[at-l] Irish Times encourages a hike on the AT

Jack Vanderbijl jacko_1956 at hotmail.com
Sat Feb 18 16:42:55 CST 2012

Despite the article I'm not sure if you'll get too many from Ireland.  They're not that far behind Greece as a country hard hit by economic downturns from what I can gather.
We have currently a new influx of Irish into Australia on short and long term "working holidays" as they can't get work in Ireland.

Australians with an interest in hiking (myself included) however, are in a different situation.
Due to the boom in our mining sector our economy is growing and while it's "patchy" (isn't the distribution of all wealth?), we have some people with very high disposable incomes at the moment.
If you are in a tourist attracting area you will probably notice the % of Australians coming through to be rising over the last 2 years.  A large part of this is that when I started looking at hiking the AT a couple of years ago our dollar bought about 80 cents US.  We currently get about $1.08.  The USA and Canada are increasingly being looked at here as very affordable.

Unfortunately the reverse means Australia is not as cheap for you to do the opposite.  

As many of these things always seem to cycle, I am hoping the trend remains as is until after I do the AT in 2013 and then it reverses a bit so any friends I make over there can come and do my trail - the Bibbulmun.

At least hiking is one of the cheapest holidays around anyway.

 We might get more international hikrs…..wouldn’t that be nice !! Rosie/mdhiker
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