User Tools

Site Tools


The Sydney Bushwalker

Established June 1931

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 7.45 pm at the Cahill Community Centre (Upper Hall), 34 Falcon Street, Crow's Nest.

EDITOR: Ainslie Morris, 45 Austin Street, Lane Cove, 2066. Telephone 428-3178.
BUSINESS MANAGER: Bill Burke, 3 Coral Tree Drive, Carlingford, 2118. Telephone 871-1207.
TYPIST: Kath Brown.
PRINTERS: Phil Butt, Barry Wallace and Morag Ryder.


David Rostron's 1985 Central Australian Trip Heather Finch 2
The Six Foot Track and Trout Keith Docherty 5
The Ryebuck Leader Geof Wagg 8
Now What? Ainslie Morris 9
A Little Quicksand Never Hurt Anybody Bill Gamble 10
Not So Blue in the Blue Mountains Now Ainslie Morris 11
Lunar Walking Gear 12
Answers to Now What? 13
Prevention of Exposure 13
Advertisement - Eastwood Camping Centre 14
Wilderness Policy of the N.P. & W.S. 15
Social Notes Bill Holland 17
Report of Committee Meeting 4/9/85 18
Preliminary Report of the Half-Yearly General Meeting 11/9/85 18
S. & R. Practice 19/20 October 18


by Heather Finch.

Twelve people boarded the plane for Alice Springs on Saturday the 8th June. The members of the group were our leader, David Rostron, Bill Caskey, Fusae and Ray Dargan, Bob Duncan, Spiro Hajinakitas, Ray Hookway, Jim Laing, Peter Miller, Jim Percy, Jo Van Sommers and myself. We arrived at Alice Springs airport to be met by the 13th member of the group, Vicki Beaumont, currently a resident of Alice Springs. Our transport was waiting for us and after a quick side trip to Ellery Big Hole, we arrived at Serpentine Gorge mid afternoon.

David had promised an easy stroll through the Serpentine Gorge to our night's camp site, but the recent rains had filled the gorge so we had no alternative but to climb with heavy packs the 600 feet over the Heavytree Range. After a steep descent we stopped at the first decent camp site for the night and bedded down to enjoy our first night under the clear Central Australian skies.

The following morning we awoke to find Spiro, our quarter master, lighting the breakfast, fire and preparing the porridge, a task to be undertaken by Spiro every day. This day was probably our most uninteresting and longest, with a walk across the dry east-west ridges of the wide Alice Valley to the Chewing Ranges. David was keen to explore an interesting gully seen on the aerial photos. We arrived at the foot of the creek and continued up to look for a campsite but to our disappointment it was much too narrow and rocky. We collected water in the wine skins and walked back down the creek and made camp.

With the call of “plates” Spiro proceeded to dish up breakfast. Today we were hoping to find Giles Springs, a lovely creek Frank Rigby referred to in his book “McDonald Ranges” as a “little bit of N.S.W.” We walked west along the base of the Chewings and found the creek and after climbing up a rocky ledge we came to Frank's camp site. Some people decided to erect flies for the night. We intended to explore the upper part of Giles Springs in the morning. Food was beginning to take on a new importance and after tea the conversation circulated as to what new delights awaited our plates for the next meal.

One by one sleepy people gathered around the breakfast fire with talk of hearing loud whistles during the night. It was thought that it could have only come from Bob Duncan. Those of us who had been on the previous year's trip remembered only too well the unusual blood curdling yowling that occurred at ungodly hours of the morning, but Bob had such a look of complete innocence we did not have the heart to press the matter further.

We started up the creek to explore Giles Springs and what an absolute delight unfolded before us. It was what we had all been hoping for. The creek narrowed out and became a rocky red-sided canyon which wound itself this way and that only to open out again some metres further up. The pools were so crystal clear it was almost impossible to tell whether there was water in them at all, and yet some pools had up to 6 feet of water. Some of the party decided to continue on, lured by the excitement of the unknown. A few of the more hardy couldn't resist one of the largest pools further up and throwing all caution and common sense to the wind dived into the very icy water only to quickly jump back out and perch in the warm sun to dry out. David had decided Giles Springs definitely was worth a much longer stay next time. We walked less than two hours and found our fourth night's camp site situated in a narrow scrubby creek bed.

Wednesday, 12th. David was very keen to find another of the canyons that appeared in Frank's book, however we spent most of the day exploring further up the creek without success.

Thursday, 13th.
Porridge had now become so popular some of the group were having seven servings! We walked 7 km across the spinifex-covered ridges to our new camp near the climbing ridge to Mt. Giles. The 2200 feet climb is well worth the 1 hours long effort to the trig. Once on the top of Mt. Giles you get a perfect 360 degrees view of the surrounding country. Jim Laing pointed out the spot where in 1982 he and six others camped out at the summit to witness the sun rise. An unexpected bonus at the trig was our discovery of a tin of potato salad and a tin of asparagus plus (would you believe) a can opener. That night we certainly enjoyed the change in the menu.

