Established June 1931.
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 7.45 pm at the Cahill Community Centre (Upper Hall), 34 Falcon Street, Crow's Nest.
|Editor||Ainslie Morris, 45 Austin Street, Lane Cove, 2066. Telephone 428 3178.|
|Business Manager||Bill Burke, 3 Coral Tree Drive, Carlingford, 2118. Telephone 871 1207.|
|Production Manager||Helen Gray.|
|Printers||Fran Longfoot, Morag Ryder, Stan Madden & Ben Esgate.|
|The Border Ranges National Park||Alex Colley||2|
|Tantangara to Brindabella - Part 2||Janet Waterhouse||9|
|Committee Meeting 4.6.86||11|
|Just a minute - Fifty-four Years Ago||11|
|The Trans-Kowmung Push Bikes||Puffing Billy||13|
|The May General Meeting||Barry Wallace||15|
|Notice of Motion of Rescission||16|
|Letter to the Editor||Tom Herbert||17|
|Body Talk - First Aid Footnotes for Non-tiger Walkers||Elwyn Morris||18|
|Annual Subscription - Form to send in||18|
|Eastwood Camping Centre||8|
|Canoe & Camping, Gladesville||12|
by Alex Colley.
The McPherson Range extends from the Great Dividing Range east to the coast. The border fence, designed to keep the rabbits out of Queensland and the ticks out of N.S.W., follows its crest. The section between Mount Lindesay and Lamington forms the northern boundary of the Border Ranges National Park. Until 1982 the forested area south of the border, now in the park, consisted of the Mount Lindesay, Roseberry and Wiangarie State Forests.
Lamington National Park, north of Wiangarie, was dedicated in 1915, following 19 years of persistent campaigning by Robert Collins and Romeo Lahey. The three forests on the N.S.W. side were dedicated two years later, but difficulty of access to the range restricted logging. It was Arthur Groom of Binnaburra who, in 1948, first advocated preservation of the rainforest on the N.S.W. side. Local campaigns for preservation, though well supported, were unsuccessful. The last of these was triggered by Rus Maslen, an orchid buff, who investigated the source of large quantities of orchids brought down from Wiangarie, which grew only on the Antarctic beech. He found they came from beeches cut in the forest, and this inspired him to form the Border Ranges Preservation Society. By 1973 logging interests had prevailed and the Society could make no further progress. His son, Peter, brought the matter before the Colong Committee, then totally committed to the Boyd Plateau campaign. Two years later, when the Boyd had been saved, the Committee adopted the Border Ranges National Park as its number one priority.
The Committee's first task was to delineate its claim. It decided to go for the whole of the three forests, believing that if it asked for the lot it would at least get more than if it asked for a little. Within a few months the issue had hit the headlines, and continued to escalate. Three years later, with an election in the offing, the Government decided to dispose of the problem. It created a park 50 km long, averaging 2 km wide. which was promptly dubbed “Snake Park” - it had a bulge towards the tail and its head was raised. By this time the entire conservation movement supported the campaign, which continued to escalate, until the movement expanded its claim to embrace all the major rainforests in the State.
After five inquiries, all of which found reasons why the rainforests should not be saved, the Government decided to dispose of the matter once and for all. On October 26th 1982, after a cabinet meeting lasting from 8.30 am to 4.30 pm, during which rainforest was the only item on the agenda, it was decided to preserve 120,000 ha of rainforest (four times the original Colong Committee claim) in six national park additions, two nature reserves and three flora reserves. So ended the State's most publicised conservation campaign, to the satisfaction of both the conservation movement and the Government. As Mr. Wran said when addressing the 1983 A.L.P. Conference: “When we're all dead and buried and our children's children are reflecting upon what was the best thing the Labor Government in N.S.W. did in the 20th century, they'll all come up with the answer that we saved the rainforests.”
In geographic terms the Border Ranges National Park falls into three sections - the eastern, ex Wiangarie State Forest section, the central, Richmond Gap section and the western, ex Roseberry State Forest section. Based on a recent week's walking in the park, and a number of previous visits, Jim Somerville and I are recommending a management plan for the Park. The Wiangarie section includes the Tweed Range, which provides magnificent views of the Tweed Valley caldera with Mount Warning at its centre. There are walking tracks on Grady's Creek and Brindle Creek giving access to unlogged rainforest and a large stand of Antarctic Beech. There are camping and picnic areas in the rainforest on the range and another camping area at Sheepstation Creek, in the eucalypt forest below. Access is by the well maintained forest road. Probably the most interesting feature of the central section is the border loop on the Sydney-Brisbane railway below Richmond Gap.
