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VERSION 5 as at 1-2-06






Contents. 2

Introduction.. 3

Pre Outing.. 3

Planning – Pre Outing.. 3

Doing the Pre Outing.. 3

Write Article for Jilalan about Coming Walk. 3

Essential Equipment. 4

Leaders extras. 4

What to Wear. 4

Preparing for the Walk. 5

Car Pooling.. 5

The Day of Trip.. 5

Assembly at meeting Spot. 5

At walk site.. 6

On the walk. 6

Caring for the Group.. 6

Keeping the Group Together. 6

Ongoing Tasks. 6

Off Track Walking.. 7

Hints on Leading.. 7

Bush walking etiquette.. 7

After the Walk. 7

Write up report for the Club magazine.. 8

In Case Of Medical Emergency. 8

In Case Of Lost Person(S) Emergency Or Overdue Party Emergency 9

Emergency Officer System... 10

Committee Contacts. 11



Leading can be fun and greatly enhance your experience of bushwalking. You are no longer following as part of a group but learning about the bush and how to move through it. The acquisition of bushcraft skills can be an ongoing lifetime experience.


This booklet is a guide and much more could have been written. If you are new to leading it is useful to work with an experienced leader. Never hesitate to ask for help as there are plenty of members ready and willing to help.


Walking parties and conditions can vary considerably. A small experienced group of similar abilities and fitness require much less attention that a large group with variable abilities and experience. How you use this guide may vary accordingly.


Finally thankyou for contributing to the life of the club by leading a walk.




Planning – Pre Outing

• Find out as much as possible about the area, terrain and vegetation.

• Obtain maps (Matthew Ph: 3876 8125 may be able to give you copies of Club maps)

• Talk to members who know the area.

• Obtain permits for National Parks or permission from owners to access private property for the pre-outing and the walk. (Discuss your proposed route). https://www.epa.qld.gov.au/parks/iaparks/gds/


Doing the Pre Outing

• Pre-outing group should consist of 3 people (for safety)

• Include an experienced person to assist in evaluating and grading walk

• Inform the Club’s outings officer of your route & date of pre-outing

• Record the distance & directions to walk destination i.e where you park your cars (for driver’s reimbursement)

• As you walk, record – walk times; navigational notes; comments on terrain and major landmarks.

• Note shortcuts and accesses on proposed route in case of emergency

• Allowing extra time for a larger walking group, estimate rest breaks, lunch etc aim to finish in daylight.

• Determine walk starting time (making most use of daylight)

• The drivers reimbursement for a pre-outing is the cost of petrol used- fill the tank as you start out and refill at the end of the trip. The refill costs is the reimbursement.




• Discuss & Arrange the Emergency Officer with Outings Secretary

• Supply outline of trip to Outings Officer & Treasurer for costing.

• Write & submit article for Jilalan in time for publication – Details include

* Date, venue, type of walk

* Leader’s Name and phone number

* Emergency Officer (preferably Club member)

* Grade of walk (see Outings Officer)

* Cost of trip (See treasurer)

* Meeting place

* Time of departure

* Map references (if applicable)

* Route and features

* Factors affecting fitness and experience


Do pre-outing within two months of walk (if possible)


Maintain checks on Weather and Fire reports that could change walk conditions before outing. Weather: www.bom.gov.au ,

Roads: http://www.racq.com.au/cps/rde/xchg/racq_cms_production/hs.xsl/Motoring_Road_Cond_

Fire: http://www.emergency.qld.gov.au/

Park Alerts: http://www.epa.qld.gov.au/projects/park/news.cgi ,

Park Permits: https://www.epa.qld.gov.au/parks/iaparks/gds/




Back pack to contain:-

• Torch with spare bulb and batteries

• Whistle (for emergencies)

• First aid kit (minimum – sunscreen, bandaids, bandages, pain relief tablets, anti-histamines, tweezers, scissors, safety pins)

• 2 Water bottles (1 –3 litres depending on distance & time of year)

• Toilet paper & soap

• Parka (for wind & rain)

• Warm clothing (stays warm even when wet)

• Food for one day - mid morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack or fruit and emergency rations.




