Walk this Land

Mountain to Mouth 2016: Day 2 in summary

Mountain to Mouth, Geelong's two day 80km Extreme Arts walk, has wrapped up its 2016 event lauded as a great success. Over 500 people registered to walk across the event, including 47 who completed the entire 80 kilometres, while over 6000 people attended the ceremonies that took place.

Together they contributed to the creation of a contemporary songline – a pathway across the regions of Geelong and Queenscliff inspired by traditional Indigenous pathways used for thousands of years to navigate across the land through song, story, dance and painting. Over 70 artists were commissioned to create work across the twelve walking circles and three ceremonies, which addressed issues relating to the environment they were set in as well as responding to this year's theme of “Air”.

Bright and early on day 2 of Mountain to Mouth 2016!  Image by Dean Walters Photography

Bright and early on day 2 of Mountain to Mouth 2016!

Image by Dean Walters Photography

"Lost River View" by Jennifer McElwee.  Image by Jo Mitchell.

"Lost River View" by Jennifer McElwee.

Image by Jo Mitchell.

On an early Saturday morning, on the second day of the Mountain to Mouth journey, a large group of fresh and seasoned walkers began the march to Barwon River Rowing Club. Representatives from the Karingal Foundation led the way out of the city and past the stadium before crossing the bridge and descending onto the walking track by the river. Walkers were greeted by people wielding lanterns whilst drumming plastic containers upon arrival at the sixth Songline Station. Here attendees appreciated Jennifer McElwee's magnificent sculpture "Lost River View", which is modelled on the shape of the river featured in Eugene von Guerard's painting View of Geelong 1856. The walking circle surrounding it was constructed with pots and pans that represented early settlements by the river and were filled with dry ice, creating a picturesque scene as the sun rose in the distance. Jennifer's walking circle examined the changing of environments driven by human settlement, giving walkers much to ponder upon as they continued the journey towards Christies Road led this time by local crossing supervisors.

Crossing supervisors carrying Canoe alongside the Barwon River towards Christies Rd.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Crossing supervisors carrying Canoe alongside the Barwon River towards Christies Rd.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

The long march to Christies Rd.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

The long march to Christies Rd.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Mirjana Margetic continued the theme of examining environmental issues at the eighth Songline Station. Upon arrival, walkers were led through a corridor of bush, where birds and nests made from recycled materials lay amongst the shrubs to be discovered by passers. As you exit the corridor, you are confronted with the sculpture of a tree with plastic bags full of different coloured liquids representing pollutants. The walking circle encourages viewers to consider the environmental issues facing the region and uses the pleasant walk through the green corridor full of birds and nests to make the tree at the end all the more provocative. Mirjana was on the ground enthusiastically giving tours to detail the installation's message and her artistic background to everyone who was interested. 

Mirjana Margetic speaking about her installation at Christies Rd.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Mirjana Margetic speaking about her installation at Christies Rd.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Ingrid Petterson's walking circle "Hearth Stories".  Image by Azaan Naqshbandi

Ingrid Petterson's walking circle "Hearth Stories".

Image by Azaan Naqshbandi

From there the journey continued along the Bellarine Rail Trail as the overcast weather gave way for another beautiful and sunny day, with Canoe now carried by the Geelong Sustainability group. After a particularly long stage of walking, the procession arrived at Drysdale Station where Ingrid Petterson gave participants a ritualistic and sensual experience of sight, sound and scent in a charming and slightly pagan-esque walking circle. 

Alapcas leading the procession of Canoe.  Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

Alapcas leading the procession of Canoe.

Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

Walkers were then provided a choice between continuing their journey on foot or riding Bellarine Railway's historic locomotive to Swan Bay, the site of the ninth walking circle. A small herd of alpacas escorted Canoe as it left Drysdale, with a few others posing for photos and seeing the train travelers off. As the journey descends into Queenscliff, participants are treated to outstanding views of Swan Bay and the entrance of Port Phillip Bay as the route passes by olive groves, vineyards and thickets of ancient moonah. 

The ninth walking circle was located beside the Swan Bay Marine and Freshwater Discovery Centre, where a number of walkers and visitors took up the opportunity to discover more about the wildlife of the bay with aquariums featuring a variety of fish species and a touch tank where visitors could get closer to animals like starfish and crabs. The walking circle itself housed an epic and monolithic basalt installation by renowned arts practitioner Glenn Romanis, "Banjo Ray", depicting one of the bays most famous residents. At this point, a lot of walkers seemed rather wearied, with a few taking a quick nap under the sun, while others proclaimed their intention to use the event's shuttle service for the next couple of stages.