Friday, 14th.
We awoke to a windy day, and after breakfast six of us explored further up the creek we camped in, only to be disappointed again. We returned to the others who had stayed behind to engage in world-problem-solving discussions. We then started to walk across the Alice Valley, still heading west, with the Red Walls on our right. We walked 10 km leaving the Alice Valley and entering the Ormiston Pound. It was our intention to camp at the base of the far end of the Red Walls and explore the Walls the next day. We made camp at a most delightful sandy beach at Bowman's Gap.

Saturday, 15th.
After one of the coldest nights so far, most of the party wanted to explore the Canyon of the Thirteen Pools, so named by Dot Butler on a previous trip of Frank's. We followed a steep-sided canyon past the pools and recent rock falls up to a large dry waterfall which stopped us going further. David, the only game one amongst us, climbed up the jagged side to the top. The rest of the party attempted to climb out to the Red Walls on the opposite sloping side but were unable to find a break through the cliffs. Our camp site at Bowman's Gap was so lovely we talked David into staying there for another two nights.

Sunday, 16th.
This morning we were surprised to see frost on David's sleeping bag. The party decided to spend the day climbing up to the top of the Red Walls. Vicky stayed back to rest an injured knee while I went for a solo walk further up the Ormiston River.

Monday, 17th.
Because we were only a few kilometres from Ormiston Gorge we walked down the river and made an early camp close to the end of the Ormiston Gorge. We spent the rest of the day having a look around the camping ground and Ranger Station.

Tuesday, 18th.
The last day of the trip and everyone was looking forward to hot showers down at the camping ground. What a disappointment! - there was no hot water. Some braved the cold water, while the others, in true bushwalking style, emptied the food out of their packs and settled down to a few hours of eating before the van arrived to pick us up at 1 pm.

CONGRATULATIONS: To Fiona and Jim Vatiliotis on the birth of their second child, a daughter,Veronica, who was born on 16th August last.


by Keith Docherty.

Brian Bolton was a disappointed man. The Walks Programme of the Sutherland Bushwalking Club contained a walk along the Six Foot Track from Jenolan Caves to Katoomba for Queen's Birthday weekend. Brian had been looking forward to participating but when he contacted the leader he was told he was too late - the limit of seventeen had already been reached. In the hope of organising a private walk he telephoned Frank Woodgate but Frank had family commitments and was unable to get away for the weekend.

I had planned to spend the weekend fishing the Cox's River because the trout fishing season ended at midnight on the Monday. I am quite content to fish by myself but, having spent a week alone in May fishing the Cox's, I thought it would be nice to have a companion for this trip. I called Frank Woodgate and he said that Brian might be interested in going with me. I called Brian and we decided to combine our plans. We would walk the Six Foot Track from Jenolan Caves to the Cox's River, then turn downstream so I would get a chance to do some fishing before going up Breakfast Creek to Canons. We invited Steve Lengakis and Elisabeth Ratcliff to come with us so we had a party of four.

On the Wednesday and Thursday before the long weekend heavy snow fell on the Blue Mountains and the Great Western Highway was closed by drifts at Blackheath. The leader of the Sutherland Club's walk learned that the Cox's River was in flood and promptly cancelled the walk. Maurie Bloom and Denise Shaw were two of the people disappointed by the cancellation and they called Steve and Elisabeth to see if they were interested in doing a walk. Elisabeth put them in contact with Brian and we had a party of six.

Our original plan was to drive to Carlons, leave one car there then use the other to return to Katoomba where we could catch a bus to Jenolan Caves. However, one of Brian's workmates wanted to explore the Blue Mountains in his VW Combi but he didn't have much money for fuel. He jumped at Brian's offer of $10 from each of us if he would go with us to Carlons, then drive us to Jenolan Caves.

We met Brian and his workmate in Katoomba Street very early on Saturday morning and proceeded to Canons. The VW had some mechanical trouble in the Megalong Valley but this was eventually overcome and, after hiding a supply of water near where we intended to camp, we reached Jenolan Caves shortly before noon.

The weather was beautiful and no signs remained of the heavy snow that had fallen earlier in the week. We did some exploring around Jenolan Caves and ate our lunch in the Devil's Coachhouse, with the sun streaming down on us, before walking the 9 km through the lyrebird-noisy bush to our campsite near Forestry Headquarters.

The night was very clear, with a surprising amount of light from a thin crescent of moon. We were a happy party, sitting around a cheerful campfire and discussing everything under the sun: especially what a mistake the cancellation of the Sutherland Bushwalking Club's walk had been and what a roasting Brian and Maurie would give the leader at the next club meeting. I was asked if I could guarantee trout for dinner on the following night and I said I could if they walked fast enough for us to get well down the river before dark. I had never seen trout above Flaggi Clear and I hoped to be able to camp near the Jenolan River where trout are plentiful.

