Table of Contents
The Sydney Bushwalker - December 1980
A monthly bulletin of matters of interest to The Sydney Bush Walkers, Box 4476 G.P.O., Sydney, 2001. Club meetings are held every Wednesday evening from 7.30 pm at the Wireless Institute Building, 14 Atchison Street, St. Leonards. Enquiries concerning the Club should be referred to Ann Ravn, Telephone 798-8607.
|EDITOR||Helen Gray, 209 Malton Road, Epping, 2121. Telephone 86-6263|
|BUSINESS MANAGER||Bill Burke, 3 Coral Tree Drive, Carlingford, 2118. Telephone 871-1207|
|TYPIST||Kath Brown. Telephone 81-2675|
|DUPLICATOR OPERATOR||Phil Butt|
|Forty Years On||Jim Brown||2|
|The Club Auction||Dot Butler||4|
|Advertisement Eastwood Camping Centre||7|
|The Flowers of Srinagar - Part III||Bill Gillam||8|
|Recollections - Part II||Owen Marks||10|
|The November General Meeting||Barry Wallace||13|
|From the Committee - Notice to Walks Leaders||14|
|Social Notes for January||Peter Miller||14|
Forty Years On
by Jim Brown
In the first week of December I went to Kanangra and set out to do a modified version of Spiro's now traditional Australia Day weekend walk. To start with, I reversed the trip, and went from Kanangra out past Crafts Wall to Mount Berry, and then dropped down the ridge to the west into Kanangra Creek. I had intended thereafter to do Spiro's trip complete and unabridged (but in the reverse direction), coming up Gingra Creek, climbing to Pages Pinnacle, thence Crafts Wall and Kanangra, but the weather dictated a change and my actual route was the Gingra Range.
Throughout the jaunt I kept on recalling my first ever walk to Kanangra, at Easter 1940, and how low the rivers were then. Inevitably I compared them with the present conditions, and came to the conclusion that they are not yet as desperate as in March 1940. What they will be like by Easter 1981 is anyone's guess, but unless there are some more soggy days like Friday 5th December, which forced me to abandon my original project, and take the track up Gingra Range, it may be necessary for walkers during this summer and next autumn to give very earnest consideration to routes which . have an assured water supply.
Looking back to 1940, there had been a very dry winter and spring in 1939, and during the three summer months December to February, total rainfall in Sydney was (to the best of my recollection) only 1.4 inches - say 35 mm on the present scale. The average summer rainfall in Sydney is about 300 mm.
That Easter, coming down Hughes Ridge to the Kowmung River, which I had never seen before, I found it was not flowing. There were some good long pools, but all the way from the foot of Hughes Ridge to the junction with the Cox, there was no run. I did know the Cox, and was rather startled to find the same conditions - no flow, some good pools, but quite long stretches of river bed with only sand and stones. Probably there was water below the surface, but there were dead cattle in and close to some pools.
Quite suddenly, as I approached the inhabited part of the valley, the stream began to flow. Knowing from bitter experience that Kedumba Creek is a dangerous water supply, I filled an aluminium water bottle I was carrying to tide me along the Kedumba track and up the pass into Wentworth Falls. This time I became bilious even before I reached the bottom of Kedumba Pass. Some years later I discovered that Kedumba Creek then joined the Cox by a small and inconspicuous gully, and the flowing water I had collected was the output of Kedumba, with its Leura Sewerage Farm effluent.
So, then, in 1940 both Kowmung and Cox Rivers were at a standstill. At present the position is better, as I have listed:
- Kanangra Creek - Not flowing at the point where I first cane to it, below Gabes Gap. Indeed, there are stretches of up to a kilometre without surface water. However, there are some good pools, and from the vicinity of Thunder Bend a small flow almost all the way.
- Kanangra River - From the junction with Kanangra Creek to the Cox there is a small but constant flow.
- Coxs River - From Konangaroo to Kowmung Junction - flowing. Not strongly, but rather better than I had expected. In rocky stretches there is almost as much surface water as there was a month previously in the much larger Shoalhaven at Badgery's Crossing.
- Kowmung River - From Coxs River to Gingra Creek - just flowing. Many very-large-deep pools, but it is also possible in numerous places to cross dryshod using only two or three stepping stones. I would guess that, even after a dry summer, there would still be an abundance of water in pools, but no flow.
