Table of Contents
SYDNEY BUSHWALKER is a monthly bulletin of matters of interest to The Sydney Bush Walkers Inc, Box 4476 GPO Sydney 2001. To advertise in this magazine, please contact the Business Manager.
|Editor||Patrick James 5/2 Hardie Street Neutral Bay 2089 Telephone 9904 1515|
|Business Manager||Elizabeth Miller 1 The Babette, Castlecrag, 2068 Telephone 9958 7838|
|Production Manager||Frances Holland|
|Printers||Kenn Clacher, Tom Wenman, Barrie Murdoch, Margaret Niven & Les Powell|
THE SYDNEY BUSH WALKERS INCORPORATED was founded in 1927. Club meetings are held every Wednesday evening at 8 PM at Kirribilli Neighbourhood Centre, 16 Fitzroy Street, Kirribilli (near Milsons Point Railway Station). Visitors and prospective members are welcome any Wednesday.
|Public Officer||Fran Holland|
|Walks Secretary||Bill Capon|
|Social Secretary||Peter Dalton|
|Membership Secretary||Barry Wallace|
|New Members Secretary||Jennifer Giacomel|
|Conservation Secretary||Bill Holland|
|Magazine Editor||Patrick James|
|Committee Members||Elwyn Morris & Louise Verdon|
|Delegates to Confederation||Jim Callaway & Ken Smith|
November 1998 Issue No. 768.
|2||Elections & The 1999 AGM by Eddy Giacomel|
|4||A Hard Day’s Night by Maurice Smith|
|5||Competency Standards for Leaders by Eddy Giacomel|
|5||Reflections on Coolana by Gemma Gagne|
|6||Plaque at Pulpit Rock by Eddy Giacomel|
|6||How the Blue Gum Forest was Saved by Tom Herbert|
|8||The October General Meeting by Barry Wallace|
|9||A note to Leaders & Intending Leaders by Bill Capon|
|11||The 71th Reunion by Patrick James|
|11||Isdell River: advance notice|
|12||Nomad’s Journey by Joy Hines & Ian Debert|
|14||A Walk in Lane Cove National Park by Ute Foster|
|14||Footnotes by Patrick James|
page 10 Eastwood Camping Centre
page 13 Willis's Walkabouts
Back Cover Paddy Pallin
Elections & The 1999 AGM
The next Annual General Meeting of the Sydney Bush Walkers will be held on Wednesday 10 March 1999. This is just over three months away. This article is to inform you about the various positions in the club, both on Committee and not on Committee. As some positions will become vacant, it is hoped that this article will inspire some members to stand for either a committee position or a non committee position.
At the AGM in March, the following committee members won't stand again - Peter Dalton, Jennifer Giacomel, Greta James, Patrick James, Elwyn Morris (perhaps) and Don Wills. Perhaps some others won't stand and there’ll be other vacancies. Unless somebody does the work, it doesn't just happen. So be there and consider standing for a position. More information from the incumbent member or from the president.
President Eddy Giacomel
Chairs the committee meetings on the first Wednesday of the month and the General meetings on the second Wednesday of the month. General central point of contact for the club.
Vice President Tony Holgate
Stands in for the president when the president is unavailable.
Public Officer Frances Holland
Keeps the relevant government body up to date with annual reports.
Treasurer Greta James
Collects and banks subscriptions from 500 or so members and prospective members (via the new members secretary). Advises the membership secretary which members have or have not paid their subscriptions. Produces the budget for the following year, pays accounts for expenses, rent, Coolana, printing, etc. Keeps track of the club funds.
Secretary Don Wills
Takes minutes of meetings, collects mail from the GPO box, writes letters on behalf of the club.
Walks Secretary Bill Capon
Prompts members to submit walks for the walks program. Sifts though the mountain of information to produce a balanced program trying to spread walks across the available weekends. Every three months the Walks Secretary has the task of producing the next walks program. Presents the walks report at the general meetings. This year Bill has been assisted by Tony Marshall who typed the program.
