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198009

The Sydney Bushwalker September 1980

A monthly bulletin of matters of interest to The Sydney Bush Walkers, Box 4476, G.P.O., Sydney, 2001. Club meetings are held every Wednesday evening from 7.30 p.m. at the Wireless Institute Building, 14 Atchison Street, St. Leonards. Enquiries concerning the Club should be referred to Ann Raun, Telephone 793 8607.

EDITORHelen Gray, 209 Malton Road, Epping, 2121. Telephone 866263
BUSINESS MANAGERBill Burke, 3 Coral Tree Drive, Carlingford, 2113. Telephone 8711207
TYPISTKath Brown, telephone 812675
DUPLICATOR OPERATORPhil Butt
Page
The Franklin River - a battle won 2
The flowers of SrinagarBill Gillam5
Presentation of Spears 7
Magellan's CloudsJim Brown8
Social Notes for October 11
Advertisement 12
The August General MeetingJim Brown13
Sunrise on Mt. Warning0.M.15

The Franklin River - a Battle Won? The Tasmanian Government's Decision

Most of you know, the Tasmanian Government announced on 11th July its decision to create a Franklin-Davey Wild Rivers National Park and to approve the damming of the Gordon above the Olga River. Additionally, the proposal for a new coal-powered thermal station at Bell Bay was rejected by the Government on H.E.C. advice. Mr. Lowe has since said that thermal will never be developed in Tasmania. However, the H.E.C. is converting the existing Bell Bay power station from oil burning to coal burning. This leads one to question the real reasons for the Government's rejection of a new thermal scheme.

Mr. Lowe is to be congratulated for his decision regarding the proposed Franklin-Davey National Park. However, the campaign for the Franklin and for the South West is by no means over, especially when one realises that-

  1. The Government's decision is now being considered by both Houses of Parliament. The H.E.C. is applying strong pressure for a reversal of the decision, which could well result in the conservative Legislative Council's rejection of the legislation, especially that for the Franklin National Park.
  2. The Tasmanian Liberal Party is strongly opposed to the saving of the Franklin and has stated that if elected it could revoke the National Park and give approval for a Franklin-Lower Gorden hydro scheme. Even Mr. Lowe has said that the National Park might be revoked in 25-30 years time to allow a Franklin scheme to be built. The Young Liberals recently made a public announcement that they were opposed to further hydro schemes in the South West.
  3. A National Park does not necessarily ensure the sanctity of an area. Lake Pedder was part of a National Park which was revoked to enable the flooding of the lake and the building of Scotts Peak Dam. A “National Park” in Tasmania is much more weakly protected than in other states.
  4. The damming of the Gordon above the Olga will
    1. Flood the Gordon and Denison Splits.
    2. Flood parts of the Gordon, Denison, Albert and Maxwell Rivers.
    3. Flood large amounts of Huon pine habitat.
    4. Involve the construction of a road from the Serpentine Dam to the Olga-Gordon junction. Even the H.E.C. has described the construction of this road as “bad”.
  5. No Environmental Impact Statement has been made for the Gordon Dam. The Government may proceed without one and work on the scheme could start as early as October, but almost certainly by summer, towards the end of this year.
  6. Employees of the H.E.C. have formed their own action group called H.E.A.T. (Hydro Employees Action Team) which appears to be well funded. It is exerting strong pressure on all fronts despite Government disapproval. A former premier, Mr. Eric Reece is lobbying strongly on H.E.A.T.'s behalf.
  7. Forestry activities in the South West are causing concern, particularly now that the Forestry Commission has been granted power to veto its own Minister. The Lower House recently passed a bill proposed by Mr.Neil Batt, the Minister for Forests before he resigned from Tasmanian and Australian politics. Because the Forestry Commission has vested interests in several areas of the new National Park, it will oppose the National Park proposal.
  8. Several mining and mineral exploration permits inside the South West bave been granted and more are pending. Conservationists are not able to object legally to such permits. This is despite the fact that the area has been declared a “Conservation Area” and also placed on the Federal Government National Estate list.

Obviously there is much that you can do to help preserve Tasmania's Wilderness, especially by becoming involved in the South West Tasmania Committee. Full time workers are needed, but there is no budget for this. However, if you are blessed with “flexi-time”, “leave in lieu” or work part- time, or are interested in helping during a free day or hour, please ring Peter Kaldar at the Committee's Centre on 233-5388 after 10 a.m.

