Bulletin 52  - July 2022        [View this email in your browser]
BWV Leadership Forum
Bushwalking Victoria representatives were extremely pleased to welcome members to the annual Leadership Forum & AGM on 18 June. It was wonderful to meet face to face after two years of enforced Zoom activities.

The 50 participants included representatives of 23 member clubs, along with six individual members. All contributed to a day of networking, sharing of ideas and discussion on issues facing our organisation and its members.

President Mike Grant opened proceedings with an update of BWV activities throughout the year and acknowledgement of all the volunteers who support Bushwalking Victoria, its members and the wider bushwalking community.

The Keynote speaker was Matt Ruchel from the Victorian National Parks Association (VNPA), which is celebrating 70 years of protecting nature. Matt provided an informative and interesting update on current conservation issues in Victoria, focussing on the threat to protected areas, threatened species and other wildlife caused by development and logging activities in our parks.

Conveners of our Bush Search & Rescue and Bushwalking Tracks & Conservation volunteer teams provided an update on their valuable activities. The program also included interactive workshops, with participants encouraged to join in discussions on three key areas:
  • Safety and Risk – working through issues which affect club safety practices
  • Club Development – how to attract and retain members, develop leaders and support committees
  • Engagement in Conservation – using the online consultation platform Engage Victoria to keep abreast of planned developments that could impact bushwalking activities.
After lunch, an open forum allowed members to raise issues for discussion. These included: succession planning and getting involved with BWV; the Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing project; Covid-19; dual club memberships; who pays for helicopter rescues; and future hosting of the Federation Walks event.

The day concluded with the Bushwalking Victoria AGM. The Annual Report was presented to members and a new Board elected. A number of Board members are continuing their service and one new member has joined the team. The Board looks forward to continuing to support our bushwalking community during the coming year.

If you would like to find out more about joining Bushwalking Victoria as a member club, or getting involved with our volunteers, please contact us at

Image: Warrnambool Bushwalkers.  Enjoying the view from Mt Sturgeon after track work

Around the Clubs

Newsletters from BWV’s member clubs contain a great mix of ideas, images, information and fun! Here’s a small selection.
Menu malfunction
During a base camp at the Cathedral Ranges, walkers from Strzelecki BC were rewarded with spectacular views and fresh mountain air. Back at camp, they enjoyed a glowing fire, good chat and a few wines. Jean E reports:

“One hiccup for us: the meal of pasta, pesto and parmesan turned out to be pasta, pesto and milk powder!! Discovered on returning home the unopened packet of parmesan – must have been hungry…or was it too much wine?? Oops!”

Seismographic falls – a new scale!
Multiple incredibly steep uphill sections and knee crunching descents at Lake Eildon led Jeanette B from Melbourne Bushwalkers to ponder the difference between uphill and downhill falls:

“If you fall uphill you can gracefully slide down and recover. Not many witnesses, as they are probably all ahead of you anyway. Slipping over yourself going downhill is not good. Not only is velocity added to the fall but it usually results in a spectacular rearrangement of your body and gear as you take out those in front. Downhill falls always score higher on the “oooh ouch” Richter scale.”

Grand Opening at Golton Gorge
Grampians BC held a final working bee at Golton Gorge and Heatherlie Quarry before the Grand Opening of the gorge picnic area and the track to the waterfall. Over 840 volunteer hours were spent in making the day possible: what a great effort! Here’s a report.

Image: M Jones, Melbourne Bushwalkers. Looking towards Mt Kosciuszko from Mt Nelse

Our thanks to those willing to share their images and articles with other Bulletin readers.

What’s New?

  • Applications for sporting club grants – provided by Sport and Recreation Victoria – are open until 21 July. Funding categories include Uniforms & Participation Equipment, Skill Development, and Operational Capacity. Clubs might consider applying to buy first aid kits, equipment for members to borrow, or to provide training courses.
  • The State Government recently announced $4m in funding for three new National Parks. The parks, which will be created by linking existing state forests, parks and reserves, will significantly increase Victoria’s protections of native flora and rare and threatened species.
  • Five spectacular new lookouts will be built in Melbourne’s Plenty Gorge Park as part of the new Plenty River Trail. The trail will enable people to better experience the landscapes and wildlife of the park, including wetlands, native bush and historic sites.
  • For all the walkers who are also cyclists: the Australian Walking and Cycling Conference will be held in Sydney in November, as a partner in the Micromobility Conference. Early-bird registration is available now.

Conservation and Engagement

Lots of walkers (and their dogs) love Queenscliff. Public feedback is being sought on how erosion at Dog Beach should be managed. If you’d like to contribute, here’s a link to Engage Victoria’s Dog Beach Coastal Adaptation Plan. Submissions close 10 July.

