Table of Contents
The Sydney Bushwalker
A monthly bulletin of matters of interest to the Sydney Bush Walkers, C/- Ingersoll Hall, 256 Crown St., Sydney.
No.220. March, 1953. Price 6d.
|Editor||Jim Brown, 103 Gipps St, Drummoyne|
|Sales & Subs.||Jess Martin|
|Typed by||Jean Harvey|
|Production & Business Manager||Brian Harvey (JW1462)|
|Editorial - Constitution and By-Laws||1|
|At the February General Meeting||4|
|Lamington via Running Creek||Molly Gallard||5|
|The Chardonnet Episode||Leon Blumer||9|
|The Annual Reunion||12|
|Activities of the Fauna Protection Panel||Allen A. Strom||13|
|February Federation Notes||15|
|Bouddi Work Party||15|
|Leica Photo Service||3|
|The Sanitarium Health Food Shop||7|
|Scenic Motor Tours||9|
Constitution and By-Laws.
Recently we noticed on our calendar block the legend: “Man, the tool-making animal”. It would probably be equally true to coin the phrase, “the law-making animal”, for it seems to be impossible for any community to manage without some code of behaviour, and some ordinances for the supposed betterment of existence. From time to time, with changes in moral standards, scientific advances, wars, depressions, inflation, with political coups and industrial disturbances, it becomes necessary or expedient to change the rules. Gradually the laws become more complex until they prove an embarrassment to statesmen, judiciary and public alike. However, the citizen looks on the first two named as making a living from the laws, and frequently feels aggrieved and co-erced and restricted by them.
It was little wonder that, when the accumulated rules and laws of the Club were first rendered into a written form, about a year ago, it was argued that by-laws were unnecessary.
“Rules (it was said) are only for fools… The wise don't need them: and the fools don't heed them”.
Surely, though, one would not quarrel with the need for some regulations. Would we happily dispense with the Poisons Act, the Pure Food Act, and the various laws governing safe driving of vehicles? The Club itself has sought State legislation on a number of matters - among them control of the use of firearms and protection of wild flowers.
No doubt in an Utopian community we should need no laws. In a perfect Club, with each and every member conscientiously striving for the best for the organisation as a whole, we could probably do without rules. Unfortunately, we have neither, and so must have some shield against the citizen or member who interprets the absence of a written law as a permit to trespass.
Our own Club efforts at law-making are represented by the Constitution and the By-Laws, which complement one another, and provide a reasonably rational set of rules, which have not grown too intricate up to the present, and have proved adequate for most of our Club needs.
The Constitution came first, of course, and has proved an admirable document. As a basic statement of our aims and procedure it would be difficult to improve, but it is desirable that it remain a broad charter, and not become complicated with petty issues. In order to alter the Constitution it is necessary that the proposed amendment be adopted by a three-quarters majority at an Annual or Half-yearly General Meeting. Some such qualification is desirable, so that the Constitution may express the will of the great bulk of members: at the same time the requirement of a three-quarters majority can mean that a worthy amendment may be scotched by a small group (in a meeting with 80 members present, it could be defeated by 21 “No” votes). This has the effect of minority rule, but, so long as the Constitution is confined to matters of broad general policy, it will probably be found that any worthwhile change will have almost universal support.
The by-laws take over where the Constitution ends. They are provided for in the Constitution, and may be framed by either a monthly General Meeting or a Committee Meeting, but are subject to ratification at the following Annual or Half-yearly General Meeting. One ratified, by-laws may be altered or cancelled only “with the approval” of one of the two major annual meetings, which ensures that by-laws may be changed at short notice to meet the current situation, but must receive the assent of the next Annual or Half-yearly Meeting. A simple majority is sufficient to confirm the resolution.
The job of the by-laws is to provide a set of working rules affecting management of the Club's daily affairs, the behaviour of the members, the responsibilities of the officers, and these laws are based on long-standing resolutions of General and Committee Meetings and the experience of the years. From time to time some may become passe; other fresh rules needed, but the simpler they can be kept, the better.