Social Secretary Peter Dalton
Extracts presentations from members and guest speakers for the 3rd, 4th and 5th Wednesday evenings of the month. Produces the social program (attached to the walks program) every three months. Introduces the presenters for the night. Buys the coffee, tea, milk and biscuits for the meetings. This year Peter has been assisted by Elwyn Morris who took the new role of Assistant Social Secretary
Membership Secretary Barry Wallace
Keeps the database of members addresses updated. Cross references the treasurer to delete members who have not paid their subscriptions. Every month produces the labels for the posting of the magazine.
New Members Secretary Jennifer Giacomel
Is the first point of contact for persons interested in joining the club. Explains the club and the process of joining. Coordinates the prospective members to arrange their entry to the club, getting their forms signed, arranging navigation and first aid tests.
Conservation Secretary Bill Holland
Keeps the club up to date on conservation issues. Writes to governments and other bodies on behalf of SBW on conservation issues.
Magazine Editor, Patrick James
Solicits and edits articles from members and non-members, writes articles, copy and notices, prepared layout for the Sydney Bushwalker which appears every month and has done so since 1931.
Committee Members, Elwyn Morris & Louise Verdon
This year Elwyn has been the assistant social secretary, helping Peter with the duties described above. Otherwise assist as required when other committee members are unavailable.
Delegates to Confederation, Jim Callaway & Ken Smith.
SBW has two delegates to “The Confederation of Bushwalking Clubs NSW Inc” on the SBW committee. Jim is the president of Confederation. These two members represent SBW at Confederation meetings. There are also two other delegates who need not be on the committee - refer below.
NON COMMITTEE POSITIONS
Delegates to Confederation vacant.
Assist the delegates to Confederation noted above
Printers : Kenn Clacher, Barrie Murdoch, Margaret Niven, Les Powell, Tom Wenman.
Print the magazine and the walks program and other club printing (eg Notice for AGM). Generally two operate the printing machine. This takes the two printers one night every month. After printing, the pages (not collated) are passed onto the magazine production team …
Magazine Production, Frances Holland
Coordinates the production of the magazine. Fran organises the collating which is done at her house one night every month. On this night, a dozen or more members (not named elsewhere in this article) converge on the Holland household to collate, staple wrap and label the magazine every month and the walks program every three months. With several hundred magazines and walks program, this takes quite a few hours.
Magazine Business Manager, Liz Miller
Manages the business side of the magazine, solicits advertising, submits invoices to advertisers.
Assistant New Members Secretary,Patrick James
Archivist, Bill Holland
Keeps the clubs archives, some of which date to the origin of the club. Bill would much prefer that someone else does this job as his hands are full with other SBW business. An excellent opportunity to volunteer for a position if you have a room for storage and like history.
Honorary Solicitor, Rosemary MacDougal Advises the club on legal matters
Honorary Auditor Chris Sonter, Audits the treasurer's books
Delegates to Kocziusko Huts, Ian Wolfe, and Louise Verdon
Search & Rescue, Allan Donnelly, Bill Holland, Dave Robinson and Morie Ward. These people are the telephone contacts for members requiring search and rescue. Fortunately, they are rarely (if ever) used.
Gemma Gagne, George Gray, Bill Holland, Patrick James, Joan Rigby, Peter Rossel. These people plan, coordinate and carry out the maintenance work at Coolana.
Reunion Organiser Spiro Hajinakitas.
Plans, organises and manages the reunion at Coolana, including supper.
Training, Bill Holland and Patrick James. Organise the training of prospectives, in particular the Coolana weekends 4 times a year.
A Hard Day’s Night
By Maurice Smith
As the evening of Monday 6 October 98, the Labour Day long weekend, came to its inevitable close a group of walkers were slowly making their way through the Ettrema Wilderness in Morton National Park, to the west of Nowra. In fact they were to continue to make their weary way through the scrub for many hours that night, eventually to emerge onto the road not that far from their cars at shortly after midnight. This was after walking for some 17 hours from the time that we left our camp on the junction of Ettrema Creek and Tullyangela Creek.
To say that we were very tired would be wrong. In fact we were all exhausted. We have all recovered now, although the scratches that we received from making our way through dense hakea bush will take a while to heal. In addition to those scratches are the self inflicted ones that come about from very itchy sand fly bites around my knees. How they itched!