[ Map: Border Ranges National Park ]
The Roseberry section is accessible only on foot, the Queensland side of the Range being privately owned. We believe it should be retained as a wilderness area - i.e. no vehicular access. We approached it by climbing the ridge west of Findon Creek and came back on the ridge east of the creek. Most of Lever's Plateau is unlogged. The rainforest canopy is very high and there is little understorey. It contains the last substantial stand of hoop pine and some of the largest remaining specimens of carabeen, cedar, strangler fig and other rainforest species. There are magnificent views of the western McPherson Range, including Mounts Lindesay and Barney and the Logan Valley.
Off-track walking in rainforests is not strongly recommended, but there is good access along the track next to the border fence, and a good deal of interesting exploration could be done. I have walked the western “Scenic Rim” from Cunningham's Gap to Mount Lindesay, not along the crest, which is very broken, but along the upper Logan valley with climbs of the main peaks. It is beautiful walking country, and it is possible that one day a walking track will be constructed which will avoid the arduous climbing now required to negotiate the range.
by Jim Brown.
This sketch-with-songs was presented at the Reunion Campfire by Dot Butler, Barbara Bruce, Ainslie Morris, Mike Reynolds and Jim Brown. It had to do with the recent spate of walks into the Colo River catchment, and was preceded by an introductory section spoken by the performers in turn. The Introduction can be summarised as follows -
The four letters “CO…LO” crop up repeatedly - right from the beginnings of life. For example, COLO-STRUM is the very first mother's milk produced after a mammal has given birth. Then we in Australia were long considered COLO-NIALS. In America there is a River and a State both called COLO-RADO, whilst the smallest woodwind musical instrument is a PIC-COLO.
Which makes us think of the River COLO and all the walkers who have attempted it; beginning with the Gordon Smith / Max Gentle team about 1930, and a large S.B.W. party in 1934. About 15 years ago there was a sequence of three walks which covered almost the whole of the main valley from Glen Davis to Colo Heights.
In the last year there have been 23 programmed walks in the Colo country - many in the Wollongambe Wilderness - but also a new version of the series of trips covering the main stream. These were led by Don Finch and Oliver Crawford, with an additional Christmas walk led by Matthew Walton which went all the way in one stage.
The sketch-with-songs about these recent walks begins with a ballad by an ageing walker who wants to “do” the Colo before he's completely over the hill. (This was a snide device to allow the author to claim he did know something of what he was writing about, albeit ten years earlier.)
Song: (To “Rolling Down to Rio”)
I've walked the Grose and Nattai, I've walked along the Cox,
I've trudged the Wollondilly with grass seeds in my sox,
But never done the Colo
From Wolgan to Wollemi,
And a madman you may deem me
But it's there that you may see me,
Even tho' November's steamy
I've simply got to go,
The Capertee and Colo that's where I've got to go.
There are three trips that I see here with Crawford or with Finch
Right down to Angorawa, I know they're not a cinch,
So I would try the Colo
And I think that I can follow
All along that cliff-lined hollow,
My dignity I'll swallow
And in the quicksands wallow.
I know I've got to go,
The Capertee and Colo that's where I've got to go.
Now the first of the three main-stream trips was a car-swap. One party went downstream from Glen Davis and the others came up from the Culoul Range at Six Brothers, and went upstream. Of course, it was harder for the upstream party, mainly because the flood debris usually points down-river, but also because they had some trouble in identifying “Pass Six”, the chosen way into the Colo Gorge. In fact, they finally scrambled down by “Unauthorised Route”… here's the story….
Song: (To “The Fox”)
A crowd went out one Friday night
And hoped that the moon would give them light
To make Six Brothers in moonshine bright
On the trail out to the Colo….Colo….Colo….
But the drive out gave them no delight,
There were bogs on the road to the Colo.
They had some strife along Pass Six
And once they were in an awkward fix,
But with the aid of a few smart tricks
They finally, reached their goal-o….goal-o….goal-….
And nobody crossed the River Styx
Before they reached the Colo.
By Saturday night at Girribung Creek
They were pretty tired and ready to peek,
For all were scratched and some felt weak
It wasn't a simple stroll-o….stroll-o….stroll-o….
But the prospect didn't look so bleak,
They'd walked so much of the Colo.
The downstream party there they'd see
Who'd come down from the Capertee,
Discussed the trip and they'd all agree
You don't have a bludge on the Colo….Colo….Colo….
Exchanged the news and the old car key
And slept on the banks of the Colo.
The next day it was on again,
A final dash for Davis Glen,
A resolute crowd of girls and men
As the river took its toll-o….toll-o….toll-o….
They tramped twelve hours and then….and then….