In some respects Constitution and By-Laws may appear to invade one another's provinces. For instance, the Constitution provides that Federation delegates shall be elected, and that two of them shall sit on the Club's Committee, but does not particularly refer to the Federation as a body with which we shall be affiliated. It is left to the By-laws to establish that we actually have affiliation with the Federation. At some future date it may be thought desirable to recast the whole framework of the Club's laws, but since adequacy and adaptability is the true test, it seems that they meet the Club's present requirements in their existing form.
Best wishes to Kath Mackay, who is back home recuperating after a serious illness. Keep up the good work, Kath, and it won't be long before we'll see you in the Club Room again.
At The February General Meeting.
A perfectly normal gathering of about 60 witnessed a perfectly normal meeting on a Friday 13th. Three new members Ruth Archer, Nanette and Paddy Burke were welcomed, and the name of Ted Weavers was called in vain.
Minutes, correspondence, and all the usual reports were so disappointingly commonplace that “no business arose”. Apart from the routine formula of “moved”, “seconded” and the chorus of “Aye”, the President added the only colour with a reminder of Paddy Pallin's request for slides to be shown at his Thursday evening session.
So, already we were at General Business, with the final caution of the bush fire danger period, and the customary recital of the conditions of the Annual General Meeting (closed to prospectives, etc.) Also, a reminder that walks were needed for the winter programme.
Brian Harvey reported seeing a notice at Era forbidding construction of farther huts, and out of ensuing comment it appeared that similar notices were at Little Garie and Burning Palms, and that a recent “builder” at Era had been warned and then proceeded against. We carried the resolution to notify the Lands Department of our satisfaction.
Len Scotland wanted to “thrash out” something. Was it true that, when there was a motion before the meeting, an amendment which was a negative of the motion could not be moved? Yes, said the President, that was correct. Then, said Len, such an amendment had been accepted at a meeting several months ago. “Too late!” cried several voices, and Len amiably agreed, saying he only wanted to clarify the point.
Brian Harvey sought a Sales and Subscriptions volunteer for the magazine in succession to Gladys Roberts and our thanks go to a stalwart volunteering type, Jess Martin.
Dormie now sought to “prick that annual blister” whereby minutes of the Annual and Half-yearly Meetings were kept in cold storage for twelve months, instead of being confirmed at the following General Meeting. After a long and speedy outburst, he brought the house down with “Have I been taken down correctly?”
The President consulted with the Constitution and found Dormie's motion in order: your reporter said it was a matter “which had baffled him when he was Secretary, but he hadn't got around to interfering with the old procedure, and it was finally resolved that minutes would be dealt with at the following monthly meeting in future, be they minutes of the Annual General or not. “Was it a by-law?” asked Kath Brown, and that was left to Committee consideration.
At which stage effective business tapered off into reminders about axe-men and entertainments for the Re-Union, overdue magazine subs., and,the like, and the President banged the bone on the table at - yes, 8.40 p.m.
Lamington via Running Creek.
By Molly Gallard.
As we, that is Betty Holdsworth, Colin Ferguson, Bill Rodgers and myself sat eating our first evening meal of our three weeks' trip, I ruminated on the preceding events of the day. Could the folks at home have been right in saying we were mad to come to Queensland at Christmas? Could be! For it was hot!
When we had left the train at 1.30 at the Cougal Signal Box, we walked through the Richmond Tunnel which, I might add, took us fifteen minutes good walking, and emerged into bright sunshine. In fact, the heat of the sun was so fierce and our packs so heavy that although we had only to follow the telegraph line down to Running Creek, by the time we found a camp site to our liking, Betty and I had “had it”. I think the boys were quite happy to stop too.
During tea, we were quiet - we were all thinking! Betty put our thoughts into words. “If it's going to be hot like this”, she said, “I think we'll have to be on the track by 7.00, rest in the middle of the day then continue in the afternoon when it gets cooler”. We agreed unanimously.
