Three generations of a Border family will tackle the Kokoda Track next week

TRAINING: Peter Clancy, Brad Pietsch, Michael Pietsch,Hayden Keatings and Paul Bennie will tackle the Kokoda Track together later this month after months of training along Nail Can Hill. Picture: JAMES WILTSHIRE
TRAINING: Peter Clancy, Brad Pietsch, Michael Pietsch,Hayden Keatings and Paul Bennie will tackle the Kokoda Track together later this month after months of training along Nail Can Hill. Picture: JAMES WILTSHIRE

Three generations of a Border family will tackle the Kokoda Track next week.

After months of training across Nail Can Hill with packs as heavy as 20 kilograms on their backs, Michael Pietsch will have his son Brad and grandson Hayden by his side for the nine-day expedition.

And for the 73-year-old it was seeing Paralympian Kurt Fearnley complete the trek on just his hands which prompted Mr Pietsch to round up his family and mates and lock it in.

"It is a bucket list and I just thought it was something we could do together," he said.

"I saw Kurt Fearnley crawled it and I just thought that is incredible and if he can do it so can I.

"I have been training hard for six months and I'm not going to have a porter so I will carry my own pack like those young blokes that went 100 years ago did.

"I got two new knees done three years ago and I have been getting stronger over the six months so I think I have never been fitter."

FAMILY: Michael Pietsch, 73 (middle) with son Brad Pietsch (left) and grandson Hayden Keatings (right) will walk the Kokoda Track together. Picture: JAMES WILTHSIRE

FAMILY: Michael Pietsch, 73 (middle) with son Brad Pietsch (left) and grandson Hayden Keatings (right) will walk the Kokoda Track together. Picture: JAMES WILTHSIRE

Mr Pietsch said the group are heading off on Tuesday after the long weekend and will tackle the 96km Track with Indigenous leaders.

"I wanted to go with the fuzzy wuzzys as their relatives carried out our wounded 100 years ago it makes it a bit more emotional," he said.

"I did national service in '66 in Malaya with 8th battalion. We didn't fire a shot in anger but we ate all the pommy world war two rations and I thought that was worth a medal."

Mr Pietsch's former neighbour Peter Clancy is also taking his son along and Paul Bennie is also part of the team who will take the "tradition Kokoda route".

"We are going the way the troupes went from Owers' Corner to Kokoda," Mr Pietsch said.

Despite his obvious adventurous nature Mr Pietsch said his biggest challenge will be handling the heat.

LAST TRAINING: The group walked 9 kilometres on Sunday as their last group training session before they walk Kokoda next week. Picture: JAMES WILTSHIRE

LAST TRAINING: The group walked 9 kilometres on Sunday as their last group training session before they walk Kokoda next week. Picture: JAMES WILTSHIRE

"I don't think it is carrying the weight, it is 70 per cent motivation and 30 per cent fitness," he said.

"The heat will be a big challenge I think but every 30 minutes or so we get to stop and have a rest so I think we just go at our own pace and we will do it all together so it will be fine.

"I think it is all going to be hard but once I get there I will let you know."

Despite some jokes from his son and grandson about "making sure his will is in order" Mr Pietsch said his age doesn't worry him.

"We will get it done," he said. "It is quite emotional doing it with my son and grandson though.

"It will be great doing it together and I am so proud of them."

Five members of the group did their final team training on Sunday walking about nine kilometres from the bottom of Monument Hill and onto Nail Can Hill.