THE SYDNEY BUSHWALKER
A monthly bulletin of matters of interest to the Sydney Bushwalker, the N.S,W. Nurses' Association Rooms “Northcote Building,” Reily Place, Sydney. Box No. 44760 G.P.O. Sydney. Phone 843985.
|Editor||Bob Duncan, C.S.I.R.O. Camden. Camden - 69251|
|Business Manager||Alex Colley|
364 April 1965 Price 3/-
March General Meeting J.Brown 2. Chapter II. The 37th Annual General Meeting J.Brown 4. Here's a Mystery Paddy 6. King's Canyon Alice Wyborn 8. Blotches DyPass Michael Short 10. Day Walks 13. Social Notes for April 13. Federation Report. 14. Homage to Henry Lawson W.G. 15. Natural History Towards New Nomenclature. 16. A Mighty Trip that was Not Whatit was to be. Fitzganderpipe. 18. Anzac Memorial 20.
Which was, this time, the March General Meeting only, and opened at 8.10 with a welcome to new members n Dillon and Phillip Nicholls.
The President referred to the postponement of the Annual Meeting to 24th March and assured a questioner that it had nothing to do with the possible deferment of the Reunion, which would be discussed later. The notice of meeting and Annual Report were not ready in time to give the requisite warning of the Annual meeting.
The minutes were read and signed as a correct record, after which several members raised a query over the Presidential comment on barefoot appearance in the Club Room. Pointing out that the minutes had been dealt with, the President would not permit further discussion.
Correspondence said that Colo Shire Council had 0.K'd our request for the Woods Creek Reunion site, while the new owners of Bendethera did not at present contemplate resale. The Treasure's report showed current funds at 183 on 28th February, but that officer refused to be drawn into a forecast of his subscription proposals. Following a Walks Report which mentioned ten of the programmed trips in February, Edna Stretton moved that, owing to the current lack of interest in the Swimming Carnival, that event should be deleted from next year's summer programme motion carried, after some discussion. There were no reports on Parks and Playgrounds or Federation affairs, and after the Social forecast, the President thanked Don Read for withdrawing his slide evening to make way for the Annual Meeting. First item in general business was the postponement of the Reunion, the President first outlining the factors which had prompted the suggestion the serious bushfire risks, the complete ban on outdoor cooking fires. Frank Ashdown moved that it be postponed to a date to be decided. Various people contributed scraps of relevant information there was qtite a deal of water in the Grose, the bush surrounding the oar park area had already beeri burned, portogas stoves used out of doors were included in the fire lighting prohibition. The motion of deferment was carried without 'a dissentient voice. Zack Wren suggested a tentative date should be set and suggested 27-28March, but this foundered when Don Frost reported that he had obtained permission from Colo Council to take a party of up to 200 scouts to Woods Creek that weekend. A voice in the multitude asked if they would use up the firewood our workers had gathered and also our toilet facilities.
An amendment now proposed that an alternative site be selected for 27-28 March, but the existing alternative, Burning Palms, was stated to be very short of water, while other places, mentioned in a dubious my, were in similar case, and finally amendment and. motion lapsed, and on a motion by Snow Brown, the date was left for dotermination at the Annual Meeting. Gordon Redmond suggested it was timely to indicate which office bearers may or may not be willing to stand for reelection, so that members could consider nominations. The President listed in a verbal statement the present officebearers, and to the best of her knowledge, their intentions. Frank Ashdown would have liked a forecast of possible nominations, but it was pointed out that this was not the responsibility of an ordinary general meeting. David Ingram suggested we notify Colo Shire of our altered intentions about the Reunion and also mentioned that the membership figures in the Annual Report contained an inaccuracy. Kath Brown said the new Walks Programme showed a very meagre number of test walks and proposed that the incoming Committee review the programme, as there were several trips that with very little amendment, could be accepted. John White seconded this and later mentioned that a trip he was leading in May was designed to be of test standard. Snow. Brown put up the amendment that future walks programmes contain a footnote that walks harder than marked tests would be accepted as tests. In support of the original motion he added there was one weekend_ when all the walks were suitable as tests, but not so marked. The President felt that it was possible some trips accepted_ by Committee as tests had not been shown on thd-prOgrammIS!, but'in relation' to Oridamendtnent would only agree to the wording “walks of harder standard MAY be accepted.” In this form the Plindment and original _motion were carried, and the President stated that the incoming Committee, would be reminded., of this decision. Frank Ashdown who had been displaying considerable interest in the whereabouts of the Secretary all evening, now brought the question up again and the President replied that she ,had just discovered apologies for the absence of the Secretary and also Evelyn and Nick Elfick. At 9.45 this unique March meeting ended with the appointment of short term Room Stewards to see us through to the Annual Meeting.