Now, our plan for the first seven days originally was to go to the Lamington Plateau, and our reason for going via Running Creek was to see the falls on this creek which are said to be the finest in the whole Reserve. Then, having seen the falls, we would follow the newly cut track up the ridge to the Border Track and follow this through Point Lookout, Throakban, Ratatat and so an, to O'Reilly's.
The next morning saw us on the track bright and early. It was warm and muggy, threatening rain and thunder could be heard in the distance. We followed Running Creek up to the junction and after a little cogitation, decided to follow the right arm. You see, Running Creek Falls aren't marked on the military map and that particular area doesn't come into the maps of the Reserve, so we were really going by guess work.
Seeing a largish pool, we decided to have a swim and we had barely changed back into our walking clothes before the storm broke. It poured and the thunder and lightning was terrific - a little too close for me.
We continued, rock-hopping up the creek, for we had left open country behind and the jungle-clad mountains rose steeply on either side. Rock-hopping, for my part, is never conducive to good temper. I soon tired of trying to keep my feet dry, in fact, I seemed to be more in the water than out of it. To make matters worse, there were hundreds of gaily coloured flies and March flies that seemed only too keen to spur one on the way with great nips in the more tender part of one's anatomy.
Came lunch time and we took shelter under a large overhanging log. The boys did battle with the wet wood but soon had a fire going and tea brewed.
That afternoon we had our first encounter with Stinging trees. Not very attractive trees but if you touched one you weren't likely to forget it in a hurry. Under this tree had sprung up a small forest of trees about knee-high and, believe me, they took some negotiating.
A little further on we came to a small waterfall, that one which is marked on the military map, but it wasn't worth seeing. Beyond that we came upon a large pool, very deep with straight rock up either side. This was a case of swim, for there was no going up and over, the jungle was too thick. Even then, we said, we would probably strike further difficulties. So after consulting the map again, we finally decided to turn back and camp at the first available spot and the next day we would make back to the junction and follow the left arm.
Our camp site Was hacked out of the jungle, an area just big enough for the tent and as we were cooking tea the storm burst again. We all made a bee-line for the tent except Bill, who stood by the fire in swim trunks and hat until everything was cooked.
This storm was really fierce, so fierce that two yabbies hurried from their waterside homes and seemed rather keen to spend the night with us in the tent. But after repeatedly knocking them off our sleeping bags, they finally took the hint and left.
The next morning, we retraced our steps to the junction, lunched and followed up the left arm of Running Creek as far as the junction England Creek, passing a very nice fall, about 15 feet, en route. It was here that I had my first encounter with a snake, a green one and less than 6 feet away. It came slithering out from between two rocks in my direction. I put on a rare turn of speed that would have put Marjorie Jackson to shame.
We made camp at the junction of England Creek on the only piece of flat ground - solid rock.
At this point, I feel I should comment on the noise. There must be more locusts up there per cubic foot than anywhere else in Australia and they all seemed bent on out-screeching one another. Then, apart from the locusts, there was a shallow pool near the tent about two inches deep and it was full of small green frogs. Of course, you know the noise frogs make when they get together. We had to literally shout to make ourselves heard. Apart from that, these frogs weren't content to stay in their pool but delighted in jumping on our backs and legs and even inside our packs!
As I said before, the point of our trip was to see the Running Creek Falls which aren't marked on the map. But it seemed to us that there wasn't enough water in the creek for falls, so we decided to see the falls on England Creek in the hope of their being the ones. We followed England Creek for half a mile and climbed or rather swam up a waterfall which proved rather hair-raising although nothing as compared with what was to follow.
The falls were straight ahead of us. Nothing spectacular, their beauty being marred by a fallen log. We later learnt that we had missed Running Creek Falls by one mile.
Skirting round these falls, we literally came up against a blank wall. It was quite sheer. Not a toe-hold anywhere. Betty and I looked back at the waterfall we had just climbed. Wild horses wouldn't drag us down that again. As Neil Schafer would say, “we were at the point of no return.”