An aerial shot of "Banjo Ray" by Glenn Romanis (If a person was in the shot they would take up about the space of one of the eyes).  Image by Jarrod Boord.

An aerial shot of "Banjo Ray" by Glenn Romanis (If a person was in the shot they would take up about the space of one of the eyes).

Image by Jarrod Boord.

Walking by Swan Bay.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Walking by Swan Bay.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

The procession reaches the coast side.    Image by Dean Walters Photography.

The procession reaches the coast side. 

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

"Wind Worx II.1000" by Brian Thompson, overlooking the sea at Point Lonsdale.  Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

"Wind Worx II.1000" by Brian Thompson, overlooking the sea at Point Lonsdale.

Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

Those who pressed on soon hit the coast, where they were met by a king tide before arriving at Point Lonsdale village. On the foreshore overlooking the sea, engineer turned artist Brian Thompson displayed an imposing and impressive metal structure inspired by the H2O cycle. The installation was meticulously constructed so that it would respond to changes in the weather, remaining in a state of continual interaction with the wind, sun, clouds and sea. Across the road meanwhile, the charming band of ukulele players were back on ground to serenade walkers and passers by as they rested and admired the artwork. 

The hooded plover lovers taking over the carrying of Canoe.  Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

The hooded plover lovers taking over the carrying of Canoe.

Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

Next in line for the duty of carrying Canoe was a group of hooded plover conservationists, aptly self-dubbed "the hooded plover lovers". One of their charismatic members gave a quick speech discussing the importance of protecting these birds before the group donned their full-head plover masks and set off towards Ocean Grove. 

The threat of rain and a persistent king tide threatened to spoil the adventure, with the latter delaying the erection of Suyin Honeywell's beautiful "beacon of hope" walking circle installation set on the shores of Ocean Grove's main beach. Both gave way in time for everything to work out perfectly, and droves of beach goers were drawn to the spectacle of the tenth Songline Station on the beach opening, followed by the eventual arrival of Canoe and its procession. 

Suyin Honeywell's bamboo sculpture at the centre of the walking circle at Ocean Grove.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Suyin Honeywell's bamboo sculpture at the centre of the walking circle at Ocean Grove.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Crossing the final bridge.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Crossing the final bridge.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

All of a sudden we'd reached the final leg of the journey, as young lifeguards from the Ocean Grove Surf Life Saving Club led the way towards Barwon Heads Foreshore for the final Songline Station and closing ceremony. The Mountain to Mouth procession crossed the last bridge to the mouth of the river and was greeted with cheers as thousands of people enjoyed the final walking circle was took positions on the foreshore, eagerly waiting for the closing ceremony to begin. Artists Michelle Fifer Spooner and Julie Shaw constructed a large sculpture of a feather, serving as a 'welcome home' totem echoing the journey and marking the end of the Extreme Arts walk. 

"Feather" by Michelle Fifer Spooner and Julie Shaw.   Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

"Feather" by Michelle Fifer Spooner and Julie Shaw.

Image by Daniel Huigsloot.

And that was 80km done! Familiar faces from the previous ceremonies returned to give speeches proclaiming the success of its event and how magical it has been. Mountain to Mouth artistic director Meme McDonald commented that "Mountain to Mouth 2016 has exceeded our dreams of what could be achieved artistically - with what each artist contributed creatively - but also in how much it was embraced by the local communities along the walk."

The Gathering of the Elements ceremony was a truly magical end complete with stunning visuals and moving music that contributed to an Olympic Games-esque sense of grandeur. A group of drummers lead the procession of Canoe down from the final walking circle to the edge of the water. From across the other side of the river, a large egg floated towards spectators on a boat, watched over by spirit bird dancers who had appeared in the previous two ceremonies.

Hatching of the egg.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Hatching of the egg.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

The school of fish puppets at The Gathering of the Elements ceremony.   Image by Dean Walters Photography .

The school of fish puppets at The Gathering of the Elements ceremony.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

As a school of fish puppets dashed across the foreshore, the egg hatched, with newly birthed spirit bird dancer performing a delightful dance as she brought the water carried by Canoe from the rockwell at You Yangs Big Rock and returned it to the sea. Canoe was then set alight and drifted out to sea, marking the end of a ritualistic journey and traversing of a contemporary songline. The crowd left knowing they'd seen something special and wishing something so magical could occur again sooner than in two years time. 