The Annual Meeting lasted, almpst pzac-O_y 2,1ipups, and, when_.one ponders the fact that there was no narMal monthly-business to transact, and no constitutional amendments,At makes one wonder. howl,the-lusugITAhtudi:Meeting eve/iling - - T
However, away to a flying start at 8.10 p m. we heard the very fresh 10th March minutes, arising from-which Ron Knightley suggested postponing the Reunion until after the Half Yearly Meeting in September. It became a foreshadowed motion when the President suggested it be discussed later. In very short order we took as-1ad,and then adopted the Annual Report; we took as read the Financial Report and adopted that too after Treasurer Gordon Redmond had elaborated on its contents, emphasizing that our bookkeeping was a “cash” system, and did not play around with sundry debtors or carry over of advance subscriptions. He also made the point that we were steadily depreciating the value of Club equipment and in about two years all the Club property would join items like the maps and library as fully depreciated. So, very quickly we came to the election, for which we chose the time honoured voting system and appointed scrutineers, at the same time suspending standing orders to conduct other affairs between election of officers. The Office-bearers list appears below. Next was that often hardly ddbated item of subscription entrance fee. It was quite evident that Gordon Redmond's resistance had been lowered by his recent hospitalisation - he was content to have the same subscription as last year and moved that it be so fixed - Junior Active Members El: Senior Active members 2: Married couples 3; Non Active 10/- and Entrance Fee 10/-. The point was made that in the Constitution the Non Active sub should be “one quarter or such other amount as determined by Committee”, so that portion of the motion was withdrawn and the rest carried - not before a few stalwarts sought a reduction to combat the inflationary spiral. r Already, with a Committee taking shape on Eddie Stretton's blackboard, we were -back to the Reunion. At firbt Ron Knightley suggeSted September 11-12, but finding this was in the Spring,Sphool holidays he amended his motion to September 18-19, Although at least one resolute member was for going ahead on 27th-28th March, come scouts or bushfires, the meeting was probably relieved to have six months breath-Ing space, in which it may actually rain, and carried the motion very decisively. April, 1965 The Sydney Bushwalker 5.. We had covered the set part of the agenda and in opening the meeting to General Business, Heather reminded us that Federation was keen to avert future conflict of Reunion dates. There was a little preliminary skirmishing in which it became clear that there would be no clash in 1966, and Kath Brown then moved that our Reunion be held on the usual week4nd, following the Annual Meeting “weather permitting”. Carried with general assent. Frank Ashdown regretted that the incoming President would not have the doubtful pleasure of vowing his life away while the emblems were hung about him and suggested he be inducted at the next General Meeting. Feelings were mixed, some suggesting that the atmosphere was not the same as a campfire and anyway the new President knew what he was in for, so what the Hell. The motion was lost. Snow Brown now presented a pre-fabricated resolution that the standard dress be left to the discretion of Club members. Some were for 'em and some agizam. Some said bare feet on polished parquetry was a poor show: and some said we sought to avoid cramping conventions in a free and easy Club. Others felt that unduly garish attire would disturb visitors and lecturers; while Brian Harvey moved an amendment that hobnailed boots be barried at all times. This prompted a spate of other proposed bans, which the Presidsmt treated as being frivolous, and the amendment and original motion (as amended) were passed. With the evening ebbing away, the elections drawing to a rapid conclusion it was left for Alan Rigby to express the Club's appreciation to Heather Joyce for a very solid year's work as Madam President - including in the scope of one weekend the Christmas Dance, a trip to Braidwood in connection with the Bendethera bid, and a Search and Rescue activity at Bungonia. His comments were seconded. by that President-elect, Jack Gentle, and rounded off in the only suitable way. And the 37th Annual was over at 10.10 p m. President Jack Gentle Vice-Presidents Ron Knightley Alan Rigby Secretary Nan Bourke Asst.Secretary To be elected Treasurer Gordon Redmond Social Secretary Edna Stretton Walks Secretary Bob Godfrey Membership Sec. Jack Wren Literary Editor Bill Gillam Committee Members Eileen Wren Audrey Kenway Ern Farquhar Bill Burke Federation Delegates David Ingram (x) Alan Rigby Bill O'Neill (x) John Holly (x) to sit on Committee. Subsitute Federation Delegates - Kerry Hore,Brian Harvey Auditor Brian Harvey Publications Business Manager - to be appointed. Trustees - Maurice Berry, Joe Turner, Vial Roots. Hon. Solicitor Colin Broad. Parks & Playgrounds Delegate - Margaret Child. 6 The Sydney BushwaiRer April, 1965