The Committee has formed the following groups, each of which needs more manpower. If you are interested in a particular group and wish to help, please ring the appropriate contact(s):

FORESTRY GROUP: badly needs more members. The monitoring of forestry aotivity in the South West has been neglected because of the threats posed by H.E.C. proposals. However, many people see forestry activities as having a more devastating effect on the environment than do hydro dams. ' Furthermore, the Forestry Commission is as powerful an adversary as the H.E.C. Work with the Forestry Group involves:

  • helping research forestry activities in the South West
  • prepare information sheets for the general public
  • prepare submissions
  • compile maps, graphs and tables.

CONTACTS: Ross Bradstock, 660-3931 (Home), Dave Kelly, 439-1414 (Home, Mon. to Thurs. nights) 662-2424 (Work)

RESEARCH GROUP: Researches information for all groups and for the TWS nationally. The work involves basic research and information gathering on hydro, forestry, mining, energy, conservation and political matters, with a view to preparing information for the other groups and for preparing publicity material. The Research Group is responsible for preparing submissions to Government and Government organisations e.g. the Evers Committee, and the Legislative Council. The Research Group produced “Free Currents”, which opposed the arguments put forward by the H.E.C. in its “Cross Currents”. Copies are available at the Environment Centre for any donation you may care to give. 60c would cover costs. The Research Group needs typists and those able to help in the drawing of maps, tables and graphs.

CONTACTS: Geoff and Judy Lambert, 949-3521 (Home, preferably after 8pm) 661-0111 Ext.857 (Geoff, Work: after 10:30a.m.)

POLITICAL LOBBYING GROUP: Its main job is to stir up politicians, both Federal and State, to inform them of matters in the South West and to ask them to take particular actions. This sometimes involves making personal representations to M.P.s.

  • It encourages members of the SWTC to contact their local members regarding South West matters.

CONTACTS: Richard and Renate Wood, 412-4429 (Home)

PUBLICITY GROUP: helps organise film evenings, fund-raising-events (e.g. cake stalls), compiles newsletters, prepares photographic displays and film-showings, posters, contacts people when a rally has to be arranged.

  • Shows the film “South West Tasmania, A Wilderness in question!” to interested groups. More help is needed with showing the film.

CONTACTS:

  • Tim Haner - showing the film to groups. 78-5518 (Home) Please leave a message or phone number if Tim is not at home. 20-935 Ext.424 (Work)
  • Ian Skinner - photography and preparation of displays 569-6308 (Home)
  • Judy Kelly - general information, 439-1414 (Home, Mon. to Thurs. nights inclusive) 237-6564 (Work)

GENERAL HELP:

Collating information sheets or newletters, stamping envelopes and putting up posters for film evenings.

Distributing pamphlets and/or information sheets to libraries, community centres and shops (Health food shops are often sympathetic to our cause).

Continuing the writing of letters to the Tasmanian Premier and politicians as well as to newspapers.

MEMBERSHIP: WE NEED MORE MEMBERS.

If you'd like to become a member, please send a money-order or cheque for $5 (unchanged since 1974) made payable to The South West Tasmania Committee of N.S.W., together with your name, address and phone number (home and/or work). The postal address is P.O. Box N204, Grosvenor Street, Sydney, N.S.W. 2000. You may also send correspondence to C/- The Environment Centre, 399 Pitt Street, Sydney, N.S.W. 2000, or you may wish to contact S.B.W. member Judy Kelly (nee Story) for further information.

The Flowers of Srinagar

by Bill Gillam

In the precise, and usually dessicated, language of philosophy photographs are images of objects and because we feel that photographs portray reality they acquire a further meaning as images of truth. The truth, that is, not merely that the object exists but that it was seen by the photographer whose own experience and truth is thus validated.

Photography in 141 years has changed our world, altering and enlarging our notions of what is worth looking at and what we have a right to observe. Television and movies became moving wallpaper but still photographs, slides, remain both object and image. Photographs are experiences captured, to photograph is to appropriate the thing photographed. Photography implies the possibility of capture of the greatest number of things possible (until we reach perhaps the ultimate, and disappointing, photograph of the earth from the moon). Painters never had such infinite ambition; paintings remain objects and the painter and his work is validated by the uniqueness or each object - original paintings have a scarcity value because there must be a finite number any painter can paint. Validation of a painting protects the owner from falsehood, not from lack of intrinsic beauty.