Water from the You Yangs rockwell is returned to the ocean.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Water from the You Yangs rockwell is returned to the ocean.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Canoe is set aflame.   Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Canoe is set aflame.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

The end of the journey.   

The end of the journey.

 

If you have any stories or pictures you'd like to share from Mountain to Mouth 2016, please do so across our social media channels. We would love to see them.

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/mtomgeelong

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mtomgeelong

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MountaintoMouth

 

Mountain to Mouth 2016: Day 1 in summary

Mountain to Mouth, Geelong's two day 80km Extreme Arts walk, has wrapped up its 2016 event lauded as a great success. Over 500 people registered to walk across the event, including 47 who completed the entire 80 kilometres, while over 6000 people attended the ceremonies that took place.

Together they contributed to the creation of a contemporary songline – a pathway across the regions of Geelong and Queenscliff inspired by traditional Indigenous pathways used for thousands of years to navigate across the land through song, story, dance and painting. Over 70 artists were commissioned to create work across the twelve walking circles and three ceremonies, which addressed issues relating to the environment they were set in as well as responding to this year's theme of “Air”.

Parks Victoria and Canoe artists Leonard Tebegetu and Mahony Kiely carrying Canoe through the first walking circle at the conclusion of The Gathering of the Elders ceremony.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography

Parks Victoria and Canoe artists Leonard Tebegetu and Mahony Kiely carrying Canoe through the first walking circle at the conclusion of The Gathering of the Elders ceremony.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography

The journey begins.  Image by Dean Walters Photography

The journey begins.

Image by Dean Walters Photography

The journey began midday on Friday 6 May at the You Yangs, where a large crowd gathered at Big Rock on a beautiful sunny day for The Gathering of the Elders ceremony and the start of the walk. Lead by Wadawurrung Elder Uncle Bryon Powell, the ceremony invited walkers and spectators to take a moment to acknowledge the land and its ancestors, to reflect upon where we come from as well as where we will travel to from here.

This was followed by the unveiling of Canoe, the lead ephemeral artwork designed by Papua New Guinean artist Leonard Tebegetu and Australian artist Mahony Kiely. Canoe's important task was to carry water from the ancient rockwell at You Yangs Big Rock to the mouth of Barwon River, where it is returned to the ocean in a spiritual and ritualistic journey. Once this water was harvested from the rockwell, the journey had begun.

CFA carry Canoe to Lara.  Image by Dean Walters Photography

CFA carry Canoe to Lara.

Image by Dean Walters Photography

 

Various community groups were invited to carry Canoe for a stage of the walk as a way of honouring them. After Parks Victoria carried Canoe out of the ceremony, CFA members from Lara and Corio took over for the first eleven and a half kilometre leg of the journey, through farmland, bush and along the beautiful Kevin Hoffman Walk.

After what seemed to be a very sweaty journey for the local firefighters, the procession arrived at the historic Lara RSL where artists David Dellafiora and Teresa Lawrence displayed their handmade pinwheels assembled from recycled materials and animated by the wind.

Accompanying the installation were a charming group of local ukulele players, who sang and played while RSL members put on a sausage sizzle for those in attendance. 

 

Handmade pinwheels animated by wind at Lara RSL, the second Songline Station.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

Handmade pinwheels animated by wind at Lara RSL, the second Songline Station.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

Canoe journeys through the wetlands.  Image by Dean Walters Photography

Canoe journeys through the wetlands.

Image by Dean Walters Photography

After a brief rest the procession was off again, on route to Limeburners Lagoon. With the You Yangs already far in the distance, walkers were treated to more stunning sites as they walked alongside wetlands on the Hovells Creek Trail. These wetlands are an internationally protected site under the Ramsar treaty. Simon Macaulay used his walking circle installation to focus attention on the importance of protecting such sites. A large paper cube serving as a meditation space sat beside the walking circle, and the surrounding area was blanketed in a galaxy of small paper cubes that Simon was also handing out to everyone in attendance to remind them of the relationship between beauty and fragility. 

Simon Macaulay's walking circle MC3 at Limeburners Lagoon.   Image by Ed Sloane Photography

Simon Macaulay's walking circle MC3 at Limeburners Lagoon. 

Image by Ed Sloane Photography

Artist Simon Macaulay talks walkers through the messages of his installation.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography

Artist Simon Macaulay talks walkers through the messages of his installation.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography

Ford factory workers carrying Canoe through industrial Geelong.  Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Ford factory workers carrying Canoe through industrial Geelong.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

As the sun set, the procession of walkers set off with Ford factory workers leading the way carrying Canoe. Walkers were treated to the beautifully lit up night time sites of Geelong's industrial area as they continued on to Moorpanyal Park. At the fourth Songline Station and walking circle in the journey, totems of "pop archaeology" greeted them.

