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NOVEMBER 2001 Amongst the vast array of day packs that decorate the shelves of outdoor shops, it's difficult to

pick something with the right features, what

with 101 different types of nylon, all sorts

of different canvases, airflow systems, expanding pockets and neon colours.

So it's nice to know that if your the type of

person that wants simple robust functionality

that reflects years of local bushwalking

experience with solid locally made material then the BLUE MOUNTAINS TRIASSIC could be your best companion for ma ny years to come.

__. Pack Review

by David Noble It's good to see a pack made in the Blue Mountains for use in the Blue Mountains. The Triassic features two shoulder strap sizes so that the pack can be properly hip loaded, sitting down comfortably in the lumbar region of the back. This is sometimes difficult especially if you are a taller person. The harness system also includes a thick waist belt and chest strap enabling a tight fit which is great when climbing over rocks.

The volume is large enough to allow a 50m rope and wetsuit to easily fit in and the top is made larger so that your stuff slides in and out with ease. The pack has a large front pocket for those essential items such asa torch, and a top pocket for the map and camera. The pack is large enough to be used as a weekend pack when no ropes etc. are needed. This can keep the bulk down and stop you from packing too much on those weekend bushwalks.

The Triassic is made from durable 120z canvas which can withstand the abuse given to it in canyons and when walking through scrub. All the seams are double stitched and sealed to prevent failure. It is also very water proof, on a recent trip down Hole In The Wall canyon, no water entered the main compartment despite a number of fengthy swims.

The pack is bush green in colour making the walker almost invisible in the bush. This is handy for sneaking up on wildtife with a camera or just blending in to the wilderness as you walk along. Good for those who like to keep the visual impact minimal too.

A quality Blue Mountains pack for our tough conditions, - the Triassic carries a lifetime guarantee on workmanship and materials.

Overall an excellent pack for either short or tall with the

2 shoulder strap options. And great for canyons or short weekend trips.

NB: David Noble is a keen canyoner and bushwelker. He {s also the discoverer of the rare Wollem! Pine (WOLLEMIA NOBILIS) found In 1994,

a a en oe



a 4 A a

Australian 120z canvas

Made in Katoomba the old traditional way

40 litre capacity

Proper hip loading with 2 shoulder strap sizes for walking comfort

Wide throat for easy loading and unloading Buckle up front pocket with internal divider Top lid pocket

Extendable lid for overloading

Padded hip belt with 38mm buckle

Hip belt retainer for city use (conveniently holds the hip belt back and out of the way

Padded back (removable)

Thumb loops on shoulder straps for more comfortable walking

Internal compression strap for holding down your canyon rope

Side compression straps for minimising volume Storm throat to keep out the rain

Hard wearing Cordura base

Price $159.00


1045 VICTORIA RD, WEST RYDE Ph 9858 5844 THE SYDNEY BUSHWALKER is a monthly bulletin of matters of interest to members of The Sydney Bush Walkers Inc PO Box 431 Milsons Point 1565. To advertise in this magazine, please contact the Business Manager.

Editor: Bill Holland Telephone: 9484 6636 Email:

Fax: 99805476 (phone 9484 6636 first)

Business Manager: Gretel Woodward

Telephone: 9587 8912

Production Manager: Frances Holland

Printers: Kenn Clacher, Barrie Murdoch, Tom Wenman, Don Brooks

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.

General Enquiries: phone 0500 500 729 SBW WEBSITE

COMMITTEE President: Wiif Hilder Vice-President: Peter Daiton Public Officer: - Fran Holland Treasurer: Carole Beales Secretary: Judy O'Connor Walks Secretary: Caro! Lubbers Social Secretary Gemma Gagne

Membership Secretary: Barry Wallace New Members Secretary: Kay Chan Conservation Secretary: David Trinder Magazine Editor: Bill Holland Committee Member: Pam Morrison Delegates to Confederation:

Jim Callaway Tom Wenman

Wiif Hilder, Geoff Bradley

The Sydney Bushwalker.


Issue No. 804


Editor's Note President's Report Vale - Morie Ward

The Club Questionnaire - Part 2 Pam Morrison


5. Letter to the Editor

6,7. Seven Virgins and Eight Peaks Maurice Smith

8. The October General Meeting Barry Wallace

10. Mt. Pomany Dick Whittington

11. Conservation Report David Trinder

12,13. Grey Mare Gallop Kenn Clacher

14,15 Walking in Ettrema Wal Roots (1952)

16 Odin's Last Rune - Part 2 Almis Simankevicius

17. New Members Report 18. Sociai Notes

ADVERTISERS: Alpsport Front cover Eastwood Camping 9 Paddy Pailin Back cover Wildemess Transit 7 Willis's Walkabouts 5

First Edition July 1931

Official publication of The Sydney Bush Walkers Inc.

[Page 2 ae _ The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001

Editor's Note:

As Editor, I receive the Club's copy of other bushwalking club magazines. It is interesting to read that most clubs are experiencing a lessening of participation - rather similar to SBW ie members are interested in bushwalking activities but cannot find the time, or inclination to join in the walks and social activities.

On this subject, the results of our Club Survey - as reported in last month (Part 1) and this month are recommended reading. Pam Morrison has completed the summary and Part 2 of her findings are shown on Page 5.

My own interest was of course the section on “Attitudes to the Magazine”. It was pleasing to me , and no doubt to those who contribute articles, that 96% of respondents read the magazine on a regular basis. However there is room for improvement and a majority say that the content can be improved.

So what about it! Let's have your articles as suggested in the survey - short articles on recent / upcoming walks with = photos and tips/advice/recipes/first aid.

This month marks the end of the three month trial period of using white bond instead of recycled paper. As I have received neither negative or positive reactions future issues will revert to recycled paper.

In October the Club received news of the passing of Jean Moppett. Jean joined the Sydney Bush Walkers in 1931 and was an active member for many years. A tribute to Jean Moppet will be published in next month's magazine Bill Holland

DoOoooocooon Letter To The President

Dear Wilf

On behalf of my family, I would like to thank you and many SBW members who sent their condolences to us on the occasion of Morie's death.

As you know, Morie wanted you all to know how special bushwalking and his bushwalking friends were to him. He had many happy memories of his time with the club and I know he treasured those memories when he was no longer able to “hit the track.

To those of you who were able to attend his funeral, thank you very much. It gave us all great strength to see such support.

And finally, thank you so much for the kind donation given in Morie's memory to the Central Palliative Care Service.

Jenny Ward

President's Report:

SBW 75th Anniversary Celebrations:

I am pleased to announce that Patrick James has been appointed Coordinator of this most important event in the clubs history. The Committee has enthusiastically accepted his generous offer to take on this demanding job. I should mention that Patrick is highly qualified for the task as he has coordinated two previous SBW anniversary celebrations.

As head of the 75th Anniversary Celebration Sub-Committee, Patrick is secking your help to rup the appropriate events - please ring him if you can help with our club celebrations - thanks. Advertising in Club Magazine:

To resolve any confusion the Committee has adopted new guidelines for advertising in our club magazine. Firstly, all advertising must relate to bushwalking and related activities. Secondly, club members are entitled to advertising space up to 1/8 page free of charge for disposal of surplus gear and other (non-commercial) bushwalking related activities. Thirdly, all commercial advertising must be consistent with the objectives of the Club. SBW Review: The Committee has agreed to proceed with the proposals to discuss the management structure of the club which could involve constitutional changes. These meetings will be held on the same evenings as the December and January general meetings. The general meeting proceedings will be shortened to allow adequate time for these proposals to be formulated and discussed. These meetings will be held on: Wednesday 12th December 2001 Wednesday 16th January 2002

Wilf Hilder Ooooogoooono

Alex Colley in Hospital

Alex is in hospital after a bad fall at home. He has required surgery and will be in hospital for a while. Notes and cards to Alex will be welcome but, please, no phone calls to the hospital.