Images make us feel that the world is more available than it is and turn experience, and time, into a way of seeing until events and objects come to mean something that is worth photographing. Most of us can recognise objects, including landscapes and “views” which could make good images, the final slide. The philosophic discourse, I hope, established that there is a difference between object and image. Then we have given the image the greatest degree of reality we have produced a good slide. When the slide falls short of our expectation of reality as remembered we are disappointed with the slide. Exploring a view with some painters techniques can help.

Exploring a view is closely linked to a most perplexing group of problems; perspective, horizons, the relationship of eye-level to subject and the relationship and distances between objects in the field of view. Perspective in painting and in architectual drawing is a “convention” - the adoption of perspective was the beginning of a great age of painting culminating in the Dutch interior school. The convention is that a true size and distance can be shown when an horizon is at eye-level and vanishing points, projections of apparent diminution are located at this horizon. Unfortunately the other part of the convention is that verticals remain vertical which is just not so in photographs unless we use elaborate lenses or cameras. Our ordinary vision is comfortable when there is a natural horizon, sea or land against clear sky and most comfortable when we are standing on flat ground; a beach or extended plain. Landscapes, seascapes, painted from this basic viewing position, eye level while sitting at an easel, are usually successful. They render scenes as we usually and like to see them. Climb a sea cliff and the ocean/ sky horizon climbs up the sky and our attempts at rendering objects into images go haywire. Climb a ridge and measure your elevation against a neighbouring ridge - sense and optimism tells you that you must be near the top - a stick or an arm held horizontally tells you otherwise. We have looked at the “normal” horizon, land against sky, whereas our true eye level gives us bad news.

It sounds like a chicken and egg argument but it is basic to “seeing” objects (the real world) as potential images (the photographic slide). While the convention of perspective is observed the object and the image are compatible - deliberately, “artfully”, disturbing the convention gives weight and strength to the image. The most vitriolic attacks on Manet were that he couldn't control perspective; the standing nude in “Lunch on the Grass” had to be a giantess. The surrealists can terrify with a non-perspective shadow. Munch compresses perspective so that his subjects are imprisoned in perspective. Heysen painted meticulous landscapes in absolutely conventional perspective and superb aerial perspective (the perspective of colour). Nolan's Ned Kelly floats free from perspective and gravity. When he was older than anyone's grandmother Lloyd Rees began to paint from a high eye-level transcending the Sydney sandstone and the otherwise so-so Berry Gerringong scenery. The great American photographers of the Twenties beat perspective to death with hard black and whites of bridges, machinery, the canyons of New York.

The relationship of distances between objects in the field of view is closely allied to perspective. The Greeks and other ancients up to Leonardo sought the Golden mean and countless generations of art teachers have praised it as harmonious, subtle, something to be achieved before perfection can be gained. (The G.M. is related to a line so divided that the larger to the smaller division is the same as the total line to the larger division.) The same teachers and manuals extol the S curve, the pyramid, the fallacy of leading lines which lead to hackneyed banal scenes remaining just scenes. Eventually we ignore real sunsets because they look like perfect compositions. They remain views without ever becoming images.

Exploring in this very roundabout way is an invitation to find what a view has to offer. Vastness, bulk, nearness, distance, colour, blandness, a tonality that is unusual. Perspective can then be manipulated, low eye levels to magnify height, the balance examined between near and far, bulk and lack of bulk, the known (in size or familiarity) against the guessed-at. Invariably with exploration some of these relationships can be abstracted and the next phase, isolation, begins.

Isolation is the selection of the one part of the view that is to provide the close focus compulsion of which I spoke last time. Objects already isolated, in space, bulk or form are not really commonplace. When they do occur the probability is there will be nothing unique about your image. Fuji, Stonehenge can be trivialised with greater facility than they can be dramatised. Isolation must impart to the image much more than the validation of existence and observation. Crudely put one could have a slide of Mitre Peak (I keep returning), the Sound, the lobster boats, the bus and the bus driver. More subtly, even when we have discarded some of what is integral with the view there is still possibly much that can be further discarded, focussed out, accented by light and specific exposure. One tree can stand for a forest, a door knocker indicate an age and architecture.