- Gingra Creek - Owing to my change of plan, I could not survey the water supply position. At the junction with the Kowmung, no water, either as flow or as pools, was visible. I would expect to find quite satisfactory pools higher up.
An interesting point that I observed in all the streams was the strong growth of small casuarinas (river oaks). Because of the long dry spell, and the lack of disturbance of the rocks and sand of the river beds, there is a profusion of young growth, some of the trees so small they resemble a coarse grass growing amongst the river stones. In other places the young river oaks are already a metre high.
My other observation was of the general nature of the river banks. Where grasses normally grow, it is rather sparse and scorched, with quite big patches of almost bare sand. If the present drought is followed by flood rains, I fear a lot more of the poorly bound banks will be swept away, leaving more and more river rocks to tire our feet.
Now let's look at today's (Saturday 6th December) “S.M. Herald.” and its weather map.
- Average annual rainfall in Sydney - 1216 mm
- Rainfall 1980 up to 5th December - 655 mm
- Rainfall 1979 up to 5th December - 807 mm
If the dry spell continues through this summer, beware where you walk by February and March. We could easily be back forty years - well actually 41 years - to rivers that don't flow, and side streams entirely dry.
Ho hum - I called this account “Forty Years On”. I think that's the title of an English school song, which includes a line - “Shorter in breath as in memory long”. Alas, alas, quite true.
P.S. If you're planning a trip via the Gingra Range, don't rely on water at the Coal Seam Cave. The drum had been taken away as at 5th December. After the day's rain a few drips had formed, but not enough to be really useful. One wonders if the Parks & Wildlife Service people found that desperately thirsty small bush creatures were getting into the drum and dying there and if the removal of the water supply was deliberate - or was it just vandalism?
The Club Action
by Dot Butler
The Club Auction was a riot with the witty and irrepressible Charlie Brown as auctioneer. Out of shear good spirits people bid high for the accumulation of valuable and not so valuable second-hand gear.
There were packs, sleeping bags, parkas, tent flies, assorted water buckets, billies, ground sheets, grabbers to grab with, binoculars for bird viewing, a TV set for home viewing and a carpet sweeper for John Redfern to spruce up his bachelor quarters. Bill Burke winked and was lucky to win back his valuable ski boots for 50 cents. Clothing from the house of Kath Brown looked as if it wouldn't find a bidder, till Charlie demonstrated that the elasticised dress expanded with the expanding girl. “Don't ask what size it is.- it will fit ANY girl.” An emery stone went to George Gray - “There are gall-stones and kidney stones, well this is a pocket stone. Don't say you haven't been warned.”
There were beer mugs and wine glasses; there was schnorkeling gear and second-hand socks. Dot Butler owns to a guilty feeling as she saw a pair with a developing hole in the toe go for over $2 in the heat of competitive bidding. If the lucky winner cares to make herself known, Dot will give her another pair for free.
The whole glorious show was over in 1 1/4 hours, with the multitude having a free-for-all among the books and containers which we didn't bother to put under, the hammer.
Coolana funds benefitted to the magnificent tune of $400.60!! thus enabling the Committee, by adding it to funds already in hand, to invest in a Water Board Loan at 12.7%. This means another $127 per annum to go towards payment of the Coolana rates and so we keep abreast of the anticipated yearly increase of 10%.
In Charlie Brown we have discovered a “national treasure”, and the Coolana Committee's thanks go to all those donors whose generosity made the affair such a success.
Change of Address or 'Phone Number
Would members please let the Secretary know of any change of address or 'phone number for inclusion in the 1981 List of Members, as this list must be prepared by the end of January 1981.
by Ray Hookway
There has been recent criticism that the S.B.W. magazine does not feature enough walk descriptions. There are some walks people would rather forget and some walks one cannot forget. That makes a walk memorable? One walk that I remember with great pleasure was a Bimberi trip that possibly could have been held in the Centennial Park without detracting from its enjoyment. This was due to the close rapport that existed between its members.
Another walk, memorable because of its members, or rather because of one member, was a three day walk I led in the Budawangs.
