Staying on established trails will:
Protect fragile plant life.
Prevent erosion and instability.
Avoid creating a confusing network of tracks.
Fragile vegetation is always at risk of invasive plant species - weeds. Once it is gone, the stronger invasive species take over with many indigenous plants never returning.
When vegetation does not regenerate due to foot traffic, top soil is exposed, which causes erosion. Water and rain cause gullies to form and as the trail erodes, walkers go wider on the track, causing the process to begin again.
CliffCare has worked tirelessly with land managers to build and establish sustainable trails for climbing areas throughout Victoria - please stick to these tracks.
A section of the legendary Pharos Gully track, Mt. Arapiles, built over several years by CliffCare/Friends of Arapiles volunteers and master stonemason Walter Braun.
Switchbacks are a better option for steep ground, causing less erosion.
Gullies are not good access tracks as they’re prone to erosion.
Stay on durable surfaces such as rock as much as possible.
Digging and disturbing soil – All of the parks in Victoria are required to adhere to the Aboriginal Heritage Act (2006). This means that if Parks Victoria want to put in a new trail, they are required by law to first get clearance to do so by getting a cultural heritage inspection to ensure no heritage is impacted. All trail work that CliffCare undertakes is with collaboration and cooperation of Parks Victoria.
And lastly – if there are any areas on climber’s access tracks that have issues, be it erosion, fallen trees, new multiple social tracks growing etc, drop CliffCare a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can go from there.
It is up to us as a community to prevent and manage issues before they become major but as they are generally in state and national parks, it is also about going about this in a consultative way and working with the land managers.
CliffCare volunteers hard at work on trail building projects completed in collaboration with PV.