Bulletin 55  - October 2022        [View this email in your browser]
Great Ocean Road Coastal Trail
A new coastal trail will enable walkers to experience a 90-kilometre walk which traverses breathtaking and culturally significant Gadubanud Country between Fairhaven and Grey River. The trail – the Great Ocean Road Coastal Trail – will provide a 7-day, 6-night hike, as well as day walks and shorter walks. When complete, it will link the Surf Coast Walk and Great Ocean Walk, resulting in uninterrupted track stretching from Torquay to the Twelve Apostles.

The Great Ocean Road Coastal Trail Master Plan was released recently, and the Engage Victoria site has been updated with next steps, the project video and the Master Plan. The plan was shaped by over 12 months of community and stakeholder consultation. Over 3,000 responses were received, focussing on design principles and trail alignment; environmental excellence; suspension bridges; lookouts; accessibility; camping and car parks.

The trail’s guiding principles ensure that the trail respects and promotes the rich cultural heritage and natural values of the area; existing tracks will be utilised where possible. In places, the preferred trail alignment has moved further inland, incorporating more of the Great Otway National Park. This short video explains how the Master Plan was developed. Significant funding has been invested by the Victorian Government; construction is expected to begin next year.

Image: Great Ocean Road Coastal Trail Project

Around the Clubs

Newsletters from BWV’s member clubs contain a great mix of ideas, images, information and fun! Here’s a small selection.
Gisborne Bushwalking Club recently celebrated 40 years of walking. Their anniversary celebrations included the launch of a book about the club’s four decades, the appointment of their first Life Member and the intriguingly-named “Grog Walk”. Here’s a report and photos.

Amblers and Scramblers
Twenty-three walkers from Melbourne University and Alumni Bushwalkers enjoyed a long weekend of walks in the Southern Grampians. Two groups of walkers – each with different abilities and interests – revelled in climbs, views, orchids, wildlife and waterfalls. Here’s the full post: check out the walks and great photos!

Shall we blame the GPS?
Walkers from Dandenong Valley Bushwalking Club ‘enjoyed’ a walk they may actually prefer to forget at O’Shannassy Weir and Aqueduct – muddy quagmires and bog-hopping; fallen trees; leeches. As Heather W reports, navigation was problematic:
“The day did start a bit weird when the three in the car pool heading up to meet at the start of the walk inadvertently decided to cut the walk very, very short by going straight to the end of the walk instead of the start. Now, I’ve heard of taking a bit of a short cut, but come on – bypassing the walk altogether is a bit much!”

Returning from Narnia
After completing a Mount St Gwinear snowshoe shuffle, Kerry K from Ben Cruachan Walking Club captures what many walkers feel, but may find hard to put into words quite so eloquently:
“…we ‘popped out’ on the track. Not unlike returning from Narnia and finding oneself back in the wardrobe, somewhat stunned to see familiar landmarks again. So, what made this walk Epic, and the Stuff of Legends? It is a combination of the distance, the different (and new to many) means of walking in snow, the hilly (indeed, mountainous) terrain, traversing hidden tracks, the views for miles, the incredible diversity of plants, the accompanying lyrebird songs, and the awesome company. Such a wealth of bushwalking experience: we were always assured of making it back for a hot donut at the carpark, despite some brief moments of navigational uncertainty. And underpinning all of this was the positive and inquisitive energy of the walkers, who willingly shared their knowledge and experiences.”

Image: Ben Cruachan Walking Club
What’s New?
  • There's been a bit of a stir in the media recently about proposed changes to Metropolitan and Regional Parks Regulations impacting on bushwalking activities in Victoria. The detail missing from the articles wasn't too hard to find on the Engage Victoria website.  The list of affected parks is included in Appendix A of the downloadable document. Most are metropolitan parks or small regional parks and won’t affect our bushwalking activities. In fact many will be better protected under the proposed changes. It is a timely reminder though to stay abreast of public consultation opportunities and have your say BEFORE decisions are made. It's often too late when it is picked up by the national media. Stay informed by signing up to Engage Victoria HERE.
  • Parks Victoria’s three Grampians Peaks Trail maps – which we featured in June’s Bulletin – have been updated. Revised in March 2022, they are finally available at specialist map suppliers, some outdoor shops, and suppliers in the Grampians/Gariwerd region. Information on trailheads and trail access points has been updated, and suggested walk times are now far more realistic for the average walker.
  • Outdoors Victoria has a new website where you can read all about their objectives, latest projects and other outdoor news and subscribe to their newsletter.
  • The Avenza Maps app has undergone significant recent updates. This informative article explains everything you need to know, such as how to install a map on your smartphone; how to find your position and Grid Reference; how to plot a track and navigate to a feature; how to plan a route; how to set a Geofence; how to import and export tracks…and more!
  • If you’re looking for new walks, don’t forget to read other clubs’ newsletters, which are often publically available on club websites: their walk programs and walk reports might provide just the inspiration you need! The Walks Directory on BWV’s website also showcases many favourites, and there are other dedicated websites and apps available to source walks information, such as Trail Hiking Australia and AllTrails.