The walk was fully organised when the Walks Secretary asked whether I could squeeze in our friend. I replied, “If Spiro can fit him in.” Spiro squeezed him into his VW Beetle somehow, all 6' plus and at least 210 lbs. His massive pack Spiro hung on the rear of the V-Dub where it occasionally bounced on the road. He had all the correct gear; a well worn home-made pack with a wooden frame covered with badges from all over Europe, but he appeared a trifle overdressed with a heavy coat, sweater, shirt, long trousers, tie and heavy boots.
We set off from Newhaven Gap towards Styles Creek. Talking to David Cotton he asked in his heavy European accent, “Are there any white toilets where we are going?” This remark kept David amused all weekend. At the first creek crossing where we paused to get a cool drink it was noticed that he was missing. This was to be the pattern for the weekend. George Mayer went back to look for him and found him floundering in the bushes to one side. “They have gone off and left ME.” he shouted at the sight of George. We crossed to Mt. Houghton, skirting the mountain he tailed the field. “This is not a bush walk,” he wailed. “This is a bush race!”
The party slackened its pace to accommodate him. He seemed to have a fear of the slightest slope, his normal slow pace reducing to a pathetic shuffle. We stopped for lunch. During lunch David asked, “How are you enjoying the walk?”
“Shocking!” was the sharp reply.
After lunch he checked the weight of everybody's pack, comparing it with his own, and picking on George Mayer he said. “I'll carry yours, mine is too heavy!” Stunned, George was too surprised to answer before his pack was whisked away. This procedure was repeated with other people at each stop.
Descending the ridge from Mt. Tarn he followed George Mayer and several others when George realized that they were too far off course. He advised the others. Immediately our friend became alarmed, “They have gone off and left me!” he wailed. “Shocking!” I then posted David to ride shotgun until we reached Mt. Donjon but we still managed to lose him twice more before we arrived in Monolith Valley.
In Monolith Valley he produced a tent but it was obvious that he didn't know how to erect it. I picked a spot and put it up then decided to move it to another spot. On inspection he said “You will have to move it again. There are lumps on the floor.” I removed the lumps.
At dinner our friend produced some sausage. “I cannot eat this. It is, too hard and my gums are sore.” Various people donated food. This practice was repeated at every meal stop during the weekend.
The weather turned quickly bad. Dense black fog clouds rolled into the valley from the Clyde, rolling along the rocks towards us like large ocean breakers, and the heavens opened and rain poured down. We retired quickly to our tents.
Next morning dawned sunny and bright. “How did you sleep?” I asked him. “Shocking!” he snapped.
It seemed that I had pitched his tent in a natural watercourse, that he had no groundsheet, that his borrowed bag was much too short and that he had had a miserable night.
His conduct during the rest of the walk didn't vary. We climbed the Castle and Quiltys Mountain but he stayed at the bottom in each case fretting and fuming and greeting us each time with complaints for keeping him waiting. The ground around him was littered with orange peels from oranges of which he had a copious supply.
On the walk back he somehow talked Spiro into carrying his pack and raced off ahead for the first time in the weekend with the faster members of the party. Various people decided to lighten Spiro's load and investigated the contents of our friend's pack. Out came a heavy change of clothing, a camera, a radio, cigars, chocolates, oranges and biscuits. The people who had been donating food over the weekend soon lightened Spiro's load considerably.
Arriving at the cars he rescued his pack from Spiro and quickly inspecting his contents he shouted, “Shocking: You are not Bush Walkers, you are Bush Thieves!”
On the trip home he again exercised his charm until even Spiro's perpetual smile had become badly creased around the edges.
Our friend never did join the Club, but in another club suffered for his pack swapping by the loss of pack and camera.
Despite or because of the trouble caused by our friend everyone considered that the walk was most enjoyable. His legacy to the Club was an addition to its vocabulary.
(“Editor's Note: I've been hearing of this trip for over 10 years now. This trip reaffirms what we all know - the trips that go wrong are the trips we remember. This trip appears to have brought out the best in everyone (except the protagonist of the above story). Spiro smiled even more than usual, David told more crazy jokes than ever, and Ray (the others tell me) was so full of kindness and pity that he was seen on one stretch actually holding “our friend's” hand.)