Our weekend had started by walking to Pardon Point, at the top of Transportation Spur which leads down to Ettrema Creek. After several of our party went swimming in a pleasant pool in Ettrema Creek we made our way north along the creek to our camp site which I had found several years ago on a previous trip.
Sunday saw us on a day walk further north along the creek to Dynamite Creek. Or was it Dynamity Creek? One topographic map has it spelled one way while the adjoining map has it spelled the other way. Before starting up Dynamite Creek we walked the several hundred meters further north to the junction of Ettrema and Tullyangela Creeks to thoroughly check out the camp sites to be found there. Having satisfied ourselves that we had several camp site options we explored part way up Dynamite Creek then returned from our day walk to our camp site, packed up our gear and relocated ourselves to a lovely camp site at the junction of the two creeks for our early start on Monday morning.
We knew we were in for a longish day on Monday as there was a lot of distance to cover and a lot of height to gain. With that in mind we started off from our camp site at 7.15am on Monday morning. We encountered some delightful scenery on the way up Tullyangela Creek. The nature of the creek is such that we were forced to travel quite slowly. Indeed we had two pools where it was necessary to make short swims with our packs. However, shortly before lunch time one of our lady members sprained her ankle while down climbing one of the many small boulder in the creek. After strapping her ankle and distributing her pack among most of the group she was able to move a bit slower than before. Another of our lady members was finding that she was travelling slower than the rest. So to aid her we also lightened her pack.
Eventually, late in the afternoon we came to our first exit point in the creek and we took pretty much a direct bearing to the nearest point in the road. The map showed that we would have to cross the creek again as it takes a big swing from west to south. Night fell upon us as before we reached the creek. Before long we came to the creek. Surprise! Lots of cliff lines. About 50 or 60 metres of them in all. Our torches couldn’t really see the creek below us. The full moon clearly showed the trees on the other side of the creek. Eventually, by trial and error, we found small ramps here and there to get us down each layer in the cliffs to the creek. After refilling our water bottles and eating some munchies we headed off after consulting the map. We selected what looked like an easy way back to the road.
In retrospect the scrub we encountered on our easy route was some of the worst I’ve experienced. As I lead the way walking on a compass bearing and broke the trail I was being forced all over the place because of the dense hakea. Alan behind me was steering me with the benefit of his GPS. “You’re 200 metres too far right!” A little later, “we’re 150 metres from our turning point”. And later still, “only 2 kilometers to the road”. The moon was so bright we were often able to walk without using our torches. After crossing several deep gullies not marked on the map, we eventually saw the road from about 50 metres away. Hurrah!
Two of our members then walked the 2 kilometers along the road to retrieve the cars and collect the other 7 very tired members. Two of the three car loads camped beside the car at Quiera Clearing to get several hours sleep before heading back to arrive at Nowra around 7 am Tuesday morning. While driving back we finally caught up on the federal election results. We had been speculating about the result at various times over the weekend, now we knew.
I also know that I want to go back to Tullyangela Creek. What a challenge. What a weekend. Thanks to all who came with me. Some of them even said that they enjoyed themselves. How mad!
Once the scratches have healed and the bite lumps disappeared I might even begin to think that too. Now where’s that map, there has to be a better way for the last section of the walk. Its too late! My Easter walk is definitely heading back there.
Party members were:
SBW: Ute Foster, Michelle Mandler, Liz Miller, John Nagy, Maurice Smith,
SBC: Paul Elliott, David Hufton, Megan Pryke, Alan Pryke.
Competency Standards for Leaders
All leaders will have received a note by post inviting them to an information night conducted by the NSW Confederation of Bushwalking Clubs on the subject of Competency Standards for Leaders. The date of this information night (11 November 1998) makes it impossible to provide a review of this information night in this magazine due to the closing date for printing of this magazine. However, Rosemary MacDougal, SBW's honorary solicitor, together with some members of the SBW committee will be attending the meeting. I'm sure that several leaders will also be attending.