At last they had done the Colo.
And one car hit a kangaroo near Lithgow, and its crew came home by train with the milkman in the early hours of Monday… and the leader billed all taking part the sum of $25.60 for repairs to the car - not the kangaroo.
The second mainstream walk was rather shorter, from a bit below the Wollemi down to Canoe Creek, and all the party went downstream. Apart from a soggy Friday night on Culoul, the weather was warm and many floated down the somewhat swollen river, while a few determined types trudged along the scrubby and sandy banks….
Song: (To “Bonnie Banks of Clyde”)
Raining and complaining
As the Culoul miles slip past.
Feigning it's not raining
Till we pitch our tents at last.
Then mosquitoes in the camp
Seeking shelter from the damp -
Oh, it's lovely when you get out to the Colo.
Yawning in our awning
Over muesli or weet-bix,
Yawning in the dawning
And again we'll seek Pass Six.
Well, we find the way this trip
Even time to take a dip
As we start out floating down the Colo.
Gloating as we're floating
Along the river's tides
Noting while we're floating
That some others walk the sides.
While they're getting scratched and sore
We can drift a whole lot more.
Oh, it's lovely when you're floating down the Colo.
But there was one casualty that weekend. One that went un-noticed and was callously ignored by the walkers…. Let us go back to the Friday night on the Culoul Range, when the mosquitoes appeared…. here is their humming chorus….
Zizz….zizz….zizz…. The raindrops are falling on our heads!
Song: (To “Pop-eye the Sailor Man”)
Mostyn mosquito is dead,
Raindrops fell “plop!” on his head,
And when he was found
We saw he was drowned,
Alas, his spirit had fled.
Chorus: Zizz….zizz….zizz….Raindrops keep falling on our heads!
If he'd got under a leaf
His life need not have been brief.
He gave one last hum
Then fell on his… tail.
We're laden with rain and grief.
Chorus: Zizz….zizz….zizz….Raindrops keep falling on our heads!
Giants appear with a light
And they're distressed by our plight,
While the rain pelters
They're building us shelters -
We'll be blood-brothers to-night!
Chorus: Zizz….zizz….zizz…. Raindrops stop falling on our heads.
The last of the three main-stream trips, from Canoe Creek to Angorawa and out to Drip Rock, took place on the weekend that introduced the summer. There was also expected to be a full moon. However, persistent showers, including a downpour on Saturday and some rain on Sunday, made it less than summer-ish.
Song: (To “Shenandoah”)
Oh, bright full moon, I'd like to see you
Round and gold and boldly beaming
Instead of which I must agree you
Have hid your face to-night….
….And the rain is teeming….
Oh, summer sun, shine on our river,
Don't be coy - just let us sizzle,
And while we float don't make us shiver,
Don't menace us with rain….
…Rain and mist and drizzle….
On Saturday we felt and saw a
Deluge storm as we neared Tambo,
By Sunday's lunch at Angorawa
We felt restored again….
….Fit and tough as Rambo….
Then as we hump our swag and bluey
Sodden legs to Drip Rock wending,
Send her down….0h, send her Hughie….
Don't change the pattern now….
….Soggy start and ending….
So the sequence of trips was over and the main part of the Colo had been “done” again.
For those who took part in the trips, I guess the memories will be “Colo-rific”. In fact, you may come to remember it as a high spot in your walking….
Song: (To “Red River Valley”)
You'll remember the wild Colo Valley,
You'll remember that you battled on,
You'll remember the scrub and the sallee
When a lot of your memories have gone.
Perhaps at the time it seemed rougher
Than you'd thought you were going to find;
But at least you could meet it and suffer
And pretend “Oh, it's all in the mind”.
In those mem'ries one day you may treasure
How you trudged out Culoul in the rain.
It's the tough ones that give us such pleasure….
And you'll wish you could do it again.
Please add the following names to your List of Members.
6 days - October 10th to 16th. Details phone George Walton 498 7956 before 9 pm.
Wilderness Society. “Hard Yakker”, Petersham Town Hall 7.30 pm.
$7 - Concession $5. Beer, wine and food Available.
Lightweight Tents - Sleeping Bags - Rucksacks - Climbing & Caving Gear - Maps - Clothing - Boots - Food.
Large Tents - Stoves - Lamps - Folding Furniture.
Paddymade - Karrimor - Berghaus - Hallmark - Bergans - Caribee - Fairydown - Silva - Primus - Companion - and all leading brands.
Proprietors: Jack & Nancy Fox. Sales Manager: David Fox.
Eastwood Canvas Good & Camping Supplies.