Just then, Colin, who had gone exploring, care back, saying that he had found an “easy” way up. This “easy” way proved to be a chimney about 3 or 4 ft. wide, 3 ft. deep and 12 ft. high. There seemed to us to be a noticeable lack of toe-holds, but further inspection revealed a sturdy monkey vine running the full length of the chimney. Colin went first and showed us how, then Betty, myself, packs and Bill. At the top of the chimney there was barely room to turn around and as Betty and I waited to take the packs as they were hauled up one by one, a small brown snake went by and disappeared under a bush 2 ft. away. There was nothing we could do but hope and pray that its mother wasn't about.
After a short rest, further on, we scrambled and slithered and clawed our way to the top of the ridge and came out into a narrow grassy belt. It was a bit early for lunch so we decided to continue for another half an hour. We were influenced to take this ridge, that is, the ridge between England and Running Creeks, as it was the only negotiable one. As I said, it began in open grassy, gum country but after only ten minutes walking, we struck jungle or, it might be more correct to say, the jungle struck us. Some people say that rain forest country is pretty but all I can say is that their activity was confined to the broad tracks of the reserve. There was hardly a tree, shrub or vine that didn't either sting or scratch or do both. Snakes, mosquitoes, leaches, etc. are mere trivialities as compared to the Queensland Lawyer Vines. This vine grows prolifically in rain forest country. Its stem is thickly covered with fine brown spines and its dark, green leaves are edged with hooked barbs. It also sends out fine barbed strands which are not always visible until they have firmly attached themselves to one's clothes or flesh. It also had the annoying habit of removing your hat and immediately dropping it on the ground behind you. Then while endeavouring to retrieve the hat, you'd get into worse difficulties. At this point we donned ground sheets as a means of protection.
We were all glad when lunch time came and it was here that we saw a curious thing - a piece of silver paper an the ground! Not ours. Deciding that the sooner we got out of the jungle the better, we only had half an hour for lunch. The going was the same as before, zigzagging to get round the really impenetrable parts. We were averaging a quarter to half a mile an hour. At 4.00 Betty and I went on strike, so we camped on a sloping ridge. As water was a quarter of a mile away through more jungle, the four of us cooked, washed up and cleaned our teeth with just the one bucket of water. In all, from 7.30 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. with half an hour for lunch we had covered exactly 3 1/2 miles.
Progress was just as tough and slow the next day. We stopped to rest at one spot and the boys went off to scout around a bit. They came back with serious faces. “We're bushed”, said Bill, “I thought we were going right but we've just come up a hill which isn't right according to the map, so now I don't know where we are.”
We retraced our steps and took a more easterly direction. Within fifteen minutes we struck the track. So thrilled were we to get on to a track that we raced along it like hairy goats. But it was then that Bill, in his efforts to avoid a snake which was by the side of the track, hooked his foot under a fallen branch, hurting it badly enough to make it sore to walk on. At 3.00 p.m, we hit the main Border Track and taking the left hand turn, made for the Stinson Base Camp which is the only flat spot for miles and that was our Christmas Day.
(In the next instalment - “On to O'Reilly's.”)
Easter is the perfect time of the year on the Shoalhaven.
Tallong - Long Point - Shoalhaven River - Bungonia Gorge - Block Up - Tryers Creek - Tallowal Creek - Touga Trig - Badgery's Crossing - Tallong.
About 45 miles (includes 18 miles of optional walking - without packs).
Type: Medium – Tickets to: Tallong – Fare: (2nd Return) 24/-. Trains: 5.10 p.m. or 9.18 p.m. on Thursday April 2nd (check train times a fortnight before Easter. Seat booking on 5.10 advisable).
If the Shoalhaven is badly flooded an alternative trip starting from Tallong will be done.
Jim Brown - 'Phone LM-2163 (Business).
The Chardonnet Episode.
By Leon Blumer.