Effective photography is simply art plus technique. Exploration and isolation is the art of the equation. They are non-specific, intangible and very subjective. Organisation is the technique to make the image as specific and tangible as our equipment allows. Perhaps I simplified too much last time when I said all the instructions were on the camera or the box of film. Cameras and films next time.

Presentation of Spears: Special Night for S.B.W.

All members are cordially invited to attend the Camp Fire for the Presentation of Spears, Friday 24th October 1980.

This is closely linked with the aboriginal ceremony of “Making a Man”. As it is our TREVOR's 16th birthday, Trevor is now ready to receive his spear and-be admitted to his totem, and his place as a young warrior in the tribe.

LADIES will not be permitted to watch the first short part of the ceremony, according to Tribal Law and custom, but will be invited to the camp fire for the main presentations and stories. Children are NOT being invited on this occasion. MALES are requested to be seated around fire by 8 p.m.

Ladies will be entertained in lounge till invited to campfire, and on doing so, you are to please move quietly and quickly to your positions. Remember ladies, at the sound of the Bull Roarer you are warned not to approach campfire on fear of being “Speared to Death”.

Photographs and tape recordings will be permitted, except during one part of the secret ceremony. Ladies are requested to bring a plate for supper, and it would help if you bring your coffee mug and a folding chair.

No R.S.V.P. required, just please come if you can and witness a ceremony from a dying culture.

Kind regards. DENISE & NEVILLE RAYMOND.

303 Malton Road, North Epping. Opposite Eastcote Road. 869-2129.

Friday, 24th October 1980 at 8 p.m. Look for the S.B.W. sign.

Mark this date in your diary now.

Magellan's Clouds

by Jim Brown

I had not taken a tent. When you walk in the Budawangs in mild March weather you can rely on overhangs if shelter is really needed. However, my timetable went adrift on Day 1, and by Night 2 I was settling down on the banks of the Clyde River at the foot of Dummal Creek to sleep under the stars, and with no overhangs that I knew of within a very loud Coo-ee.

Soon after it was dark I slept, and at 11.0 pm awoke and looked up at the canopy of dark sky and shimmering stars. And there it was - or rather they were - the two clusters of small dusty-looking stars which are Magellan's Clouds. If you imagine a third “cloud” forming an equilateral triangle with the other two, you're dead on the Celestial South Pole, and you can march by the stars.

Now where, I wondered, did I learn that? Then I remembered, and what I remembered as I lay in my sleeping bag beside the Clyde at Dummal Creek forms the rest of this tale. If it tells you anything about finding your way by the stars - well the best of British Good Luck to you. It's all correct as far as I can remember it after 37 years, but the trouble is that our walking country doesn't really lend itself to walking at night without a track. The ridges and valleys aren't favourable ground for star marching - or even compass marching - at night. Well then…

In March and April 1943 I attended a School of Military Intelligence at Redcliff, near Brisbane. The class consisted of 35 people, divided into seven “syndicates” of five, and including all ranks from Captain down to Private - actually “Gunner”, the artillery equivalent of Private. Funnily enough, I can't remember the names of any of the 10 Captains or Lieutenants, but I do remember the solitary “Gunner” - the artist Donald Friend, who was even then quite a remarkably memorable character. The remaining crowd of 24 were Warrant Officers, Sergeants and Corporals, and included yours truly, a Staff Sergeant temporarily detached from an Infantry Brigade then stationed near Geraldton, Western Australia. It was a long haul by war-strained railways from Geraldton to Brisbane and back.

Please don't envisage Military Intelligence as being all espionage and counter espionage. At field unit level all of the personnel, officers, non-comms and rankers, were supposed to be specialist in the use of maps and in plotting disposition of your own troops: and when in contact with an “enemy” in plotting his strength and dispositions. Intelligence sections at “unit” level were also expected to be experts at guiding larger bodies of troops over unfamiliar terrain. Let us ignore the sad case of the Battalion Intelligence team that arrived back at base almost a day later than the troops they were escorting.

