A monthly Bulletin of The Sydney Bush Walkers, C/- Ingersoll Hall, 256 Crown Street, Sydney.
|Editor||Alex Colley, 55 Kirribilli Av., Milsons Point|
|Assistant Editor||Dot Butler|
|Walks Reporter||Kevin Ardill|
|Business Manager||Maurie Berry|
|Production Assistant||Peter Price|
|Sales and Subs.||Christa Calnan|
|Assistant Sales and Subs.||Bill Horton|
|Editorial - Skiing for the Bushwalker||1|
|Objects of Proposed Skiing Committee||2|
|Social Notes for November||3|
|At Our October Meeting||3|
|The Habits and Destruction of Mistletoe||A. Wyborn||6|
|Bushfire Prevention||lecture by Mr. Kingsmill||7|
|Sucked In||“Sixpenny Bob”||8|
|Round About the Hunter Range||“Skip”||11|
|S.B.W. Night of Plays||14|
|Column 8 1/2||Kevin Ardill||15|
|Federation Annual Party||16|
|Walks Leadership||letter from Allen Strom||17|
At the October General meeting the President, who was also Convenor of the sub-committee appointed to consider the formation of a skiing sub-section within the Club, announced the decision of the sub-committee.
It was of the opinion that the Club's objects and constitution were already broad enough to include skiing. The present Club organisation was equally adapted for the arrangement of walking or skiing trips, so that no special skiing subsection was necessary at present. There were, however, a number of activities which required co-operation - such as the booking of huts, the arrangement of week-end trips, sand skiing and other instruction, the purchase or manufacture of gear etc. For the purpose of arranging these activities a special committee was recommended. In the same way as the social committee arranged the Clubs social activities the skiing committee could arrange the skiing activities.
The S.B.W. would not be eligible for admission to the Ski Council, but the committee was in complete agreement that, in any case, skiing as done by the skiing clubs meant something quite different to S.B.W. skiing. The ski clubs were interested almost exclusively in racing and the S.B.W. interested almost exclusively in touring. Neither the social nor the alcoholic sides of the sport appealed to most of the S.B.W., and, for these reasons there was no desire to obtain Chalet bookings on a Club basis.
The constant urge of the skiers to get out into “new country” is a source of wonder to “regular” skiers. Many buswalkers who have only the most primitive ski technique do trips that experienced skiers would not attempt without a guide. This is a bad thing as it would be easier and safer to acquire technique first, but at least the bushwalker has the advantage of knowing how to find his way round, something which many skilled skiers never acquire.
There are many advantages in making skiing a recognised Club activity. Skiing trips take a great deal of organising and accommodation is hard to find. “Official” ski trips might well take their place on our walks programme and perhaps in time we will follow the example of the Melbourne and Hobart Walking Clubs by erecting our own hut or huts.
Below are published the objects of the proposed Skiing Committee. The whole subject will be discussed at our November meeting.
(Extract from report of sub-committee appointed to investigate formation of Club skiing section.)
In order that everyone may attend the Federation Party on the 21st. November, this evening will be a free night at our Club.
On the 28th. Frank Leyden is giving a night of films of Kosciusko snow with the emphasis on the snow. This should be very popular in the Club as so many people have turned to skiing in recent years.
This event will be preceded by a Chinese Dinner at a restaurant to be arranged. Cost will probably be 5/6. As the number of dinners will be limited, get in early if you want to be sure of inclusion. If you have any unworthy doubts in your minds, ask any of those who went to the last Chinese Dinner about the superior quality and succulence of the food.
Announcing the Xmas Party (The event of the year). Time: Tuesday, 16th December, 8 p.m. to midnight. Place: Air Force House Goulburn St, just off Elizabeth St. Cost 6/6 per person.
There will be dancing and other attractions - good supper, - all for the incredibly small sum of 6/6. Subscriptions must be paid before the night so pay your money in the Club room or send it to the Club's address.
