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THE BIBBULMUN TRACK Walk Hard

Bibbulmun-Track

Looking for some outdoor activities that are a little different? The Bibbulmun Track Foundation has a calendar of events that might appeal. 

The not-for-profit organisation supports the Department of Parks And Wildlife in the management, maintenance, and marketing of the Bibbulmun Track. Jean Byrne, the Foundation’s Marketing & Tourism Manager, describes the track as a world-class long-distance walk trail which attracts walkers from all over the world. “It’s free and it’s in our backyard!”

 

Stretching over 1,000 kilometres through some of the most varied and beautiful areas of Australia’s South West, it’s become a West Australian icon. There are few places on earth where you can travel through a virtually unbroken stretch of natural environment with the length, variety, and scenic qualities of the Bibbulmun Track, and the Bibbulmun Track Foundation is passionate about protecting it for future generations.”

 

According to Byrne, events offered include easy day walks, family and kid events, women-only escapes, workshops, and weekend or week-long overnight hikes (supply and hire of essential hiking gear included in cost). Upcoming June events include Pub, Pumps & Pipes on Sunday, June 14, exploring the history of the construction of the Mundaring Weir with an expert guide, a tour that ends at the Mundaring Weir Hotel.

 

On Friday, June 26, is Get Found With Steve!, a weekend out rogaining (great for those who want to practice compass and map-reading skills). On June 7 and 21 are Sunday Social Walks – one beginners, one intermediate – that are free to members, with fees for non-members. In July, during school holidays, there’s a three-day expedition for teenagers.

 

Byrne says if you like the outdoors and are reasonably fit, there’s an event to suit you. “There are even themed or special interest events, like bush photography or wildflower walks or Ramble & Paddle, which combines walking and canoeing. Our workshops are popular too as they provide the essential information and tools to get out and do it yourself.” Prices can be found on the website.

 

The Foundation is manned by a small staff and many volunteers. “We’re centrally located in the city where you can purchase maps and guidebooks and other Track souvenirs. We also hire equipment, run guided and self-guided tours, and offer a calendar of events packed full of guided events for all ages and fitness levels.

 

“Our key role, however, is the administration of our Eyes On The Ground maintenance program, which has over 250 dedicated volunteers who each adopt a section of track and carry out maintenance tasks such as pruning or checking signage. They also report on any major problems likely to affect walkers or any major problems which need to be tackled by the Department of Parks And Wildlife.”

 

She points out members are an essential part of the organisation. There are different categories, with assorted benefits. “Membership lasts for one year. It’s easy to join online or over the phone. By joining you’re helping to ensure the Track remains a free world class walk trail: well-used, well-maintained and well loved.”

 

The Friends Of The Bibbulmun Track events calendar can be found at bibbulmuntrack.org.au

 

GILLIAN O’MEAGHER

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