Artist Miranda Kelly utilised discarded and obsolete objects to construct these totems which examined the prevalent nature of consumer-driven society in discarding materials that were once valued greatly, inviting people to consider the consequences of the debris that is created in the process. Deakin University representatives, who helped in the creation of the totems, then took over the reigns of carrying Canoe to Geelong's city centre.

Pop archaeology at Moorpanyal Park.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

Pop archaeology at Moorpanyal Park.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

Pop archaeology at Moorpanyal Park.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

Pop archaeology at Moorpanyal Park.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

Once the procession arrived in the city Mountain to Mouth collided with Geelong After Dark, Central Geelong's annual night of pop up arts. At Steampacket Gardens by the foreshore, Jacinta Leitch and Dare Tekin created a ritualistic space bordered by kinetic sculptures. This walking circle marked the half way point of the journey as well as being the site of Mountain to Mouth's second ceremony, The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities.

Deakin University academics arrive at Steampacket Gardens with Canoe for The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.  Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Deakin University academics arrive at Steampacket Gardens with Canoe for The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.

Image by Dean Walters Photography.

Canoe sits in the centre of the dance space for the Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

Canoe sits in the centre of the dance space for the Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

The ceremony treated spectators to a visually dazzling and heatwarming display of music and dance as people from a diverse range of cultures and backgrounds came together to celebrate diversity and connect in the timeless tradition of dance. Walkers then spent the rest of the evening enjoying Geelong After Dark, or for those who had walked the entirety of the event thus far, retired to get a big rest for the second (and slightly larger) half of the walk the following day.

The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.  Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

The Gathering of the City: Geelong Connected Communities ceremony.

Image by Ed Sloane Photography.

If you have any stories or pictures you'd like to share from Mountain to Mouth 2016, please do so across our social media channels. We would love to see them.

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/mtomgeelong

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mtomgeelong

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MountaintoMouth

 

Mountain to Mouth 2016 artists get ready for the weekend

Our artists have been working very hard preparing for our Extreme Arts walk. We have over 70 artists working on this event, not including our extensive team of performers in ceremonies and countless volunteers from the community engaged in workshops and other aspects of the event. Here is a little look at some of the works in progress.

Here is a preview of Jennifer McElwee's magnificent sculpture, part of her Walking Circle at the sixth Songline Station. See the whole thing at 6am on Saturday 7 May at the Barwon River Rowing Precinct. 

 

 

 

Pop archaeology is taking over at Merinda Kelly's workshop in preparation for her Walking Circle at Moorpanyal Park.

Interactive and bound to be a highlight of the event, come on down to the fourth Songline Station, open from 5:30pm on Friday 6 May.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jacinta Leitch and Dare Tekin creating kinetic sculptures in the workshop for their Walking Circle at Steampacket Gardens.

This Songline Station is the central point of the journey and is where Mountain to Mouth collides with Geelong After Dark in the city. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some kids getting involved in a workshop designing birds and nests made from recycled materials for Mirjana Margetic's Walking Circle at Christies Rd.

 

 

 

 

 

Mountain to Mouth artistic director Meme McDonald and Canoe artists Leonard Tebegetu and Mahony Maia Kiely scouting the land in preparation for the event.

 

 

That's right! A sneak preview of Canoe itself, which is currently spending the week at the National Wool Museum. See it in action this weekend, starting from the Gathering of the Elders ceremony at You Yangs Big Rock at 12:30pm.

 

Mountain to Mouth (6-7 May) is Geelong's multi-award winning journey of discovery, an 80km walk over two days and 11 stages. Register Now 

 

Top 5 reasons to go to Mountain to Mouth 2016 this weekend


1 - Art like you've never seen it before!

From beaches to farmlands to wetlands to ancient mountaintops, prepare to experience extreme arts in extreme and unexpected environments.  The ephemeral art installations at Mountain to Mouth 2016 vary dramatically in style, genre and aesthetic.

They reflect the history of the area as well as addressing issues facing the environment of their setting. Mountain to Mouth 2016 is an unmissable chance to view these unique works which exist so temporarily. 

 

2 - Help us replant the land!

50% of tickets sold to Mountain to Mouth 2016 go towards funding an indigenous revegetation program across the Geelong and Queenscliff region.