Rosemary will attend the next general meeting of SBW on Wednesday 9 December to answer any questions that members may have about this very important subject.
Eddy Giacomel, President
Reflections on Coolana
An invitation from Gemma Gagne
Join us for a camp at the club property “Coolana” in Kangaroo Valley. Have a fun time doing a little bit of work, lots of socialising, extended happy hours, walking about exploring our beautiful property, birdwatching, enjoying the flora and fauna or just lazing around a campfire, swimming etc.
The weeds are now more or less under control so it does not take much to keep it looking beautiful. The Water Board has the noise of the campers under control across the river so there is peace and quiet again.
I have gone down to “Coolana” many times this year and it is really rewarding to see all our hard work paying off. We have been able to save much of the natural regrowth, most of which is rainforest trees. There are lots of white cedars, sandpaper figs and many more not yet identified.
PLAQUE AT PULPIT ROCK
At the recently renovated Pulpit Rock lookout in the Blue Mountains National Park near Blackheath, the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service has erected a plaque. When I came upon this plaque, I approached the NPWS for a copy of the artwork to print in the Sydney Bushwalker. I express my thanks on behalf of SBW to Stephen Alton of the NPWS Blackheath who kindly provided the artwork for publication. The plaque is reproduced on the opposite page.
For those who may not be aware of the history of the Blue Gum Forest, the following article is a reprint from page 32 of the book “The Sydney Bush Walkers, The first sixty years”. For reference, in 1931 there was a basic weekly wage of about £3 and an average weekly wage of about £5.
Eddy Giacomel, President
How the Blue Gum Forest was Saved from the Axe
by Tom Herbert *
In 1931 Mr. C. Hungerford, a farmer of Bilpin, obtained a Conditional Purchase Lease in the valley of the Grose River which included what is now Reserve 63,521. On the Eight-Hour Weekend he started to ringbark the trees on that flat, but fortunately, a small party of bushwalkers was camping in the Blue Gum Forest that weekend. Some of them were members of the Mountain Trails Club and some belonged to the Sydney Bush Walkers. On hearing the chopping, they approached Mr Hungerford, and succeeded in getting him to stop ringbarking and to agree to sell them his rights in the area for £130, provided it was paid by 31st December, 1931.
At that time there was no N.S.W. Federation of Bush Walking Clubs (it was formed in July, 1932) so, from the members of the Mountain Trails Club, the Sydney Bush Walkers and the Wild Life Preservation Society of Australia was formed the Blue Gum Forest Committee, viz:-
MTC Myles Dunphy and Alan Rigby
SBW Harold Chardon, Walter Roots, Noel Griffiths and Joe Turner
WLPS Roy F. Bennett
On 12th February, 1932, Miss Dorothy Lawry was elected to fill in the vacancy on the Committee caused by Mr. Chardon's resignation.
The arrangement with Mr. Hungerford was confirmed at a meeting the Committee had with him in the Blue Gum Forest on 15th November, 1931, at which Mr J.C. Lockley (“Redgum” of the Sydney Morning Herald) was present. On the way up Govett's Leap Creek on the return journey to Blackheath, Mr. Lockley commented on the great, rocky “pylon” on the left, which was later officially named “Lockley Pylon”. The Sydney Morning Herald gave valuable publicity to the purchase of the Blue Gum Forest by bushwalkers and other nature lovers, and their gift of it to the community for a recreation reserve.
The Wild Life Preservation Society donated £25, bushwalkers and tree lovers gave £25, and Mr W.J. Cleary lent the Committee £80 free of interest for two years, so Mr. Hungerford received his £130. The Blue Gum Forest Committee the arranged with the Lands Department for the dedication of the area as a Reserve for Public Recreation, and advised Departmental officers of the surrounding areas that were suitable for the reservation.
By further appeals and donation, as well as the proceeds of various entertainments they arranged, the bushwalkers raised the £80 and on 1st December, 1933, repaid Mr. Cleary's loan.
* Tom was president of SBW 1934/36.