Paddy. A track that starts nowhere in particular and leads to nowhere at all is indeed a mystery and this is just what Barry Duncan and two friends found on one of their walks from the mountain hideout overlooking Jamberoo which some of us inhabit on occasional weekends. The track was discovered quite by accident. The trio had gone off across the River above Carrington Falls and intended descending Ebbs Track which leads down from the plateau at about map ref. 638220 and proceeds down to Yeola. However, at the top they discovered a cleft which they thought looked exciting. They abseiled down and followed the bottom down towards the river. This got them to the upper Kangaroo River and they decided to make upstream towards Carrington Falls. After a day and a half of very difficult going they found they could not get up to the Falls and decided to try the Northern side of the Valley. They scrambled through dense growth to the base of the cliffs and looked in vain for a break. They had just decided to aim for a very well marked creek when one of the party discovered a cut step. So was found the mystery track. An enormous amount of work has gone into the track. Steps are hewn deep into hard rock. It follows the course of a tiny stream and rivals in beauty many of the Blue Mountain passes. There are ferns and mosses, lovely sassafras, masses of rock orchids and magnificent cliff faces. But who was the patient worker who discovered this pass and hewed the stubborn rock to make the going easy? Where was he going? Whence did he come? The folks at Yeola had a good track A bridle track into Robertson. So had Ebbs. So far as we know there was no settlement higher up the valley. The valley below is deep and rough. It does not appear to have been a tourist track. There is no easy way either right or left leading to some other pass through the cliffs. Should you be tempted to try and solve the mystery, here are directions for finding the top of the track. It is certainly worth a look at if you are in this vicinity. Take the clear wheel track to the right (West) a little less than half a mile from Carrington Falls. This leads to a large deep pool. Cross the creek by the track upstream from the pool and follow roughly west for nearly a mile. Here the main track (a wheel track) bears off to the right and a faint track crosses a swamp to the left. From this point a clear view of Bell's Hill is seen ahead. Follow the faint track to the left until it reaches an old fence running North and South (approximately on N S grid 64). Follow the fence south until you find a dead stick laced into the fence wires. (This point is about 50 yards from the cliff edge). Turn left and go at right angles to the fence for about 100 yards to the head of a shallow gully. The track starts near two large gum trees. It is a somewhat obscure entrance but almost immediately becomes quite clear. No prizes for the best solution but I would be interested to hear theories.
Alice Wyborn. Early one morning last Ssptember a cool breeze was blowing as we crosssd the derodroMat Alice Springs, to our waiting plane a seven seater Italian Piaggio, and shortly aft we were airborne and on our way to King's Canyon, about 170 miles south west of “Alice”, where we were to land on an airstrip on Tempe Downs Station. Later, asking where were the station buildings we were told “seventy miles away” there being another airstrip closer to the homestead. The planes complement was two pilots,one cnly being necessary but the second was new to the area and was learning the route our guide David, a young lass of 21 from Brisbane, and our family of four. A cloudless blue sky provided excellent views of the great ranges of the centre. There is something weird about these ridges and curves which run for hundreds of miles in seried ranks as though a monstrous chariot in prehistoric times3 had worn groat wheel tracks between the hills. We flew directly over Et. Sonder, 43417 ft., so loved by Albert Namitjera, with it's magnificent ochre coloured spires and ramparts, which for the previous few days we had been seeing from the ground, in all its soft shades of blue now it was a different mountain rugged and aloof. Davia pointed out the various scenic spots Glen Helen Gorge, Ormiston Gorge, Serpentine and Ellery Creek Gorges, all of which we had explored by landrover and on foot, and now their immense walls had shrunk to mere slits in the mountain ranges. We landed on the airstrip, where a waiting blue landrover glistened against the red sandy ground, The landrover is left there during the tourist season May to October a lonely sign of civilisation on that hot dry plain. We had already flown over King's Canyon in the George Gills Range, and now set off in the Landrover a distance of about three miles, and from there, it was on foot. Our guide was pleased to have a party who could walk. Apparently they often go out with tourists who are unable to do the walk and climb, and so never get up into the canyon proper. The sun was high now, and burned into our skins as we stripped down to shorts and shirts. There was not a cloud in the sky, but in the course of conversation about weather etc. David