For the postal address and updates on Alex's progress please phone Shirley Deane 9810 4268 or Ray Hookway 9411 1873. They have kindly offered to keep club members informed.

Vale Malcolm McGregor The sad news has reached us of the passing of Malcolm McGregor, an Honorary Member and Past President. He will be fondly remembered as a very active member during the 1950/60's.

The Sydney Bushwalker

November 2001 Page 3

Vale Morie Ward Morian (Morie) Ward: 28 May 1937 1 October 2001

On Ist October 2001, Morie lost his battle with cancer. At his funeral on 5 October many SBW members were present to bid farewell and to remember the many, many good times they shared with him.

Morie joined SBW on 16 June 1987 and was active in leading walks and participating in the Club. He was a committee member twice, in 1993/94 and in 1995/96, walks secretary in 1994/95, and vice president in 1997/98.

The following tributes have been prepared by

two close bushwalking friends of Morie. The first is taken from the address given at the funeral service by Michele Powell. The second prepared subsequently by David Robinson. Today is the saddest of days, to bid farewell to one who has been such a part of so many of our lives. When each of us think of him, a thousand images will come to mind.

Morie, eager, excited by the prospect of a bush adventure; generous; stubborn capable and accommodating

Morie, rope in pack. Just in case Bill Capons creek doesnt go.

Carefully wrapped in a T shirt to be taken home is a piece of bark, a fallen flower, a vividly coloured leaf, to be admired, studied and eventually captured forever by his extra-ordinary artistic abilities.

Uncomfortably perched in a small crevice. Cold and cramped but ever willing to aid those less able to cope with pack and exposure concurrently.

Morie - the undisputed King of the wusses A cold, a tummy bug, or a headache would have him searching for sympathy from those he knew would provide it. Yet in the face of cancer a tower of strength, self containment and sheer determination.

This is the very same man who Jenny reports following his first SBW walk, could not get out of his car unaided. He just sat in the car in the driveway, honking the hom for general assistance, muscles seized, unable to move after a week-end in the bush.

For ten years Morie has been there, a dear and generous friend. He has taken us to exotic rainforests, to exquisite places in search of new horizons, rare orchids and adventures. He has taken us to the snow when he didnt mean to, raging rivers that he hoped would not be there, to

beautiful places: Murdering Gully, Guogang, Cloud Maker, The Watagans, Cape York, Fraser Island, New Zealand. While we who loved him dearly, fussed about his health and wellbeing, he walked the Himalayas and conquered mountain tops in Borneo.

Jenny, Andrew and Louise, on behalf of Mories bushwalking friends, our love and thoughts are with you. Thank you for encouraging him to walk with SBW and for letting us share so much of his life.

Michele Powell

Morie was many things to many people: husband, father, grandfather, businessman and artist. SBW knew Morie as a strong and able walker who led many groups to places that we would not have ventured without his initiative: Kakadu, Hinchinbrook Island, North Queensland, Kokoda, white water rafting on the Tully.

Memories of the good times and laughs flood back, Morie stuck in the top of Big Willis Chimney, Narrowneck, and finally popping out like a cork from a bottle after being pushed and pulled for an hour. Sitting atop the Three Sisters admiring the vista of early morning light and sounds. Walking through the misty forests on the ascent of Batu Lawi, in the Kelabit Highlands of Sarawak, and stopping to admire the beauty of Pitcher Plants and other previously unseen flowers. Hearing the calls of Hornbills and the cacophony of birds and a myriad of unknown bugs. Freezing on the summit of Mt. Kinabalu waiting to take in the glorious sunrise, stopping again and again on the descent to inspect orchids and being told that Kinabalu had thousands of different varieties. Strolling through the markets of Kota Kinabalu and being forced to dnnk the local sickly sweet, strong coffee because Cappuccino could not be located. Arriving home at 4:00am after spending 16 hours covering only four km of the upper Williams River, Barrington. Racing along Narrowneck in the final stages of the K to K. A thousand campfires, a thousand do you remembers. Sharing a bottle of red over some fine Italian cuisine. Cappuccinos. All good times, shared with friends.

David Robertson

The Club Questionnaire (Part 2)

Pam Morrison

In July this year a two page survey was sent out to all members. The number of surveys returned (231 ie approx 50%) allows us to interpret the results as reasonably representative of club members. In last month's magazine we showed Part I covering “Summary of Key Findings” and (1) “Profile of the Respondents. Here is Part 2. of the report:

(2) Profile of Walkers

This section answers the questions, Who walks? Are there any significant differences between active/ non-active walkers in terms of their age, years membership with the club, or gender?

The general conclusion is that if we look only at active walkers, that is, members who went on at least 1 walk in the past 12 months, then there is no significant relationship between age, gender, and years membership with the number of walks/ overnights participated in.

Members who also walk with other clubs tend to be the more active SBW walkers. They are significantly over-represented in the group that do 4 or more walks a year with SBW. This is not unexpected as belonging to multiple clubs is a good indication of high interest in walking.

The main reason given for not walking more often (went on less than 4 walks in past 12 months) was too busy with other commitments (47%). These commitments include family, work and study. The reason given by 13.7% of respondents was that walks offered didn't meet my needs.

Members who went on less than 2 overnight walks in the past 12 months were asked why. Similar to day walks the main reason was too busy, followed by a preference for day walks, for easier walks, and not like having to carry full packs.

(3) What members think of the WalksProgram

Members were asked a number of items as to what they thought of the Walks Program. Only 32% liked it the way it is. A number of suggestions were made as to improvement. These included in order of importance, more mid-week walks, more medium walks, more 2-3 day walks, more easy walks, and more hard walks. Suggestions to the open ended question were a call for broader activities (eg climbing, canyoning, bike-riding), more exploratorys/ new area, walks with children, and easier to get to with public transport.

(4) What members think of the General Meeting and Social Program

The most frequent comment provided was that there are too many meetings. Low interest in the meetings is highlighted by the average claimed attendance, with 19 members saying they regularly attend the General Meeting (Note: this is a realistic picture of attendance ie all regular attendees of meetings returned the survey), while 23 members say they regularly attend the Social Evenings. Note that while 65% say they are happy with the General Meeting and 83% say they are happy with the Social Program, the majority of these people don't attend. The main reasons in order of prominence are too busy and not interested.

(5) Satisfaction with the way the club is run.

There is general satisfaction with the way the club is run with 85% saying they are either completely or reasonably happy. 47 members replied to the open-end question with the focus of the responses being less politics, less formality, more enjoyment, new ideas.

(6) Attitudes to the magazine

The club magazine is an important communication tool for the club with 96% of respondents reading it on a regular basis. However there is room for improvement with 57% of respondents saying the content can be improved and 43% agreeing that there are specific features that should be included. In response to the open-ended question, the clear winner is demand for more short articles on recent / upcoming walks with photos. Another frequent response was for tips/advice/recipes/First aid.

(7) What attracts our members to other clubs

More than a third of respondents (n = 92) provided information to the open-ended ; What attracts you to other clubs? The most frequent responses were that they are attracted by:

A wide variety of walks

Walks that are easy to go to (eg access by public transport and not having to pre-book)

Smaller groups

More relaxed style

To request a copy of the full report provided to

Committee email

Management Structure Review Meetings : Will be held on: Wednesday 12th Dec 2001 Wednesday 16th Jan 2002

The Sydney Bushwalker

November 2001 Page 5 |

< Letter To The Editor

I read the *News Item* contributed by Alex Colley on page 15 of the October Bushwalker with interest.

Back in February 1998 the High Court of Australia handed down a decision in the case of “Romeo v Conservation Commission of the Northern Territory”. I published an article in the August 1998 edition of Confederation's Bushwalker magazine giving some details of the High Court's decision.

In that case a 16 year old woman Nadia Romeo fell over a 6 metre high cliff in suburban Darwin resulting in her becoming a paraplegic. She sued the Conservation Commission of the Northern Territory arguing that the Commission was in breach of its duty of care to her in failing to give warning of the presence of the cliff or to erect a fence or other barrier at the edge of the cliff. The case went through several courts ending up in the High Court.