Community feedback is influencing the location and design of the Great Ocean Road Coastal Trail, which would link the Surf Coast Walk to the Great Ocean Walk. Existing tracks will be utilised where possible. Public consultation closed on 27 June, but you can learn more about the trail alignment, its new suspension bridges and the cultural heritage and natural values of the area here.

Images: Engage Victoria
Bushwalking News - Reader Survey

To ensure that the Bushwalking News bulletin continues to evolve to meet the needs and interests of all readers, we’d be most grateful if you could complete our short survey. Your feedback is extremely important to us! The survey will be active until Friday 29 July.

The survey is anonymous and takes only a few minutes to complete. A summary of the survey results will be shared with readers in a future bulletin.

Thank you!  We appreciate your time and your interest.

Complete the Reader Survey!
Image: M. Kotsanas, Melbourne Bushwalkers. Glenelg River morning.
Winter Essentials

The alpine environment is perfect for adventurous and exciting winter activities, including bushwalking. Here are three websites designed to help you to stay informed, prepared and safe.
  • Snowfalls have been recorded at quite low altitudes this season. Public huts can provide much-needed shelter, so it’s timely to check out the Victorian High Country Huts Association Hut Code.
  • The Mountain Safety Collective provides daily observations and forecasts of likely alpine hazards in Victoria and New South Wales, right through the snow season. Check their Backcountry Conditions Reports on their website.
  • The revamped SnowSafe website provides essential information on how to enjoy the alpine environment in safety and comfort; planning and preparation are highlighted.
Image: Border BC
Park Closures

Following heavy rainfall and flooding in East Gippsland and severe weather in other areas, several National, State and Coastal Parks sustained significant damage. Some parks, facilities and tracks are partially or fully closed. This includes areas of Croajingolong NP, Cape Conran Coastal Park, Mitchell River NP and Snowy River NP. Parks Victoria staff continue to assess and repair sites so that they can be safely opened to the public. Don’t waste your trip: check the Parks Victoria website before you head off for a walk, exploration or school holiday camping trip.
Image: Parks Victoria
Navigation Techniques: ‘Handrails’

We checked out Back Bearings in Bulletin 50; here’s another really useful technique to add to your navigation ‘tool box’. A dictionary will tell you that handrails provide safety on stairs, but bushwalkers use handrails to make navigation easier!

A handrail might be a creek, track, ridge, fence or powerline – any linear feature which is roughly aligned with your intended route. If you’re planning to walk cross-country using handrails, it could sound like this: “I’ll keep the fence on my left until I reach the creek, where I’ll turn east and follow the creek until I hit the powerlines, where I’ll turn north and follow them back to the car”.

For a diagram and more detailed advice on using handrails, refer to the Bushwalking Manual.

Contributions to our Bulletin

Would you like to share your comments, articles or ideas with other readers of the Bulletin? We welcome your contributions.  Simply email and put ‘Bulletin Article’ in the subject line.  We prefer articles of no more than 200 words (in Word format, with any accompanying photo/s in JPG or PNG format). Those chosen for publication may be edited for legal or space reasons. All authors will be acknowledged.

We also have limited space available for advertisements which would interest our readers.  Please direct your advertising queries to:

Quick Links

Bushwalking Manual

Our on-line manual provides guidelines and information for safe and enjoyable community-based bushwalking across Australia.

You can view the Bushwalking Manual here.

BTAC (Bushwalking Tracks & Conservation)

Our BTAC team of volunteers participate in track maintenance and conservation projects all over Victoria. BTAC works closely with the land managers of our national parks and forests to schedule around ten projects a year.  More information here. 

BSAR (Bush Search & Rescue Victoria)

BSAR is a dedicated volunteer search and rescue service. They participate in land-based search and rescues for persons lost in bush and alpine areas under the direction of the Victoria Police. More information here.

Find us online

Follow us on social media for news, updates and inspiration! 

Our Discount Partners

Discounts for club and individual members are available from:
Ajays Heathmont - 10% off
Bogong Equipment Melbourne - 10% off
Discovery Holiday Parks (Cradle Mountain - 20% discount on shoulder and low season rates)
EMC Deepdene - 10% off'
Fjällräven -15% off
Kimberley Offroad Adventures - 15% off
Maps Books Travel Guides - 10% off
Paddy Pallin  Melbourne/Ringwood - 10% off
Smitten Merino - 15% off online orders
The Wilderness Shop Box Hill - 10% off
Woodslane Walking Guides - 25% off online orders

A walk in nature walks the soul back home

Jessica Leigh Mattern

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
Bushwalking Victoria · PO Box 1007 · Templestowe, Vic 3106 · Australia