The Flowers of Srinagar - Part III
by Bill Gillam
Lenses, cameras, and film are the brush, canvas and pigment of the painter. Designers of cameras have grappled with three main problems - rapid and precise focussing, accurate control of the amount of light reaching the film and overall camera bulk for useable image size. Superb cameras, like prestige motor cars, are heavy and expensive - the 35 mm single lens reflex camera is a compromise and as design compromises go most successful. (There are two versions of the innovation of the Leica. The designer was undoubtedly a camera and lens designer for Leitz working on movie cameras. One version is that he needed to test the claimed “speed” of movie film and built a black box using the slotted film. The other version is that he was physically incapable of carting around a large view camera to photograph his native mountains.)
The basis of a camera, the projection of an image through a very small diameter hole is of ancient origin for a very good reason. A partial eclipse of the sun will project crescent shapes through overlapping leaves onto the ground. A pinhole through a sheet of cardboard will do the same. Most of our codified “scientific” knowledge springs from astronomers and astronomical observation - lenses and telescopes, the nature of light, modes of thought have all been refined to explain the mysteries of the visible universe. Camera oscuras have been known at least since Roman times and have been used by artists as anonymous as the Pompeii muralists and as well documented as Leonardo. The Daniells, uncle and nephew, carted one around India in the 18th century - engravings of their vapid, stylised perspective drawings still appear on calendars. A magnificent camera obscura (the name suffered a sea-change) was installed in the south-eastern pylon of the Harbour Bridge. I can remember the endless steps and the sense of wonder but not much else. Simple “pin hole” cameras give wonderful “definition”; sharp edges appear sharp, closely spaced fine lines appear as separate lines but they still show a unique, distorted perspective. Their images are not replicas of reality. Towards the end of his long life Einstein confessed he hadn't fully grasped the wonder and surprises of the science of seeing. Who are we.
The design solution of the single lens reflex is to separate the “pin hole”; the lens and aperture from the “black box” so that compromises in the optics don't adversely affect the mechanical operation of the box. If it seems obvious a look at its predecessors will be chastening. One got a stiff neck from the waist-level view-finder of a twins lens reflex and because the image was reversed there was a lot of waving around; coupled rangefinders, the original Leica were restricted to one lens or paired lenses and extra viewfinder; Hasseblads, otherwise approaching perfection, have to incorporate the shutter in the lens so one has to pays for both to get a different focal length lens. In the S L R a light tight box is sealed by a mirror set at 45° to the lens axis. The mirror reflects all the light at full lens aperture to a prism eye-piece where we see the view right way up and capable of being finely focussed. Part of this image is metered by a miniature photo-electric cell, usually battery operated, and an indication given of an idealised exposure. When the shutter is released the aperture is re-positioned, the mirror flips up out of the way and a slit in a travelling blind exposes the film. Moving the film frame on re-tensions the mirror, the aperture setting device end the shutter.
Film manufacturers have standardised their products so that each brand of equal rating will show similar sensitivity to a mythical 18% grey card. For film rated, for instance, at ASA 100 from different manufacturers you can set your aperture to f.16 and the shutter speed to 1/100 of a second, point the camera at a scene described as “mid-day, bright subject, good sun!” and an exposure from each brand will give you more or less a similar rendition if the light remains constant. This relationship between film speed, aperture and shutter speed is a most useful assumption. f.16 amounts to a pinhole (with a 35 mm camera) the 18% card is about the reflectance of most scenes and the shutter speed as the reciprocal of the A S A rating (one over the A S A number) is clear. If you have a light meter, either through the lens or separate, something close to this relationship should be indicated. If it isn't have the camera checked; there is something wrong. If it happens on a trip use the relationship rather than the meter reading. This sort of constant camera check is much cheaper than going back to do it again.
“f” numbers are established by convention so that the next lower numeral shown on the lens barrel doubles the light reaching the film at constant speed setting. When I said that f.16 amounts to a “pin-hole” this means that at this relationship of lens opening to focal length there is a generally accepted “depth of focus” at the indicated distance. At f.8, two stops or four times as much light, this depth of focus is much less. For a lens of 50 mm focal length set at a distance of 3 metres and f.16 the reasonable focus is from 2 metres in front of the camera to 10 metres from the camera - at f.8, same object distance the acceptable focus is 2.5 metres to 4 metres. f.4 gives about 0.5 metres either side of the set distance. This is the first compositional choice - i.e. that of “focussing out” unwanted detail or using the available depth of field for special effects. Generally detail behind the focus is likely to be less considered before the event and much more intrusive afterwards. Unwanted and clearly focused detail can swamp the frame. Or a tree we thought would nicely “frame” the view is an ambiguous out-of-focus blur that frames nothing and over-rides what is possibly vividly sharp and clear. Depth of field scales are engraved on the lens barrel - a simple reference to this scale will tell you if objects other than that desired can be “blurred-out” or just as importantly whether all the desired object will remain in focus.