One of our lecturers at Redcliff was an ex-school teacher from Victoria, named Bob Holden, this long before a film star and a motor car made the name a household word. He had the rank of Lieutenant, having achieved his commission just before reaching the age of 30, at which you were reckoned too elderly to be given a first commission or to take part in jungle warfare with a field unit. Acti-Ally Bob was about 52 having set back his age some 20-odd years on enlistment, and had served as a Battalion Intelligence Sergeant in Egypt and Libya in 1940-41.

In the desert environment, where night movement of troops was often important, he had gained quite a reputation as a navigator, and had evolved a simple but effective method of finding a way by the stars, avoiding the use of prismatic compasses on which the luminous paint was often virtually invisible after an hour or so. Indeed he had been loaned to a Scottish battalion to demonstrate his methods, but was returned to his own unit after a discussion with the kilted battalion commander which went something like this. Colonel - “What can you see, Sergeant Holden?” Bob (lying on his back on a sand dune) - “Well, I think I can see Uranus, Colonel.”

It was Bob Holden who taught us to locate the Celestial South Pole by imagining the third Magellan Cloud. In addition, of course, he described the familiar process of fixing south by prolonging the longer axis of the Southern Cross four times, and best of all showed us that if you imagined a line linking Sirius with Canopus and extended that an equal distance you came to the Celestial South Pole (hereafter C.S.P.) This C.S.P. is the spot in the sky which is above the South Pole on the ground, and of course its angle above the horizon is practically equal to your latitude (say 28° above the horizon on flat ground at Brisbane, 34° at Sydney). You can help in imagining these starry link-ups by taking an ordinary 15-inch ruler, and notching it at 3 inches for the Southern Cross system or at 7 1/2 for the Sirius/Canopus system. Holding this rider above you, you could move it to and fro until the notches coincided with the selected stars and the end of the ruler then represented C.S.P. We found the Sirius/Canopus method very satisfactory, because they are the brightest fixed stars normally visible in our latitudes and can be seen when lesser stars are obscured by filmy clouds. Sirius is also easy to identify, and after a bit of study one learned the pattern of stars surrounding Canopus.

Of, course, fixing C.S.P. is only part of the game. Then you must drop an imaginary vertical line, to the horizon and settle on a tree or hill or some other recognisable feature.as your terrestrial south point. Moreover, it MUST be a vertical line', if you kept on prolonging the line between the stars until that reached the horiton, you could be a long way out. A weighted line (say a bit of fishing cord) dangling from the end of your ruler helped you in this.

Obviously, too, an army doesn't always want to travel south. Well, once you have fixed south, you can turn sideways and raise your arms to shoulder level. If your left arm is south, the right arm points north. For east or west, you should make a “correct military left or right turn'''. Not many of the students were good parade-ground soldiers, and Bob Holden used to describe this manoeuvre with a grin (a gin-sodden grin at evening lectures after he'd spent an hour or two in the Instructors' Mess). Surprisingly, it was fairly accurate even with bumble-footed, unsoldierly Intelligence personnel. For finer angles still, there is the continuous length of cord, with knots at intervals of 5 feet, 5 feet, and 7 feet 2 1/2 inches. With two colleagues holding the line tight at the knots you could form a right-angled triangle including two 45° angles. Finally, holding your arm at full length in front of you, you could measure the angle represented by the distance between the knuckles of a clenched fist or the spread fingers of the hand. This had to be done individually, as people's spans differ, but the average adult can cover about 18° with a fully-spread hand. Using all these methods you should be able to be accurate to within 3° or 4° on almost any desired bearing. Indeed you simply had to achieve about that degree of accuracy, because an error of 4° means you will be about 70 metres off course after you've travelled one kilometre. Once you fixed on the direction you wished to travel, it was important to select a tree or similar object as marker and head towards it.

Naturally, once we'd been taught the theory, it had to be put into practice. We were given a route comprising five “legs” so that each member of the syndicate could try his skill, and for each leg a bearing and distance were given. For example -

Leg 1 242° 550 yards

Leg 2 109° 720 yards

and so on.

On a clear April night we were taken by truck to a starting point and six syndicates were despatched at 5 minute intervals. The seventh syndicate was made up of tough old warriors who had just returned from the real thing - patrolling and fighting in the jungle around Buna with an Independent Company (Commando). It was agreed they had nothing to learn, so they became the “enemy”. They were given carte blanche to fall on any other syndicate and rip off the trousers of the luckless star-marchers. Any person arriving at the end of the exercise without trousers would not be allowed to join a truck, but would have to walk trouserless the 9 miles back to Redcliff.

