The Highway Man Grant 'John' Cadoret travels through Dubbo

SWAGMAN: John Cadoret has been wandering the highways of eastern Australia for more than 40 years, becoming a regional icon after his first television appearance on Australian Story in 2004. Photo: WILLIAM OWENS
SWAGMAN: John Cadoret has been wandering the highways of eastern Australia for more than 40 years, becoming a regional icon after his first television appearance on Australian Story in 2004. Photo: WILLIAM OWENS

Dubbo welcomed the return of well-known swagman Grant 'John' Cadoret, who made his slow walk into town on Wednesday.

Mr Cadoret has been wandering the highways of Eastern Australia for more than 40 years, becoming a regional icon after his first television appearance on Australian Story in 2004.

In 1977, at just 22 years of age, he decided to leave his Melbourne bank job and never look back, living his life on the road.

His endless roaming has lead to the nickname The Highway Man.

ALSO MAKING NEWS:

"I said I was taking a three months holiday and just took off. After a while I thought this was alright so I just kept on going," Mr Cadoret explained.

Now in his mid-sixties, Mr Cadoret recently made the trip up from Cooma along the Newell Highway, and says he intends to continue to head north towards Tamworth and then eventually the top end of Queensland.

I said I was taking a three months holiday and just took off. After a while I thought this was alright so I just kept on going.

Grant 'John' Cadoret

"My walk takes a loop, I just go up to Northern Queensland and then turn around and travel back down to Victoria," he said.

"I've got a brother and sister in Ballarat [Victoria], and when he was alive my dad was in Caloundra [Queensland] so I'd stop there and say hello to him as well, although these days I just keep wandering around there".

Mr Cadoret said he enjoyed the sense of freedom and immersion in the Australian wilderness.

"No one is telling me what to do, if I get fed up I can always go camp in the bushes".

However, having spent most of his life exposed to the Australian elements, Mr Cadoret believes that the heat and dry spells in rural areas are lasting longer, making his travels all the more difficult.

"The heat definitely last's a lot longer, at the moment I do a bit - sit down, do a bit sit down," he said.

A Facebook group dedicated to the swagman's travels has been created by a group of people on the NSW Central Coast, who regularly update their members on Mr Cadoret's endless journey.

The Facebook group has more than 18,000 members.

While he does not ask nor expect any assistance, such updates allow everyday Australians to assist him with food, water and other supplies.

The updates also ensure Mr Cadoret is being regularly checked up upon.

This story The Highway Man passes through Dubbo on way up north first appeared on Daily Liberal.