(Below is the first of three articles on climbing in the European Alps received from Leon Blumer. The other two stories will be published in subsequent issues. We learn that Leon has now 'bagged!' most of the worthwhile peaks in Europe and has turned his attention to Canada. We wish him good rocks and far horizons.)
We were very tired after the Du Tour ascent and argued that evening whether to attempt the Auguille du Chardonnet. Tomorrow was our second day in the Alps and to climb a fairly difficult 14,000-ft. peak was very ambitious. Ian, our third limn, was obviously too ill from the day's excursions and needed rest, but Brian and I decided that if we climbed slowly from an early start, we two would make the top. The weather was fine, the route fairly obvious, and the peak worth climbing. We could have a rest day after.
We left about 4.0 a.m., following numerous parties bound for the Du Tour. A Swiss party of two had left even earlier and, as the dawn awakened, we could see the two dots gradually working their way towards a steep ice ridge on the other side of the mountain. It was interesting to compare their progress amid such grand mountain scenery, mere files on walls of blue, white and green. We followed Du Tour route for quite a way in order to avoid a badly crevassed section in the middle of the glacier, but soon found new problems on our own route. We had [illegible] not feel inclined to explore some of the enormous cavities cutting across our path, the axe being poked nervously into each doubtful bridge.
Above the middle section on the rising slope it was much better and so second breakfast was declared. The sun's rays were warming, and layer after layer of clothing was gradually peeled off and placed in the rucksac. This is a set-back of “good weather” climbing - rucksacs get so bulky that climbers are tempted to leave them (to their cost).
The Swiss party was now on the thin ice ridge, a gleaming arc lit by the sun. Evidently they were leading through, as we observed one dot slowing advancing the length of the rope, the other stationary. Seeing others at work on difficult climbs is sometimes nearly as good as being in the actual battle. One can sense the expectancy and doubt as each difficult section is overcome. The sheer beauty of the day, the freshness of the sun on snowfield and peak, took my mind back to happy days in the Australian bush. This was living indeed.
We strapped on crampons and threaded our way through several large crevasses to an enormous bergschrund below a very steep snow slope, about 400-ft. high. This proved exciting, as two other tracks had crossed on parts which had since melted and dropped into the depths. This part was still in shadow so, after donning more clothing, Brian belayed with his axe, while I led up a frail bridge between the previous tracks. Slowly and gently I managed to lodge myself on the wall, axe buried to the hilt in the-soft snow. Brian led through and established himself a rope length away, ploughing through hip-deep snow. It was slow and exhausting progress, and ice was encountered at one stage less than two feet below the surface.
At last we reached the col and walking along its crest to a clump of rocks ate in the sun while we surveyed the next part of the route. Someone had evidently disregarded the guide book and worked their way up a steep ice couloir above the col, then climbed a short steep rook cliff. We decided on the guide books instructions to traverse upwards to the right on to a steely-looking ice slope leading to a smaller col. It was only after we had crossed the smaller bergschrund and were launched on this slope that we realised its difficulty. It was brittle hard, and the crampon points had to be punched in at every step. We moved slowly and cautiously - one slip and we would fall back, not to the col, but down its sides for thousands of feet to the Argentiere glacier. Steps were cut for 20-ft., but the effort left us panting and heaving for breath. A few weeks later we could have walked up, but at this early stage of the holiday we were badly in need of training.
A horizontal crack a few inches wide split the slope at this point, and by using this we managed to traverse to below the ice couloir. At least if we slipped here we could hope to brake with our axes, and slide back to the col.
Another badly needed rest on some rocks, then we took to the ice until it became so steep that it was necessary to climb rocks on the left. Just before reaching the top, there came a stinging shower of ice particles and we heard voices. Yes, it was the Swiss party attempting to cut steps in an ice slope above. They had been moving very strongly, obviously very fit and competent. We waved a greeting, as cheery as possible under the circumstances, then wearily plodded upward on a mixed snow and ice slope.