TO BE CONTINUED.
Additional Note for Social / Walks Programme
Country & Western Festival, January 24, 25 and 26, 1981.
Anyone who is interested in joining Joy Hynes and myself at Tamworth on a camping weekend, enjoying Country and Western Music, would be most welcome. For further information, contact us on 982 2615. Ian Debert.
Recollections - Part II
by Owen Marks and Dot Butler
From the top of Popocatapetl where we stayed until about noon, we descended the opposite side to our ascent, and met Pepe with our baggage as arranged. The passes at this stage were very exposed. and we decided to make our way down to the vegetation on the sheltered side where we could see a few little houses.
Pepe was agitated and said that a witch lived there. This made Dorothy excited and more insistent than ever, in staying with them. A small collection of solid timber huts and doors about 6” thick. The witch was only a very old lady, blind and over 90 years old BUT she told us her father was Alexander Humboldt (who did lots of exploring in the Americas but I had only heard of his “Current” off the South American coast). It sounded vague, but she had an oil painting in her daughter's house of him, so we presumed it true, and because she looked only half Indian. The other ladies had a social circle going that I can't see taking over the Sydney scene. They sit around a large vat, into which; after chewing handfuls of corn kernels, they spat. Add water and chew and spit all day and after leaving for a number of days, it ferments and beer is ready. Dorothy drank it saying that the fermentation killed the germs but my stomach in those days made me wary of catching the diarrhoea bug (called the Aztec Two Step) and I declined.
From this nameless village we climbed up to the ridge next day and made our way along to Ix….atl. This means the Sleeping Woman, because from afar the whole range of about 20 miles or so from memory, looks like the silhouette of a woman laying down on her back. Technically we were in the Bosom of the mountains. Magnificent views of Lexico Valley (I forget the real name - Texaco?) and of other ranges. Lots of zapolotes (vultures) so there must be wild life although we only saw rattlesnakes which we always gave wide berth. One thing amazed us both and that was the intelligence of the donkeys. Our two were either the world's cleverest, or else the whole genus is very maligned; none of the images came true. No pulling of reins sort of thing. NO, our two donkeys would come at a whistle, stop on the word “alto” and would cuddle up to Pepe just like any old faithful dog. Maybe it was the Virgin of Guadalupe that was engraved on a pure silver plaque attached to their harnesses.
Winding our way along the mountain we were down on one side sometimes and then on the other. Patches of snow gave us clear cool drinking water; there was wood enough to have a fire each night and time enough to learn some Mexican songs, not folksy ones but popular tunes that the Rockola machines were blaring out in every village that we passed. “Lagrimas de Amor” was one (“Tears of Love”) and the other one that Dorothy still sings was “Solamente una Vez”(“Only One More Time”). Pepe was a born musician and he would sing to his donkeys all the time. At night he would sing louder than the prevailing winds to keep away the evil one. (Dorothy hoped he meant the mosquitoes!) He came from Vera Cruz where the national instrument is the harp, and when you think how difficult it is to transport a large orchestral king-size one up narrow dirt streets; with the whole thing balanced on a small wheeled trolley not much larger than a present day skateboard, well, that is real devotion. Dorothy told him it would be easier to have the flute as a national instrument but he said that God wouldn't be pleased, because the early missionaries decreed it (and showed them Bible pictures, I suppose), anyway that is that.
We came across on the fourth day our mutual friend the Algerian anthropologist who had fallen and sprained his ankle, and so our party grew. He could speak Toltec, knew more than the locals on botany, and he was a pleasure to travel with. By this time we were not at all jealous of him doing it alone. We enjoyed our Pepe and with no pack to carry, Nirvana is quite easily achieved.