3 Trelawney St., Eastwood, NSW, 2122. Phone 858 2775.
by Janet Waterhouse.
(Leader - Don Finch)
Thursday: An optional side trip to Little Peppercorn Hut (Peppercorn: 480613) was suggested by our illustrious leader and as the six starters assembled awaiting instruction and guidance Don announced that he was joining the frail and old and remaining in camp. The leaderless waifs trudged off across the baking plain and saw en route four brumbies (one of which David claimed was not a stallion as he “couldn't see the parts”) and two wallabies.
We inspected the relic of Little Peppercorn Hut and examined an old kerosene fridge which we had mistaken for a car, so we had a conversation about taking it for Sunday afternoon drives around the countryside anyway. We had no time to explore the pretty Peppercorn Creek gully and returned to camp avoiding the tussock wherever possible.
On our return we admired then ate two magnificent wholemeal dampers Wendy had cooked under Bill's expert guidance. The party having been set a departure time of 1400 behaved with their usual paranoia about being last ready, so at 1335 without the chance for a last minute rest Little Hitler had us march off without delay. Rather than retrace our steps to Coolamine Homestead, we opted for the quiet cool pools of a Caves Creek tributary. As we waded and floundered through a deep sea of tussock, briar rose and occasional wild raspberry vines we wondered at our unflappable faith in our leader's ability as a water diviner. We wondered all the way to Caves Creek where the majority of the party hesitated only to divest themselves of a thousand grass seeds, gaiters and a range of vestments before plunging into the nearest icy cold pool.
A couple of passing tourists were heard to observe that we looked like “Extras out of a scene of John the Baptist”.
Refreshed, and out of grass seed country at long last, we took off downstream on a superb track which we wanted to believe would continue to the Goodradigbee. At the first spectacular waterfall downstream the track dwindled and was gone, leaving us to flounder over crags and bluffs, 6 ft high weed, briar and then to a grinding halt while the leader dispatched two of us to explore the limestone canyon.
The gorge country there is very spectacular and exciting, and negotiation along the steep rock shelves proved to me once again the usefulness of a herringbone tread. After determining further progress downstream would be fraught with difficulty, the party beat a strategic retreat to the cliff tops up a steep, sun-baked, airy, rocky ridge from where we had a fantastic view up and down the hairpin bends in the gorge. After bashing through various degrees of scrub and jungle we stumbled upon an old four-wheel-drive track running all the way down the nose of the ridge between Caves Creek and the Goodradigbee River, where we established camp (Peppercorn: 557567) amongst swarms of very persistent tiny black beetles. We were all satisfied that we had put in a really good afternoon's walk.
After hot rum and lemon drinks and a good deal of discussion about whether the rum would last the distance, a few of us went for another swim - such bliss to have water deep enough to submerge. Dinner that night was a W. Burke production of curry and rice followed by an apple lemon cake and vanilla pudding.
Friday: Much to everyone's surprise Don was up first and fooled us all by lighting the fire without breaking any sticks. When I stirred in my snug cocoon I peeped from beneath the fly-sheet and watched David and Don quietly building the fire up and marvelled at the tranquility of our campsite.
I watched the leaping flames setting their peaceful faces aglow and knew I would always remember this walk. The rat-race seemed just so far away.
At breakfast Steve was initiated into the art of damper making with huge success, and Lynne amazed us all by dragging out yet another clean neatly pressed blouse to wear.
Our next two days would be on the Goodradigbee, so with considerable anticipation and arming ourselves with personally selected scrub-bashers, we set off to push our way through the gorge country following faint tracks where possible to avoid the briars. Before long David found a wild apple tree which we sampled, Barry picking extra apples to tempt any possible “Eves”.
After fairly slow progress rock-hopping and pushing through scratchy scrub, David took a fancy to a short cut over a small saddle. Due to Wendy'a insistence that in doing so we had side-stepped the much spoken about Ben Esgate tunnel, Don was dispatched to investigate by which time the front runners had crossed the river. I remained very quiet about my two dry feet when everyone took delight at the rock turning to water under David's feet.
Joan, Wendy and Steve turned back to explore a slit in the rock which Don had found and what a prize it held! The slit penetrated deep into the cliff and was filled with limestone formations - shawls, flow-stone and masses of pure white crystals. They went as far as the unwaterproofed torches would allow in swiftly flowing, freezing cold water which was up to Joan's chin (even when on her tippy-toes). I was quite envious when I realised the prize I had missed.
