The Adventure Gene

Tom and Maddie – About Us

We are Aussie hiking guides and endurance athletes based in Canberra, Australia. When we aren’t hiking long distance trails, we are running or riding our bikes. Over the past 8 years, we have hiked over 30,000km with highlights including the Greater Patagonian Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail. Tom has set self-supported Fastest Known Times (FKTs) on the Australian Alps Walking Track and the Bibbulmun Track. Together, Tom and Maddie have set the self-supported FKT on the Te Araroa, with Maddie being the fastest female to have ever completed the trail.

After graduating from university, we decided not to pursue PhDs in physics and dived head first into a career as hiking guides. From our experiences travelling and guiding, we believe that the best way to explore this earth is using your own two feet.

Far too often, we meet people who dream of adventure, but don’t think they have the skills or ability required. We created The Adventure Gene to share our knowledge and experience, and hopefully convince people that their outdoor aspirations are more realistic than they think.

All of the content we post, such as track guides, reviews, and gear lists, is our attempt to help others successfully plan and execute their own trips. When we recommended gear, we evaluate everything based on two primary considerations:

  1. Will it help keep you safe and comfortable?
  2. Is it worth carrying?

On our hikes we have found that an enjoyable experience often hinges on having a reasonable pack weight. We don’t think sore shoulders and bruised hips are a normal or necessary part of hiking. In fact, we think that a total pack weight of 3-6kg (without food and water) is comfortable and achievable for nearly anyone.

Hopefully this website can give back to the outdoor communities that have inspired us, allowing us to share our experiences and help others get out on the trails. After all, we believe The Adventure Gene is in all of us 😉.

Tom and Maddie