predicted rain within a few days, and how right he was as only a couple of days later, on our way to Ayer's Rock, we had our first rain since leaving home three weeks before, and that was the start of some really heavy rain which dogged us right through South Australia. April, 1965 The Sydney Bushwalker 9. .11 David was a very interesting fellow who had been born and bred in the Centre. His father had been a Native Affairs Officer, and so young David had grown up on various mission stations and learnt the ways of the Aborigines from early childhood. We trudged up a rocky hillock, some 800 ft. high, and up and over various rugged outcrops, following the line of cliff on the north side of the Canyon. The water in the canyon is purely rain water, held in the vast rocky cavern, from where it runs out in a narrow creek bed gradually losing itself in the red sand of the western plains. There are strange rock formations comprised of small rounded knobs, for all the =rid like buns they reminded me of trays of buns just out of an oven. The rock is very brittle and dangerous to climb on in places. We followed the cliff line to its farthest point east where it takes a sharp turn northwards, and here ww dropped down into the corner where an icy pool provided welcome refreshment. The colours in the walls were very striking bright orange and yellow, and streaked with black in many places. Several picturesque gums and low scrub in the creek bed provided a good foreground for pictures of the walls, and so the cameras clicked merrily. The way back was over the same route and the waiting landrover whisked us away over a narrow bush track, through quite dense undergrowth in places, to Reedy Waterhole, a lovely clear pool in a picturesque setting. This was to be our lunch spot, and the men soon had a dixie boiling for a “cuppa”. Reedy Waterhole is a permanent spring and there are several of these springs within a dozen or so smiles of each other, and apparently all known to David. A chicken dinner on Airline trays provided a funny intrusion in that cool bushland spot!! Nevertheless we all did justice to it and washed it down with several “cuppas.” After lunch we were taken on a tour of some caves, containing fine examples of Aboriginal drawings and paintings, and in a roundabout way of several miles, eventually arrived back at the airstrip. “I'll take you right up to the plane,” said David, who was driving and he did we stopped only when the landrover nudged the nose of the plane. With the sun sinking in the west we boarded the little plane back to “Alice” and so ended another wonderful day in the “Centre.” 10. - , The Sydney Bushwaiker April, 1965
Michael Short. Map: Mittagong Military.
Team: Leader Michael Short. Members: Dave Carver, Heather Joyce, Greg Reading, Chris Richards. Prospectives Terry Norris, Judy Simpson, Phil Nichols, Ron Doolan, Colin Maluga. Visitor: Frank Tadker.
“Mt. Jellore, Jellore Creek, Nattai River, Blatch's Pass” there were loud guffaws from the back of the room when Blatch's Pass was mentioned during the walks announcements. This was due perhaps to some small blunders on the last trip Mittagong, Nattai River, Hilltop when Blatch's Pass and that small gully known as Rocky Waterholes Creek were overshot in our mad career down the river. (Oct. magazine).
But the reputation of the leader could not deter the adventurous group which set off on the 8.45 on Friday night. The conductor had sent us to the back of the train, but Heather and Frank were looking for us at the front when it arrived at Strathfield. They made a quick dash along the platform and just managed to reach our carriage before the train moved out. Terry had decided to take his car to Aylmerton. As the platform loomed up we could see him signalling frantically. With Terry and Chris aboard, the party was complete.
Reaching Mittagong at a quarter to twelve, we made an assault on my grandfather's cottage. Everyone was left standing around outside while we broke the news to pyjama clad Mr. Lee that there were eleven of us. After he had had a chance to prepare for the invasion we allowed ourselves to be invited in. A large pot of tea and some scones were produced and Grandad entertained us with a reading of some of his poems until one o'clock. Heather and Judy disgraced us by accepting the offer of the two spare beds but the rest of us sprawled haphazardly over the lawn.
Next morning we managed to be ready by eight. As we could only find one Taxi, Mrs. Lee offered to drive the other five out in the Dodge. The boot did not seem too safe for our packs as the lid was a bit unstuck. The car was a jumble of packs and bodies.
We reached the others and after farewelling Mrs. Lee, continued along the road which was becoming a little rough. The owner of the farm, Mr. Butler, who was driving into town, wanted to know whether we were experienced, as he did not want to come looking for us. When we told him we were quite experienced in being overdue to he was satisfied.
As we were passing through the farmyard, we were lamenting that a small foal lay dead in the paddock. We were relieved when it sprang to its feet. Frank thought it worth a photo.