This initiative will help retain the regions natural beauty, its biodiversity and ecological future. By walking this land, you're helping to preserve its future.

 

 

3 - Discover the land!

This is an opportunity to experience and discover the Geelong and Queenscliff regions in a very personal yet communal way.

The diversity of this region will startle and move you, with iconic coastal beaches, rural farmlands, industrial ports and more all along the route of the walk. This walk allows you to forge a bond with the land and its various intricacies. 

 

 

4 - Get fit!

What better way to motivate you to embark upon a significant physical challenge than to see Extreme Arts, protect the environment and discover the land?

The same question with the different aspects of it rearranged can be posed to just as great of an effect. That is what makes Mountain to Mouth so special and unique. You can choose the distance, and you can choose the challenge. 

 

 

5 - Connect with history

Discovery is a large component of this event. By witnessing the different areas of the region, you discover more about the nature of its past, its present and the reality of its future through the narratives told by the artists, local historians and indigenous elders. 

One final reason: Mountain to Mouth only occurs every two years, don't miss out!

 Mountain to Mouth (6-7 May) is Geelong's multi-award winning journey of discovery, an 80km walk over two days and 11 stages. Register Now 

Are you ready for Mountain to Mouth 2016?

Mountain to Mouth 2016 is just under a week away, meaning it's time to make sure you are registered and prepared for the event. This means discussing a few things some of us might forget in the excitement of it all.


          What to Bring

  • Ensure you have comfortable clothes for a variety of hot, cold, wet and dry weather, including raincoats, hat/hood, poncho etc. 
     
  • Durable, well-fitting footwear suitable for walking distances.
     
  • Thick and breathable socks with anti-chafing products for walkers planning on doing long distances.
     
  • Sunscreen and refillable water bottle.
     
  • Trail mix/snack food and money to purchase food.
     
  • A fully charged torch if you are walking at night or early in the morning.
     
  • A fully charged mobile phone.
     

    Amenities

  • Toilets will be available at each of the 12 Songline Stations during the walk. This includes accessible toilets. 
     
  • Drinking water is available at each Songline Station. 
     
  • Toilets are also available near Suma Park railway siding, mid point between Drysdale and Swan Bay. The stages from Drysdale to Swan Bay, and from Point Lonsdale to Ocean Grove, are particularly long. Walkers should plan accordingly.




          Transport and Parking
 

  • Free shuttle buses are available to registered walkers between Songline Stations along the walk. Use your Mountain to Mouth 2016 passport to gain access. No payment or booking is necessary for these coaches if you are a registered walker.

    Note that these buses take walkers back through all the previous Songline Stations before travelling forward along the path of the walk. Shuttle buses will depart from each Songline Station approximately 15 minutes after Canoe has departed. To get an idea of the timing, consult the timetable.
     
  • A coach will depart from a signed bus bay at Geelong Railway Station, to Big Rock at the You Yangs at 12pm Friday 6 May, for the Gathering of the Elders ceremony and the start of the walk. 

    A coach will depart from a signed bus bay at Barwon Heads Foreshore to Geelong Railway Station at 8pm Saturday 7 May, after the conclusion of the event.

    Seats for these trips need to be reserved through the registration portal. Tickets for these trips are $5 return and are payable at the time of registration or in cash on the bus. 
     
  • Limited parking will be available within the vicinity of the Songline Stations.
     
  • Please note that parking is very limited at You Yangs Big Rock on Friday 6 May and walkers should plan for this in advance.


          Food
 

  • Karingal will be providing fruit and other food goods for a gold coin donation.
     
  • A number of Songline Stations will feature a variety of food and beverages from local vendors that can be purchased. 
     
  • There will be extensive dining options in the Central Geelong area. Check out www.centralgeelong.com.au for more information. 
     
  • At the Heads is a beachfront eatery in Barwon Heads, located within the vicinity of the last Songline Station, which they officially sponsor. We highly recommend walkers visit this charming, relaxed, nautical-themed restaurant which uses sustainable produce and methods to deliver delicious meals. 

 

         The Walk

  • It is highly recommended that you train in advance and consider your physical fitness level. Contact your GP for advice if you have any considerations. Have a realistic goal for your participation in the walk and be aware of your limitations. Please look at our fitness guide to get an idea of an appropriate amount of training in preparation for the event.
     
  • All care has been taken to ensure that the route follows the safest pathways wherever possible, however we cannot guarantee that the condition of the path meets your abilities. Consult the timetable for details of the pathway or the Route Marshals on the walk for advice. 
     