Members were surprised when, instead of the usual thumping of the bone, they were summoned to the meeting by the beating of a most elegant brass gong, hung, appropriately enough, on a framework of brass sticks. We later learned that it had been donated to the Club by the President, who felt that the bone needed more gentle treatment as it grew older. The bone itself, we are glad to announce, reposed on its stand, its beautiful curves not even dented by the recent accident. For this we have to thank Dennis Gittoes.
First business of the evening was the welcoming of a new member, Fred Doutch.
Next the Noises Off Club, who had, as usual, gone outside as soon as the meeting, commenced and who, even at this early hour, [illegible] sounded like a covey of jackasses anticipating a rainstorm, were summoned in. Determined to cause as much trouble as possible, they managed to hang on for another couple of minutes before they came. The President then told them just what the Committee and most of the members thought of them. He said that the Committee had taken a very dim view of their “shocking bad manners” during Mr. Kingsmill's lecture, during which they had gathered on the stairs and landings talking and laughing loudly. The Committee had decided that, during Club functions, members must remain in the audience or leave the hall completely. He then said that those who wished could leave, whereupon two of the N.O.C. bolted for the door. How is it, we wonder, that people who are not only bored with the Club, but like everyone to know it, are ever admitted?
After this about 60 members remained, and before long conservation matters were the subject of discussion. It was decided that the Club undertake to purchase two dozen copies of Miss Joscelyn Henderson's booklet “Fire or water.” Then it was resolved that the Federation be asked whether a fund has been opened for the purchase of Narrow Neck lands. Next Dorothy Lawry quoted from Truth (how little we know our members!) to the effect that State Cabinet had decided to amend the Kosciusko State Park Act to permit two more trustees to represent the 500 lessees who use the snow leases. Federation delegates were instructed to bring up the matter of the representation of recreational bodies, and it was suggested that Mrs. Elyne Mitchell would be an ideal representative of the skiing and walking clubs, if she could attend Trust meetings.
Fifteen members volunteered to man fire lookout posts in National Park during the five or six weeks of danger period, if the Trustees would consider the installation of a fire prevention scheme.
Dorothy Lawry gave a verbal report of the proceedings of the Forestry Advisory Council Conference. A vote of thanks was passed for her three days' attendance at Council meetings.
The report of the Skiing Sub-Committee was presented. Full discussion will take place at the November meeting.
The Secretary requested that registered mail be forwarded to her at Elliott's Australian Drug Ltd., Balmain, or to Allan Hardie, 14 Osborne Rd., Lane Cove. Nobody was present at the Ingersoll Hall during the day to accept delivery of registered mail. The meeting closed at 10.45 p.m.
Two packs, one of them belonging to Val Downing, were stolen from a truck outside the Clubroom on the night before the Federation Reunion. This is about the worst thing that could befall a bushwalker and is the first instance of pack stealing we have heard about. Most people wouldn't be seen dead with one.
'Phone 102. Est, 1891.
Govett's Leap Road, Blackheath
Bushwalkers! We cater for large or small parties requiring transport from Blackheath. For a quote ring or write to the above address.
Last year the Kiddies' Christmas Treat had to be postponed, and was not held until March 30th this year, but, on our latest Walks Programme, you will see it is back to it old place, being set down for Dec. 21st.
Christa Calnan, Bob Younger and Bill Horton are already collecting subscriptions. They will be in the clubroom on Friday nights, and the rest is up to you.
If you want to know just how much fun the kids (and, incidentally, the Bushwalkers) have at the treat, just look over Christa Calnan's description in the May magazine.
Methinks there's a genius
Roams in the mountains,
Girdled with ivy,
And robed in wisteria;
Lips ever smiling,
Of noble demeanour,
Driving the yellow pard,
Couched in a chariot,
With banners of cassia,
Cloaked with the orchid,
And crowned with azaleas;
Culling the perfume
Of sweet flowers, he leaves,
In the heart a dream-blossom,
Chu Yuan “The Land of Exile”
by A.L. Wyborn, Hon Sec. and Acting Hon Organiser, Forestry Advisory Council.