Leaving the farm we dropped into Jellore CtOek. (The Military Map names the branch on the northern side of the mountain as Jellore Creek but according to the Blue Mountains Tourist Sheet and the Parish maps, this is wrong.) We picked up a road which gradually rose up the left side of this creek. Leaving it after a mile, we shot up to the long spur which runs out from the West slope. Donning packs, we made our way to the summit. Mt: Jellore is only one hundred feet lower than the well known Gibraltar and is much higher above the surrounding country.
On the top we watched for ten minutes while a three lane chain of caterpillars passed by. Frank, who is a bit of a bugologist, tried putting a caterpillar of a different species in the line. He just went his own way taking no notice of the others. Having exhausted the subject of the strange ways of caterpillars, we turned our attention to the view.
Unfortunately there was some smoke haze so we concentrated on the nearer features. After we had sorted out the landscape we dropped down to our packs and then down a selected ridge to the creek north of Jellore. There we were disappointed (?) to find a timber getters' road. It soon petered out. Lunch was now on everybody's mind, but hardhearted Terry led us on to the junction with Jellore Creek. We were glad that he did for there were a couple of swimming holes nearby.
A mere two hours later we pushed off. The creek, which up to now had level, earth covered banks, ran through an obstacle course of rock and boulders. There were many interesting descents until finally the creek levelled out and we knew that the Nattai could not be far off.
As soon as we reached the river, we started looking about for a camp site as it was now five o'clock. All the flat spots on the bank were covered with scrub so we settled for a sandy hollow in the river bed and hoped that it would not rain during the night. Phil prepared for the worst and erected a tent higher up the slope.
At this stage Terry and I decided to make a reconnaissance of the way up to the pass. We figured that by the time we got back the firewood would be collected and the fire lit. We went up where I had put a cairn of stones on top of a giant boulder. We soon found that we were on the right side of the wrong gully and going up there would get us into a lot of trouble. We found the right creek fifty yards downstream. Down came the cairn!
Terry and I had timed it nicely, for all the work around the camp had been done when we returned. After a peaceful night we awoke with not even dew on our sleeping bags. We found what would have been a mighty camp place just a few yards downstream of course! a flat, sheltered spot with a large swimming hole nearby. Some of us tried the water before we finally got away at ten o'clock.
Up the ridge we went. It became steeper and was a scramble in some places. It then levelled off to the' Summit of Flat Top Mountain and Blatch's Pass which is now only a route. There we took a compass bearing on the next saddle between US and civilization. Near where the saddle should have been we struck thick sera. Not knowing our exact position, we pushed on blindly, relying on the compass. At one o'clock we came across a, rocky creek where we decided to have lunch.
We didn't know for certain what creek it was but since it came from the right direction, we followed it up, saving a scrub-bash. Near the source a road was sighted but, being true bushwalkers, we ignored it and went tramping on through the trees. We skirted one hill and made for the next. Near the top we found a second trail. Since it was going exactly in the direction we wanted to go, the temptation was too great and we followed it to cleared land.
Since lunch we had been hearing gun shots, and now we came upon the blasters. Mr. Blatch's brother-in-law and a friend were firing away with muzzle-loading shotguns at a poor piece of iron. They said we were welcome to water at the farmhouse.
Now there was the question of whether to pick up the road or cut across the paddocks to the farm, Not to miss the last chance of being bushed, we headed for the fields and after much climbing of fences, were surprised to find ourselves at the farmhouse. After knocking fruitlessly at the door we helped ourselves to the water. The lady of the house was startled when, on waking from her siesta, she found us all soaking up her precious water, and we had some explaining to do.
After a long gossip, we headed for Colo Vale over a fine road - not much up and down - plenty of bends - wide enough for six abreast - white gravel and pleasant bush. This was very welcome at the end of a trip. The glass of Fizzle Guzzle was welcome too. At Colo Vale station, a shaming little siding with “UP THE SURFIES” scrawled on the wall, we parted from Terry, Chris and Dave. We had a whole twenty minutes to spare before the train arrived. The carefree ride back by courtesy of the Government Railways proved the perfect end to another glorious Nattai trip.
ANNUAL REUNION 1965. This year the Annual Reunion will be held on 25th - 26th. September. This date was decided upon at the Annual General Meeting. Your camp-fire Items will be most welcome.