Being a coy (? cunning) type, I concealed a pair of shorts under my shirt, secured with a string around my neck, and set off with Syndicate No.2. The first leg went reasonably well, but on the second stage our navigator mislaid his original landmark and we fetched up in typical Queensland lantana. At first we walked over it, then waded through it, and finally we were crawling under a prickly canopy. We agreed we were astray and as we stopped to confer, heard what must be Syndicate 3 moving freely some distance on our right.

We slunk out of the thicket and presently came in sight of Party 3, evidently at the end of Leg 2 and taking measurements for the next stage. Our navigator had retired hurt (well, hurt feelings) and the born leader that you always find in a group whispered, “We'll let them go, give 'em a couple of minutes, then work out our own bearing.” The inevitable malingerer asked, “Why not just follow 'em?”

Party 3 moved on and we were creeping out of the underbrush when all Hell was let loose. Shouts, thumps and oaths told us the Basher Gang had ambushed the syndicate that had overtaken us and were now just about where we should have been. We went to ground again and waited. We were even prepared to let Syndicate 4 test the water for us, but after a time we heard them thrashing about in the lantana patch.

At this we grew bold, moved up to the estimated end of the leg, took our measurements and went on. Legs 3, 4 and 5 were uneventful and we came on the road only a hundred yards left of the darkened waiting trucks. As we drove back to Redcliff, much, much later, and after Syndicates 4, 5 and 6 had extricated themselves, the dimmed wartime headlights of the'trucks picked up an undignified scatter of shirt-tails - Syndicate 3, which finally crept into the school at 2.30 am.

All done with the aid of the stars, which were in the ascendant for Syndicate 2 that night. Lousy sods that we were, no one shouted for that navigator who got us lost on Leg 2. By the way, we used Sirius and Canopus, and not Magellan's Clouds.

Social Notes for October

by Peter Miller

Wednesday, October 15th

National Parks and Wildlife Foundation - Operation Noah.

A guest speaker will outline the operations of the Foundation and illustrate the talk with slides. This talk was originally scheduled for June but had to be postponed.

DINNER will be held. before the meeting at the Nam Roc Chinese, Restaurant - 538 Pacific Highway, St. Leonards -.7.00. to 8.00 pm.

Wednesday, October 22nd

Square Dancing

Ted Thomas, an experienced caller, will instruct us in the gentle art of Square Dancing. Previous Square Dance evenings have been very popular.

There will be a collection to cover the cost of the caller and the music.

Wednesday, October 29th

Nepal Night.

Marcia Shappert and Peter Sargeant will show slides of their trip to Nepal. Views of mountains (what else?!) and Chitwan National Park in Southern Nepal.

The August General Meeting

by Jim Brown

At about 8.20 pm and with an attendance of around 40, the August General Meeting was opened by Vice-President Spiro Haginakitas, deputising for the President. Amongst apologies were two from newly elected members, George Floyd and Nicole James, but we were still able to welcome four, new enlistments (one from the previous month) in Bob Jaeger, Jan Mohandas, Bob Sames and Bob Garnett.

No-one could find anything to challenge in last month's Minutes, and we moved on to Correspondence, which included an invitation from the Parks and Wildlife Service to comment on the proposed Management Review of the Kosciusko State Park; an advice of a gathering of the North Coast Conservation Council at Wauchope, and a letter from member Margaret Smith, complimenting the leader (Jim Vatiliotis) and members on a recent walk in the Budawang country when she sustained a fractured bone in the heel of a foot and had to be assisted back to the cars. In discussion it was agreed that some comment and a submission on Kosciusko Park question and submit it for assent at the next meeting.

The Treasurer's books showed a current account standing at $2298 at rhw wns do July, but the Coolana funds were then down to $43 - see, however, Dot Butler's statement later in these notes.

So, quite early in proceedings, to the Walks Report, commencing with the week-end of 11-12-13 July, when Charlie Brown had an easy trip on Upper Coxs River: it was known to have gone forward, but details were not available. Tony Marshall successfully led an Allum River/Nattai River/Wanganderry Creek foray with about 7 starters. It was reported to be chilly in the Allum River Gorge and perhaps this stimulated the party to reach the Nattai by afternoon tea time on the Saturday, and to arrive back at the cars not too late on Sunday. The 27 who went on Sheila Binns' Royal National Park walk of Sunday 13th had a pleasant easy day, while David Rutherford and party went down Red Ledge Pass off the Corral Swamp, along an old coal railway formation and back up the ladders near the first Narrow Neck.