We made our way slowly down the banks as far as possible until we were forced into the river by thick scrub, where we discovered that rock-hopping on submerged rocks lacks a certain charm and can really take one unawares. We stopped to admire a spectacular split waterfall, cascade and pool near Basin Creek, then continued the slog. Most of that day went by in a blurr of concentration whilst trying to remain approximately vertical, Joan discovering the skill of stepping between instead of on rocks in her boots. She had quite mastered it by Saturday!
That afternoon we lost David for a while after a great deal of confusion about a possible retreat to a fire-trail. It was too early with too many unknown hazards still ahead to stop at the only really good campsite, so, late that afternoon, tempers were a little frayed as we bashed our way up through the scrub to a level place in the forest. This was starting to feel like a “S.B.W. weekend walk” - what had happened to our holiday?
Despite my tiredness I think for me this was actually one of the more special campsites of the trip and most certainly the only one in wilderness. I enjoyed the sounds of the rushing untamed river and could not absorb enough the gorge country through which we'd passed. Mosquitoes kept us awake for a while although the insect repellant worked wonders.
Saturday: We awoke to the cracking of sticks and the morning chorus of birds - we were getting the hang of it by now - and after breakfast we scrambled down through the scrub to the river where we found Don gazing into a deep pool where the trout should have been. Again we selected scrub-bashers, Joan taking pity on David whose stick had been “left forlornly leaning against a tree” (or so she claimed….).
The morning progressed as the previous afternoon - rock hopping, slithering and sliding and hanging by our toe nails to the edges of rock ledges. After morning tea and disillusioned by our slow progress on the river we took to the hills, David in the lead with Don playing samurai with his scrub basher with what seemed like much too much surplus energy. This culminated in Don and David's Tai Chi fight and brought us some comic relief.
Back at the river for lunch after a dunking to wash off the perspiration and leaves, the sky began to look ominous and we cursed David for tempting the gods to produce rain. As the first big drops fell and we all contemplated how much worse rock hopping would be in the rain, David put his raincoat on and Joan ceremonially dragged out her scout hat, and the rain promptly stopped.
At long last we reached the fire trail which crosses the Goodradigbee and left the river behind, making our way to a far less than perfect campsite for our last night. As Barry commented “For someone who'd nearly run out of toilet paper perhaps we should have been grateful”. Nonetheless it sufficed and had the advantage of a large swimming pool in which Joan and I indulged and so, we believed, did the trout.
That evening the Pritikin-powered Steve suffered a 'flame-out', and crawled into his sleeping bag with no decent mountains to tempt him and Don fell asleep under a tree while the stayers sang on into the night to the appreciative audience of Bill who had made his bed under the stars.
Sunday: After breakfast of rice, porridge, stewed fruit and anything else we could force down, we road-bashed our way to Brindabella, stopping to chat to the farmer on our way. We made good time, stopping only to pick large handfuls of what David decided were the best blackberries he'd ever tasted, and reached Brindabella an hour ahead of schedule. As we waited for our bus we were reintroduced to the ways of society as 4WDs and trail bikes passed covering us in dust. The apples Wendy picked along the road were fresh and sweet and were a reminder of the simple pleasures in life to which we had all become accustomed.
The bus journey back was subdued as we savoured the last of our escape from society and pondered our return. Steve was dreaming of a box full of mangoes, Bill of a good sharp razor, Wendy of clean hair, Joan of a radox bath, Lynne of clean clothes and me of my next escape from the rat-race - the sooner the better.
The Draft Constitution will be discussed, then retyped and printed for distribution to all members with notification of the Half-Yearly Meeting in September, when changes to the Constitution can be considered.
A motion will be put to the next General Meeting concerning the costs of preparing the history booklet and preliminary work on the archives.
The abseiling equipment will be bought for $454.
From the Committee Meeting of Friday, 10th June, 1932.
Blue Mountains National Park: Mr. Dunphy reported on a proposal to have a large area of land on the Blue Mountains, as a Blue Mountains National Park, and stated that he was endeavouring to get the support of all walking clubs in order to add weight to his representations in this matter.
265 Victoria Road, Gladesville, 2111. Phone (02) 817 5590. Hours: Mon.-Fri. 9-6, Thurs. 9-8, Sat. 9-4. (Parking at rear off Pittwater Road).
A large range of lightweight, quality, bushwalking & camping gear:
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Quality touring craft of all types. High quality, performance competition craft.
by Puffing Billy.
Camped at the Boyd Crossing on the night of 9-10 April, 1986, that non-stop practical joker, Malcolm McGregor, shook Geoff Higson wide awake at 4.05 am and announced, “There's no need to wake up to look at Halley's comet; the sky is still overcast.” He was only kidding, though, for the former ten-tenths overcast had given way to a brilliant clarity in which Halley was visible to the naked eye.