MAY 2. Garie Curra Brook Colbee Knob Nioka Ridge GoonderaDam Heathcote. 12 miles. Right across the southern portion of the Royal National Park, from East to West. Parts of the area are fire damaged, so wear your oldest clothing. A good opportunity for map reading practice. Trains 8.20 a m. Cronulla Train from Central Electric Station. CHANGE AT SUTHERLAND for rail motor to Waterfall. 9.30 a m. bus Waterfall to Carie Beach. Tickets: Waterfall return @ 6/ plus 2/6 bus fare. Map: Port Hacking Tourist or Port Hacking Military. Leader: Jim Callaway. MAY 2 Pymble bus to St. Ives (Warrimoo Rd.) Cowan Creek Bobbin Head Berowra Station., 12 miles. This is particularly suitable for a first walk, because shpuld anyone fall by the wayside, there is a bus service from Bobbin Head or a short cut to Mt. Kuringai Station. Mainly track walking in a picturesque part of Kuringai Chase, Train: 8.10 a m. Hornsby via Bridge from Central Electric Station to Pymble. 8.46 a m. bus Pymble St. Ives. (Warrimoo Rd). Tickets: Berowra via Bridge return @ about 5/9 plus 1/1 bus fare. Map: Hawkesbury Military or Hawkesbury Tourist. Leader: Denise Hull. MAY 9 Heathcote Scouter's Mountain Eckersley Fire Trail Eckersley Trig Waterfall. 12 miles. This walk is a test walk, the symbol was omitted from the Walks Programme. It includes a trip along the top of Scouter's Mountain and part of the Heathccte Primitive Area. Come and see the area which Paul Barnes talked to us about last February. Trains 8.20 a m. Cronulla train from Central Electric Station. CHANGE AT SUTHERLAND for rail motor to Heathcote. Tickets to Waterfall return @ Map: Port Hacking tourist or Camden Military. Leader: David Ingram.
Since 21st April is sandwiched in between Easter and Anzac weekends, members will probably welcome a free night to talk about the trip that went before and the one to come after.
On 28th April, Dave Roots will be revealing the mysteries of Ball's Pyramid. Slides as well as movies will illustrate his commentary. Press reports of this expedition and the successful one that followed have been most interesting, thus an excellent night at the Club on 28th is assured.
Blue Mountains National Park. Alan Strom, Chief Guardian of Flora and Fauna has been elected to the Park Trust. The track from the Glenbrook Causeway to the Blue Pool has been completed. Improvements have been made at McMahon's Lookout overlooking Burragorang.
Heathcote Primitive Area. The support of all Clubs is requested to a proposal that an additional area be added to the Reserve comprising the land from the Southern boundary of the Area south and southwest to the boundary of the Water Board's Catchment Area.
Search and Rescue Report. One alert reported when a member of a party from this Club was overdue on a trip through Claustral Canyon. The organisers of The Radio Practice weekend on 13th-14th March were disappointed at the poor response.
Tracks and Access. The Victoria Falls track has been remarked to avoid the landslip.
Forthcoming Events. April 25th. Anzac Memorial Service to be conducted at the Bushwalker War Memorial at Splendour Rock. A bugler is required to assist at the function.
Search and Rescue Practice Weekend. 16th-18th July. Annual General Meeting and Election of Officers. July 20. Annual Ball. September 10.
Heard Island Expedition –Ball's Pyramid Expedition. The Federation is to offer congratulations to the members of both expeditions on the successful completion of their missions.
This year marks the centenary of Henry Lawson's birth. It is perhaps a tribute to the man's ammplexity and a rebuke to our tmrdiness in establishing a daair of Australian Literature that as yet no cri.1:ica1 analysis of his work has yet appeared, Such violently partisan opinions of his merits were offered while he lived that even now the author of a biogra-Dhy of Lawson has thought it best to issue the book under a pseudonym. Denton Prout's “The Grey Dreamer” appeared in 1964 and recently Meanjim has Published new light on Lawson's Norwegian ancestry Prout's is an attempt to preserve the views of Lawson's contemporaries who must by now be a very diminished band (he died in 1922). It is a dispassionate account of an unnecessarily tragic life and leaves one thinking “if only ,…” The Ebanjin research indicates that Lawson's father a gold fields failure, dismissed by his wife as a Scandinavian seaman, was a member of an elite Norwegian family; intellectual (Larsen was cousin to Ftridjod Nansen) and actively patriotic while Norway was a province of Sweden. That Lawson was aaminated by his mother and then by his wife is well known. Rejected as a seaman Feder Larsen's eclipse is understandable. From previously published work one is led to think he took to the grave the true nature of his own family. Lawson was christened as such, as the politicians put it unilaterally by his mother, before his father saw him. Such drastic rejection woUld, I think affect father and son to their resective graves. Lawson's fantasies on his “Viking” blood and the lifelong despair at the death in infancy of his only fair complexioned sister show how little he knew or acknowledged and hol- deeply it affected him. Despite his tuch vaunted mateship, lawson wc.