The High Court decided the case in favour of the Commission, with Justice Michael Kirby stating that “Where a risk is obvious to a person

Last Chance:

exercising reasonable care for his or her own safety, the notion that the occupier [the Conservation Commission] must warn the entrant [Romeo] about that risk is neither reasonable nor just.” Several other High Court justices made observations along similar lines.

The recent NSW case that Alex Colley has noted seems to contradict the findings of the High Court in the Romeo case. It will be interesting to observe whether the NSW case is appealed on the basis of the Romeo case.

Maurice Smith


Good News or Bad News:

Depends on your point of view - but we now inform you that mobile phones can be used in the Kangaroo Valley including Coolana; where reception is clear at the shed but fades away downhill. The river flats are out range.

Light Pack

2002 may be the last Something New:

time we offer these

Kimberley Day Pack Explorer |

tri DS ' SO if you ve Gn my two week expiratory trip in August, | finally

been thinking about trying

found a remote area perfect for daywalks without the tourist hordes that you might encounter at more accessible locations. Those who come along are guaranteed to see an amazing variety of Aboriginal art sites, beautiful waterfalls, lots of wildlife and a variety of landscapes both on foot and from the 4WD as we

one, NOW iS continue the exploration begun this year.

the time.


if you think you might be interested in a genuine exploratory trip where you might be the first nan-Abariginal to visit a particular location or in any of our other light-pack trips, ask for the ay 13 trip notes. Wait a year Pes and it might be too late.

Williss Waikabouts 12 Carrington St Millner NT 0810

| Page 6 The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001


Seven Virgins and Eight Peaks = Maurice Smith

In early May this year I decided that I was going to walk in both of this years club one-day marathon walks, the Six Foot Track on 1 September and the Kanangra to Katoomba (the K-to-K) on 15 September. In 2000 I had walked the Six Foot Track prior to the Olympic Games and had found that although I was pack-fit, having recently returned from a Northern Territory bushwalking holiday, I had not really done enough walking to be properly fit for the two walks. Due to an injury I was not able to do the K-to-K in 2000.

Having set this objective it was then a matter of getting really bushwalking fit so that I could complete both walks in comfort. With that in mind, I then decided that (a) I would undertake a bushwalk every weekend in the lead up to the Six Foot Track, and (b) I would be doing lots of early morning weekday walks before heading off to work.

In the end I completed both of the marathon walks, the Six Foot Track comfortably and the K-to-K with some effort (more about this anon).

As the weeks and club walks rolled by I kept meeting a considerable number of people who were also working on getting fit for the Six Foot Track, although Im not sure if they were getting fit for the walk or getting fit for the party at Caves House that follows the walk. When the clubs winter program arrived in the letterbox | immediately got my pen out and marked off the walks that I wanted to do in my preparation for the two walks.

As the weeks rolled by, the hardest part of the fitness program was getting up early on a weekday to go on my morning walk in the dark and the cold. I had no one to spur me on. Whereas it was very easy to get up very early for an 8 a.m. start from Carlons Farm (for example), because I had lots of other dedicated walkers to meet and greet on arrival.

Indeed, I found that the fitness program was effective as the hills were no longer quite so hard and the little bit of surplus weight that had accumulated over summer slowly disappeared. The Blue Mountains walks, and the two weekend Kanangra Walls down to the Kowmung River and return climbs from the Kowmung River were, if not easy, then at least, not difficult, because my walking fitness was really improving.

Then the evening before the Six Foot Track many of us gathered at Katoomba to find that

two of our members (Phil and Klaus) had decided they needed a bit more exercise, they had walked from Caves House to Katoomba on the Friday and were ready to walk back to Caves House with us on Saturday. In due course we were up early and then the brief drive around to the Explorers Tree.

There were 21 walkers and a large support crew. The day was quite cool; in fact, the maximum temperature did not top 10 degrees. Really the temperature was ideal for walking, although, whenever we stopped for more than a few minutes it was necessary to get out a warm top because we cooled off quite quickly. During the course of the moming we had about 20 minutes or so rain in several showers.

We left the Explorers Tree at Katoomba right on schedule at 6.30, arriving down on the Megalong Road at about 8.00 to be met by our support crew with fruit juices, home made muffins, chocolate biscuits and the like. After leaving Megalong Road we were down at the picnic shelter on the Coxs River in about 90 minutes. Another brief morning tea there followed so that we could fuel the internal boilers ready for the big hills that were to take us up to the pluviometer. It was in the section between the Coxs River and Little River that Hughie decided that we needed some rain to cool us off. It rained quite steadily for some time. Indeed our leader Tony Crichton was quite apologetic about the rain. As we made our way up the hill the internal boilers were indeed working hard to provide the necessary head of steam to arrive at the top of the hill, This we did in due course, with a brief shower of rain as we neared the top of the hill. Our support team was waiting for us with a nice warm fire, hot soup, fruit juice and so on. The steam was rising from the bodies of the walkers as they arrived at the top of the hill, unlike our support crew; several were apparently shivering in the cold.

After lunch it was a case of walking fast to warm up again. Upon arriving at our afternoon tea site, there was our wonderful support team; again they had lovely goodies waiting for us. Then the last leg of the walk was ahead of us, a number of minor ups and downs then the big long down to the finish at Caves House. Some members decided that they hadnt had enough exercise so they decided to run/jog down the hills. After arrival at Caves House, there was our wonderful support team with our gear, then a | The Sydney Bushwalker

November 2001 Page7 |

lovely warm shower, then the happy hour party, then dinner and so on. The following moming it was a case of a delightful breakfast in Caves House then homeward bound. Having survived the Six Foot Track, then it was a case of making sure that I was as ready as possible for the K-to- K walk.

In the evening prior to the K-to-K we met our leader Phil Newman in Wentworth Falls then travelled on to Kanangra where we set up our tents to get as many hours sleep as possible prior to the early rising for 6.00 a.m. start. I found that the overnight temperature at Kanangra was very mild indeed, unlike some weeks earlier when we had found frost on our tents upon arising. The morming was mild and once our group of 10 walkers (plus two support crew, Kay Chan and Tony Manes who came with us out to Crafts Walls) started walking it was quickly apparent that we were in for a warm day. Of the ten walkers, seven were K-to-K virgins, not having done this walk previously.

On schedule we arrived at Mount Cloudmaker, to meet a group of 7 young people heading back to Kanangra car park. An all too brief 10 minute stop, then we were on the track again, heading out to Mount Strongleg. On arrival there we met two walkers who were doing a_ leisurely Kanangra to Katoomba over several days. Again another brief break, then on the track again. The

- day was really warming up and as we headed - down Strongleg Ridge the heat was quite

noticeable and I found that I was getting bnef intermittent leg cramps. We arrived on schedule at the Coxs River and after topping up our water bottles we were then to face the toughest part of

the walk. The day was very warm probably with - temperatures in the low to mid 20s,

The track up Yellow Pup Ridge just seemed to go on forever, with the heat at its maximum, very

* +little shade, no breeze and the leg cramps were

petting worse. The last few metres up to the top of Mount Yellow Dog were very difficult because of the cramps. However, I had company, in that Tony Crichton and Mark Patteson were also suffermg from leg cramps. We had lost some time coming up Yellow Pup so we were now behind schedule. For me, this was the first time in my years of bushwalking that I had ever suffered leg cramps, a most unwelcome visitation indeed.

-~ After leaving Mount Yellow Dog we then had a pleasant walk in nice shady forest along reasonably flat terrain out to Medlow Gap, although all the fallen trees across the track were

a decided nuisance. Then the second to last gentle rise, up Mount Debert, then to Tarros Ladders. Our support team, Kay Chan, Pam Morrison and David Trinder met us with appropriate and very welcome refreshments, as well as some medication for we three cramp sufferers. The cooler afternoon temperatures had arrived by the time that we were ready to start the walk back along Narrowneck to finish the walk at Narrowneck Gate in the dark. The headlights of the cars waiting for us at the Gate were very welcome indeed. The hot showers and dinner waiting for us at the Grand Views in Wentworth Falls was cherished.