  • Make sure you walk at a pace that suits you and rest regularly. There is no need to keep pace with Canoe or other walkers. 
     
  • We recommend that walkers planning on completing long distances do so in company and/or arrange support teams that can travel by car and carry belongings, provide nourishment, transport and moral support. 
     
  • Persons under 18 must be accompanied by an adult at all times. 

 

          Accessibility

  • Many parts of the walk are uneven, and include sealed and unsealed paths, as well as steps, inclines and declines. The stages between Songline Stations 10, 11 and 12, are along the beach, on wet sand, and across informal gravel paths. Walkers may wish to personally assess the stages or only complete the Walking Circles (which are free to everyone). Certain aspects of this walk are not fully accessible.

    Please note that the stage from Steampacket Gardens to the Barwon River, which will take place on Saturday 7 May, is via a footpath. The stage involves a moderate gradient up to McKillop Street, a moderate decline to the Barwon River, as well as a short gravel path to the sealed path towards Barwon River rowing sheds. We recommend that you make a self assessment about this journey based on your individual requirements. 


    Anything else?
     
  • Everyone is welcome to experience any of the 12 Walking Circles or 3 ceremonies without registering. It is a great way for friends and family to be involved for free. The registration process constitutes a donation to the Green Corridor strategy, the artists and the future of Mountain to Mouth. 
     
  • The Connecting Memories app app gives you access to a rich collection of digital stories about the iconic places and people of Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsula. The app allows you to hear diverse voices telling fascinating local stories through short films, audio narration, music, images and text.  Find out more information here.
     

The origins of Mountain to Mouth

Mountain to Mouth was envisioned as part of the "Connecting Identities" project in 2007, which was created in response to the rapid changes that were taking place at the time in the Geelong region across all levels of the community, the economy and the landscape. These changes and upheavals were felt by some to create a sense of discord and negative perception about the direction the region was headed.

This project aimed to create links across the increasingly diverse municipality and reinforce the importance of local places and community by encouraging people to connect with the land and with each other. Mountain to Mouth was a vessel to achieve this through a collaborative, community based project that told an important story with important messages. Establishing a connection to the land could be done by introducing the indigenous concept of the Songline - a path across the land recorded through a song describing landmarks and natural phenomena. Mountain to Mouth was to create a contemporary songline, allowing the community to establish a significant bond and sense of respect for the land and its history. 

The first version of this project in 2009 was a 54km relay from Barwon Heads to the You Yangs, and was called Mouth to Mountain. 144 ambassadors representing the 12 wards of Council carried water from Barwon Heads – kayaking, on horses, strolling, in processions, by train, in utes, on bike and foot. People of Geelong joined the relay at locations along the way, taking a moment to reflect on the gift of water, the memory it holds, the connection it makes between people and places, and the future it creates. Artworks marked the journey through iconic locations arriving at dusk for a big celebration at Big Rock.

The event was so well received in the community that it was redesigned in 2014 to be a larger and more inclusive event that would occur every two years. Mountain to Mouth 2014 was the first incarnation of the event as we know it today; an 80km walk over two days from the You Yangs to the mouth of Barwon Heads. 

Close to 1,000 people took part in some or all of the 80km journey, more than 80 artists worked with over 2,400 participants to create thousands of art works that featured along the journey, and an estimated 12,000 people gathered to watch various aspects of the event. With major awards and community appraisals under its belt, Mountain to Mouth aims to continue sharing this very unique and wonderful event with all aspects of the community and beyond this year, and for years to come.

 Mountain to Mouth is Geelong's multi-award winning journey of discovery, an 80km walk over two days and 11 stages. Register now.

 

 

Connecting Memories app update

The Connecting Memory app has just been updated to dramatically improve user experience, with easier layouts, smaller download size and seamless integration with online maps.

The app taps into a rich collection of digital stories about the iconic places and fascinating people of Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsula. Local voices tell local stories through film, spoken word, song, images and text. 

Stories are clustered around the footprint of the Mountain to Mouth Contemporary Songline, a path which extends from the You Yangs Regional Park mountain range to the beautiful Barwon Heads river. The app is a useful and experience enhancing companion for participants of Mountain to Mouth 2016 as it alerts you to nearby stories.

Travellers on the route can unearth content by traversing the land and walking circles based on ancient labyrinth designs to unlock stories as they pass through grasslands, industrial nightscapes, the city centre, rural landscapes and beaches across the diverse municipality. 