By lunch time on the same day, Betty Weekes and I were atop Craft's Walls enjoying the scenes of the Thurat Spires, Murdering Gully, Paralyser, Cyclops, the Dogs, the Gangerangs, Tiwilla - well, wouldn't it just take a book to list all that you can see from there?
Puffing back across Kanangra Tops at about 2.30, pushing through the hakea jungle that now smothers the country where once we raced over ankle-deep grass, we examined some peculiar tracks in the sandy parts. “Anywhere else,” ventured Betty, “I'd have thought they were bicycle tracks.” We both chuckled at such a ridiculous thought; but were left wondering as to their cause.
By 3 o'clock we were back at the Boyd, savouring a cold tinny and hot cuppa respectively, swapping the day's experiences with the McGregors, Higsons and Les Weekes. “Funny thing happened,” said Malcolm, “Remember those two cyclists we passed back towards Oberon yesterday? They came through;” and he proceeded to regale us with the conservation that then took place.
“1st dis de vay to Yeranderie?” asked one of the two male riders in a heavy German accent.
“Well, yes,” said Malcolm; “but - (eyeing the assemblage of gunny sacks or whatever it is that they festoon touring bicycles with) - the road that you're looking for branched off about 40 kilometres back, around the head of the Kowmung.”
“Och, ve are not looking for de road,” said the accent, producing the Kanangra-Boyd map. “Ve are proceeding hier… und hier… zum hier… und zum hier….” As he spoke, his finger traced out a route across Kanangra Tops, down Gingra Ridge, across the Kowmung, up Scott's Main Range and on to Yeranderie.
“Bit steep in parts,” ventured his listeners, eyeing the festoons of gunny sacks, etc.
“Och, ve know,” he answered. “Ve vill haf to carry; but ve can do it..” And off they went.
As Betty and I heard the tale, we looked at each other and laughed, “Well, they really were bicycle tracks on Kanangra Tops.” We described our earlier puzzlement to the audience and concluded, “We had a good look at the Mt. Maxwell country as we passed it (named, of course, after the late Max Gentle of S.B.W., as also is Gentle's Pass off the end of the Walls); and, as there were no people there, we can conclude that they were on or nearly on Gingra Ridge by then. With bikes on Gingra, they will comfortably make the Kowmung tonight.” So they really did know what they were about; bicycles on the Kowmung, indeed!
The conversation drifted to other things and I drifted into siesta. Suddenly, I was fully conscious; a strange, male voice beside me had said, “We've had a bit of an accident up the road and our car isn't drivable. We wonder if there's any chance of a lift to Jenolan Caves, please?” The “we” was a clean-looking, pleasantly-spoken, twenties-ish couple showing no overt signs of a recent car crash.
A few minutes later, braking to a halt at the “bit of an accident” site, I could not help remarking, “You must be the luckiest young people alive. A 360-degree wheelie; full somersault with twist between two gum trees, either of which would have been terminal; snapped off a sapling as thick as your knee; stove your roof in; and neither of you has so much as a bruise or a scratch!”
“Well, I have,” said the soignee young lady ruefully, “I broke a finger nail.”
As I drove them to Caves House their story emerged. He had been on a bushwalk: from Katoomba, down White Dog, along the Kowmung, up Gingra Ridge to Kanangra. His wife had driven from Caves House to Kanangra to pick him up.
“Well now,” I said. “What time did you come up off Gingra Ridge?”
“About 2.30,” he answered. And had he seen anything of two bicyclists? Oh, yes he had - about 2.15, going past the coal-seam cave, two German-Swiss fellows, heading for the Kowmung.
Now, that is the beginning of the story, I wonder if it has an end? Was this the first bicycle traverse of Gingra Ridge, of the deep Kowmung, of Scott's Main Range? Who were they? Should we initiate action to curtail such mechanised desecration of our treasured walking tracks? If anyone else has later news of them it would be interesting, to me at least, to read of it.
10 seater mini bus taxi. 047-87 8366.
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Pick up anywhere for start or finish of your walk - by prior arrangement.
Share the fare - competitive rates.
by Barry Wallace.
The meeting began at around 2010 with 20 or so members present, the Fresident in the chair, and the bone restored to unity. New members Margaret Niven, Bob Niven, Chris Szonter, Wilma Rubens, Clive Rubens and Michael Stitt were welcomed to membership with applause, badge, constitution, and applause.
Minutes of the previous meeting were read and received with minor amendments and corrections. Correspondence included letters of resignation from Betty Hall and Peter Harris, a letter from a researcher at James Cook University seeking information on any magazines relating to outdoor recreation which we might publish, and outgoing letters of thanks to Mr. B. Holden, Ms. C. McEwen, Dr. Wheen and Ms. Grace Matte.