-1 very sltary, wall,;c1 off by his own deafness, escaping into fantasy and then into alcoholism all his life. In literature he left no recognisable influence on subsequent writers. Ballads flared and went out of fashion; the life they depicted did not survive the 1914 Viar. Lawson's ballads competed in Australia with the whole group of Bulletin writers, and in the English language at large against Kipling whose “unpopular truths in popular language” had a more universal audience. Lawson's professional jealousy of Patterson was publicly paraded in the Bulletin, a jest which turned sour before it was stopped. His humour stories were more cynical than Edward Dysons who he copied and his lyrics less pleasing than Daley who is forgotten. And yet there is a core of early work which is original and some later short prose which is authentic. The story “The Union buries 16. The Sydney Dushwalker April, 1965 its dead bears comparison with the short takes with which Hemingway shot away the artificial, contrived conventions for short prose some twenty years later. It is perhaps significant that Lawson wrote this story when he was on his Far West “health” trip and was to some extent dry. A few good tales and then the inevitable relapse when he could stand the bush and his mates” no longer. Lawson's publishers and editors could have been more helpful to him in a literary sense. AG. Stephens of the Bulletin almost single handedly established an Australian literature. With others he was a cutting critic and hard editor, yet does not seem to have been at all selective with Lawson's work, This had the effect of keeping Lawson alive and free from maintenance judgements, Others had trades, professions to sustain them. Lawson had only his writing and he was not quite good enough in the Australia of the Times, to live by writing alone, The result is a mass of trivia with a few small perfect nuggets. For these nuggets we are fortunate. There are still sheoakes on Reedy River.
NATURAL HISTORY TOWARDS A NEW NOMENCLATURE.
In the published literature the only distinct subgenera receiving much attention has been the Tiger now represented by a solitary active specimen Felix Petrophillia Wahroongensis the rock loving tiger from Wahroonga. Deeper thought on the matter shows that, rather than a classification of species the ecology or typical assemblage of Bushies might be more meaningful. We could then talk of a Tiger Group meaning an assortment of walkers having an ideal composition of 1. One. only polarised navigator. More than one navigator could destroy the ecology due to wrong or differing polarity. Of Immense strength. 2. Sufficient (men) to hold the navigator above thick scrub so he may find the way. Of immense strength. 3. Others in just stfficiont numbers to be carried home exhausted by the first two categories Naturally, lightweight, slim girls are preferred for this group. Tiger groups are by definition transitory things. A more durable assembly is that of Foxes and Rabbits not that the Foxes prey on the April, 1965 The Sydney Bushwaiker 17. Rabbits. Indeed the qualities of both are often present in the one walker the exhibited trait depending on the stresses of circumstances. Morning Rabbits are often afternoon Foxes. Wednesday night Tigers can become Sunday morning Rabbits. Rabbit behaviour is easy to pick. Chief symptom is agitated behaviour at Breakfast, frantic stirring of the porridge followed by rapid shaking of the tent to remove the dew. This behaviour is largely self-defeating. The porridge has burnt during the tent shaking and by the time the pot has been scoured the Foxes have taken the preferred position immediately behind the leader where they have settled such minor details as morning tea, two hours for lunch and a detour from the programme to avoid some mountain holly remembeladfrom antiquity. If there are no Foxes present, a very rare occurence, the leader will find himself gulping down hot tea and setting off to catch up with the disappearing Rabbits. Foxes blend with the landscape so that Fox behaviour is often difficult to detect as such. If alone he seldom eats porridge; the complications deter him and if he is a porridge lover the risks of allowing someone else to cook it for him are enormous. I once saw two recognised Foxes detect a non-Fox over porridge cooking. The non-Fox, a bacon-fat for bile-juice breakfast type, put his portion of porridge into the billy of the Foxes while he cooked his bacon. The porridge burnt. The Foxes, nibbling from the edges of the billy, discovered this and left the metamorphic mess thinly disguised for the non-Fox who burnt his fingers when a rasher fell off its forked stick. Foxes can detect Trigger orchids from a great distance - the first types of Flora a Fox recognises are trigger orchids and dry wood. A valuable breathing space for old Foxes is to demonstrate the action of the plant. Since no one can resist them, the Fox has at least ten minutes to catch his breath, take off his pack, smoke, and offer half his “top of the ridge” orange to a wilting prospective. It must not be thought that Foxes are completely innem idirected Groups of Foxes are the sum of their Foxmanship and such groups have existed amicably for long periods advancing the art, rather than the cause, considerably. I am seriously considering offering courses in Foxing and forming a roster of known Foxes who will take all prospectives under their wings, so to speak. It might reduce that wastage rate. There must be someone among that seventy percent who can cook perfect porridge while I speak to the leader about the pool we should reach about ten o'clock. It is just at the foot of this side-ridge, a spur really off the ridge, and it is an easy way up. It really is 18. The Sydney Tushwalker April, 1965
I arrived at Strathfield on Sunday 21st March at a quarter to five and began waiting for Ross Wyborn. Three quarters of an hour later he arrived explaining that his alarm clock had decided to sleep in and, but for the rain, he would have too.