Conservation and Engagement

Nature Stewards is a 10-week program that introduces participants to Victorian and local environments. Topics span geology, soils, climate, fungi, plants, animals, conservation land management, volunteering & citizen science, and environmental interpretation from western and local Aboriginal community perspectives. Each program includes weekly classes and four field sessions. The next, based in Ballarat, commences 1 October. Here are the details
The first land handback to Bunurong Traditional Owners in 180 years is on track. The eight ha property on Millowl (Phillip Island) was donated to Trust for Nature in 2020. It’s part of the richly biodiverse Rhyll Inlet – one of the most significant sites for migratory birds in Australia, recognised as a globally significant wetland under the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands.
Critically endangered Helmeted Honeyeaters have a more secure future thanks to the protection of 41 ha of habitat at Yellingbo on Wurundjeri Country east of Melbourne. The property also extends habitat for the lowland population of Leadbeater’s Possum. If you’d like to volunteer to protect Victoria’s animal emblems, you can find out more here.

Images: Nature Stewards; Trust for Nature

Welcome to Our New Editor

As of next month, Patsy Scales will be stepping into the role of Bushwalking News editor. Many of our members will recall Patsy from several years ago, when she was BWV’s Office Manager. Welcome back on board, Patsy!

Get Involved at Bushwalking Victoria

While we are always on the lookout for potential Board members, there are other ways to contribute as part of our bushwalking community.  We will soon be putting a call out for club members to assist in a number of areas, such as the Safety Committee, policy and guideline updates, and promotional activities.  If you have the time and are willing to assist, we would love to hear from you.

A reminder that we are still looking for our next Treasurer, ideally from within our club network.  There will be plenty of time for a handover before the new person is required to take over so please let us know if you know someone who may be interested.

Reader Survey Report

Many thanks to those who responded to our recent Bushwalking News Bulletin survey: your participation has provided valuable, constructive feedback. This report summarises the responses, comments and suggestions received. The participation rate, survey data and comments will be analysed by the incoming editor and BWV’s Communications Team, so that the Bulletin continues to evolve to meet the needs and interests of the majority of our audience.

Image: Southern Grampians, Melbourne University Alumni Bushwalkers

Brilliant Base Camp #2: Wyperfeld National Park

Wyperfeld NP is one of Victoria’s vast Mallee parks and is well-suited for autumn, winter and spring base camps. It offers walks, camping (basic facilities), a Visitor Information Centre, spring wildflowers, varied landscapes and plant communities, wildlife and birds – including Malleefowl. Clubs wishing to explore more of Victoria’s Mallee and Murray-Sunset NP sometimes organize “progressive camps” incorporating Wyperfeld, Pink Lakes and Hattah-Kulkyne NP. This article offers useful information for planning and enjoying a Wyperfeld base camp.

Showcase your club’s favourite base camp location!
Base camps are a fantastic way to attract and engage new members. They also encourage walkers to enjoy a wider range of tracks. We’d love to harness your knowledge, and strengthen our club network, by sharing your favourite Victorian base camp location with other readers.

Tell us all about it: when to visit, walks and maps, facilities & accommodation, complementary activities…whatever makes it special! Email your article (in Word format, with accompanying photos in JPG or PNG format) to  with ‘Brilliant Base Camp’ in the subject line. We look forward to receiving YOUR base camp inspiration!

Image: Male emu with young, Wyperfeld NP


The designer of this game suggests that it would be useful for bushwalkers on base camps, to add amusement to evening activities.

Navigation Techniques: ‘Aiming Off’

Here’s another really useful tip for your navigation ‘tool box’.

Imagine: you’re navigating cross-country, using map and compass, to the track where you parked your car. But upon reaching the track, the car’s not in sight. Which way should you turn – left or right? This dilemma is easily avoided by deliberately setting a bearing that will under-shoot or over-shoot your car’s position. If you aim off to the right, you’ll turn left when you reach the track; if you aim off to the left, you’ll turn right at the track. Done! This technique works equally well if you’re aiming for a point on any linear feature such as a river or coastline.

Take a look at the Bushwalking Manual for diagrams and other handy navigation techniques.

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. Articles should be 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

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going”

- Beverly Sills -

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Bushwalking Victoria · PO Box 1007 · Templestowe, Vic 3106 · Australia