The October 1998 General Meeting
By Barry Wallace
At around 2005 the President, as chairman, called the 16 or so members present to order and began the meeting. There were apologies for Bill and Fran Holland, Wilf Hilder, and Patrick and Greta James. New members Winnie Wu, Richard Phillipps and Michael O’Brien were welcomed to the club with badge, constitution and membership list.
The minutes of the September meeting were read and received with no business arising.
Correspondence was comprised only of outgoing letters to new members and accounts for payment.
The treasurer’s report was next, indicating that we began with $14,181, received income of $1,135, spent $3,634 and closed with a balance of $11,715.
The walks reports began with compulsory visual relevance, with “The Map” prominently displayed in a dark alcove. Alan Wells’ walk in the Wollangambe, scheduled for 12, 13 September was having none of it. It was cancelled. David West’s Saturday cycle tour de Homebush went with visitors and the leader only. Tony Crichton had the three starters on his Saturday walk from Victoria Falls out for Cappuccino by 1400 in wet conditions. Eddy Giacomel had 12 on his trip to Tootie Creek in good weather surveying the results of recent fire and flood in the area. The 11 starters on David Robinson’s Sunday walk from Bundeena to Otford were treated to views of whales and a sea eagle along the way.
Ian Rannard’s mid week walk went despite transport problems for the party of eight.
The weekend of 18, 19, 20 September was not good for weekend walks, though whether this was due to the presence of the Confederation Bush Dance on the same weekend in uncertain. Whatever the reason both Jan Pieters and Maurice Smith cancelled scheduled walks due to lack of starters. The K to K went that Saturday, under the baton of Phil Newman. There were 10 starters and 9 finishers on what was described as a great walk. Frank Sander led 13 decreasing to 12 on his Sunday walk from Roseville Station to Gordon Station, and described it as a good walk. There was no report for Bill Hope’s Sunday walk out from Carlons' Farm.
The midweek walk that week was conducted by Bill Holland, with an entourage of six reporting warm conditions and wildflowers.
Bill Capon’s flexible October school holidays trip/trips in the Buddawangs/Wolgan area(s) went, with five starters.
The weekend of 25, 26, 27 September saw Tony Manes and a party of 15 out from Mount Talaterang in good weather. They reported somewhat overgrown conditions with the rough going here and there compensated by good views along the way. Bill Holland led a party of13 on his visit to farms at Georges Plains. You may have read the article in last month’s magazine. Ron Watters reported nine on his Saturday walk to Russells Needle and Jim Calloway had five starters in glorious but hot weather on his walk from Engadine to Waterfall on the Sunday. Sunday also saw the 18 walkers on Lucy Moore’s walk in the Mount Wilson area out by 1430 for some reason.
October 2, 3, 4, 5 was the long weekend, with Ian Rannard leading a party of 10 on his walk in Morton National Park on what was described as a beautiful weekend. Jim Rivers cancelled his walk from Porters Creek Dam. Maurice Smith’s test walk from Quiera Clearing also enjoyed perfect weather but turned into somewhat of an adventure, with the party walking for 17 hours on the Monday. The presence of one sprained ankle may have had something to do with that. Eddy Giacomel reported a party of eight on his part exploratory Wollemi National Park walk. Ken Cheng had 12 on his Brisbane Waters area walk and reported sightings of wildflowers and wildlife along the way.
Tony Manes had 10 starters on his walk from Loombah Plateau over the weekend of 9, 10, 11 October. Conditions were wet on the Saturday, with persistent drizzle, but Sunday turned on fine weather. The other item of remark was the extensive pig sign throughout the area. Wilf Hilder postponed Stages 3 and 4 of his Great Illawarra Coastal Walk the same weekend. Allan Donnelly led the party of six on his Saturday test walk out from Carlons Farm through rain, hail, and generally challenging conditions. There was no report for Roger Treagus’ Sunday walk from Gordon to Narrabeen Beach although it did end the walks reports for this month.
Bill Holland was away, so we skipped the conservation report.