Somewhere about 17 folk were on the Wolgan River country the following (18-19-20 July) weekend, but when the creek down into Capertee Valley could not be located, they retreated to the Wolgan. Jim Vatiliotis, leading the party of 10 on the trip on which Margaret Smith was injured, made the programmed journey up the Clyde River and up Darri Pass, reaching the cars before nightfall on Sunday. More than 60 people were out on the Sunday trips, Roy Braithwaite collecting 42 on his Jerusalem Bay/Porto Bay jaunt, with one minor casualty (a wrenched ankle), while Anne Brown started with 22 on the walk over Stanwell Tops, the party later reducing to 19 after a youngster developed a slight foot injury. It was not mentioned that one member subsequently placed her head forcibly on a boulder, but without lasting effects (4 mishaps in one week-end - perhaps we should have another “think tank” on accidents and see if we can improve the score again). So far as we are aware Roy Braithwaite's 42, including 25 prospective members, is the biggest party for several years past.

Next weekend (25-26-27 July) was disagreeable weather-wise. It rained Friday night, most of Saturday and that night, and Spiro's Kanangra-Kowmung trip didn't get to Mt. Colong, but covered most of the ground programmed. Details of Helen Gray's walk into Brogher's Creek and to Budderoo were not known, but it was understood a smallish group had carried out the trip. Owing to conditions on the Mount Hay Road, Hans Stichter cancelled his Blue Gum Forest walk, but Marcia Shappert found improved weather conditions for her Cowan Creek walk on the Sunday and went in accordance with plan.

The beginning of August saw a couple of ill-fated weekend walks, with navigational problems on Tony Denham's Wangandery Plateau trip causing the team to camp in an overhang on the tops on Saturday and return the same way on Sunday - the return taking only about 1/4 the time of the forward journey. Bob Milne's trip was cancelled, and on the Sunday Victor Lewin's team encountered fairly “savage” scrub out on Fortress Ridge, but persevered to a successful trip. Some 16 folk went with Barbara Evans from The Sphinx to Berowra and had a pleasant outing.

So to the last weekend recorded, when Don Finch's party were in strife in Running Stream Creek near Glen Davis and never made it to the high country. Both Peter Miller (cycling trip on the old Northern Road) and Jim Vatiliotis (ski practice) cancelled for want of starters, but on Sunday Leon Vella was reported as having 21 or 22 folk (several dropping out later) doing a very fast clip out to Mount Solitary. About 20 went on Meryl Watman's Waterfall/Audley trip in bright mild conditions.

Spiro now gave report on the latest Federation doings, including the Annual Meeting, at which Murray Scott (Sutherland Walking Club) was elected President; Spiro himself is Secretary, Jim Callaway as Treasurer, and Snow Brown Tracks and Access. Fergus Bell became S. & R. Director, and Roger Lembit is the Conservation man. On other Federation matters it was recorded that a First Aid Kit to sell at about $12 - $14 and enclosed in a plastic cylinder has been prepared. Some Clubs are concerned that the new S. & R. policy stipulating no-one will be called upon unless they have had recent practice will eliminate their members from searches - notwithstanding which Federation proposes to observe its guidelines; and there are vacancies for Councillors on the Morton Park Advisory Committee - Peter Harris has been Proposed for one. It was also announced that the Lands Department is willing to make available aerial maps and other data to walkers desiring access to little-known localities.