Daylight brought another beautiful day and we were soon walking down the Black Range Fire Trail to the pluviometer where we had morning tea. As we started to walk again a fleet of 4WD vehicles passed, leaving a cloud of dust and petrol fumes. We then began to meet groups of people and one female cyclist who had started the walk from Katoomba. They all looked very tired and Brian did nothing to improve their spirits when he jokingly told them that knee-deep snow covered the road near Jenolan.

The scenery became quite pretty after we crossed Little River and there were some fine views of the high country across the Cox's River. We had lunch in a sheltered spot beside Murdering Creek where it was warm enough to sunbathe, then walked down the final steep stretch of the fire trail to the Cox's River. As usual the river flats were rich in bird life with red-browed finches and rainbow birds being the most noticeable.

The river was a milky colour but not much more than knee deep where we crossed. A couple of people from another party fell as they were crossing and one girl had some difficulty climbing out because her tight, wet jeans restricted her movements. The other lady went to all the trouble of changing into fresh, dry clothing before she realised she was on an island-and had two more stretches of river to cross. Despite some banter from Brian I did the decent thing and carried her over. I think she was a bit surprised when a stranger offered to carry her across, but how could I leave such an attractive looking lady in distress?

Our party was much slower than I had hoped and it became obvious that we wouldn't get below Flaggi Clear before dark. I therefore suggested that we camp at the mouth of Tinpot Creek where there are good flat areas, plenty of firewood and good drinking water.

At Black Jerry's Ridge I was well ahead of the others and decided to try a few casts for trout. Despite the milky colour of the water a trout was rising to floating insects close to the bank a short distance upstream. A cast in that direction brought a satisfying thump as a small but very active brown trout hit my lure. I landed it just as the others were passing, and I gave it Elisabeth to carry while I tried to catch more. Alas, it was not to be. I fished every likely looking spot on the way to Tinpot Creek without success.

I had expected to see a fire burning at Tinpot Creek but to my surprise the others weren't there. An examination of the sand and dust showed no sign of their footprints so I walked back up the Cox's and found them camped above Galong Creek.

We cooked the trout by wrapping it in tinfoil and burying it in the hot ashes of the fire. There was only enough for everyone to have a mouthful as entree. Steve complained that it was a brown trout after I had been telling them about the big rainbow trout in the Cox's. I disclaimed all responsibility for only catching one small brown trout because the party hadn't walked fast enough for us to camp below Flaggi Clear.

Next morning I set off at 7.50 am. The others were to follow at 9.30 am and meet me for lunch at Breakfast Creek at noon. I didn't intend to start fishing until I passed the Jenolan River but I couldn't resist the challenge of some likely looking spots. At Flaggi Clear I landed a nice brown trout but remembering the mock moans of the previous night I released it. A bit further down I caught a rainbow trout, which I retained, then another brown which I released. At the Jenolan River I met a party from Pack Saddlers and stopped to talk for a while. The time passed quickly and I suddenly realised I had less than half an hour to catch five more trout and meet the others at Breakfast Creek.

I quickly crossed the Jenolan River and caught a very nice rainbow trout. Then I waded out to the centre of the river opposite the end of the flat above Breakfast Creek and cast towards the rock face. I caught two more rainbows, lost another when it threw the hook, then caught and released a small brown.

Leaving my pack against a tree I hung the four trout from a branch at the spot the others would have to cross, then set off to fish the rapids above Breakfast Creek. I had only walked a short distance when I heard a “Dayoh!” and went back to find Steve holding the fish. He seemed quite impressed but pointed out that there were only four of them and six of us. I said I would catch a couple more while they were lighting a fire for lunch.

At the mouth of Breakfast Creek I caught another brown, which I decided to keep, then ran down to a deep hole below Breakfast Creek that often holds some large trout. My first cast brought a nice female rainbow and my second cast brought a slightly smaller male. Seven fish were sufficient for the six of us so I rejoined the others at the fire. Soon there was a tremendous clicking of camera shutters as everyone had their photograph taken with the fish. No volunteers were forthcoming to clean the fish so I had to perform that unpleasant task myself.

We lingered so long over lunch that we had to hurry up Breakfast Creek to reach Carlon's before dark. There were complaints from Maurie that his pack weighted 46 pounds with the trout he was carrying, but we still managed to get up Carlon's Creek in daylight.

At Carlon's we celebrated the completion of a very successful walk with an icecream. We had enjoyed three days of glorious weather, wonderful companionship and splendid fishing.

Back in Sydney we had to cook our trout. I don't know how Steve and Elisabeth prepared theirs but, on the advice of Ben Esgate, Maurie and Denise deep-fried theirs. Brian Bolton's was baked and I marinated mine in lemon juice then steamed them - delicious! The brown trout was the best I've ever tasted.