The following night which was our second-last “on-the trail”, we had a rare insight into Mexican village life and all its social ramifications. The rather large village where we rolled up was a gem of Spanish desert architecture, set in the snow country. A hundred years ago or more, the clergy backed the Spanish Government and when they lost the revolution the church was wiped out. Officially, that is. It was against the law for priests and nuns to walk outside their churches in habits and it was only the last five years or so, in the 1970s, that the Vatican had an official Annuncio in the country. Anyway that night was a Saint's Day, and a concert was held after the religious procession and Dorothy and I were asked to sing. We insisted on the mariachi band practising out the back of the police station, and they could accompany me in Raffs' “Cavatina” which in those days, before my hair fell out, I could sing. (Goliath-like my voice went as my hair receded.) Dorothy wanted to sing them a song of the revolution, a song to give hope to the forgotten. Alas, when she sang “You get pie in the sky when you die”, the silence as deafening, and Mexican peasants are the politest in the whole world. My solo was a hit because the orchestra drowned me out and continued into “Lagrimas de Amor”. The police ordered the priests to leave the concert, and they returned an hour later dressed as business men, standing out like you know what, amidst a sea of white baggy pants, white shirts and large sombreros. (It was night!) A marimba land came from nowhere and the xylophone placed over gourds kept the cantina full of men all night. Naturally all tho women were at home.
A harp was found, and what a harp. It had three parallel rows of strings, whereas in the Sydney Symphony, there is only one set. Our no-hoper Pepe sat down and rivalled the ancient Welsh bards. His two hands would play the outer rows and now and then pluck the large vibrating ones in the middle. Dorothy said that such a thing would not be believed unless photographed but it couldn't, and I suppose harp enthusiasts would know all about it. The mariachi band which was a wandering group sang a few songs in French, which must have been a heritage from its beginning. The whole image of Mexicans with serapis over their shoulders singing with guitars etc. comes direct from the French invasion of pre-revolution 'days.
That night we were both carried to the mayor's house and in our bedroom surrounded by hundreds of saints' paper cut-outs and portraits of wanted criminals all with large moustaches we slept. Pepe was ordered into the lock-up WITH his donkeys and our famous Algerian Anthropologist disappeared. We never saw him again - next day, or ever. “No importa” was all we ever got. It is quite possible that he could have been murdered, or just walked away from us. Or he was just sleeping it off. Anyway we left our little village called “The Three River Junction or “La Union de los Tres Rios”. Due to the extreme mountainous regions, areas quite close to the capital are very backward, while those far from the centre of things are on transport routes and life is just like Sydney (relatively, of course).
The rest of the trip was of no interest but quite scenic. We were on a narrow road that had a weekly bus but they are so ricketty and the drivers oblivious to danger because of their Holy Images hanging on the windscreen. We did a small detour to look at a waterfall, and there we made our last camp. Our Pepe mixed his flour with crushed lime stone to make it go further and we had fresh tortillas (like flat Lebanese bread). I presume what that is why Mexican peasants have beautiful teeth.
Crossing over the range and on to the main road to the capital involved a hairy track and it was only then that we actually rode the donkeys. Can't say I enjoyed it, because there was no saddle although the containers were tied to a sacking type of thing.
Thus ended our small trip in the Mexican mountains. We both recommend it although go without donkeys or guides and you can do your own thing. The only regret about leaving Mexico City was that instead of accepting an offer to have afternoon tea with Mrs Trotsky, I went to a bull fight instead, to my eternal regret. (Dorothy had gone at that point.) I had met American Negroes and they invited me, and were amazed at my refusal. She lived near the University and to this day I don't know what made we ignore such an offer.
If any S.B.W. member wished to go for a stroll around Mexico, the local peasants are friendly, musical, generous and all have B.O. something terrible. But then again, so must have the both of us.
Congratulations to Peter and Robin Scandrett on the birth of their second child, a daughter Michelle.
- Rucksack - Mountain Mule “H” Frame. Excellent condition.
Approx. weight 2 kg $50.
Hans Stichter, telephone 635-5808 (H), or contact at Clubroom.
Snow Brown is suffering a compound fracture of the ankle following a week's trip down the Apsley. The accident happened when he fell off a child's bike a few hours after arriving home.
