee Walk at Melaleuca. You can expect to see a traditional campsite, including huts, tools, hearthfire and even a paperbark canoe – all created from materials in the surrounding forest. 

European settlers in the early 1800s decimated Aboriginal culture across the whole island of Tasmania. Whaling and timber-getting first brought Europeans to the southwest, but this presence was short-lived - in just 20 years the resources were depleted, leaving the remote southwest wilderness largely forgotten and unoccupied.