Confederation report told of the release of the draft plan of management for Morton National Park. It appears that camping under rock ledges will be prohibited in an attempt to preserve certain rare ferns, which are being adversely affected by the practise. Other details are expected to follow. Watch this space. NPWS prefer to control bushfires in park areas using their own resources in order to minimise collateral damage. The upshot of this is that other park areas will sometimes need to be closed to public access to release personnel for this duty. Extensions to existing firetrails during fire control by others are of particular concern.
There was no general business, but announcements indicated that this year for the first time the Tasmanian Park Service will introduce permit only access to World Heritage areas of their National Parks. The meeting closed at 2148 after announcements.
A Note to Leaders and Intending Leaders regarding Overnight and Extended Trips
By Bill Capon: Walks Secretary.
I have compiled details of trips from past programs going back quite a few years. I would be happy to briefly discuss walks and walk ideas over the phone or in greater detail in the clubroom, for example at General Meetings or at the Christmas Party.
Our Club has long standing reputation for putting on great walks. Unfortunately some of these have been forgotten as leaders retired. With the aide of a bit of arm twisting some of the old classics have appeared in the last few programs. There are a lot more walks where they came from! If you haven’t had time to rack your brain when I start harassing you before the next deadline (22 January 1999) do something about it soon.
I am not discouraging people from putting on trips they have done before. There are some very popular trips which deserve to be repeated. Nor am I (Heaven forbid) suggesting you necessarily follow someone else’s ideas
To a large extent the traditions of the Club can best be carried forward by those who spread the maps over the loungeroom floor and plan something of their own. Then go out and do it.
Water Water Everywhere, and not a drop to drink. Last month we had an article on bugs in water and how to purify get rid of them. Next month a series of articles will commence on Drinking water in the Bush, starting with Why Not Just Drink the Water?
In the Great Outdoors, there are potentially four dangers of drinking water straight from a source (assuming it's freshwater): chemical pollutants, protozoa and larger parasites, bacteria, and viruses. This could be another excuse for home knitting and gin drinking.
These articles are based on the results of Tony Holgate’s surfing of the Internet, wading through masses of information to find the latest and greatest on drinking water, all the dirt on dirty water plus bugger-all on bugs in water.
The 71st Reunion.
by Patrick James
I’m not sure why this year’s reunion is so memorable, but it is. It could be the people who were there, the fun, the huge bonfire, the entertainment, the singing, or the food or just everything together. No matter what I wont forget the 71st for a long time and I’m almost counting the days to the 72nd.
On the Saturday people started to drift down to the riverflats at Coolana. As the tents were erected they looked like great multicoloured flowers in the grass among the trees. I could get all poetic describing that tranquil scene.
By about happy-hour time a good crowd had assembled. Not too sure of the number. We did try to do a count on a number of occasions but always someone was missing and we had to start again, and then another matter had to be discussed or listened to or the billy had to be stirred, or whatever so we never finished the count.
There was a timetable of sorts, what had to be done when. This was followed after a fashion. Well there were only a few things to do and they followed a logical sequence. Starting with the fire to be lit and finishing with supper. In between the start and the finish entertainment and of course bedecking the President with the symbols of office. We had more presidents than the ceremony called for but we muddled through and Eddy was suitably installed. Eddy had succumbed to the occasion and was resplendent in white shirt, red bow tie and old battered hat. (besides his jeans and boots).
Supper was terrific. Spiro appeared ready to cater for either a small or large multitude and any number in between; amazing! Supper was up to his high culinary standards. Rich fruit cake, spinach pie, Greek coffee and hot Milo. Sustenance to give one strength to sing and dance in the light of the fire. Some even managed to get second helpings.
Not sure what time I got to bed. Not early, not late, probably just right.
On Sunday morning the damper making competition was on for young and old. One damper, not in the competition of course, was made from instant damper mix. This was more of an experiment. The competition entries varied from burnt, black, sooty things to some very good examples of the damper making art. The judges, chosen for their wisdom, impartiality, incorruptibility and appreciation of good damper had a hard time to select the winner from a field of good entries. The judges however did make their selection which was accepted by all.
Sunday morning, just like Saturday afternoon was spent chatting with old friends and reading by the fire. One group did wander off to look at the property next door but there were enough of us in camp to keep the fire under control.