Our destination was a Lookout off the Mt. Wilson road, where we planned to meet Jerry Sinzig and John Worrell, who had been climbing with the S.R.C. and Peter Cameron and Duncan, We were going to investigate what we hoped would be a canyon that would eclipse Claustral, Thunder and Clatter-teeth all rolled into one! We duly arrived after a tense trip during which our senses were kept alert listening for “pings” etc. in Rosso's new baby.
When we arrived, Jerry was breakfasting and John debating whether to leave his fleabag or not. Hot on our tail was Duncan, (this time minus two left sand shoes) who on arrival, supported by Peter Cameron, announced that:
1. The water would be too cold to swim in,
2. His bees needed moving. (Could this be a sign of that dreaded disease White Antocity?)
That shocked me even more was that Jerry and our valiant vanguard driving leader supported him. To my cries of “Shame! Shame!” John Worrel said that I had better wait 1.3.;]'“ I'd done Et. Hay Creek Canyon before I aggitated for a canyon trip in weather that he described as “midwin erish.” Well, the trip WAS to have gone down in Dushwalkirag history as an epic in Canyon discovery now appeared to be little more than a girlguides picnic party, and to retrieve selfrespect our once hardy canyoneers began fossocking about for an alternative trip, which of course had to be DRY. Before long unanimous approval waS given to Mt. Banks, Grose River, Blue Gum, Mt. Banks; but this was not tb be so, for after bouncing out to Mt. Caley, it was decided enfin to go down:a crack Ross had onCe not been able to get up, go downstreath and then up Coalmine Creek. Surely this would be a mighty trip! April; 1965 The Sydney Dushwalker 19. In no time at all we were through the scrub at the top of the crack and slithering, climbing and crawling downwards. But our good going was suddenly stopped when we came to a sheer drop of about 30 feet. Rome may have its Appian Way, Claustral its Wade's Way, the Heavens its Milky Way, but bushwalkers going down this crack off Banks now have the “Rosso Way”. For, peering round the side of the rock: slab, Ross fund a tunnel, stdeply inclined and about 12 feet long. This solved the problem and. all went well until a yell from Peter stopped us in our tracks. Looking back we saw emerging simultaneously from the tunnel, which was not bigger than 2 feet in diameter, a head and foot. We were still wondering about this feat when we reached The Abseils. Both required a full 120' rope. The first was overhung slightly With loose rabbitfood all over it, but the second was clean rock all the way. It was most enjoyable going down However this one overhung in one part too and it was here John Worrell', decked out like a Christmas Tree in rockclimbing equipment caught his trousers in his karabiner. Some minutes of priceless entertainment resulted before he had completed the abseil which he describes as “Very Hairy.” After lunch we headed downstream towards the Coal Mine Creek exit, and before long another incident which makes bushwalking really worth- while occurred. Till now, the only incident which had impressed upon us the fact that Duncan was present was when he'd got Peter Cameron to throw his pack down some 30 feet not realising till ten minutes later that his camera was inside. However it was not until now that he roally distinguished himself. We'd encountered a black snake right in the middle of the wallaby track we were using, and one by one sidled around it. Unfortunately it thought we were surrounding it, and as our last member Duncan began his sidle, our friend the Dlackie became active. Peter Cameron's cry of “Look out, Duncan l!” brought on some of the best entertainment probably ever witnessed on a bushwalk. Duncan attempted to leap some 10 feet into the air, but forgot that he was in the middle of a huge patch of lawyer vine. The resulting tumble caused the snake to take fright and head for cover in the opposite direction, while we, his sympathetic comrades, collapsed to the ground in stitches. Good time was made down to the Grose where we finished off the food and drink and had a most refreshing swim. We then set off up the ridge and as it was cooler and as the view increased step by step, I found this particularly enjoyable. We soon found the Mt. Caley firetril and as no one else was keen on going to the top of Banks we bounced back to the Dell road, went down to the Kurrajong Hotel, and then set off for Richmond and a wellearned meal. Altogether a MIGHTY trip.