Highlights include Serendip wildlife sanctuary, Bob McGovern Path, Hovells Creek, Limeburners Lagoon, North Geelong and North Shore, Corio Bay, Western Bay walk, Geelong Waterfront, Steampacket Gardens, Bellarine Rail Trail, Swan Bay, Point Lonsdale, Ocean Grove Beach and Barwon Heads. 

Mountain to Mouth is Geelong's multi-award winning journey of discovery, an 80km walk over two days and 11 stages. Register now.

There's a distance for everyone at Mountain to Mouth 2016

With under 4 weeks to go until Mountain to Mouth 2016 (6-7 May), there is still time to commit to the walking program and train for one or more of the stages of Geelong's 80km Extreme Arts Walk.

Walkers at Mountain to Mouth 2014  Photo by Gerry Van Der Meer

Walkers at Mountain to Mouth 2014

Photo by Gerry Van Der Meer

Local Geelong resident Terri Osburn, who completed the whole 80km walk last time - a huge achievement - encourages others to do any part of the walk at any pace. She described one of the most surprising and memorable parts of the event to be the walk from Moorpanyal Park to Steampacket Gardens, 6.7km through the lit-up industrial landscape arriving in the city centre for Geelong After Dark. Terri says the lights coming from the industrial areas around the bay were amazing.

Industrial light show on the path from Moorpanyal Park to Steampacket Gardens

Industrial light show on the path from Moorpanyal Park to Steampacket Gardens

Mountain to Mouth has a distance for everyone with the longest stage being from Drysdale Station to Swan Bay, 13.9km. The shortest leg is the very scenic 2.8km from Swan Bay to Pt Lonsdale village along a flat, sealed path. Both occur on the Saturday afternoon of the second day (7 May). You choose the challenge, you choose the distance.  Download your Mountain to Mouth fitness program here.

Mountain to Mouth is Geelong's multi-award winning journey of discovery, an 80km walk over two days and 11 stages. Register now.

 

Mountain to Mouth 2016 unveils plans for three major walk ceremonies

Mountain to Mouth 2016 has unveiled plans for three major walk ceremonies which take place across the 80km journey of discovery on 6-7 May 2016. The three ceremonies celebrate the land, the heritage and the people of the Geelong region. 

GATHERING OF THE ELDERS

The first ceremony occurs at the beginning of the journey at You Yangs Big Rock. Co-directed by Wadawurrung Elder, Uncle Bryon Powell and Mountain to Mouth 2016 Artistic Director Meme McDonald, the silent ceremony focuses on acknowledging the land and its ancestors that walked on it. It gives participants of Mountain to Mouth 2016 the opportunity to contemplate the heritage of the land as well as the journey that lies ahead.

Central to the ceremony is the unveiling of “Canoe” - the ephemeral lead artwork designed by a yet to be announced major artist, that will be carried along the 80 kilometre journey. The sculpture will carry water from the ancient rockwell at Big Rock to rejoin the ocean at Barwon Heads at the conclusion of the journey.

Gathering of the Elders ceremony at Mountain to Mouth 2014  Photo by Gerry Van Der Meer

Gathering of the Elders ceremony at Mountain to Mouth 2014

Photo by Gerry Van Der Meer

 

GATHERING OF THE CITY: GEELONG CONNECTED COMMUNITIES

The second ceremony occurs at 8:10pm in Steampacket Gardens, when the journey of Mountain to Mouth 2016 collides with Geelong After Dark 2016, welcoming walkers to the city centre for a celebration of dance and bringing people together. Dancers from all parts of the city will gather people together to celebrate Mountain to Mouth 2016's theme of “Air”. Everyone is welcome to join in and be a part of the celebrations.

Those who would like to get involved as a dancer can express their interest at mtom@geelongcity.vic.gov.au

Gathering of the City at Mountain to Mouth 2014  Photo by Brien Cohn

Gathering of the City at Mountain to Mouth 2014

Photo by Brien Cohn

 

GATHERING OF THE ELEMENTS

The final ceremony will be held at the mouth of the Barwon River from 6pm on Saturday 7 May at Barwon Heads Jetty, marking the conclusion of the 80km journey. It is a ceremony of completion, acknowledging those elements that came together to support our journey both as individuals and as a community on Mountain to Mouth 2016.

In an expression of gratitude, this ceremony returns the precious water carried from You Yangs Big Rock, across 80 kilometres, to where river meets sea, where freshwater and salt become one, at the point of change and exchange, marking endings and beginnings, acknowledging rhythm and flow, standing in past, present and future, for this one moment together.

