Man walking 2000km from Adelaide to Maroochydore for beyondblue

He’s the man who is travelling 2000km on foot for beyondblue.

31-year-old John Dean, better known as ‘Walkabout Dun Dean’ on social media, is walking from Adelaide to Maroochydore to create awareness for those suffering with mental illness.

'Walkabout Dun Dean' is walking 2000km from Adelaide to Maroochydore to create awareness for mental health.

'Walkabout Dun Dean' is walking 2000km from Adelaide to Maroochydore to create awareness for mental health.

“It has been absolutely amazing so far and some of the stories that I’ve heard and people that I’ve met really make it worthwhile. It is very, very rewarding,” he said.

Whilst recently going through a difficult time, John, who has always loved the outdoors, decided to go walking.

“I needed to get out and clear my own head,” he said.

“I didn’t want to be that guy on the couch. I decided I was going to go for a walk.”

Short walks however, weren’t enough.

It was then that John decided he was going to walk to his sister’s in Maroochydore, from Adelaide.

His great 2000 kilometre journey began on April 5 and after walking for five weeks, he arrived at his half way point of Forbes on Friday, May 12.

“I made it to Forbes. That’s just over halfway now of the 2000 kilometre goal of mine. It’s all raising money and awareness for Beyond Blue.

“I chose ‘beyondblue’ as my major charity partner on this journey as their central ethos of ‘hope, recover and resilience’ resonates with me in my current personal situation; and likely with many Australians,” he said.

He is planning to arrive in Maroochydore on June 13.

“It’s probably going to take me another five weeks to get there. If I can do 40 kilometres a day from now on, I’ll be able to get there in time.

“On average I cover 35 kilometres [each day] – that is where my body really starts taking its toll and starts hurting on me,” he said.

Pulling his ‘WADD Mobile’, which is made up of two bike trailers weighing an extra 80 kilograms, John always has essentials that will last him four to five days at a time. 

“A lot of people have given me hugs – they’ve pulled over and told me their story.

“To know that I am helping other people is a real reward. It makes me feel like this is all very, very worthwhile and it’s a lot bigger than just me and dealing with my own stuff now. One step at a time, I will get to Maroochydore.”