Famed in literature as the delicate symbol of feminine caprice and encouragement to the laggard lover, the mistletoe has an undeservedly popular reputation in the lay mind and its depredations are conveniently forgotten.
Several species of mistletoe (Loranthaceae sp.) are found on gum trees. It is a hemi-parasite, i.e. it lives partly by synthesising its own food material and partly in its host plant. It is this parasitic function that makes mistletoe such a menace, causing as it does disfigurement of ornamental trees and stunting and ultimate killing of forest trees.
The ravages of mistletoe are reaching alarming proportions, and it is the duty of all foresters, beekeepers, etc. to strive towards its elimination. Although millions of our trees have been destroyed by this pest, it is not too late to do something about it. There is in addition, evidence to suggest that mistletoe has an indirect harmful effect by leaving the way open for an infection of the tree by fungi and insect pests.
The seeds of mistletoes are generally surrounded by a viscid gum. This sticky gum enables the seed to adhere closely to the bark of trees. The adhering seeds soon germinate and send suckers (haustoria) through the bark of the host tree into its living tissues. From the living tissues of the host the parasite derives nourishment, as it has no roots of its own in contact with the soil. It seems most likely that birds convey the seeds of the parasite from tree to tree, after having eaten the sweet gummy fruits.
Of the coastal species Eucalyptus tereticornis (Blue Gum) is considered the most susceptible to mistletoe attack, and of the western species the most susceptible are Eucalyptus rostrata (River Red Gum), and the Boxes: Eucalyptus pilligaenis (Narrow Leaved Box), and Eucalyptus hamiphloia (Grey Ironbox). For some years past reports have been received from districts through which the Condamine River flows, to the effect that there has been a large increase in the mistletoes on the gum trees on the banks of the river.
Many of the trees are so closely infested by the parasite that they are threatened with destruction. It has also been reported that opossums keep the mistletoe in check, and that after the opossums are thinned out by trapping and shooting, there is a dangerous increase in mistletoes parasiting the gum trees. This seems reasonable, for opossums certainly play their part in keeping the balance of nature.
Some mistletoe are particular as to their host. Loranthus pendulus mostly occurs on eucalyptus, L. Bidwillii grows only on Cypress Pines and L. linophyllus on She-oaks. Some are common on many trees but prefer a particular kind, thus L. vitellinus is especially abundant on the Swamp Mahogany, L. congener on She-oaks and Notothixos incanus on Ti-trees. N. Subaureus always grows on other mistletoes, instead of direct on to a host tree. Some mistletoes are indifferent as to their host and grow on many shrub and forest trees.
Since mistletoe requires much light, reasonably dense stands suffer little, but mistletoe is most severe on trees occupying poor sites where it is difficult or impossible to maintain adequate density.
(In the next issue Mr. Wyborn will describe methods of mistletoe control.)
Lecture by Mr. Kingsmill, Executive Officer of the Bus Fires Advisory Council, on 26th September.
Mr. Kingsmill commenced by stating that probably we could give him some points on bushfire prevention, but that he was very glad of the opportunity to meet is and let us know what the Council is doing.
His first point was that the general public does not realise the great loss caused by bushfires. During fires in Victoria in 1944/5 70 people lost their lives and in 1939 50 people died in four or five days. Also in the U.S.A. the cost to the nation of forest and other fires was greater than the entire war damage in England.
We were assured that the Council does not exist simply to impose irritating restrictions on the lighting of fires in the open by the public; but for the prevention of the careless use of fire by means of education, advice on fire fighting and by fire controls.
In country areas, apart from State Forest, local Councils are responsible for fire fighting, which is accomplished solely by voluntary efforts, funds being raised locally. Control from Sydney is not advisable, the Bushfires Advisory Council's part is to co-ordinate and advise on equipment. They have recommended to the Government the granting of a subsidy.
The period of extreme fire hazard is from October to March. In order not impose undue inconvenience complete prohibition is seldom imposed for more than two days.
warnings are based on weather Bureau advice. When the apparent danger has passed a notice is placed in the papers repealing the regulations. The intention is to use Radio Stations, just after the 7 p.m. news on Fridays (also to advise Paddy Pallin) to broadcast fire lighting banning and repeal.