The Treasurer's Report is still in a formative stage but it all seemed to mean that for the month we had an income of $2803.00, spent $461.00 and ended up with total general purpose assets of $5810.00. Opening balances for the month don't seem to exist anymore, but never fear, I am assured there will be one for next month's report.
On the other hand, even in the absence of the Walks Secretary the walks reports were right easily understood, and they went like this. The night was not dark and stormy for Bill Holland's comet viewing extravaganza at Parkes, there were 28 starters, some of whom saw the comet more than once at the same time. George Walton had between 3 and 8 bods on his two day Golden Stairs, Cedar Creek, Mt. Solitary walk and of the day walks, Greta Davis's Glenbrook walk went, as did Wendy Lipiatt's Waterfall to Heathcote trip. There were no real reports on either walk, but someone ventured the opinion that there had been lots of people on Wendy's trip.
The following weekend, 18,19,20 April Spiro Hajinakitas led a party of seven on his annual pilgrimage to Mt. Colong, Ben Esgate entertained a party of six throughout his Hampton to Hampton tour of places with evocative names, and Bob Younger reported 13 people and an uneventful trip for his Budawangs walk. Jim Brown reported 20 starters on his Springwood area day walk, and Barbara Bruce enthused on her Waterfall to Heathcote bicycle trip which attracted a party of ten. The Anzac Weekend saw Peter Miller extensively reconfiguring his Axe Head Range walk to cope with a serious shortage of water in the area. The six starters dried out somewhat but all survived. George Walton reported similarly for the party of 18 who attended his Kanangra walk, but of Bill Capon's Ettrema walk there was no report. Rumours have since filtered out to the effect that mostly they got up and left early. There was only one day walk that weekend, Ralph Penglis's Bundeena to Otford ramble, of which there was no report.
George Walton's 2,3,4 5,6,7 May, Three Peaks in 5 days epic failed for lack of starters. Laurie Quaken's Megalong area walk went, led by Peter Miller with a cast of five, and David Rostron's Wollangambe walk was reported as pleasant for the 7 who went. Jan Mohandas was laid low by a suspected hairline fracture of a leg bone when it came time to lead his Glenbrook to Springwood walk (something to do with gardening I think it was, should be good for a few brownie points at least). Geoff McIntosh substituted as leader and reported the party of 13 as having a pleasant walk although sometimes troubled by leeches and lovers (?) or was that lawyers (vines I guess). Gordon Lee's Mt. Hay trip did not go.
There was no report of Carol Bruce's Yalwal walk for the weekend of 9,10,11 May but Oliver Crawford had a party of 12 snugly in the cave below the top of The Castle before the late Saturday afternoon storm burst upon them. All things were obviously not equal or they would have been able to see the sunrise the following morning. Peter Miller had good weather, 5 members and 9 prospectives on his Cox River Sunday walk, Margaret Reid had 23 people on her Wondabyne trip and Malcolm Boadle reported 9 starters and a very good day for his Ruined Castle walk. Gordon Lee's rockclimbing and abseiling instructional did not go.
Federation Report indicated that the Bushsports program is under review, that there were no S. & R. call outs for the month, and that around 40 people attended the S. & R. practise weekend.
Conservation Report (that's new isn't it?) reported that the woodchipping agreement for Tasmania has still not been signed and that the Gardens of Stone area in the upper Wollemi may be added to a national park area. There was also a mention of some correspondence regarding the increasingly used look that the Megalong Valley section of the Cox River is taking on as its usage by horse riding parties increases.
K.H.A. annual meeting report indicated that there are still liason problems with the N.P.W.S. although this is improving. The K.H.A. February newsletter is also available.
General Business was next. Peter Miller proposed that a permanent barrier be installed on the Coolana access track and the meeting agreed. Peter is sorting out details so check with him if you have ideas or equipment to offer. It was also Peter who proposed the building of a second, more accessible, fireplace in the hut at Coolana. Again the meeting agreed, although this time with more debate, none of which produced much heat, or light either for that matter. The meeting then went on to decide on the need for a Coolana Maintenance Committee. Members elected to the committee were Alan Doherty (convenor), Ian Debert, Peter Miller, and John Redfern. That list is by no means exclusive, so if you want to join, talk to Alan.
A motion that we donate $200.00 to the Wilderness Society was also passed. There were a number of questions about insurances of one kind or another and the whole thing drifted about until Gordon Lee proposed that we do something to reduce the number of walks cancellations. The meeting decided to ask the Walks Secretary to investigate the establishment of a panel of substitute leaders who would be prepared to take over walks at short notice in the event of the scheduled leader being unavailable. There was no mention of a panel of substitute walkers for weekends following wet Thursday/Fridays.