Saturday, 12th October.
Daintree Rally. Assemble Town Hall Square for march to Hyde Park at 12.30 pm. At Hyde Park there will be entertainment and speakers will address the rally.

Friday, 25th October.
Wilderness Society Bush Dance, Petersham Town Hall, with Prop-a-Goose, 7.30 pm. Tickets $7 and $4 concession at door or Wilderness Shop, 362 Pitt Street, Sydney. Phone 267-7929.


by Geof Wagg.

(A fairly relaxed handling of the facts surrounding Don Finch's walk on the Capertee and Wolgan Rivers.)

I went on a walk the other day
With a bloke called Finch, it was 64 K,
An' I thought to meself, “That's a bloody long way,
But o' course 'E's a Ryebuck Leader.”

If we don't walk a tally by Sunday night
The whole darn' party'll be in the …
be in strife,
An' we'll never pull our volleys on to climb another height,
But 'course 'E's a Ryebuck Leader.

Well, we set off at dawn for the Pipeline Pass
When the frost was inches thick on the grass,
An' I thought to meself, “'E can st …. no
I thought to meself, “I'm glad mine ain't brass,
But o' course 'E's a Ryebuck Leader.”

“Ere 'ave you ever walked with that there nice young couple, Steve an' Jenny Brown …. well, they turns up with only one pair o' shorts between 'em …. ”'Ullo,” I thought to meself, “We'll soon see who wears the pants in this family,” an' sure enough Steve walks in 'is undies ….“

Oh, we walked on the tops an' the going was rough,
An' I thought to meself, “Thank Gawd we're tough,”
But our knees began to creak 'cause we weren't tough enough,
For the poor ol' Ryebuck Leader.

“Yair, well it was about this time, that there Carol Bruce an' that Vicki Cheeseman decided their knees were too creaky …. Though I thought to meself, “If they 'adn't ate all them avocados for lunch…. if they'd shared 'em around a bit like, well they probably would o' felt better” …. any'ow they went off on a short cut to the Wolgan, an Roger Browne, 'e went with 'em so's 'e could finish 'is argument with Carol ….

Any ow…
We walked on the ridge all the afternoon,
An' we walked down the river by the light of the moon,
An' I thought to meself, “E'll 'ave to stop soon
Or 'e won't be a Ryebuck Leader.”

“Ere, 'ave you walked with that nice young feller, that there Matthew Walton'? …. 'E loves to sing 'e does; sings all the time…. knows all the words …. don't know none o' the tunes …. but 'e sings all the time.”

Well, we woke in the mornin' all stiff an' sore,
We creaked an' groaned an' we cursed an' swore,
An' I thought to meself, “What am I 'ere for,”
It's the bloody ol' Ryebuck Leader.

“An' our leader looks at us that mornin' like Napoleon lookin' at 'is troops retreatin' from Moscow …. only I reckon Napoleda's blokes would o' been in better nick …. an' e says 'We're goin' to turn around an' walk back to Glen Davis ”

At the sound o' them words we was different blokes,
An' we headed for home like ridin' school mokes.

“I tell y' we never even slowed until we got to the pub at Newnes!”

There we toasted our Leader in cold L.A.,
'Till Carol's crowd arrived rather late in the day,
An' we all got together an' we went our merry way
With our good ol' Ryebuck Leader!!!


First of a Series by AINSLIE MORRIS

FIRST AID knowledge needs frequent revision, so in August the Club ran an evening with Hans Stichter and Ainslie Morris as organizers.

YOU need to know first aid and not turn to another member of the party when an accident occurs on a bushwalk.

So TEST YOURSELF in the situations which the groups worked on at the Club evening. They were confronted by seven situations; this month you can tackle this one:-

SITUATION 1. You are walking on a track in the afternoon when there is a very unexpected snowfall.

Place: Bluegum Forest on Govett's Leap track with a 700 metre precipitous climb to the road.

Signs: One member of the party shows -
* Coldness to touch
* Slow pulse
* Slow and shallow breathing
* Face pink and healthy-looking
* Sits down to rest frequently
* Walks very slowly
* Is quiet

Symptoms: Feels cold and tired and says she/he wants to rest.

(1) What is your assessment of the signs and symptoms?
(2) What is your immediate action?
(3) What is your treatment of the patient?
(4) What further action would you take?



by Bill Gamble.

On Jim Laing's walk of 17/18 November, 1984 (Newnes - Zobels Gully - Constance Gorge - Rocky Creek - Wolgan River - Newnes) the party of twelve parked its vehicles under the trees on the campgound about a quarter mile beyond the Newnes Hotel and then walked back passed the pub (which was not open for a beer), crossed the Wolgan River on a log conveniently placed there by Nature, and strided along the route of the old railway at the leader's inimitable pace (why does he have to go so fast so early - we didn't have a train to catch - or am I just getting older and feeling it!). Otherwise it was quite a pleasant half-hour to get into the mood for Zobels Gully.