My thanks to all involved in helping me achieve my objectives. Next year I will be there to do the walks, this time armed with more knowledge. On behalf of all the walkers I particularly say thanks to Tony Crichton for leading the Six Foot Track walk, Phil Newman for leading the K-to-K walk, and the essential support teams who helped us so much on both days. To my fellow K-to-K virgins well done, we bagged the following peaks: Mounts Berry, High and Mighty, Stormbreaker, Cloudmaker, Amarina, Strongleg, Yellow Dog, Debert and Fire Tower.



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|Page 8 The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001

The October General Meeting

It was around 2001 hours when the meeting was called to order with some 16 or so members present. There were apologies for Bill and Fran Holland who were, or were about to be, overseas.

The minutes of the previous general meeting were read and accepted as a true and correct record with no matters arising.

Correspondence In included minutes of the recent Confederation general meeting and a post card from Vivien Dunn, travelling overseas. Outgoing items included get well wishes to Jim Calloway, who has recently suffered a broken wrist, to John Poleson who is coping with some spinal problems and to Morag Ryder who is reported to be ill. We also sent condolences to Morrie Wards widow.

No Treasurers Report was available to the meeting.

The Walks Reports were next, with the weekend of 14, 15, 16 September leading off with no report for Oliver Crawfords walk in the Gardens of Stone National Park. The Kanangra to Katoomba walk on Saturday 15” September went, with 10 starters, and a hotter than usual day turning it into a harder than usual trip. Peter Miller led a party of 10 out from Victoria Falls on his Sunday tour of the various Heads above the Grose River on what was described as a lovely day.

Wilfs midweek Recircumnavigation of Port Jackson went on the Thursday, with a party of four.

There was no report for Rosemary MacDougals walk into Gingra Creek over the weekend of 21, 22, 23 October and Stephen Adams Saturday start weekend walk from Pierces Pass to Perrys Lookdown was cancelled due to a lack of starters. Richard Darke reported a party of 9 for his Saturday test walk from Victoria Falls to Evans Lookout. Tom Wenman had a cycle trip in KuringGai Chase that Saturday but no details were available at the meeting. The Sunday test walk led by Ron Watters went to program in Kuringai Chase with a party of 9 on what was described as an enjoyable, successful walk. The other Sunday walk, Chris Dowlings trip out from North Turramurra was described as pleasant for the 13 starters and included a boat cruise, courtesy of Mike Bickley.

It was back to the no reports part of the world for the October long weekend, with both Stephen Adams and Peter Miller leading, or not, walks out from Kanangra Walls. Maurice Smiths

Barry Wallace

walk from Blaydens Pass went with a party of 8 in hot conditions, which were nonetheless described, as pleasant. Stage 7 of the Great River Walk went with Roger Treagus leading a party of 4 in dry conditions with many of the side creeks not flowing. The two Saturday walks went, but details were somewhat sketchy. Charlie Montross led an unspecified number of starters in warm conditions for his walk out from Wentworth Falls and Michael Bickley had a party of 9 on his Marramarra National Park test walk. Things were going swimmingly for Jim Calloway and the 4 walkers on his Engadine to Waterfall Sunday test walk nght up until Jim suffered a compressed fracture of the wnist. It would be incorrect to say it was downhill all the way from there, but it surely wasnt any fun. Jan Rannards walk out from Patonga on the Sunday is believed to have gone to program, but no other details were available.

Tom Wenman had a party of 10 for his midweek walk on the Thursday.

David Trinders walk over the weekend of 5, 6, 7 October went, but no details were available to the meeting. Jim Percy had 10 on his Saturday test walk out from Evans Lookout the same weekend to bring the walks reports to a close.

Confederation report indicated a change to the procedure for claiming under the personal injury insurance policy. Where previously claimants were requested to contact the broker to obtain a claim form, in future member clubs are to be encouraged to hold a stock of claim forms. The hostile changes foreshadowed to NPWS land use regulations appear to have been generally disowned. We now have written confirmation that Coolana is covered by Confederation organised Public Liability insurance cover. A report has been submitted to the state minister responsible for NP&WS regarding the feral horse population in the Guy Fawkes National Park. It is understood the report recommends the animals be removed from the park.

New members Vivien Dunn and Tricia Dyer were welcomed to the club.

There was no general business.

The meeting was advised of the passing of David Stead.

The club has made a donation to Palliative Care per the requested arrangements for Morrie Wards funeral.

The meeting closed at around 2049.

ooao00on Whether its bush walking, mountaineering, cross-country skiing, treic- king or travel, a pack is your best friend or worst enemy. Why? Because you depend on the agility and comfort that your pack provides.

The Mont Moto-Active adjustable har- ness system is deceptively simple, fast to adjust and easy to fit. Available in three sizes and featuring inter- changeable harness compo- nenis, a truly best fit is possibile, and best fit means a truly comfortabie carry.

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The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001 Mey |

Mt. Pomany

The farmer was friendly; he smiled as he advised us that it would be best if we approached the fire trail from beyond his neighbours boundary. This added several kilometres to our trip and provided an interesting view of farming activities on Nullo Mountain.

The trip was not well planned; we had little idea of where we wished to go, and less of how long it might take. The leader had suggested that we could perhaps descend to the Widden Valley from Hool em Boy Point, or, by following the high ground north we might reach Mt Pomany. The second option had the added appeal of using to the full, the three days available, it also left a big question mark regarding water for the first night.

Shortly after leaving the fire trail it began to rain, and as I slipped around on basalt boulders, it occurred to me that we might not get far that day. It was then that we came upon a cattle track that seemed to be going in our direction. We now made good progress as we followed the track across the saddle between Hool em Boy Creek and Emu Creek. After losing it around the side of Mt Cox we made a low sidle, and I noticed that the gullies we crossed were all completely dry. We relocated the track but it was clear that we could not hope to reach Mt. Pomany that day, and so we decided to make for an unnamed basalt crater to its southeast. Such a crater would be correctly described as a Weathered Diatreme.

It was a late in the afternoon and still raining when we began our to descent to the crater, which is perhaps why we failed to consult our maps in order to select a suitable ndge. The ridge we did select soon terminated in a dry creek bed that we foolishly followed until it became a waterfall, figuratively speaking, as there was no water falling over it. Darkness was imminent so a decision was made to return to the ridge for a dry camp. As we climbed out we came upon a small puddle; the leader immediately called a halt, as some vaguely flat ground was also to be found. The water from the puddle was brown and almost opaque when viewed through a clear plastic bottle, and whilst making any brand of tea taste like that noted Twinings variety, favoured by some bushwalkers, did not greatly effect the taste of our meals.

The next day we relocated the cattle track, which led us to the lower slopes of Mt Pomany. As we left it and climbed towards the summit I drank my puddle water, and my companions surprised me by producing the remainder of their Sydney water. I

Dick Whittington

found this mildly annoying until I speculated upon the weight of their packs at the start of the previous day. The basalt summit of Mt. Pomany is quite bare at its southem extremity and is one of the great viewing places of the northern Wollomi. To the east one can see much of the upper reaches of Widden Brook and its tributaries with Mt. Kelly and Mt. Coriaday beyond, to the south lie several large mountains including Mt. Coricudgy. To the west Emu Creek leads the eye on to the Yodellers, this remarkable formation was the recent venue for a three-day traverse in true mountaineering style (not by the author). Walking across the summit through tall timber one can eventually view the lower Widden vailey.