Another rest on more rocks, lemon, sugar and snow water being greedily gulped down. Possibly another hour to the summit - another hour of torture. Every upward move now was gained by placing one foot slowly in front of the other, and leaning on the axe shaft every few minutes. A quarter-hour of this and Brian turned round and said he would be ill and couldn't go any further. I took over the lead now and, after what seemed a long, long time, we reached another thin col. There, slightly above us, a few hundred yards to the left, was the summit. At last!
We pushed on but were brought up short by a long, narrow snow ridge, both sides plunging down incredibly steep slopes. A bit unnerved I tackled this on one side, arms hanging over the top. This resulted in some floundering and only undermined the ridge, so I balanced along the crest, Brian being warned to jump down the opposite face if it collapsed and carried me down one side. We staggered over to the summit and collapsed. The hours of torture had ceased.
A little more food and sugared lemon gradually put us in a better state of mind and body. The view was startling, the peaks on the other side of the Argentiere Glacier smoking with mist and cloud, presenting some of the most sheer ice and rock cliffs we had ever seen. It was very pleasant to lie back and take in in all this grand scenery, and an hour went by before we eased our cramped limbs and started back.
Brian, unfortunately, fell through the narrow snow ridge, but managed to stop himself falling down the face by placing both hands over the crest. I had grabbed a rock as a belay, but the instinctive action was not needed. Brian simply crawled back on to the 18-inch wide track and cautiously walked over to my safety point. The knife-edge looked a little mangled in appearance but we were over it, thank God!
Further down, the mixed snow and ice slope required care as it was getting rather soft, so the crampon points were placed securely before transferring weight. Another much needed rest at the rocks and then down 50-ft. into the ice couloir. We were just about to take to the ice when we heard a whirring and clattering noise, so shrank back again the wall - just in time - those rocks coming down were unpleasantly close.
We then had more trouble half-way down the ice slope when my left leg developed cramp. As last man, I did not dare to fall, so yelled a warning and hobbled down on one crampon till comparative safety was reached. The ice couloir was now running with water, and the place did not seem very healthy, especially when a few more stones whizzed past our heads. Even though we were dead tired, our mental faculties were still alert and our retreat became more like a military operation, slippery ice and missiles being endured till we jumped the subsidiary bergschrund and rattled down to the col. Oh, well, no harm done! Lord! - what is this? The slope we had climbed in the morning looked horribly steep now, as we craned our necks over it. Had we really came up this?
We belayed properly down this now sun-softened slope, and slowly neared the large bergschrund. Brian plucked up courage and jumped the fifteen feet into the trough. I followed suit - a most peculiar flying feeling this - one second you are high up on the lip, and the next you have landed and are trying to pull both feet out of the soft snow. Brian was feeling much better by this time and had lost his sick feeling, but I still retained a slight headache. We threaded our way through the crevassed area, and fairly romped home to the hut, very fatigued, but quite happy. We had spent a long time over it, but there were no mishaps.
Ian, good lad that he was, had a special brew waiting for us, so while we sipped hot sugary tea we told him of our exploits. Much laughter and cursing, but we both agreed it had been quite a day - a very satisfying climb all round, despite aching muscles and other discomforts. The rest day was well earned.
The Annual Re-Union - at Woods' Creek. March 14/15th.
Trains to Richmond on Saturday:
6.59 a.m. (Electric), 8.30 a.m. (Electric), 9.15 a.m. (Steam), 11.26 a.m. (Electric), 12.33 p.m. (Steam), 1.38 p.m. (Steam), 2.44 p.m. (Electric), 4.29 p.m. (Electric), 6.5 p.m. (Steam), 8.35 p.m. (Steam).
'Bus is being booked to meet 12.33 p.m. train from Sydney. Fare 4/- return.
Mary and Bob Eastoe - a daughter, Gillian Rosemary, born 6/1/53.
At the advanced age of 10 days G.R. Eastoe was to be seen camping (with her parents) at Brandy Mary Flat on the Tumut River.