The gully was a bit of a heat trap so it was pretty hot in the sun of a brilliantly fine day, and humid too after recent heavy rains. Jim would have nothing of the direct route into Constance Gorge and took us up a side gully with an interesting scramble on a rock face so that we could all be hot and sweaty for a morning tea break above the gorge.

Having gone about as high as we could go without a sky hook, Jim insisted that we go down for lunch to some idyllic spot in the top of Constance Gorge. Which we did via a neat bit of rock scrambling. Jim was right, of course, he did have an idyllic lunch stop in mind, shortly below, the point where water started to flow rather than puddle in the gorge. Who can deny warm sunlight filtering through the trees on to a sheltered place beside clear, running water and the smell of smoke in the air as the billies boil for a brew?

After lunch there really wasn't much choice of route. Either we continued down the gorge to join Deanes Creek (which comes in on the true right) and reach the Wolgan River or up it to return to Zobels Gully. The cliffs on both sides held us to a narrow route as we headed down. The heat of the afternoon was tempered by the shade of the profuse growth in the gorge and the ample flow of water in the stream. Jim omitted to tell us about the quicksand, but then I suppose he figured we were going to find out for ourselves in good time and probably did not want to spoil our lunch; and, anyway, he said it is not as bad as it can be in parts of the Wolgan River. As to whether that was meant to be relative or reassuring, or both, I am uncertain. Most of the time we walked along the streambed and paid its price in quicksand - up to knee deep on average and sometimes a little more, prompting the occasional squeal or yell depending on the gender of the member affected.

No promises were made about idyllic campsites though, and in the late afternoon we camped at the fork of the second significant creek coming in on the true left. The place was cool, dank and very cramped, but it was blessed with plenty of good water and a reasonable supply of downed timber. Evening meal and happy hour combined seemed a rather protracted affair. This was probably understandable given the poor light in the gorge and the limitations of space. By 11.00 pm a few tired heads returned to their tents and the stillness of the night descended finally. Remarkably, there was only one report of a leech - given the damp conditions they should have overrun the camp.

Sunday, notably, saw the party away shortly after 8.00 am without coercion and into a deepening, tumbling Deanes Creek. As had been the case on the previous afternoon there were stops to swim (or, rather, dip in some reasonable-sized pools) and a little more quicksand to boot. After morning tea most of the party (not always at one with the leader as to his intentions at this stage) sidled and pushed its way uphill on the true left (about where Deanes Creek comes out of its gorge to meet the gorge of Rocky Creek) to break out of the scrub and traverse high for awhile before descending through open forest to an early lunch stop by deep, cool pools about a mile short of the Wolgan River. Thus some pretty nasty scrub and more - difficult terrain was avoided by dint of Jim's local knowledge.

At the Wolgan River we intersected a fire trail and soon the race was on, for awhile that is - one could almost suggest that some members had picked up a whiff of cold, amber fluid drifting down the valley from the Newnes Hotel. However, the heat of the day was well and truly up, and now exposed fully to the sun's pitiless rays most members wilted, and the party succumbed to a slower pace and an afternoon swim in the Wolgan. Lying in water about a foot deep with a fast current was almost a body massage. And the water temperature hovered on the cool side of lukewarm.

After this, heat notwithstanding, there came that almost inevitable headlong rush to the end of an S.B.W. walk; like people possessed. The party spread out over the fire trail with some, near the end, going off to look at the ruins of the shale mining before returning to the trail for the remaining few hundred yards to the campground. The rest of the walk, if there could be anything more to it, depended upon whether one lingered at the campground with the ants, stopped at the hotel for a drink, or simply drove back to Sydney in the heat of an almost summer's day.

For those interested in route finding, they should refer mainly to Mount Morgan and a little bit of Ben Bullen in the 1:25000 series. In short, it was a loop walk in an anticlockwise direction and, basically, by keeping one's left hand down a bit when steering, walkers should more or less follow the route taken by Jim Laing and company.

(NOTE: The name “Zobels Gully” has been given to two streams in the Blue Mountains; one flows into the Grose River below Blue Gum, the other - as mentioned in this article - into the Wolgan not far from Newnes.)


by Ainslie Morris.

A Sydney Morning Herald report on 10 August 1985 gives us some good news (yes, for a change!). The Commonwealth Employment Programme - C.E.P. - has 27 unemployed people building a workshop in preparation for a new visitors' centre at Blackheath.

Walking tracks, visitors' centres and the restoration of historic buildings have benefited, and as well, the Hartley Historic Courthouse has a new tourist guide, Maurice Cratchley. Restoration of the village of Hartley was instigated and originally carried out voluntarily by old friends of mine, Arthur and Iris Paradaens.