It was now clear that we must reach the crater that afternoon, as there seemed to be no water for miles. We attempted the ridge that descended directly from Pomany but reversed it at the first cliff line. Our next choice was good. As we descended we entered a wonderland of flowering wattles and cypress pines, juxtaposed against remarkable sandstone formations. The valley to our left opened into a great chasm. As we looked beneath our feet at the tops of the rainforest trees I thought of the Wollomi Pines and how wonderful it would be to find a new stand.

Eventually we came upon some magnificent Blue Gums and I knew that we had reached the crater. We located the exit creek where it had cut its way out forming a canyon. Here at last was a copious supply of water, this time its colour was light grey. We set up camp beneath a stand of young eucalypts at the edge of a grassy clearing. It was early in the afternoon, I sat and contemplated the great mass of Mt Pomany rising above sandstone cliffs, framed by wattles. It was mild and sunny without a breath of wind; this was a good place, I wondered why it had no name.

In the moming we once again relocated the track and began to follow it back to Nullo Mountain, experiencing navigational difficulties upon losing it. This caused me to think about the local farmers driving their cattle through this country which we bushwalkers, perhaps consider to be remote and difficult to access. Returning along the Mt Nullo East fire trail we saw a number of wombats, and as we approached the back fence of the friendly farmer, we noticed a huge aggressive looking bull. I was glad we had not hopped his fence to shorten our trip.

boa0qnnoo000 _ The Sydney Bushwalker

November 2001 Page 11 |


The ADI Site Update:

My article in the June issue of the Sydney Bushwalker discusses the battle between local people on the one hand, who want to keep the site for recreation and conservation, and the developers and government on the other, who want to build houses on it. The site is 1500 hectares of native Cumberland plain woodland that used to be occupied by the Australian Defense Industries and still belongs to the Federal Government. It is a valuable opportunity to conserve one of the last remnants of natural woodland in the expanding western Sydney.

The Tourism Minister, Jackie Kelly, holds the seat of Lindsay by 3 percent, and in an attempt to shore up her vote in the 2001 election announced that an extra 250 hectares would be preserved. The conserved area would then be a total of 828 hectares, or 55% of the site. Geoff Brown, candidate for the Save the ADI Site party, said the compromise was not acceptable to the people of westem Sydney. A coalition of Greens, Democrats and One Nation promised to direct preferences away from the major parties until conservation of the whole site is guaranteed. The . Other potential bidder in the 2001 election auction is the Labor partys David Bradbury, who . declared that he would attempt to conserve the . Site but failed to make an offer. He might do so when the government released details of the cost ' of their decision.

The International Fund for Animal Welfare has

called on the government to conserve the whole site. - (Ref: Sydney Morning Herald October 27-8-01)

David Trinder

Wildlife in The Royal Devastated by 1994 Fires:

During the summers of 96 and 97 hundreds of volunteer scientists, from almost every university in the State, spent thousands of hours trapping and recording the presence of animals in the Roya! National Park. They found that up to 100 species have disappeared since the fires. The report on the survey records that of the 385 species known before the fires, only 247 species of vertebrates were found. Some might have gone as a result of the slow loss of biodiversity and some might have eluded scientists.

The parks possums reduced in numbers drastically and the numbers are still far below the old tally. The nations largest marsupial glider, the greater glider, once common in the wet forests, is now thought to be locaily extinct. The platypus, koala and tiger quoll, are thought to be very rare or absent. Dingoes, emus, eastern grey kangaroos, three species of reptiles and five species of frog are missing and thought to be locally extinct. Nevertheless, the reports author, Ms Debbie Andrew, said the Park is still a most biodiverse ecosystem.

Of the birds, 360 have been recorded in the park but only 270 were found by the survey. Some of these are thought to be extinct in the area. These include the ground parrot and the eastern bristlebird and some might be infrequent visitors. Birds are hard to trace and more work needs to be done on them. The report-states that the main beneficiaries of the fires were feral deer and foxes, but native species such as quail and New Holland mouse seem to have thrived also. (Ref: Sydney Morning Herald October 27-8-01)


he kim >

Grey Mare Gallop

The forecast said:

Sunday gales

Monday gales

Tuesday gales. That owas not too encouraging, seeing that our long-awaited tip from Round Mountain to the Grey Mare Range was due to start on the said Sunday. The good news was that, after waiting until mid-August, the ski season had actually arrived thanks to a week- long blizzard.

The original plan was to have the bus drop us at Ogilvies Creek, ski up to Round Mountain and then ski along the Toolong Range, Grey Mare Range and the Pinnacles Fire Trail to a car that we had left at the start of the Geehi Dam road on the Alpine Way. We also hoped to make a side trip to Pretty Plain. In the forecast conditions the Toolong Range would have been somewhat exposed. But with the excellent snow cover alternatives presented themselves including to ski from Tooma Dam to Pretty Plain via the Dargals Fire Trail and Hellhole Creek Fire Trail, then to Pretty Plain Hut and from there to Derschkos Hut or Grey Mare Hut. This route promised some protection from the forecast winds.

The weather wasnt too bad as we left Khancoban and excitement mounted as the snowline was reached at a modest altitude. Three lyre birds scampering across the snow in front of the bus were an unusual sight. Our bus was also taking in another party which included Rex Cox, now 83 years young and after whom the Rex Cox Classic, companion race to the Paddy Pallin race, was named. They were planning to spend the week in the Round Mountain Toolong Range Derschkos Hut area.

After moming tea of sandwiches, tea and coffee at Tooma Dam provided by Bob, our bus driver, we set out. The gale hadnt yet arrived, at least not at our altitude of around 1300m. The skiing was pleasant and the modest undulations in the fire trail made for easy enjoyable touring. The major exercise for the day was to cross the Tooma River. Pride prevents any mention of the manner of my crossing, but 1 can say that instruction is now available on how to cross icy nvers swimming backstroke with pack on while carrying a ski and stock in each hand and with water-filled boots hanging around the neck. After a most enjoyable ski along Pretty Plain on good snow cover we

The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001

Kenn Clacher

arrived at Pretty Plain Hut around 5pm. According to Huts of the High Country there are only four log cabins in the Snowy Mountains, of which Pretty Plain Hut is one. It is also picturesque and quite large way too big for a party of three in winter. Nevertheless we soon made ourselves comfortable and had a cosy night there.

The next day we planned to ski along the route of the old bridle track from Pretty Plain Hut past Jimmies Lookout to Ryries Parlour and then to Derschkos Hut. Information on this track was hard to find, with hints of its existence at the edge of sketch maps and cryptic mentions of it in old accounts of classic Snowy Mountains ski trips (see for example p241 of Kiandra to Kosciusko). The latest edition of the SR Brookes Round Mountain and Northern Approaches to Jagungal map (but not the previous ones) has the western end of the bridle track marked on it. It also somewhat prophetically warns that the track is very overgrown in places.

An overnight snowfall of around 25cm left no doubt that the snow cover would be adequate. It also 1) made Pretty Plain Hut an absolute picture as we set out, 2) made it hard going through the soft deep snow and 3) obliterated any faint signs of the bridle track we might otherwise have picked up. Nevertheless we followed the route of the track up the hill to the saddle near Jimmies Lookout. Because of the soft snow, some timber, steep hill and still heavy packs it was slow, but steady, going. Some poor navigation then had us skiing up the Tooma River instead of a side creek that flows into the Tooma. It was a good open and picturesque route, probably much easier than the bridle trail itself, but it added a couple of kilometres to the trip. By now time was getting on and we had decided to head for Grey Mare Hut, as it was closer than Derschkos.

The forecast gales had still not arrived, but the day had been overcast with occasional drizzle. As darkness approached we still had a couple of kilometres to ski to get to Grey Mare Hut. Edith now took over the lead as she was the only one with the energy to plough through the deep snow. By virtue of that position she also became the partys unofficial cornice detector. The procedure was simple one finds comices by skiing over them! We were now weighing up the virtues of pitching the tent where we were against the attractions of a warm fire at the hut. Although it was overcast, there was about a three-quarter moon

so visibility was good (except for detecting cornices) | The Sydney Bushwalker

November 2001 Page 13 |

and navigation was not too difficult. We eventually arrived at the hut at around 6:45pm.