Then there was a written proposal from Kath Brown (typed I guess) that we open a 60th Anniversary Fund to defray costs associated with the celebration. This did not exactly raise the meeting to frenzy of point, counterpoint and riposts, but it was passed anyway, with Bill Holland using a following motion to endure that no separate bank account was required.
We also agreed to write to the N.P.W.S. regarding the recent construction of new surf livesaving association premises at Burning Palms beach, seeking their assurance that there were no facilities in the structure for overnight accommodation.
The announcements followed, and it was all over yet again at 2153.
At the May General Meeting a resolution was carried to construct a second fireplace in the hut at Coolana. Notice has now been received that a motion for rescission of this decision will be put before the July General Meeting (9/7/86). The movers believe the vote at the May meeting was not representative of Club opinion owing to the small attendance.
Moved: Alan Doherty. Seconded: Bill Holland.
from Tom Herbert, Hon.Member.
Just a Minute - 55 years ago.
I had a good chuckle at the published Committee Minute of August 7, 1931 about certain sleeping habits in the “good old days”.
I was a member of the S.B.W. Committee prior to my election as President in 1934. I was not aware of this minute being on the books during my time but I am certain it is not an indication of wowserism. The members by and large were fun-loving, enterprising, and talented; bushwalker concerts, campfire re-unions and exploring were tops. The members satirized the Committee in song and verse and poked fun at every opportunity.
This Committee minute was apparently designed to discourage “co-tenting” of unmarrieds on official outings of the Club - not on any moral grounds but on the jealously guarded public image of the S.B.W. It should be remembered that the Club was formed in 1927 and in its early years it was vulnerable to suspicion and criticism from many directions including some press and sour people who could see evil in a mixed walking and camping club.
The Committee tried to foster amongst members a pride in the good name and public reputation of the S.B.W. over and above their own personal comfort. Behaviour in trains and other public transport and on roads and in tidy campsites all added to pluses and minuses to the Club's public image and the flannel flower worn by members was a proud badge of identification. This may explain the Committee Minute of August 7, 1931 even though it sounds a bit ridiculous in this enlightened era.
The “good name” syndrome of early Committees paid dividends over the years and the S.B.W. was held in esteem by Government departments, local councils, transport authorities, country property owners, police, the media, and the general public. The code of the Committees of “the good old days” was “the good name of the S.B.W. transcends the creature comfort of its members”.
For application form see Reverse of this notice.
by Elwyn Morris.
No.1 - Avoiding RSI of the feet.
Last year I feared that I was getting arthritis in my toes! After consulting a specialist, who reassured me that it was not rheumatoid, merely incurable, I had visions of prematurely 'falling off the twig' - or at least not being able to walk along it, or a bush track, ever again.
A non-doctor suggested Sorbothane, which cured me. This is the brand name for shock-absorbent rubber inner soles available for around $26 in good sports shops. You get the size to fit your heels and cut the rest to fit your shoes; they last about two years and are washable. Try to get this brand as others seem heavier.
Not only did they cure my 'arthritis' - really RSI - in my toes, but they may well have prevented it in other joints, as the repeated shocks from walking a long time on hard surfaces, especially with a heavy pack, travel up the legs to the knees and lower back.
I now have two pairs I swap into all shoes without thick rubber soles; women's shoes are particularly bad for walking on pavements. For a Ralph Penglis Cremorne-to-Manly with its bitumen-and-concrete-bash, I wear two together in each shoe. It's a bit of a problem fitting Sorbothane inner soles into those shallow Volleys, which is why I break the unwritten club rule and wear joggers, carrying Volleys in my pack for rock-hopping emergencies. (Scholls make thinner cheaper - $11 - inner soles available in chemists. Ed.)
Congratulations to Bob Milne and Therese on their recent marriage!
Please send this notice with your cheque/money order to:-
Bill Holland, Hon. Treasurer,
The Sydney Bush Walkers, Box 4476, G.P.O. Sydney 2001.
Name/s: (For all members in household) ….
If a receipt is required please send a stamped addressed envelope.
Type: (Cross out those not applicable) Single / Household / Non-active with Magazine / Non-Active / Active over 70 years of age / Entrance Fee (New Members)
Amount Enclosed: $ ….
(Single $20 - Household $20 plus $10 for each extra person, $30 for two, $40 for three, $50 for four - Non-active $5 - Active over 70 years of age $10 - Non-active with Magazine $10 - Prospectives (6 months only) $15 - Magazine subscription only - $10)