Dot Butler presented a report of the Coolana Committee which covered the following main features:-

  1. The Trustees of the Marie Byles Trust Fund will be approached for a donation when legal developments on the Estate are further advanced.
  2. M. Davison has completed his survey for the Land-swap proposal, which will be submitted to the Lands Board.
  3. A decision on installation of a water tank will be made on-site shortly.
  4. Shoalhaven Shire has accepted that land rates have been over-assessed in recent years. The amended amount has been paid.
  5. Investment of $1500 of Coolana Funds has been made in a current Water Board loan.
  6. Donations of considerable sums have been received (see August magazine) inclUding $1000 from sale of books owned by Marie Byles, $1000 from the sale of sleeping bags by Fazeley Read, and $50 “conjured up” by Whaka Newmarch.
  7. A notice on the land. will show the proprietor of Coolana as S. B. Walker”.
  8. Items of some value are sought for the Club Auction (proceeds to Coolana funds) to be held in the Club Rooms in November.
  9. Barn Dance at Coolana to be held 23rd November.
  10. The Treasurer requested to advise on the probable amount of funds necessary to meet normal expenditure annually.
  11. There is a proposal to compile articles giving the history, and other details of the Club land for publication in the magazine.

It was agreed that the donations mentioned in Item 6, plus other funds donate, be acknowledged in the Minutes and the information shown in the magazine.

In announcements, it was made known that Marcia Shappert would no longer be able to make her home phone number available for Club enquiries. Owing to the time factor, it would not be practicable to list a successor this year, but the question should be kept in mind for the future. It was agreed that a recorded answering service would not be suitable or desirable, and on that note we wound up the meeting at 9.20 pm.

Sunrise on Mt Warning

by O.M.

On January 1, a group of walkers led by Hec Corruthers saw the sun rise from their camp on the summit of Mt. Warning. (You can find the full story in this year's July issue.) After a conversation with P.B. (Incidently we have coincident birthday anniversaries) I began to wonder if Hec was really the first in Australia to see the sun rise that New Year's Day.

As you would know if you have been summer walking in Tasmania there are very long hours of daylight there. This led me to looking for other probable locations for an early sunrise. The following were selected for comparison:

  • Mt Warning N.S.W Elevation 1156m; 28°26'S; 153°12'E
  • Mt Wellington TAS Elevation 1270m; 42°54'S; 147°14'E
  • Adamsons Peak TAS Elevation 1226m; 43°21'S; 146°49'E
  • Ben Lomond TAS Elevation 1573m; 41°36'S; 147°40'E
  • Mt. Fortescue TAS Elevation 500m; 43°10'S: 147°56'E

The next step was to find out by how much difference it made by being on a mountain. This was done by using the old but very accurate way of finding the distance to a sea horizon. The height in feet is multiplied by one and a half and then the square root gives the distance in miles. Unfortunately the metric version is not as easy to remember. In the same order as the list these distances are 121km, 127km, 129km, 142km, and 80km and In corresponding angular measurement they are 1.089°, 1.143°, 1.116°, 1.278° and 0.720°. So being on a peak has the effect of being about one degree further to the East.

When you see a sunrise from sea-level the Sun is directly over a point on the earth which is 90° from you. Also on January 1 the Sun is at 23°04 South Latitude, or very nearly on the Tropic of Capricorn. This leads to a practical way to solve this puzzle: it is to use a large glove of the Earth, and taking a piece of string wrap it around the Equator. Next cut it so its length is equal to 91° on the Equator. Now with one end on Mt. Warning and the other end on the Tropic of Capricorn, and the string tight, you will find the end positioned in the Pacific Ocean. Note down the longitude of this point which has the Sun directly overhead. Repeat the procedure for the other peaks and compare the longitudes found. At this place the longitudes are measured westward, so look for the smallest number. The mountain which corresponds to this number is first to see the sunrise.

With a picket calculator rather than a globe I have more accurately determined these positions and converted them to sunrise times. The results indicate Mt. Fortescue will be the first to see the Sun rise.

At this time of the year the Sun time is slow by a little over three minutes as compared to clock time, so allowing for this the times for sunrise would be Mt. Fortescue 04.32 and Mt. Warning 04.51 (All E.S.T.). Mt. Wellington and Adamsons Peak are only one minute later than the hardly significant Mt. Fortescue on the Tasman Peninsula. Ben Lomond would be a further two mins. later.

Most of the N.S.W. coast will have sunrise times very similar to Mt. Warnings; for example, Bondi Beach's calculated sunrise is also at 04.51. Most of the southeast Tasmania including Hobart would have an earlier sunrise than Mt. Warning. Lord Howe Island if included would be well ahead of all these mentioned places.

Remember that the foregoing is only for January 1, but at the times of the Equinox Mt. Warning would be a likely first.

198009.txt · Last modified: 2014/07/14 01:30 by rachel