The Council insists that in Parks, Reserves and open Bushland only properly constructed fireplaces be used, all inflammable material being cleared for 10 ft. around. Failing the use of a properly constructed fireplace, care should be taken to see that the fire is not built near a log or stump, and all inflammable material for 25 ft. around should be cleared.
The best protection for the bush is proper fireplaces, fire trails, and adequate fire fighting equipment.
The Penalty under the “Careless Use of Fire Act”, for leaving a fire alight is £50, or 3 months in prison.
Camp fires are the chief cause of bush fires on the Blue Mountains. The outlook at the moment is not promising, bad fires being expected during the Summer.
Mr. Kingsmill appealed to us to become Hon. Rangers under the “Careless Use of Fire Act”, to exercise the greatest care when in the bush, and not to take the slightest chance of leaving a fire unextinguished. The job of the Bush Fires Advisory Council is to stir up the national consciousness and to bring constantly before people the terrible effects of fires and the means by which they can be prevented.
By 'Sixpenny Bob'
Have you been to Kanangra and back in a weekend? If not, one sound word of advice, don't ever attempt it.
It was one of those spine-bashing weekends at Marley, when our cobber, Eric Pegran, suggested the trip to Stan Madden and myself (the two suckers).
Immediately the trip was suggested we were eager to be off on the road. The next few weeks were filled with preparations for the trip and discussions of routes to be taken, gear needed, etc.
At last the great night arrived and a slight panic was created by one of the party, Stan, who turned up about 10 minutes later than the scheduled meeting tine. However, all were present when the train departed.
We arrived at Katoomba and departed from the station by other means than the barrier (to save time of course) and straight into a car which took us out to the beginning of the Narrow Necks. After peeling off we set out for Splendour Rook, wearing shorts and boots only. Our first stop was at Diamond Falls, and we set off again laughing, joking, and talking of past experiences to pass the time away - walking along the Narrow Necks being very monotonous, as most bushwalkers know. We had chosen this particular weekend because of the full moon, so torches were seldom used. We dropped off Clear Hill and then rounded the bottom of Mt. Mouin, arriving at Spendour Rock at 12.30 a.m. and so to bed.
We were up and away before sunrise the next morning and down to the Cox River for breakfast which, by the way, consisted of goulash - something after the style of food which our rabid vegetarian friend Clem Hallstrom eats, only slightly more flavoured with raw peanuts and dates. All meals for the trip consisted of this tacky substance.
The next thing to be tackled was Strongleg Ridge, the real back-breaker of the trip. We started off in good spirits and with high hopes. But when nearing the top you wouldn't have seen anyone so absolutely ruined in all your life as we three boys. We lunched at Dex Creek - the first water past the Cox River. After a good spell we pushed on up Cloud-Maker Mountain, where our honourable signatures were placed in the visitors' book, and then admired the glorious views to be obtained in all directions.
From Cloud-Maker to Kanangra was just plain murder. Each hour seemed like a year, and each mile like ten. Down Rip, Roar, and Rumble we went, then up to Kraft's Walls. We never felt so sore and sorry for ourselves as then.
We reached Kanangra somewhere about 5 o'clock that afternoon, and after a drink and a spell we set off again that night for the Kowmung River via the Gingera Range. For a large part of the way down this range there is a good stock-route which made the going a lot easier and faster. However, when this branched off we dropped down into the Gingera Creek - quite accidentally, of course.
Parts of the old Cedar Road can be seen on this creek, and there are grassy flats all the way down to the Kowmung River. Walking down these out of the way creeks at night is very interesting, as all the wild-life - wallabies and wombats, etc. - came down for a drink and dash off for their lives when they hear something coming. A startled wombat charged one of our members (of St. George Club) who suddenly woke up and dived to one side, the wombat rushing past and just brushing his legs. (A peculiar thing about this weekend was that three members of the St. George Club had decided to do the very same trip as us on that weekend so we all went along together.) At ten o'clock we stopped walking, lit a fire to sleep by and then slept till dawn.