• Map (in water proof protector)

• Notebook and pencil (to leave notes in emergencies)

• Matches (in plastic bag to keep them dry)

• Walk form with spare change

• Yellow Emergency Card – with phone numbers

• Spare change if needed when collecting walk fees.

• Mobile phone if you have one.




• Hat

• Boots (for ankle support) or runners - Comfortable / Well Fitting/ Good Tread

• Socks (2 pair in boots – thicker outer set and thin inner set)

• Gaiters (keeps grass seeds out of socks)

• Shirt (cotton) with collar & sleeves or T shirt with collar & sleeves (summer) possibly flannelette (winter)

• Shorts best for Q’ld (trousers can drag on knees)




• Expect numerous phone calls about the walk

• Record ALL names, phone numbers, & visitors’ addresses (even take details of people who don’t do trip. We will still send out a magazine.) Form is at: http://www.geocities.com/briscathbushclub/EventNominationForm02-05.html

• Ensure walkers phone EO or leader’s mobile if late or cancelling at the last minute

• Try to ascertain expertise and fitness of walkers especially visitors

• Advise walkers to have breakfast before hand.

• State that walkers need to advise the leader of medical conditions that could affect the walk.

• Remind newcomers of essentials to bring (first aid, water, torch, etc) and to contact leader if they want to cancel their nomination for the walk.

• Walkers to give Ego’s name & number to household members for emergency contact.

• Inform walkers that leader will contact them if the trip is changed or cancelled due to weather or access issues.



• Leader arranges the car pool and transport (preferably 4 cylinders over 6)

• Drivers should be Club members

• Advise drivers in advance if their cars are to be used.

• Inform drivers if using gravel roads & creek crossings

• Obtain from drivers seating & engine capacity; rego number; make & colour of vehicle.

• Fill in all details on the trip sheet (handed to treasurer later)

1.                Full names of walkers with phone numbers

2.                Details of cars used

3.                Walkers to be collected on the way

4.                Walkers travelling privately (not pooling)


The Night Before ensure Emergency Officer has:-

1.          List of ALL participants & contact numbers

2.          Drivers & vehicles reg. numbers

3.          Anyone travelling independently & meeting points

4.          Details of car shuffles

5.          Outline of route

6.          Estimated time of return


If necessary check with the owners or rangers for changes in conditions affecting tracks (particularly fire danger, high winds, & heavy rain)


If the walk is cancelled due to weather OR for any reason contact BOTH Emergency Officer & Outings Officer.




Assembly at meeting Spot – usually at St. Brigid’s Red Hill (safe parking) http://www.geocities.com/briscathbushclub/brigidsmap.gif

• Welcome new members & introduce them to their drivers and passengers. It is suggested you form “a circle” and where possible get people to state their full name and mention their bushwalking experience.

• Collect fees (or later at leader’s discretion)

• Get Non-Members And Guardians Of Children To Sign Liability Waiver Form - If they don’t sign they are not allowed on the walk. http://www.geocities.com/briscathbushclub/VisitorWaiverForm.html

• Give non-members the option of driving themselves or car-pooling with the Club and explain the walk fee is a donation back to the drivers.

• Check drivers know where they are going (arrange convoy if necessary)

• Arrange for comfort stop on longer drives (regroup)

• Exchange mobile numbers with each vehicle

• Try to leave within 15 minutes of appointed time

• Notify Emergency Officer on setting off (notify any changes)


At walk site

• See property owner or ranger (if necessary)

• Check all vehicles have arrived and are parked safely – beware of cattle.

• Assemble & introduce walkers, detail walk route (preferably with map) and outline emergency procedures, & rules (eg.waiting at junctions)

• Check all walkers are adequately prepared for walk

• Appoint a Tail-end Charlie & give clear instructions to lead walkers


On the walk

• If the group includes fast walkers, you may wish to appoint an assistant leader to guide front group to wait at junctions & significant points (Make this decision within 30mins of start).


Caring for the Group

• Be aware of fitness and abilities of the walkers.