Greta and I left after lunch and were home at about 6 PM. A beaut weekend.
Join us for a three trip to a spectacular part of Australia in May1999. We will be visiting the middle and lower sections of the Isdell River (east of Broome) in the last three weeks of May 1999. This is one of the most beautiful walking areas in Australia. Remarkable gorges, massive coloured cliff sides with granite rock slabs. Gentle creeks and raging river. After flying from Kununarra by light plane we will commence the walk from Mt. Hart Station.. Two food drops will assist in maintaining relatively light-weight packs.
This walk will be custom designed by Willis Walkabouts by for the Sydney Bush Walkers and it may be possible to link with other Willis walks. In order to obtain best pricing we would like to receive early expressions of interest. FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT FRANCES OR BILL HOLLAND ON 9484 6636
by Joy Hynes and Ian Debert
Joy Hynes and Ian Debert a couple of stalwarts of the Club decided to travel Australia, so now read on.
We bought a Motorhome, rented our house for 2-3 years and set off on St Valentines Day this year. First destination was Gerroa, on the South Coast of NSW after a short detour to the Central Coast to leave Joy's car at Bouddi.
Swimming, walking and fishing was the routine down most of the coast. We crossed the Victorian border, passed through Lakes Entrance then on to Melbourne. From here we sailed to Tasmania. Three months in the Apple Isle and still we did not cover everything. We did not do a great deal of walking because of the autumn weather and also because we had a lot of problems with our Motorhome.
We drove down to Cockle Bay, the most southerly point of Tasmania, where the south west track starts. We did a day walk on the south west track in the rain; the seas was wild, the beaches were windswept and the scenery rugged.
The highlight of the Cockle Bay trip was getting bogged just off the road at a spot which looked a great place to camp. After much pushing and shoving we were still bogged. Eventually a fellow camped next door who had a F100 ute loaded with firewood and with a grunt here and there all 3,500 kg of our Motorhome was out. I said to Joy “lets keep to the roads!”
We stayed at Hobart for a few days and included a trip to Mt. Wellington. What a view, you can see for miles all over Hobart and beyond. The Motorhome Club organised a rally at a historic town called Westbury. It was St. Patricks Day and there was a procession of various floats and stalls and displays of dancing on the Village Green; a very colourful weekend. We also stayed at a place called Spikey Bridge named after an old stone bridge with spikey stones on its sides. The only use of the bridge is as a tourist attraction.
Now we started having problems with our Motorhome. One solar panel was faulty and had to be sent to Sydney for repair. We went to Freycenet National Park where we did a day walk to Wineglass Bay with a fantastic view overlooking the wineglass shaped bay
Next we then headed across the island to do a motorhome safari down the West Coast. There were six other motorhomes and we set out for ten days travelling through some of the most rugged and beautiful country of Tasmania. We visited Montezuma Falls, the highest falls in Tassie, Scotts Peak and Lake Peddar. In between the Tassie leeches devoured us. Our safari finished in Hobart
On our way to Launceston where we now had problems with the gear box. We had a new one put in and the following day we were off to Devonport to catch the 2 AM boat to the mainland.
The crossing was rough, very rough and I was not a well sailor. We arrived in Melbourne at long last and from there we had a 1 hour drive to Kyneton near Bendigo. We stayed with Jo van Sommer’s brother and his wife on their property in the cold country of Kyneton for about five weeks. We had a lot of things to get done on the Motorhome in Melbourne so we used Kyneton as a base. We finally left and went to Dalesford - Hepburn area where the Natural Springs are; they all taste different. A spa bath was very enjoyable to soothe any aches from travelling.
Next stop was Adelaide and the Borossa Valley where we spent two weeks trying to keep away from the Wineries and walking the Hysen track instead. We then took off for York Peninsular with its beaches and majestic cliffs. We had a look at Inne's NP which is right at the tip of York Peninsular, with very spectacular ocean views. We travelled north from here because that was the only way to go and because the strong winds off the ocean were blowing the motorhome all over the road. We headed inland towards the Flinders Rangers to Willmingtown and Port Augusta,
After doing our essential shopping we left Port Augusta and went down the Eyre Peninsular where we met other motorhome people in Whyalla and stayed with them for 10 days. I was taken out on a boat fishing for Snapper and between 3 of us we caught more fish than we knew what to do with.