We moved off early again the next morning, reaching the Kowmung a mile further down.
We kept up a good pace going down the river to the Cox River and ran into much startled wild life. Fortunately we did not run into any snakes on the whole of the trip, which was surprising as the Kowmung is said to be the home of snakes.
All eyes were kept open looking for Mt. Cookem, which is at the junction of the Kowmung and Cox Rivers. “There's Cookem”, said Eric, who did the whole of the Kowmung last Christmas. But when we got round the bend, what did we find but another Mt. Cookem. This happened several times, till at last the right one loomed into view and when we least expected it we suddenly found ourselves at the Cox River once more. Here we had our lunch at eleven o'clock, after having a very refreshing dip in the river to revive us somewhat for the trip into Katoomba.
We left the Cox and headed up White Dog, which is the easiest of all the “Dogs” to climb, and which brought us to the bottom of Mt. Mouin. Incidentally, we stopped on White Dog to repair Stan's feet, the heels and soles of which were one big mass of sticking plaster.
After climbing Debert's Knob and Clear Hill we stopped at Glenraphael where we finished off the remains of our food with a good drink of water, the first since the Cox River.
No sooner had we departed for Diamond Falls than it began to rain like cats and dogs. Formally we would have cursed the rain, but all were glad to see it this time as it refreshed our bodies and minds, as well as enabling us to keep up a good pace to Diamond Falls. It took us an hour and a half from Glenraphael to Diamond Falls, which was fairly fast going.
Our next stop was the good old “Paris” Cafe where we made up for lost time by eating milk shakes, apple pies, etc. and a nice hot meal.
It had taken us less than forty-five hours to do the whole trip which was approximately 80 miles.
Although at the time I was thinking it was going to be the last walk I'd ever do, on looking back it was an experience none would have missed, and at the same time I say that our next trip there will be by car all the way there and back.
Marie Byles has received a letter from Suzanne Reichard, who now belongs to the Sierra Club of California. She has been on a and camping trip which was attended by 160 members of the Club and says that, strange as it may seem, she liked it.
An inter-Club marriage took place on Friday, 3rd October, 1947 when Beverley Druce, our Ex-Secretary, married Jack Watts of the Rover Ramblers. We wish them all the best.
We hear too that Ralph and Phyllis Holroyd now have a daughter and extend congratulations.
Some time ago I read in the “Sydney Bushwalker” that two of its earlier pioneers had ventured forth into the Macphersons, and because they did it a long time ago before anybody else had got “tired” of the Blue Mountains, and even the more adventurous hadn't got further north than Barrington, and, as I say, because it was so long ago, therefore they were the first bushwalkers to have done that thing.
The years have rolled by and bushwalkers have been to Tasmania and to Atherton and not a skerrick of the eastern coast of Australia didn't have a hobnail mark on it somewhere or so it seemed. Pessimism made me broody and when I brood I brood over maps, and lo and behold what do I see but somewhere I hadn't ever read about or heard about, complete with bits of country around the 4,000' mark.
And nobody had been there either, so after inspecting Parish maps, County maps, Military Surveys, Geological maps and Aeronautical Photos and writing to at least half the inhabitants of the 2,500 square miles - which makes about twenty of them - and gathering together some foolhardy types such as only a Bushwalker's Club can produce, we got going.
How we got there would receive a disapproving frown from the capitalistic elements of the Club, but we left Denman on the Goulburn River, which does not flow through Goulburn, but joins the Hunter River eighty miles west of Newcastle, traditionally, on Friday night, which we spent in Garrawa Hall.
The next morning we roadbashed, much to the astonishment of the other half of the population I hadn't written to. This King's Creek was a pretty valley with cows and things and a few lumps of fossilised wood and a flat floor and steep sides which we started climbing, after seven miles too far on the road.
The top of the watershed wound around heads of innumerable creeklets and was very rough and very narrow. It rejoices in a trig. station called Corner Hills which gives a 360° panorama all around the place from Barrington to Monundilla and it is also inscribed “Baerami Horror” after the stream which was on the other side of the mountain which the bear, meaning us, was going over.