• When regrouping check members for subtle signs of stress.

• Encourage & assist slower & weaker walkers. Consider

    1. sharing their loads
    2. stopping for lunch early
    3. quick energy snacks

• If a person presents with a medical problem – quietly appoint “minders” to be regularly changed during the day.


Keeping the Group Together

• Tell everyone to maintain visual contact with the people in front and behind.

• If you lose visual contact “Hey Bob” is the accepted bush walking call.

• Instruct lead walkers to pause regularly at ALL junctions & scenic spots to regroup.

• Leave no one alone – always have at least 2 people together

• In an emergency keep the minimum number of people to attend crisis (considering their experience level & fitness) and send the rest on with an experienced person.

• For a toilet stop, the Tail-End Charlie goes ahead out of sight, and then waits.

• It is essential the Tail-End Charlie is the last walker & doesn’t let anyone fall behind.

• In an emergency ensure experienced person stays with injured person. Where possible encourage others to leave for home.


Ongoing Tasks

• Regroup regularly & check head count.

• Be aware of your surroundings & time schedule.

• Watch the weather.

• Keep walkers informed of the route.

• Inform the group of any difficulties soon to be encountered & arrange assistance.

• Point out natural features & items of interest.

• In the event of imminent darkness the leader needs to reassess the situation.

• After walk, make sure all cars move off.


Off Track Walking

In difficult terrain or thick vegetation

• Regroup often (say 15 minutes)

• Keep party bunched up

• Check navigation regularly

• Alternate the person in front (give them a rest)


On steep slopes

• Maintain safe separation of walkers

• Move diagonally across slopes so dislodged rocks do not endanger walkers.

• Tell group to yell “Rock” if a stone/rock starts to roll down.

• Place confident experienced walkers at dicey spots to help others. Steep slopes & scrambling require CAUTION

Plan moves in advance & if necessary stop the group to check the route. DON’T RUSH




• Think ahead & be prepared

• Give directions clearly.

• Be encouraging.

• Show confidence when in doubt consult & seek advice.

• Encourage a caring attitude

• Discourage inappropriate behaviour (explain why certain actions are dangerous)

• Encourage members to share knowledge & interests.

• Keep a log or take notes

-                     times for when you start and when you go past major landmarks and have lunch breaks

-                     this way you will be able to give a reasonable answer to the question – “How Much Further ???”



• Always seek permission to access private property in advance

• Leave gates as you find them

• Do not disturb stock & take care with fences – (for fences it is usually easier to go under or through a fence).

• Tread lightly & leave the environment as you find it.

• Carry out ALL rubbish.




• Contact the Emergency Officer on your safe return

• Within the next few days contact any new walkers

• Return all walk forms, signed visitors forms, money & receipts to the treasurer

• Return any borrowed Club maps

• Check any record & notes taken on walk

• Contact Outings Officer with any useful feedback

Ability of new walkers

Any potential walk leaders

Closures or changes in track or terrain

Any problems or difficulties experienced


•              Write up report for the Club magazine

Always write for today’s readers and someone who reads it in 5 years time. Where you started, where you went, include approximate times, mention the good things about the trip. Include the names of all the people on the trip (so we can ask them to lead the trip in 5 years time) and thank the drivers


• Prepare report for next Club meeting (arrange for someone to speak if you can’t)


• Give Nomination Form and Trip Money to Treasurer so he can make reimbursements.


• Give Non-Members Liability Forms to Secretary




Should any major injury occur (eg broken legs, falls, concussion or heart attacks) requiring outside help


MAKE EMERGENCY CALL Call 000 or 112 for mobiles (112 is the mobile phone emergency number, even if your network is out of range, as 112 finds any other network that is within range)


CONTACT EMERGENCY OFFICER (in case of media contact before you return)


• If you cannot get onto the EO, contact the President, Outings Secretary, other Committee Member, or a Long Term Experienced Club member - in that order till one takes on the role of "Co-ordinator".