The train time for the last Instructional Walk at Marley Pool was announced as 1.24 p.m. from Central to Cronulla. When the majority of attenders arrived at Central, officials assured them that there was no Cronulla train at 1.24. p.m. - 1.14 p.m. was the train, so they travelled on it. Two prospectives and your reporter, who relies mainly on a recently published timetable, travelled on 1.24 p.m. train which ran as timetabled and was comfortably empty. The leader, owing to a misunderstanding at Rockdale, travelled on 1.44 p.m. train ex Central.
Such circumstances, including the arrival of the leader from the rear, could have caused a minor panic and quite a bit of fluttering. However, with commendable sagacity, the various contingents sorted themselves out upon arrival at Cronulla and all crossed to Bundeena in the 2.55 p.m. ferry.
Activities Of The Fauna Protection Panel 1952-53.
By Allen A. Strom.
The Brush and Plain Turkey have been declared “Rare Fauna. Penalties for interfering with these animals in any fashion entail heavy fines and/or imprisonment.
Two Societies have been established - at Hazelbrook and Wollongong; another will hold its inaugural meeting in March at the Chatswood Town Hall. These societies are to encourage interest in assisting the administration of the Fauna Protection Act, 1948.
Wedge-Tailed Eagle and Wombat.
The Panel was carrying out investigations relative to protection of these animals when Mr. Clive Evatt, then Chief Secretary, in July 1951 gave them protection for 12 months. When Mr. Kelly was appointed to the Ministry he requested the advice of the Panel on the two animals but, since the Panel's investigations had been circumvented by Mr. Evatt's action, no advice could be made and the protection finally lapsed.
Kangaroos in the West.
The Chief Guardian of Fauna, the Curator of Mammals at the Australian Museum and Allen A. Strom investigated reports that kangaroos had reached pest proportions west of the Darling River. Observations justified the reports and some thinning by a licensing system was recommended. Considerable delay by the Minister finally led to Cabinet granting an Open season in the Western Division for two months - December/January 1951-52. This Open Season was reported to be a failure largely because notice was too short and professional shooters were not available. Further application in the named area has led to the granting of an Open Season “of not more than 6 months during 1953” to commence at a date satisfactory to all concerned. Efforts will be made to see that the period of Open Season is used to the fullest.
Appointment of Field Staff and Co-operation of Honorary Rangers.
Despite all efforts, Government economies continue to prevent the appointment of even one permanent ranger. Several bulletins have been circulated to Honorary Rangers under the Fauna Protection Act. These will serve to encourage interest and co-operation.
During the year the Wild Life Preservation Society requested some measure of protection for certain species of Reptiles, in particular the very useful Blue Tongue Lizard. After considerable trouble and interchange of correspondence, the Fauna Protection Panel agreed to recommend to the Minister that the Act be amended so that a schedule of protected reptiles could be approved. No move in the direction of such amendment has yet come to our notice.
Biological Survey and Commonwealth Co-Ordination.
The Panel has expressed support for a survey of our resources of wild life, its disposition and allied matters. It has also agreed that Open Seasons and the dedication of lands for Faunal Reserves should be correlated between States and with Commonwealth inspiration.
A Competition was organised by the Panel through the schools in an effort to arouse interest in conservation of fauna. Whilst the response was very limited, some of the essays were well done. The Panel has also organised a Poster Competition for children.
The Panel has in its possession ten films on the subject of Nature Protection, and these are being put to good use in the educational field. Interested persons are invited to contact the Chief Guardian of Fauna, Chief Secretary's Department, Box 30, G.P.O. Sydney ('phone B056-ext.573). Films are being added as finance and production permits.
Wild Life Surveys.
Some time ago the Panel carried out a survey to determine as far as possible the disposition and numbers of the Koala population of N.S.W. During the year a similar survey has been made for the Mallee Fowl, and this has supplied the Panel with some idea of suitable areas for reservation as a Faunal Reserve, in an effort to give permanent sanctuary to the Mallee Fowl. A new survey of the incidence of the Brush and Plain Turkeys has been commenced in cooperation with the Royal Australasian Ornithological Union.