Iris gathered oral history in the 1960s and published books on the Hartley and Blue Mountains area. Now she is National Parks Controller of C.E.P. projects there. She says, “The system of recording vegetation cover, moisture levels and topography of bushland areas throughout the mountains was leading the world in computer analysis of bushfire forecasting”.

Hartley is well worth stopping off at on the way back from Kanangra should you ever finish a walk there early.


The following, described as a “Nasa Exercise Individual Worksheet”, invites you to set out the gear you would elect to take on an unscheduled moon-walk.

INSTRUCTIONS: You are a member of a space crew originally scheduled to rendezvous with a mother ship on the lighted surface of the moon. Due to mechanical difficulties, however, your ship was forced to land at a spot some 200 miles from the rendezvous point. During landing, much of the equipment aboard was damaged, and, since survival depends on reaching the mother ship, the most critical items available must be chosen for the 200-mile trip. Below are listed the 15 items left intact and undamaged after landing. Your task is to rank order them in terms of their importance to your crew in allowing them to reach the rendezvous point. Place the number 1 by the most important item, the number 2 by the second most important, and so on, through to number 15, the least important.

Box of matches
Food concentrate
50 feet of nylon rope Parachute silk
Portable heating unit
Two 45 calibre pistols
One case dehydrated Pet milk
Two 100 lb tanks of oxygen
Stellar map (of the moon's constellation)
Life raft
Magnetic compass
5 gallons of water
Signal flares
First aid kit containing injection needles
Solar-powered FM receiver-transmitter



Would you like to learn about off-set printing and help the Club print its magazine?

Each month it takes two evenings to produce the printed sheets for the magazine. We have one volunteer assistant printer and we need two more. You are invited to come along and watch over the next few months.

The present printers do not want to continue after next March as they have already done the job for quite a long time.

If you are interested please ring Phil Butt 94-6333 (H) or 266-8209 (B), or Barry Wallace 240-1112 (B), or speak to Ainslie Morris in the Clubroom.

The off-set printer is at present located at Seaforth but in future will probably be located at Turramurra.


Your reference is Australian First Aid - St. John's.

DRABC- see page 40. D means DANGER - Look for danger to yourself (cold?), take action to ensure safety, or await trained rescuers, and only move the casualty if in danger.

(1) Assessment - HYPOTHERMIA or severe accidental general body cooling.

(2) Immediate Action - Set up a shelter, tent or fly or groundsheet. Provide warmth and psychological reassurance that s/he is being taken care of.

(3) Treatment -
(a) Put him/her in a sleeping bag, or if no bag, collect spare clothing from others and put on him/her. Two people sit/lie and hug him/her, wrapped in groundsheet, or if possible get in a double sleeping bag beside him/her after the companion has stripped to underclothing.


Never try to speed it up by rubbing hands and feet, or using hot water bottle. This could take blood from the “core” (heart, brain stomach, etc.) to the extremities where blood is not so essential.

(b) Make a fire if possible and give the casualty a warm sweet drink. NO ALCOHOL.

(4) Further Action - Seek medical aid urgently and remain with the casualty until medical aid arrives; or if fully recovered proceed to walk out. Watch the casualty.

WARNING! On day walks or ski trips in winter, take fly or groundsheet, extra jumper, long pants, billy and cup, bivvie bag for snow.


The following is from Ted Lovegrove's article “Death from Exposure”, which analysed the loss of life of a 15-year-old boy in the Cradle Mountain area of Tasmania in an early summer blizzard.

Fatigue, Physical Exhaustion + Anxiety, Mental Stress + Reduction in Core Temperature –> Death from Exposure

1. For mountain walking or skiing, no person under 16 1/2 years of age if carrying a pack should go.

2. Two qualified mountain leaders is minimum for a party, and a ratio of one leader to 5 people, who should all be fit.

3. Camp at first signs of fatigue. Discomfort leads to mental stress, as does inexperienced, indecisive leadership.

4. Preservation of the deep core temperature is vital. Wear:-
WINDPROOF CLOTHING - head and legs covered.
WATERPROOF CLOTHING - mainly anorak.
WOOL - underwear, shirt, jumper, trousers, socks and balaclava - not synthetic.
FOOTWEAR - Waterproof boots.


(Reprinted from the Save Colong Bulletin, May, 1985 - with permission.)

The policy is as follows:- The term “WILDERNESS AREA” is used to describe a type of recreation setting for a number of outdoor activities, such as cross country, skiing, walking and canoeing. This setting is described in terms of:

Remoteness: All wilderness management areas are accessible by foot or canoe only. Motorised vehicle access for recreation purposes is not provided.

Size: A large area; but no defined wilderness management area has been determined.