Be prepared to advise full detail of the "emergency"

where are you,

what is your contact number.

where is everyone else,

what happened (what is the emergency),

what condition are they in

-         are they still breathing,

-         are they semi conscious,

-         are there eyes dilated,

-         are they in severe pain. etc.

where did it happen?

when it happened,

to whom did it happen.

what has already been done about it,

who with experience is in the party,

what do you expect/want to happen,

is there a first aid certificate holder in the party,

where are the cars,

where is the nearest road,

where is the nearest house,

what is the fastest route to reach you/the party,

how much food/water does the party have,

what is the weather like,


As Soon As Possible - Write a report

How it occurred

What injuries were sustained

Report any immediate response & first aid




Should a person or persons go missing or a part of the group is overdue and caught out because of nightfall the procedures are as follows -


§               First determine if the missing person(s) are truly lost or missing or are they simply running late.

§               If they are deemed lost contact EO and advise the delay and ask EO to contact relevant next of kin.

§               Be prepared to advise full detail of the "emergency"

1.    where you are,

2.    what is your contact number.

3.    where is everyone else,

§                                                                                             what happened (what is the emergency),

§                                                                                             who is missing..

§                                                                                             what has already been done about it,

§                                                                                             who with experience is in the party,

§                                                                                             what do you expect/want to happen,

§                                                                                             is there a first aid certificate holder in the party,

§                                                                                             where are the cars,

§                                                                                             where is the nearest road,

§                                                                                             where is the nearest house,

§                                                                                             what is the fastest route to reach you/the party,

§                                                                                             how much food/water does the party have,

§                                                                                             what is the weather like,


1.          The EO remains your first point of contact until the EO states otherwise.


2.          The Emergency Officer arranges everything at "the Brisbane end" for you


3.          The Club will attempt a rescue or search if it is within out capabilities, then FMR will be the second point of contact by the EO.


4.          Stay with the party and do what you can at the "trip end".


5.          Stay in communication with the EO at intervals.


6.          If the emergency is too difficult for the Club to handle,

7.          eg the lost walkers on Mt Barney - then contact FMR and they will help decide if the issue should be escalated to the police and SES.


8.          Only FMR has any contact with the media - always refer any media person to FMR.


9.          As a last resort, if you cannot raise anyone in Brisbane, make emergency call 000 or 112, and ask for the Police Call Centre (Operations Room) -make sure you ask that FMR (Federation Mountain Rescue) is informed for extra assistance)


10.     (The Operations Room has a FMR Folder that they should find and refer to with FMR contact details.) Become familiar with the FMR web site -: http://www.fmrqld.bwq.org.au/


11.     As Soon As Possible Afterwards - Write A Report

• What occurred, How, Why, Where & etc - Provide full details as they will help uus modify our procedures & instructions, and future rescues.

• What injuries were sustained

• Report any immediate response & first aid

• Fully describe the event


Note: 000 is the Australian number for the Emergency Services Operator, 112 is the International mobile phone contact number that connects to the Emergency Services Operator - it connects to any phone company, not lust your phone service provider.





Each walk has an "Emergency Officer" (EO). There are several reasons for an EO. The EO is the communications person in the event of transport hassles, late returns or a medical alert. The EO is the first point of contact for any emergency involving an outing. The outing's leader contacts the EO prior to leaving the city to advise:-


List of walkers & contact numbers for family or carers;

Drivers, their car rego numbers & vehicle type -

(we need this information as the most dangerous part of the trip is the drive to and from a trip. If there is a road accident we need this information.);

Walkers travelling independently, their contacts & where they will join the group;

Approximate parking location for the walk;

Details of car shuffles;

Outline of walking route.


In case of injury, lost person or Medical Emergency, contact EO as soon as possible to assist in coordinating rescue. Details for EO to include:-

• Type of emergency

• What is needed

• Location

• Condition of walkers in group

• Plan of Action


If outing is delayed on the track for any reason, the leader needs to inform EO to assure family and carers.

If you cannot contact the EO, ring the President or Outings Secretary, and failing them answering, ring any experienced Club member.




Compiled by

BCBC Working Group 2004

Edited by Iain & Robyn J