From Whyalla on to Port Lincoln and a tuna farm. It was a worth while experience to see how they catch these rather large fish. What a different life from bushwalking! We then travelled around the peninsular, to reach the
Great Australian Bight, the cliffs were just magnificent, one after the other in line. We visited the “Head of the Bight” where you can watch enormous whales as they rise to the surface. We went out in another boat and saw dolphins and sea lions and also caught some more fish. Then it was across the Nullabor. We took 2 - 3 days to cross just taking in all the scenery, not that there was much, just straight roads.. We finally were at Norseman then onto Kalgoolie. We stayed in Kalgoolie for a few days and did a gold mine tour; the area is riddled with mines and you have to watch where you walk!
We left Kalgoolie for Perth visiting a few old towns on the way with our destination John Reddel’s place. John is an ex SBW member who has lived over here for some years now.
More to follow. Joy & Ian.
The really bright readers know that nomads who don’t journey are not really nomads. Editor.
by Patrick James
The 71st Annual Reunion was terrific. Read the separate article on it.
The Nowra News on 20 August this year has an article and picture of 5 SBW members walking near Coolendel. The happy five decked in their best wet weather gear had the swollen Shoalhaven River in the background of their photo. Its good to see people getting out and enjoying the great outdoors. The group? Who else but Brian Hart, Wilf Hilda (leader) Margaret Rosea, Roger Treagus and Gretel Woodward.
When I had dinner with Russel Willis of Walkabout fame last month I asked him if, like Ginger Rogers, his legs were insured for vast sums of money. Unfortunately, being hearing challenged, the clatter of chop sticks on rice bowls drowned out his reply.
This month the Confederation of Bushwalking Club had an Information Night on the new Competency Standards and how they affect bushwalking. The evening was extremely well attended, on SBW’s part no doubt by Eddy Giacomel’s direct mail-out of the notice to all SBW walks leaders.
The crux of the problem with the Competency Standards centres around Duty to Inform, Duty of Care, Due Diligence and Negligence with respect to a walk leader when there is a problem. If there’s not a problem a walk is a walk, is a walk. If there’s a problem be on the inlet side of the fan. Imagine this, you’ve been leading walks for years, some accident happens and your competency to lead walks is questioned. What is competency? How is it measured? When do you have it and when do you not? Are you more of less competent than the next leader. Did you do all the right things as a leader? What are the right things? You might say to yourself, ffforget bushwalking, I’m going back to knitting.
Don’t despair, next month a short, punchy article by Allan Donnelly will explain everything you want/need to know about Competency Standards and bushwalking.
A Walk in Lane Cove National Park. by Ute Foster
On 20 September I walked with Frank Sander in the Lane Cove National Park, one of over a dozen SBW people. It was a beautiful sunny day, and the starting point at Roseville Station meant staying in bed a bit longer, not having to drive a long way, a perfect spring day walk in fact.
And so it was, until we got to the “trackless section upstream of De Burghs Bridge”. Though the ground was mostly dry after the heavy rains we'd been experiencing up until the previous week, there were signs of the water levels having run maybe two metres or more above normal at times. As we know, on such occasions the creek waters carry away those little things, harbingers of 'civilisation', which people so kindly leave on the streets all over the place, even in the leafy northern suburbs.
The sight of these “presents” stuck in the trees and bushes touched off an odd association in my perverted imagination. So here, with apologies to Santa, is my own out-of-season offering:
Bashing through the scrub
In Lane Cove National Park
One Sunday morn' in spring
Golden wattles bright
Silky purple flags
Boronia, orchids, guinea flowers
But then - oh what a blight
Weedy creek, sewer smells
Shrubs and trees festooned
With plastic wraps and tissue paper
Rubbish everywhere - oh!
For Sale Macpac Expedition Tunnel Tent,
one person snow tent, yellow, perfect condition $450 ono, ring Tony Hughes 9314 6752 (home)