The November General Meeting
by Barry Wallace
The meeting began at about 2023 with more than 30 members present and the President in the Chair. There were seven new members, only one of whom was present to be welcomed. Was it something we wrote, or was it Australia Post holding our letters hostage? Just for the record their names were - Vicki Beaumont, Colleen Lamont, Geoff Davidson (he was the one that turned up to receive badge etc.), Arnold Medbury, Marguerite Sander, Tony Muscat and Eve West.
The Minutes were read and received without comment. Correspondence brought one letter from U.N.S.W. advising of a bush dance to be held at Kanangra, a letter Kosciusko N.P.W.S. regarding the proposed Plan of Management for the park, to our new members, to Peter Franks advising his reinstatement as a member, a letter from a group planning a walk along the beaches of N.S.W. and the usual crop of magazines.
The Treasurer was on hand to advise that we started the month with a balance of $2612.12, received $302.91, spent $442.07 and ended up with $2472.96.
Federation Report indicated that the next S. & R. exercise would be held on 6-7 December, and that F.B.W. are looking for suggestions for practice sites.
Then it was on, on at a maddening pace to the Walks Reports. First there was Jim Lang reporting 9 starters on a walk in the Wolgan area on the weekend: of 10,11,12 October. That same weekend Gordon Lee had 9 to 12 people on his suburban rock climbing and abseiling instructional, and Pat McBride's Budawangs walk went, but there was no report. Meryl Watman led 9 members, 4 prospectives and one visitor on a Sunday walk from Audley and Jo Van Sommers led 17, 18 and 19 people on her Palm Beach walk the same day.
The following weekend, 17,18,19 October saw Jim Vatiliotis 3 members and 2 prospectives on his Gingra Creek walk. David Rutherford's walk had no report and George Walton's walk was cancelled. Laurie Quaken led Barry Zieren's West Head walk on the Sunday with 5 starters for his trouble. Bob Younger's day walk to Mt. Jellore sort of went, but it rained, so they ended up at Coolana, the pub, or back home as the mood took them. Tony Marshall had 8 starters on his abseiling trip at Kanangra.
Over the weekend 24,25,26 October, Don Finch had 19 starters on his Megalong walk that same weekend, and Hans Stichter's Saturday mid-day start was cancelled. The two Sunday walks saw Jim Calloway with 5 members and 5 prospectives on his Heathcote to Otford walk and Roy Braithwaite and his 9 members giving up at Gunyah Beach.
David Rostron's 31st October, 1,2 November Kowmung River walk attracted 13 people in fine weather (congratulations David). Wayne Steele had 17 people and some ankle trouble on his Wentworth Creek - Grose River walk that same weekend. They also encountered a distressed lost party on the Grose and were able to direct them to the exit. All three day walks went, Meryl Watman had 15 members, 2 prospectives and 2 visitors on her Waterfall to Heathcote trip, David Cotton's Bee Walk went but we don't know how many Bs, and John Newman had 9 members, 4 prospectives and 4 visitors on his beach bash from Otford to Lilyvale.
The following weekend 7,8,9 November Ian Debert reported 16 people and rain on his Tomat Creek walk. Which may explain why the other three walks that weekend were cancelled - sort of. It did bring the Walks Report to a mercifully abrupt end.
There was no general business, and after the announcements the meeting closed at 2113.
From the Committee
Notice to Walks Leaders
In order to prevent a repetition of some recent instances of confusion would Walks Leaders please ensure, in the event of a last minute walk cancellation, that they individually notify all persons having previously advised their intention to attend. If unable to carry out this notification, the leader should attend at the walk's starting point to advise those persons he has been unable to contact that the walk is cancelled.
Social Notes for January
by Peter Miller
Wednesday, January 21st. Members Slide Night.
There will be two themes for the Slide Evening. Central Australia and Tasmania. Please bring along slides as well as any interesting artefacts or literature concerning either place.
If you have no slides of these areas, but wish to show a few slides of other places, bring them along.
Dinner will be held before the slide night at the Nam Roc, Chinese Restaurant, 538 Pacific Highway, St. Leonards, 7.00 to 8.00 pm.
Wednesday, January 28th. South America, Elwyn Morris.
In 1975 Elwyn travelled through Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil and took many interesting slides on the way. Elwyn will show highlights of the trip through these countries.