Moming of the next day was spent collecting firewood and generally sorting ourselves out from our long day the previous day. In the afternoon Amold led us up to Grey Mare Bogong. We were rewarded by good views of just about everywhere and a fast trip back to the hut on snow made firm in ' the cool of the afternoon.

The following day (Wednesday) we decided to investigate Ryries Parlour and Town of Ross. I recall that Ian Wolfe had explored these places some years ago and recommended them as worthwhile visiting. Of course he was right. Both were full of delightful glades and quiet comers, with clearmgs leading to surprise

outlooks. It was great skiing and all the while, especially in Town of Ross, Jagungal dominated the landscape. While skiing to the highest point of Town of Ross we encountered Rex Coxs party, with whom we had shared the bus up from Khancoban. We had an enjoyable lunch with them before heading off around the head of the Tooma River and returning to Grey Mare Hut.

On Thursday we set out on a day trip west along the Strumbo Fire Trail with the objective of reaching the Dargals Fire Trail and perhaps Toolong Trig or Finlays Lookout. It was a glorious day and the skiing was great. Views on the way out took in the Dargals and Scammels Ridge. The only thing that prevented it from being perfect was that there was some vegetation where the map shows none and it was occasionally slow going finding the fire trail or otherwise a way through the tumber. There is also a steep drop of 100m in the fire trail and it took a while to get down it. All sorts of techniques were tried, but none made it particularly easy.

We passed the top of Pretty Plain and could verify that there was an easy run down to the plain from the ridge. On arriving at the point where the trail starts to ascend to the Dargals Fire Trail we decided we had gone far enough for one day and-tumed around. That did leave time on the way back to make the most of the excellent visibility and take in fantastic views from a unnamed peak a little south of Bulls Head Rock. It provided a full panorama from Round Mountain past Jagungal, to the Kerries, Dicky Cooper Bogong, the Rolling Grounds, Mts Tate, Anderson and Twynam, the Crags, Carruthers, Alice Rawson, Mt Townsend and the Abbot Ridge the whole of the main Range laid out in one view - marvelous!

It was time to move on from Grey Mare Hut. Some hutmates from hell, a party of seven who crowded out the fireplace and took until after 11 oclock to finish dinner made that decision easy. In any case we wanted to make sure we were not stranded in the middle of the Grey Mare Range in bad weather with no choice but to keep going. We planned a leisurely day, allowing plenty of time to take in the views of the Main Range on our way to camp in the vicinity of Grey Hill Caf.

While the weather was not as brilliant as the previous day, we still enjoyed great views all the way down the range. Main Range to the left, Scammels Spur and the Dargals to the right. After lunch on top of Grey Mare Mountain and a ski down to Penders Lookout (mentioned on the 1:100,000 map), came an opportunity to test whether the eastern face of Grey Mare Mountain is as good a telemark slope as it looks from the Main Range. I can report that … well, why dont you go try it for yourself.

Before heading for Grey Hill Cafe we made a detour to The Granites, a knob on a ridge to the southeast of Grey Mare Mountain, which promised good views over the valley of the Geehi. At a spot which indeed had a superb view of the valley we found a real caf. Adrian and Geoff had skied in along Scammels Spur, stayed at Pretty Plam Hut and at Grey Mare Hut . They were on their way back to Scammels Spur via Grey Hill and had pitched their tent overlooking this superb view. While Adrian brewed tea for the mob, Geoff and I compared the telemark slope with that on Grey Mare Mountain. It was …. well, about the same.

Grey Hill Cafe is a small emergency shelter with a dirt floor but a cosy fireplace. It makes a good place for dinner, with the tent providing the dormitory. The view looking out of the tent to the Main Range on a clear morning was great. We decided this would be our last day so an early start, an overnight frost, a clear trail at last and gently undulating terrain helped us to cover the nine km to Pinnacles Mountain in around two hours. We were able to ski to around 1200m before the snow gave out and skis were shouldered for the first time on the trip. From there it was just a matter of slogging the 12 km or so downhill in the rain to the waiting car.

It had been a great trip, with the weather and snow cover coming together at the right time to allow some great skiing to some remote and beautiful places rarely visited in winter. It is a great shame that so few of us were there to enjoy it.

QOo0000008000 [Page 14 - The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001


Last month we commenced articles on the Ettrema area in the Morton National Park. First of all a “flashback” to an article from the September 1959 magazine “Cinch Creek”. Then on the next page an article by Maurice Smith walking in the same area 40 years later. This month we go back to 1952 fora story by Wal Roots of the early exploration by the Old Buffers (first printed June 1952) :

The Prologue: Recently a young chap named Bob, in discussing

bushwalking with Paddy said in tones just reeking with the condescension of the young and virile to the old and bold -“These days, Paddy, I suppose you only tackle the easy trips.”

Yes, said Paddy, I guess thats about right.

There was a twinkle in Paddy's eye for he had

plans. These plans have since matured, and so I tell the story of Paddy's Easter Gamble of 1952. The Build-up: For the sake of posterity, let me record that the party consisted of Paddy Pallin, Norm White, Ken Brown, Paul Howard and the Scribe [Wal Roots.. Ed]

The idea of the trip was to traverse the country from Yalwal, westward to the Shoalhaven just to see what lay in between. Paddy and Paul had made a trip down that way a year or two before but flood conditions had upset calculations and prevented penetration to any depth.

On that trip, however, they had leamed from the locals of the impenetrable” gorge which lay to the westward.

Ettrema it's called, it's terrific, you can't goth into it - cliffs for miles, and if you get in you won't get out. Give it a miss or you will finish up breaking your ruddy necks.

With this challenge ringing in their ears for two years, is it any wonder Paddy and Paul lead us back that way?

There is no published military map of this area, in fact, no maps at all [this was in days before the topographic maps..Ed]. Paul has influence and managed to dig up something taken from aerial surveys, and in addition was able to study the sterioscopic (sic) photos of the area.

The photos fully backed up the locals opinion of Ettrema and served to whet appetites already as keen as a westerly on Clear Hill [Narrowneck, ed]. From the photos Paul worked out a plan of attack; there was a point here which had distinct possibilities and if that failed, this creek was a cinch. So we have two new names for the future - Point Possibility and Cinch Creek. And now to the story.

The Story:

Thursday night found us camping in a drizzle at Saltwater Creek some seven miles out of Nowra. This was as far as we could go by

transport as the bridge had been wrecked in a flood a fortnight before.

Fortunately; there lived on the other side of the busted bridge a blitz buggy {an ex-Armmy vehicle.. Ed] and driver, and in the morning we climbed aboard (after helping to ferry the cream cans across the remnants of the bridge) and were duly deposited in the picturesque old mining town of Yalwal.

We told our driver what we had in mind and whilst he was most polite, he nevertheless left with us the impression that he thought anyone who wasn't a bushman who went playing around in that country was nuts.

“You won't get through! The cliffs on Ettrema extend as far as you can see. I'll keep an eye open for you on your way back.”

From Yalwal, we followed the Creek up past the old battery and cyanide tank (Paul panned some dirt from the battery - no luck) and lunched prior to making the climb over the ridge and into Bundundah Creek. It is a very pleasant climb of 1,500 feet or so to a classic gap, and then an easy drop down to a lovely little creek with a beautiful campsite.

On Saturday, we were up betimes - beat the old Sol by plenty for this was the BIG day, the day on which we were to conquer Ettrema (we hoped) and we werent so sure of ourselves as to risk a late start.

A glorious day this, clear and crisp and with woolly clouds floating lazily in an azure sky, blue distance with purple shadows in the gullies, and flecks of red where the prolific Burrawongs had cast their fruit.