It looked lovely from up top, and kept us from seeing a sort of Carlon's down below which kept us out of the valley until nigh on sunset. A request for milk resulted in 2/3 pint of cream per stomach for tea, which actually turned us off cream for quite a while.
The Monundilla I mentioned is a local highspot, basalt capped like Hay and King George, thirty miles from the nearest pub in any direction, and this is what we were heading for - the mountain, not the pub. Baerami Creek starts up that way and has a road going up it half-way there, so up the road we went next day.
[Map titled “Hunter Range”]
More milk, tons of advice, a lift in some prehistoric machine, and oh! joy (tampered with thoughts of cream) we were at last being the first since the aborigines to walk over that bit of country, and I doubt if even they did it for pleasure.
It is a very pleasant creek, Baerami Creek, very pleasant, very easy to follow. It has innumerable headwaters, but which one we were on we don't know. In the middle of the afternoon we climbed out of it on to a ridge, and there was Monundilla much nearer now, but not on this ridge which ditched us in some unknown creek for the night.
We shall pass over the next day in silence in memory of bushwalkers who were bushwalkers. We were lost with only a glimpse of our mountain now and again. Between the nows and agains we were in the creeks. But somehow we stumbled on to the main ridge and stuck there until, much to our astonishment, Monundilla was in front of us or rather than above us and we staggered up to the top a day later than as per schedule.
I shall leave the view for the next to describe, as I expect even this small work will be well edited before you get it. The other mildly astonishing thing was the prolific jungle growth at this altitude, just like Mt. Wilson. But the pleasant varies directly as the unpleasant and vice versa, and you've guessed it, so help me, having had lawyer vine and nettles your sweet little selves.
On the other side of this mound we found a small tent sized plateau, a little way off from a convenient soak. Wood, water and whatnot blessed our dirty socks but the postulate of direct proportionality which you've just read brought on a westerly gale from sunset to sunrise exclusively.
And so on to the next day which was like all the others except that we covered twice as much ground and only one river. Here we were on the Hunter Range following the route of the old cattle duffers who lifted their pocket money from Putty and took it to Rylstone, where somebody else generally lifted it and took it over Nullo Mt. to Denman. All went well this day and we followed the range fifteen miles, past the twin basaltic peaks and high sandstone cliffy lump of the three Kekeelbon Mts., getting lost on Mt. Brown further on, until we got to Coricudgy. From the Kekeelbons a cattle pad winds its way to Mt. Coricudgy, but it disappeared here and there gremlin like and only came to light on narrow saddles where it just couldn't help it.
Around Coricudgy the scenery changed, what with hungry cattle and the effects of bushfires, and timber getters. I predict a fine flurry of conservationism when the place becomes more popular with bushwalkers, because although at the moment the fine timber on top of these basalt capped mountains is a bit out of the way, timber shortages may eventually lead to heavy inroads on these natural resources.
On the flanks of Coricudgy the track became a road which led out into The Ovens on the head of the Cudgegong River. Max Gentle knows this country and can tell you all about the road there from Kandos. So will I if you want to know, and more, but suffice to say we reached Rylstone two days later, after numerous friendly clashes with very interesting locals, a story unto itself.
So now I feel pessimistic all over again. We've done it; we were the first to go right through on foot, and I'll be going there again.
But I brood again. I brood.
Not since pre-war years has the Dramatic Group been able to hire a hall and put on a full night of plays, though we have had some very enjoyable club-room entertainments. This time they put on four plays. In the first, “A narrative of nerves, nurses and nitwits”, entitled “The Rest Cure”, Ray Kirkby, looking convincingly debilitated, took part of the neurotic patient. Joan Savage took the part of his happy wife - happy because he couldn't get out of hospital for at least a month - while Betty Hurley and Betty Rose took the parts of “Dark Cat” and “Fair Cat” the unfeeling nurses. Edna Stretton, was the confiding hospital domestic who cheered Clarence the patient with tales of the sufferings of the patients and hints on how to tell when they were really sick.