Evidence of humans: Wherever possible, and consistent with the National Parks and Wildlife Act, wilderness areas have been identified over lands with the minimum of structures or other evidence of human activity. It is recognized that in some areas evidence of previous human activity may still remain but is of insignificant impact on the naturalness of the wilderness area as a whole.

Its social setting: The frequency of contact between wilderness visitors is the major determinant of the social setting. The absence of vehicle access within the wilderness areas acts as a control on the number of people visiting these areas.

The managerial setting: The actions of the National Parks and Wildlife Service in managing national parks are an important determinant of the setting. Wilderness is characterised by the minimum of regulation, facilities and services.

Opportunities for wilderness experiences will be provided by, designating wilderness areas over all or part of a national park. Such designation prescribes the recreation setting and the management emphasis as being to protect such opportunities for wilderness experiences as that area may have to offer. Any wilderness areas designated in a plan of management will be declared under subsection 59 (1) of the National Parks and Wildlife Act, 1974, as soon as possible following the adoption of the plan. They will thereby be subject to section 61 of the Act, as well as to the provisions of the plan.

The prescription for wilderness management for an area has the effect within that area of adding the following objective to those specified for that park or part of a park:
* To maintain the opportunities for wilderness experiences in relatively large expanses of land with essentially natural character.

Within designated wilderness areas, the following management guidelines will operate:
* Wherever possible wilderness areas will include complete catchment areas to protect nature conservation values and viewsheds.
* Activities that conflict with opportunities for wilderness experience of the highest possible quality will not be permitted.
* Wilderness area will be maintained as free as possible from signs, trailmarkers and other management devices.
* Fire management practices in wilderness areas shall be in accordance with the adopted fire management plan.
* To maintain the integrity of a wilderness area and the protection of adjacent areas, management operations in wilderness management areas will be on foot or skis.
* Tracks other than those essential for management of wilderness areas themselves will be closed (Section 61(2)(b) of the Act refers).
* Essential management tracks will be rehabilitated to as near to a natural condition as possible, consistent with the need to utilise them periodically for essential management operations.
* Other sites of disturbance including those which arise because of management works will be rehabilitated to as near to a natural state as practicable.
* The use by private or commercial interests of any form of motorised transport (including the landing of aircraft) will not be permitted.
* Motorised transport operated by any agency, except for essential management or rescue operations, will not be permitted.

Areas which satisfy the criteria for wilderness management exist adjacent to declared wilderness areas. The Service will seek to ensure management of these lands in accordance with these management guidelines.

The Corporate Plan of the Service has as a Corporate Direction the following:

“The review of areas having wilderness management potential should be completed during 1984/85, and a programme aimed at declaring not fewer than three such areas under the National Parks and Wildlife Act per year thereafter maintained. Priority - Moderate. Target - Complete review by June 1985. Continuing programme thereafter until potential areas declared.”

The following national parks are recognized as including potential wilderness areas and it is proposed to investigate these to establish boundaries for the purposes of declaration if this proves to be warranted.

Blue Mountains/Wollemi National Parks
Kanangra Boyd/Blue Mountains National Parks *
Deua National Park
Guy Fawkes River National Park
Morton/Budawang National Parks
Barrington Tops National Park
New England National Park *

Certain national parks in the Western Region of the Service may have wilderness areas worthy of declaration. The application of the wilderness concept to arid and semi-arid lands needs to be further considered but these areas will be investigated with the intention of recommending any such areas after such further consideration of the special problems of wilderness recreation in semi-arid and arid climates. This may require qualification of the management guidelines outlined above.

Willandra National Park *
Sturt National Park
Mallee Cliffs National Park
Mootwingee National Park *

Many of these areas are within national parks which are currently subject to the preparation of a plan of management (indicated by an asterisk (*)). Wilderness areas proposed in a plan of management once adopted will be declared as wilderness under section 59 as a matter of high priority.

In those other national parks listed above which are not currently nor likely to be in the foreseeable future subject to the preparation of a plan of management, a comprehensive investigation will be undertaken of potential wilderness areas and suitable areas declared under section 59(1) of the Act.

The management guidelines accord closely with those adopted by the Colong Committee. The Committee has strongly advocated the protection of complete catchment areas, particular instances being Nadgee, Deua-Wadbilliga and Kakadu. “Activities that conflict with opportunities for wilderness experience” would no doubt include not only vehicular use but motor boats, helicopters, hunting and any other damaging activity. The closing and rehabilitation of tracks is another management essential we have for long sought. By far the most significant guideline is the uncompromising exclusion of all vehicles. Vehicles, and the firearms and litter they so often carry, are undoubtedly the worst destroyers of the wilderness experience.