There was no hardship in the climb, although it was steep in places, and by nine oclock we were on the plateau and headed towards Pt. Possibility. We followed height of land through scrub covered country (poor visibility) until reaching an eminence (unnamed) which seems to be the central feature of this plateau. There we had an early lunch prior to making a bee line for Pt. Possibility.

A change was coming over glorious day and we arrived at P.P. just ten minutes prior to a rain squall, which the roar of camera shutters made sound like a thunderstorm. Ettrema Gorge - this was it! The unknown -the unconquerable - the great challenge: We stood in awe and looked in | The Sydney Bushwalker

November 2001 Page 15

wonderment at a seemingly unbroken line of cliffs extending as far as the eye could see, with a secondary and sometimes a tertiary cliff line below.

. The talus slopes were at angle of repose and after mentally jumping the cliff face (some 300 feet or more) the question arose as to whether it would be best to use triple hobs or butter.

The scene was one of untamed grandeur and thrills raced up and down our spines as we gazed -into the blue depths. For this was new country - untrodden by all but one or two - a challenging new playground for bushwalkers to explore.

Even more mysterious became our gorge as the rain storm draped its gossamer veil - we could _better understand its legend of impenetrability, seeing it thus.

Before long, we started looking for ways down and ways up to the other side. We could see two possible ways up - Paul picked one (Howard's Pass) and the Scribe was dead keen on another {you've guessed it - Roots' Route), but first we Ahad to get down.

. Pt. Possibility we found was wrongly named, it

should have been Impossibility. You'd need to be a hybrid octopus to get down there. So we turned our attention to Cinch Creek and what did we find? A rift vying in sheer magnificence with Kanangra Gorge and just as inviting as a possible route to the valley floor.

Believe me, Cinch Creek is terrific - the sort of place that mountain goats and rock wallabies class as mile-a-day country.

The rim rocks were continuous and we could detect not one place where a possibility of descent existed. It looked as if our trip was over for we were two days out on a four day trip and most of us commenced adjusting our mental processes to this thought - but not Paul.

Paul conducted a rock by rock search and finally located a split in a cliff, some 18 inches wide, through which we were able to climb down _ to the talus slope. Packs had to be roped down as they could not be wangled through the cleft. Then it was a case of down, down and down. Down through the rain forest, sliding on the moss, crashing through the rotting timber and skidding on the greasy rocks. Down and down at a hell of an angle, missing the stinging Gympies by the grace of God, frightening the devil out of the wallabies and lyre birds.

', The daylight was still with us when we reached the waters of Cinch Creek and it remained while we scrambled down a mile or so, until we came

to the only level patch we had seen for hours. We camped and how we slept!

An hour after our crack of dawn“ start found us on Ettrema Creek, looking up and wondering whether our climb out would be as spectacular as the descent.

Ettrema is delightful, a sort of young Kowmung but with a personality of its own. There are tall casuarinas, and some fine old cedars, mysterious deep rock pools (with whopping big perch, I'll bet) and some lovely camp sites.

What a thrill it would be to spend a week following this lovely stream down to its junction with the Shoalhaven - I wonder who will be able to say I was the first one through.

We could only enjoy it for less than an hour while we argued Howard's Pass or Roots Route. Paul put up the best case so up we went, plugging away in the blasted rain and cursing because of the view we were missing.

Howard's Pass is really a cinch (though I still believe Roots Route is better mark you) and to get up through the rim rocks is no trouble at all.

We paused at the top and looked back into the mist and rain filled gorge we had left. We had confounded the locals, we had crossed their uncrossable Ettrema and it had been a grand experience.

The rest of the trip was uneventful. That is if you disregard scrub barging on a compass course in continuous teeming rain, the swimming of the racing Shoalhaven in a twelve foot flood and a hair raising ride in a utility to Goulburn.

And that is the end of the story all that remains is the challenge.

The Challenge.

We six has-beens - old and bold - or what have you, pass along to you youngsters this challenge from one we have come to respect and to love, from Ettrema herself.

All you who glory in your ability to climb, to explore, to map, and who love wild and untamed places, here is a new thrill worthy of the best of you. See what you can do about taming this one!

But don't think I've painted the lily, that the old boys have forgotten what toughness is. Put an extra day's tucker in the rucksack and a hundred feet of rope.


[Many thanks to Maurice Smith who suggested these series of Ettrema articles and reviewed and edited the scanned copies of a very old magazine - Ed] .

[Page 6

The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001


Almis Simankevicius

Blisters, Battles and Beliefs on the Coast to Coast Walk (continued from October issue)

The history of the Dark Ages is fascinating and so much of the past seemed to be with us on our walk across England. Anglo-Saxons constructed the terraces which were still visible on the sides of the delightful Swale Valley.

Following the Anglo-Saxon invasions, fierce Scandinavian warriors known as Vikings, ravaged and looted the land for the next three centuries before they too, settled and infused their Nordic heritage to that which would become Englands.

In amongst the brutalities and hardships of those times when tribes and armies were pitted against each other, Teutonic and Nordic legends were woven into the fabric of popular culture. Stories of the old gods such as Odin and Thor figured in everyday life. They battled with the giants and the mischief-maker, Loki. Odin was the chief of the gods and had discovered the Runes, a collection of symbols that made up the Runic Alphabet. Odin used the runes to help him foretell the future. The legends told of the eventual doom of the gods in a cataclysmic event known as Ragnarok.

In the village of Kirkby Stephen there was a stone engraving known as the Loki Stone, a carving of the Norse mischief-maker, etemally trapped in rock. It is fascinating to note that four days of the week are named after the Norse gods, Tuesday after Tew, Thursday after Thor, Friday after Frey and Wednesday after Woden (Odin).

Leaving Kirkby Stephen we climbed to the Nine Standards on the Pennine ridge. These were nine large caims (piles of stones) which one story tells, were placed there to trick the marauding Scots into believing that the people of these hills were always prepared to defend their land. The path continued onto Keld where we stayed with the well-known doyenne of B&B owners, Doreen Whitehead. From Keld we walked to the village of Reeth. There was another cold days walk to reach the historic city of Richmond, a medieval town built by the Normans. Richmond was a pleasure to explore.

Now began our crossing of the wide Vale of Mowbray, over-nighting in villages delightfully named Danby Wiske, and Osmotherly. Leaving the comforts of our inn at Osmotherly we ventured onto the bleak moors. Luckily, the weather had remained clear and we had a dry although strenuous joumey up and down the hills that punctuated these moors. Then an ovemights stay at the 400-year-old Lion Inn at Blakey.

Egton Bridge was next and a comfortable stay at the Postgate Inn, which was used as the setting for the Black Dog Inn in the TV series Heartbeat. We spent half a day taking a ride on a steam train operated by the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, also taking the opportunity to visit the Aidensfield Arms featured in Heartbeat. After the relaxing train trip we walked four miles to reach Intake Farm which was situated near the hamlet of Littlebeck for our last night on the journey.

Finally, there it was - the North Sea. Leaden in colour, brooding. In the distance, whitecaps indicated friction between air and water. The track brought us to the edge of the precipitous cliffs where we simply had to stop to appreciate the panorama.

We had now walked most of the 190 miles across England. Just eighteen days ago we had left St Bees and the Irish Sea behind us, crossed Lakeland, the limestone plateau, the valleys of the Dales and the North Yorkshire Moors, and now almost unbelievably, we were standing at the edge of the cliffs overlooking the North Sea.

According to the map, we had another three miles of coastal walking before reaching Robin Hoods Bay. The ferocity of the wind and the intermittent showers encouraged us to move on.

' The walk along the headland seemed to take

forever but as we rounded Ness Point, for a brief moment, the clouds parted and the sun shone through. Across the inlet the picturesque village of Robin Hoods Bay, precariously perched on the cliffs, was bathed in golden sunlight.

We had made it! Robin Hoods Bay, also known as Bay Town, or simply as The Bay, was setiled by the Vikings. Later, due to its convenient position near the sea, smuggling became the de facto industry. The deceptively tiny houses were built closely together, linked by secret passages. It was popularly quoted that a barrel of goods could be slipped in at one end of town and finish up at the other end, without once seeing light. The origin of the name Robin Hood's Bay is not known, but probably honours the memory of one of Englands most famous folk heroes.