The Panel has expressed, as its official opinion, the view that the reduction of protected animals that reach pest proportions is best done, particularly in the central and eastern districts of the State, by a system of permits rather than Open Seasons. In Western Districts, because of the magnitude of the distances and the sparcity of the population involved, it may be necessary to declare an Open Season. Such Open Seasons, however, should not be more frequent nor of greater duration than one or two months in any twelve.
Regarding the Duck, the Panel was of the opinion that special circumstances of dry conditions concentrated large numbers of ducks in the rice growing areas. In addition poor germination aggravated the situation. The Panel agreed that a state-wide Open Season could not be justified on the circumstances existing in the Irrigation Areas. During the rice growing season 1952, ducks were removed from the Protected Schedule in the Murrumbidgee and Wakool Irrigation Areas. Renewed applications for an Open Season for Duck, Quail and Snipe in recent months has resulted in the application being refused with respect to Quail and Snipe. The duck is still under review.
The Panel has continued its efforts to have the Marshes set aside as a Faunal Reserve so far without success.
Wanted - by the Librarian.
The Club Librarian would like a copy of the undermentioned magazines to enable him to have the 1950 and 1951 volumes bound:-
February 1950, March 1951, April 1951, June 1951, November 1951.
February Federation Notes.
By Allen A. Strom.
Social Committee - Guessing Competition - Prize a Hot Water Jug.
This will help to raise money required in organising the 1953 Bushwalkers' Ball. Tickets are 6d. each, obtainable from Paul Barnes.
Prohibition On The Sale Of Some Wildflowers.
A Panel organised by the N.S.W. Ranger Patrol has recommended to the Department of Local Government, that the ban on the sale of Borania floribunda, Gymea Lily, Rock Lily, Native Rose and Woody Pear be renewed, and that such ban be extended to Flannel Flower, all species of Christmas Bells, Waratah, Boronia ledifolia and Boronia pinnata.
The Federation was represented an the Panel.
The National Park Fire Patrols.
Owing to the very good season, the Patrols have not found as much work as earlier contemplated; but the fact that bushwalkers were willing to assist the Park Trust, has served to assist in the building up a feeling of goodwill between the Trust and Federation. The Fire Danger Period is due to lapse on February 28th. The President thanked all who have assisted and asked them to stand by until the commencement of the 1953-54 Fire Season.
Annual Re-Union Camp.
Date: March 21/22nd.
Place: Long Angle Gully, Warrimoo.
The job of the S.B.W. at the Reunion: Final Cleaning Up.
Messrs. Ken Stewart (Rover Ramblers) and D. Henson (Rucksack) were elected Joint Assistant Information Officers.
Mr. S. Luke (Fire Control Officer, N.S.W. Forestry Commission) then gave a very informative talk on bushfires, fire sighting and prevention.
Tradesmen, (and women), skilled or unskilled, are wanted to join a Bouddi Work Party, March 27/28/29th. Truck transport is available from the city Friday night.
Ring Allen A. Strom at WB2520, WB2528 or WB2529 for particulars.
Well, here's February over and March beginning. The welcome cool breezes will soon denote the end of summer. With winter trips ahead how is the sleeping bag?
Paddy is pleased to say he can now supply almost anything in the way of sleeping bags.
5' 10” Featherdown bags cost £10. 0. 0.
5'10” Superdown cost £12. 8. 0.
Larger ones a little more.
For those who want a bag for cold climates the Kossie Bag is now available again. This bag has a hood and totally encloses the sleeper except for the face.
Featherdown £12.19. 6d.
Superdown £15. 7. 6d.
Utility Quilts 6'2“ x 5'
Featherdown £8. 5. 6d.
Superdown £10. 7. 3d.
Sleeping Bags can now be recovered for £8. 0. 0 plus post of any down required.
Paddy Pallin. Lightweight Camp Gear
201 Castlereagh St Sydney. M2678