There are several aspects on which we would hope for more specific policy. The designation of wilderness under section 59(1) of the N.P.W.S. Act will take place as soon as possible following the adoption of the plan. Management plans take years to prepare and in the meantime roading, resorts and other development might take place in a wilderness. The object of section 59(1) is to preserve wilderness until the management plan has been approved. There also seems to be a contradiction between the commitment to “Management operations on foot or skis” and the retention of tracks “essential for management”. Which kind of management requires tracks and what kind of tracks? In these days a track is usually a vehicle track. once a track is made it is virtually impossible to exclude unauthorized use. It provides access for destructive elements and probably gives rise to more fires than its use can prevent. Unless carefully maintained, at considerable cost, vehicle tracks become channels for erosion.

The guideline of “fire management practices in wilderness in accordance with the adopted fire management plan” begs the question rather than describes policy, though it if means that the N.P.W.S. alone determines fire management practice within the boundaries of national parks, this is a plus. A firm statement that wilderness, designated as such or not, will not be used for the creation of firebreaks, as it has been in the past, would have been more to the point. It is well proven that most fires start, not in wilderness, but in developed areas, and that is where the fire breaks should be made, though it may be impossible to avoid making some breaks on the wilderness margins.

The goal of declaring no fewer than three wilderness areas a year gives some assurance of progress, though we would like to see quicker progress. The rate of progress would not matter so much if section 59 were used BEFORE wilderness areas were designated in management plans.


by Bill Holland.

The Annual Club Auction takes place on 30th October. This is a chance to put your old or unwanted gear to good use. Also an opportunity to get good value for money and help the Club. Don't delay your spring cleaning. Bring along bushwalking or household items, nothing is too big, too small or too worn. Charlie Brown is the auctioneer. Goods and MONEY, please!

High Value items will be sold on owner's behalf with the Club receiving 20% commission. Owners may put a reserve price on these items.

Earlier in the month, on October 9th, we have a Wine, Cheese and Pate night. The Club will supply standard cask wine, fruit juices, coffee and other refreshments but it is up to you to bring along cheese, pate and cheese dishes, and if you wish quality wines more suitable for the discerning bushwalker. Please label your offering and, preferably, describe the type of cheese (district, age of cow and expiry date), type of pate (particularly if home made) or class of wine (district, vintage, height of hill, etc.) There will be prizes for the best presented, most unusual, best poetic description and most boring.

16th October is a Members' Slides Night. Bring along a batch of slides - bushwalking or other - that you would like to show your fellow Club members. DINNER before the meeting at - “Curry Bazaar” Restaurant, 334 Pacific Highway, Crow's Nest. BYOG.

On the 23rd October, Peter Christian presents an audio/visual “Pidgeon House to Snowbound Kosciusko”.


The Environment Centre has a new address (temporarily). It is:- 57 Wentworth Avenue, Sydney.

A November meeting will be addressed by Mr. Bob Carr, Minister for Planning and Environment, on Plans and Policies for National Parks in N.S.W. Be prepared to put the date on your calendar as soon as it is advised. He is a stimulating and informative speaker. How about a big roll-up!!

The Hon. Solicitor, Malcolm Steele, has resigned.

The Secretary reported on some of the effects of incorporation of the Club and will write on this for the magazine.


This is a brief preliminary report, to be followed up with a detailed report next month.

The meeting was attended by 45 members and prospectives.

The Treasurer - in absentia - had her report presented as well as a budget for the next five months. This was required in order to give members an idea of the cost of purchasing abseiling equipment for use on instructional days, and the cost of Public Liability Insurance.

Barrie Murdoch was elected as Honorary Solicitor. He is writing an article on INCORPORATION for the next magazine with the intention of stimulating debate.

INSURANCE: Motions put by Bill Holland, seconded by Barry Wallace.

1. Public Liability Insurance for $5,000,000 for a premium of $640 to cover the risk of third parties taking action against the Club office bearers and members for damages or injury caused by the Club or its members whilst taking part in Club activities. Passed.

2. Personal Accident Cover (for death $20,000 and corresponding capital benefits; $200 per week for temporary total disablement and $50 per week for temporary partial disablement) be sought in principle and be referred back to the Committee and presented as a motion at the next General Meeting. Passed.

3. General Property Cover for a value of $5,000 at a premium of $193.50. Passed.


A S. & R. PRACTICE will be held on 19th - 20th October '85.

Location: Appin 1:25,000 Grid ref. 000175.

Maps: Appin 1:25,000 and your U.B.D.

Time: 8.30 am start Saturday morning. Campfire Saturday night.

Directions: Drive to Campbelltown and head south on the Appin Road. Turn left into Woodland Road and continue to Wedderburn Road (T intersection). Turn right and continue until you can turn left into Victoria Road, watch the S.& R. signs.

Contact: Tony Parr 666-5984 (H), 666-8943, X 2511 (B)-for further details.

198509.txt · Last modified: 2014/05/10 20:55 by simon

Donate Powered by PHP Valid HTML5 Valid CSS Driven by DokuWiki