We walked down to the stone ramp, which ended at the sea-front, and wet our boots in the salt water. By performing this ritual we had completed a walk from one side of England to the other, and as Wainwright may have said, Well done!

oon00g0gcacaono The Syduey Bushwalker November 2001 Page 17 | NEW MEMBERS PAGE: My First Overnight Walk: you all you novices; give it a go and remember to iG For prospective have fun! Kay Chan. members new to Welcome:

overnight waiking, the overnight qualifying walk is probably the biggest hurdle when it comes , to fulfilling the membership criteria. I recollect my own oe Be & first overnight walk. Being a timid soul I selected an easy walk from the program and then rushed out and purchased a pack, thermarest and what was at that time the latest thing in lightweight tents. Notwithstanding this, I packed a lilo too, as liloing had been mentioned as one of the weekends activities.

On the morning of our departure I woke to torrential rain. I expected the trip to be cancelled, however the leader, who was also my lift, did not call, so I made myself ready just in case the rain stopped- It didnt, and my lift arrived anyway I hopped into the car, pretending nonchalantly that walking in downpours was an everyday occurrence for me.

By the time we reached the start of the walk the rain had eased slightly. I opened my umbrella (I had no appropriate rainjacket) and set off after the others. On our descent we were treated to swirling mists and glimpses of dramatic cliff lines. Soon we arrived at our campsite and the sun came out to greet us whilst we set up our tents. Having practiced the week before I managed this without too much difficulty! There was a lot of interest in my new tent and soon everyone was trying it out for size, even a curious lace monitor who had wondered into camp. We enjoyed an entertaining happy hour” and dinner around the campfire, where my shiny new billy disclosed to all my novice status.

I spent a wonderful weekend taking short walks up and down the river and frolicking in the water with my lilo. I confess that I struggled back up the hill on that easy“ walk. However, with much encouragement from my companions and a kindly soul who relieved me of my damp lilo, I finally made it to the top.

What an enjoyable weekend! I was totally sold

on overnight walking and have since gone on to

enjoy many an overnight and extended trip. So to

ReneS S 5% oe

To new members who have joined the club: Amanda Barr Tania Bird Steve Bird Lynne Elliott Alan Oakey Duncan Ross Michael Smith

Congratulations: To the following who were graduated to full membership at the November Committee meeting:

Mr John Keenlyside

31 Monterey Rd, Bilgola NSW 2107 Tel H 0299187708 Tel B 0414859146

Mrs Lesley Berry 3 Upper Cliff Ave, Northbridge NSW 2063 Tel H 9958 1152 Tel B 92173455

Mr Robert Berry 3 Upper Cliff Ave, Northbridge NSW 2063 Tel H 9958 1152 Tel B 9958 1152

Club Training Programme:

The next Prospective Training Weekend will be held at Coolana on 16th and 17th February 2002. Training nights will not be held in December and January due to the holiday period but will resume in February.

Wanted !

No longer used but pre-loved and m good condition equipment to be hired out by our Club to new prospective members

We would like to assemble 2 kits of suitable light weight gear to be made available for hire. It is intended that each kit consist of:

1 sleeping bag

1 inner sheet

1 pack

1 foam sleeping mat

1 ground sheet

1 lightweight (waterproof) tent

(microlight would be ideal) If you can help with any of the above items please contact our New Members Secretary (phone 9520 0266) with your offers of suitable equipment

| Page 18

The Sydney Bushwalker November 2001


Social Programme

On 24th October Peter Cochrane gave us a very informative presentation on the new digital technology used in photography followed by slides of “Pantoney's Crown.

The following week Roewen Wishart spoke to us on the aims of Bush Heritage and showed slides of their properties. I was surprised that 2/3 of the audience did not know about the Bush Heritage organisation. I'll have to write about this in an article for a future magazine

By time you- receive this magazine Almis Simankevicius's talk and slides on the English Coast to Coast Walk will have taken place.

Coming Events include the Club's Christmas Party on Wednesday 19th December and the Barbecue at Balmoral Beach on 9th January.

Have a safe and happy Christmas and pleasant walking.

Gemma Gagne


Wed. 5th Committee Meeting (6.30 pm) Introduction te SBW (8.00 pm) New Prospective members meet the New Members Team over tea, coffee and biscuits.

Wed. 12th General Meeting (8.00 pm)

' Management Structure Review Prospective Training “Food Ideas For Variety On Pack Walks”

Wed. 19th Club Christmas Party (7.00 pm) Please bring a plate of food to share. The club will supply wine beer and soft drinks

Wed. 26th Clubrooms closed


Wed. 2nd Clubrooms closed

Wed 9th Club Picnic Held at the. southern end of Balmoral Beach from 6.00 pm. BYO food and drink. Fish and chips available nearby.

Advance Notice - 27th Sept-27th Oct 2002

Walking in Califomia - The John Muir Trail

We shall walk 350 kms through the glorious High Sierras wilderness, including an ascent of Mt. Whitney, the highest mountain in the Continental United States. Quite simply the walk of a lifetime! Contact me early as there is a party limit of 8.

Leader: Stephen Adams tel:0414642154 e-mail

New Members Secretary Seeks Help! We have a good collection of photos for our New Members Night but would like to improve the visual quality with slides instead. So we are seeking donations of slides that feature Sydney Bushwalkers in action….on the track, at camp, crossing creeks, rockscrambling, abseiling, canyoning, cycling, skiing, canoeing, day walking and overnight walking. Ideally we are looking for people shots, people having fun, preferably in local national parks but some classic shots taken in Kakadu, Tasmania, Snowy Mountains, NZ would be good too. We only need about 25 slides altogether, so donations of single slides would soon provide us with a good collection

Christmas Party with PWP - 15th December Jacqui Calandra invites SBW members to a Christmas party at her house. A light dinner will be provided and there will be live music. A $10 per head charge will cover costs. BYOG

This party will held with PWP and numbers

are limited. So phone Jacqui on 9476 6538 to

book for catering purposes.

wf Contact The Editor:

Copy for publishing in the SBW magazine should be received by the editor by the end of the first week of each month.

The deadline for last-minute urgent items is usually the second Monday of each month as the magazine is printed on the following Thursday. All articles submitted will be considered for publication. Please send your submission in by mail (preferably typed), on floppy disc, email or by fax on 9980 5476.

The Midweek Walkers Group:

We maintain a list of members available for mid- week walks, cycling and other activities. A newletter is sent out every second month advising of programmed and off-programme activities. - If you would like your name added to the list please advise Bill Holland, phone 9484 6636

Committee Position Vacant: The Committee is seeking nominations for the vacant position of Committee Member. please contact Wilf Hilder 9587 8912

The Leaders in Adventure since 1930

Ever since Paddy Pallin began making his gear in his back room, Paddy Pallin has led the way in manufacturing and selling a range of quality products for fellow bushwalkers. We understand that walkers need lightweight, functional equipment which will perform in all kinds of conditions, so if you want the best products and the best advice, come

in and see us.

WE SPECIALISE IN: * Footwear for bushwalking * Rucksacks

* Day packs

* Gore-Tex rainwear

* Polartec fleece warmwear * Thermal bodywear

* Outdoor clothing

* Sleeping bags

* Tents

* Stoves and water purifiers * Cross country skis and boots * Rockclimbing equipment

* Books and maps

* Accessories

And if you are just starting out, or perhaps trying something new, we have a range of

equipment for hire at competitive prices.

For a free catalogue, drop into your nearest store, or call (02) 9524 1385.

Miranda 527 Kingsway City 507 Kent St Parramatta 2/74 Macquarie St Katoomba 166B Katoomba St Canberra 11 Lonsdale St. Braddon Jindabyne Kosciusko Rd

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