The second was “Poor Old Sam” - “A pathetic pastoral pantomime” in which Sam, acted by Kevin Ardill, who has been fired from job for umpteenth time, decides to put on a hanging scene for the benefit of his nagging wife Martha (part taken by Dorothy Lawry). There was some very amusing by-play between Sam and Daffydill, a bloodthirsty maiden from nearby (part by Joan Savage) and, of course, in the middle of it in wander a cheerful couple (Betty Hurley and Jack Wren) who must have a cup of tea. The hanging wasn't at all successful and “Poor Old Sam” went back to work rather than help his wife with the laundering business.
“The Poison Party” - “A tragedy of questionable origin and definitely doubtful period” was very well cast. Doreen Harris took the part of the Queen Mother, who offered the poisoned tarts to the wicked damsel Denise de Beaujolis (Grace Jolly) who was seducing her son, King Charles (Jack Wren) and to her father Monsieur de Beaujolis (Kevin Ardill). Richard Croker was a very convincing Cardinal who was gratified to find he was to have one of the unpoisoned tarts. Things reach a climax when, due to the King eating all the unpoisoned tarts before the party started, it is discovered that only poisoned tarts remained and they have all had one. However, the status quo is restored when it is found that the king's rabbit ate the poisoned dish of dainties and exploded shortly after, the cook substituting another dish.
The last play was “Two women and a Telephone”, the moral of which was “Let the Punishment Fit the Crime”. It was a really clever performance - good acting by any comparison. Diana Savage took the part of the flirting wife (Madge) caught out by her husband and asking her friend Pauline (Joan Savage) for an alibi. It might have worked except that Pauline soon smelt a rat and found that it was her husband who had been out in the car with Madge. Followed an amusing scene in which Pauline, per telephone, renews an old flirtation with Madge's husband, while Madge writhes nearby. Pauline keeps it up right to the point of arranging an evening's outing.
It was very entertaining to see our old favourites on the stage once more and good to see that new talent has been discovered. Joan deserves great credit for her production. It is not often, for instance, that an amateur show starts on time. This one did. Everything ran smoothly; the casting was good and the players practically word perfect. Joan must have worked like a Trojan to organise everything so well.
As a result of the production the Federation will gain about £20 which will be used for the Health Meek Exhibition.
by Kevin Ardill
Remember the Past Instructional Week End to St. Helena and how we had Instruction Plus? The second I.W.E. took place on 18th October and also provided some interesting sidelights. Details have not been verified, but one member of the party was seen on the train to Glenbrook, and, after being turned loose with map, compass, instructions, and two other pilgrims, he disappeared and did not even have the decency to catch the same train home. I'm not a woman to talk, but Phil Lose'em Hall may supply further particulars.
Sticking my neck out Corner:- At the last couple of General Meetings several experienced members have shown concern as regards the welfare and well-being of the future members of the Club. Suggest that an appearance at Instructional Week-Ends of our armchair strategists would both enlighten and edify prospective and new members.
The Railway Dept. threw a little light on one party of walkers recently. This could easily provide a sketch for next play night. Scene 1: Train pulls into station. Two First Class carriages are in darkness. Naturally the walkers entered the darkened boxes and secured seats. Enter one Railway porter, who after trying to switch on lights without success, shoots out again amid sighs of relief.
Scene 2: Enter two ticket examiners, a quick flick of the wrist and lo, there is light, also panic. Half the party had paid the difference in fares when out went the light again. After several futile attempts to light up, the examiners retired in disgust. The only happy part of the story is that the half of the party who evaded payment was comprised of prospective members. They should be given membership status immediately.
At North Sydney council Chambers, Miller Street, North Sydney, on Friday, 21st November '47.
Dancing - Entertainment - Supper.
10 minutes from Wynyard by Taronga, Balmoral, Spit or Suspension Bridge tram.
Dress - Informal.
Admission 5/-. 8 to 12 p.m.