The closing ceremony also marks the end of the journey for the ephemeral artwork “Canoe”, an end point to consider the ephemeral nature of many aspects of life, the brief yet treasured moments that occur throughout it.

Gathering of the Elements ceremony 2014  Photo by Gloria Van Der Meer

Gathering of the Elements ceremony 2014

Photo by Gloria Van Der Meer

Mountain to Mouth is Geelong's multi-award winning journey of discovery, an 80km walk over two days and 11 stages. Register now.

 

 

Mountain to Mouth unveils 8 Week Walking Program to prepare for 2016 event

Mountain to Mouth 2016, Geelong's multi-award winning 80km extreme arts walk is set to kick off in just 8 weeks. In order to help participants prepare, we have put together an 8 week walking program, in conjunction with the City of Greater Geelong’s Swim Sport and Leisure network. 

Image: G. Van Der Meer

Designed in a flexible manner, the easy-to-follow program works as a guide that can be used by anyone regardless of age and fitness level. The program is designed to cater for a range of different goals, with a guide on how to walk a 5km distance, a 10km distance and more. 

This reflects the very nature of the Mountain to Mouth walk, in that participants can choose the distance and the challenge that suits them. Walk stages vary in distance from 3-14 kilometres each and participants can choose to walk any one or more of these stages, or the whole distance whilst experiencing edgy artworks that celebrate the land.  

The 8 week walking program is ideal for organisations or teams that are considering registering for Mountain to Mouth 2016 as a group. The program gives groups an opportunity to be involved in an enjoyable team-building exercise, improving the health of participants as well as strengthening their relationships. Organisations could schedule “walking meetings” as a way of participating in program in preparation for the event.

Special group (team) prices are available. 2 day “Pilgrim” passes are $450 for a group of 10, whilst 1 day “Standard” passes are $250 for a group of 10. Tickets can be purchased here. 

You choo-choose the distance, you choose the challenge.

Geelong’s multi-award winning extreme arts walk – Mountain to Mouth (M~M2016) and the iconic Bellarine Railway are teaming up to give M~M2016 participants a choice of walking or riding a train (in one section) hauled by a historic locomotive during M~M2016.

M~M2016 is an 80km extreme arts journey of discovery over two days (6 - 7 May 2016) and 11 stages, with participants walking from the You Yangs mountain range through Central Geelong, along the Barwon River, via the Bellarine Peninsula and out to the mouth of the Barwon River at Barwon Heads.  The route is punctuated with edgy artworks commissioned especially for M~M, bringing people together through shared experiences of extreme arts that celebrate the region.

The walk gives a rare opportunity for Geelong residents and visitors to walk across the land, with the 11 stages of the walk offering varying distances.

Now, M~M participants on day two of the event will have the opportunity to be on the historic train between Drysdale and Queenscliffe - participating in activities at the Drysdale Station and the Swan Bay Marine and Freshwater Discovery Centre.

City of Greater Geelong Bellarine Councillors John Irvine and Lindsay Ellis are encouraging people to either walk or ride the train during the extreme arts walk, which will take in stunning sights across the Bellarine Peninsula.

“During the journey you will pass through remnant bush land of the Bellarine Peninsula, before skirting the picturesque Swan Bay to arrive at Swan Bay Railway Station. The railway corridor features a variety of vistas to enjoy from the train, including an olive grove, vineyard and views of Queenscliff and Swan Bay,” said Cr Irvine.

“Upon arrival into Swan Bay, passengers are encouraged to include a visit to the Discovery Centre to gain an understanding of the marine and birdlife Swan Bay supports.  The Centre has aquariums with local marine and freshwater life and a touch tank where visitors can get closer to animals like seastars and crabs,” said Cr Ellis.

Mayor of the Borough of Queenscliffe Hélène Cameron is encouraging people of all ages and abilities to hop onboard the M~M Railway and enjoy the experience from a unique perspective.

“The railway is an integral part of Queenscliff’s local history and the combination of arts, culture and community provides for a wonderful day trip for both walkers and passengers alike.”

Tickets for the M~M walk train special are $20 (adults), $15 (child, senior) and $40 (family ticket, 2 adults , up to 3 children) and can be purchased directly from the Bellarine Railway: http://bellarinerailway.com.au/mountain-to-mouth.  Tickets for the walk can be purchased by visiting the M~M2016 website: www.mountaintomouth.com.au.