Safety is important. We walk in the Sydney metro bush and are very rarely out of mobile coverage and seldom far from a road, but injuries can still happen.
- Carry sufficient water, food, first aid and appropriate clothing and shelter. Wild Endurance have a list of compulsory gear which is a handy reference for day walks in national parks. Equip sell a variety of first aid kits suitable for bush walkers. We advise you to skill up to complement your kit – St John runs courses in Remote Area First Aid.
- Carry communications gear: a charged mobile phone, and if appropriate and available, an emergency beacon (PLB). Blue Mountains Police offer loan PLB’s for free. Check Telstra mobile coverage when walking in bush areas.
- Check the weather before you walk.
- Check for Park Alerts – such as park closures due to fire or flood.
- Check the RFS website for fire danger ratings, fire bans and current fire incidents.
Don’t get lost
- Carry maps and leave your route details and return time with responsible friends and family.
- You can find useful maps and track notes for many local walks at the Wild Walks website. Detailed maps of the walking tracks in Lane Cove Valley and Middle Harbour are available from STEP. Detailed maps of the Great North Walk are also handy for our local area walks in the Lane Cove and Berowra Valleys.
- 1:25 000 topographical maps of NSW suitable for walking are available from the NSW Land and Property information online store in both digital (PDF) and printed form. Memory Map also sell digital NSW topographic maps in a format suitable for their software.
- Get yourself a compass and a whistle. A dedicated GPS or GPS watch is useful, or you can use a GPS tracker on your smartphone.
We observe courteous bush walking behaviour, be nice and look out for each other. Good bush walking etiquette is based on respect for the leader and for each other, and includes:
- RSVP by text message to the leader by 8pm the night before the walk,
- be ready to leave on time,
- inform the group of any injuries or illness,
- don’t chat on mobile phones on the walk except for emergencies,
- wait at intersections, river crossings and obstacles for others,
- keep your eyes on the path and don’t turn your head back to talk,
- don’t follow too close (if you are flicked by a branch, you were probably too close),
- don’t wave your trekking pole ends around.
Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but pictures, kill nothing but time.
Please read our disclaimer on Responsible Walking before using any GPS tracks or other information on this website.