Several parties are going to Tasmania in Jan.-Feb. One party at least still incomplete. If you like to see Kevin Ardill Club room you could get some particulars.
Ruby Payne-Scott advises that the mileage of her Frazer Park walk Dec. 5-6-7 has caused alarm and despondency amongst some of the starters. The distance should read four miles, not fifteen.
Bob Houston would like to hear from his friends. His address is:-
C/- Anglo Oriental Tin Co., 16 Barrack Rd., Kuala Lumpur, Malaya.
Allen Strom writes:
“Your editorial was timely and necessitous; I hope it will promote discussion and action and not remain a few lines in a magazine.
Prospectives are an extremely important body of people even though the S.B.W. is not anxious to take new members. But if we are conscientious about our pastime, if we believe that it will mean something to future generations, then obviously we must be doing for the “up and coming.” Despite other conceptions, I am of the belief that the S.B.W. are ideally suited to the development of worthwhileness amongst beginners because this club has in its ranks large numbers of experienced and natured peoples highly capable in the passing on of knowledge and attitudes; furthermore the financial establishment of the S.B.W. is such as to allow a stability to Bushwalking Education.”
The greatest danger to the prospective problem rests at present with the Walks Programme and the demand upon physical endurance. Walks Programmes are not suited in a general fashion to the beginner and there is a preponderance of walks led by inexperienced peoples in the field of walker-training; and worse still, their attitude towards beginners is, for many reasons, unsatisfactory. It would appear that the unorganised choice of leaders for walks is a very poor and dangerous method of compiling a programme, particularly when people new to bushwalking are thrown against it. There is a most undesirable accent upon long endurance tests rather than an emphasis upon a broadened conception of walking as a contact with the Natural Australia. Walks that look easy are shunned, any activity that proposes to teach is ridiculed and gradually we are breeding the notion that bushwalkers are a species of race horses who visualise the bush as an impediment symbolic with a necessary evil. Maybe we should come off our pedestal and mix with the young people to hear just how they conceive walking.
Still, an entrance qualification which demands speed and endurance as the end-all will not serve to encourage those who are most desired. If the most difficult walks are always test walks, we will always find inexperienced people trying to do them; and when walks are difficult they allow little time for leaders to contact beginners and to offer all the advice you suggest. Furthermore, the “new-chum” soon slips into the ranks of the bragger or leaves walking altogether. Hero-worship attitude towards activities of extreme strain and dangerous mishap is very dangerous and obviously a setback to the development of the kind of person that your editorial suggests. Beginners should be protected from its influence and walks involved kept strictly from the programme.
All this seems to point towards a greater check on Prospectives and a closer watch on types of people who lead the walks that they attend. If we are to achieve the attention you desire, then the present haphazard choice of walks is thoroughly unsatisfactory. A better scheme would involve the use of a special panel of leaders for prospectives and a set of walks and standards that would involve a broadened conception of walking.“
There's great activity going on. Seeds collected from places as far afield as Beecroft Peninsula and Barrington Tops with lots of places in between, have been planted and are now sturdy young seedlings. They are crying to be planted out into their future homes and the warm days have given a note of urgency to the matter for the tender youngsters would fare if a hot searing westerly struck them before they got fully established. Already the garden is dotted with sticks and labels and there are dozens more to come. Let's hope the weather is kind and we are vouchsafed a few refreshing showers which are so much more acceptable than the hose.
Three year old Pultenaea Stipularis plants bloomed for the first time and what a brave show they put on! P. Daphnoides was pretty and the Golden Pea bushes were a splendid sight. They have finished now but the flannel flowers are now revelling in the warm sunshine.
Japara. There's a glimmer of hope. Things look a little more hopeful. Paddy hopes to have a better showing of sleeping bags and tents next year.
Steel frame rucksacks in stock and a complete range of rucksacks without frames.
Aluminium billies. Complete range of squat and upright types available. Aluminium fry pans in stock.
Plastic proofed groundsheets going well.
Paddy Pallin. Camp Gear For Walkers.
327 George Street, Sydney. Phone B 3101.