Walking Guidelines

Bushwalker Etiquette

  • It is essential that new members talk to the activity leader prior to signing up, to ascertain whether the activity is suitable for them.
  • Advise the leader if you are taking any medications or if you have any physical of other limitations that might affect your participation.
  • Check the activity grading and ensure that you are fit enough for the degree of difficulty.
  • Nominate for activities via Meetup or at the club meeting before the cut-off date, which may be different for each activity.
  • If you are unable to participate after nominating, change your status to “Not going” in Meetup or let the leader know immediately, as there may be a waiting list.
  • Car pooling is encouraged. The activity leader may set up a carpool and if so you should participate in this, as parking is often limited.
  • Passengers are expected to contribute to the drivers expenses.
  • Arrive at the meeting place on time. If delayed let the leader know by mobile phone.
  • Take sufficient food, water and suitable equipment on every club walk, however short or local:
    • A minimum of 2 litres of water is required (more in hotter conditions)
    • food & snacks
    • rain jacket
    • warm top
    • hat
    • whistle
    • first aid kit
    • Sunscreen
    • small torch
    • sturdy covered footwear
    • appropriate clothing (Please note jeans are not suitable)
  • Bring along a clean set of clothes to put on at the end of the walk.
  • Bring a plastic bag to store your wet clothes or muddy boots at the end of the walk.

During the Walk

  • Follow the leaders instructions.
  • We walk as a group – the party is expected to stay together.
  • Maintain a line of sight with the person in front and behind you. If the person behind is not visible slow down or stop to allow the person behind to catch up. Advise the person in front that you are stopping or slowing down.
  • Do not leave the group for any reason (including comfort stops) without telling the Leader or appointed Tail-end-Charlie. In an emergency leave your pack on the track to mark where you have left the track.

Bushwalking Code of Ethics

(Taken from the Guidelines of the QLD Environmental Protection Agency)

Walking Softly

  • Protect the bush, take no shortcuts, this causes unnecessary erosion.
  • Walk on rocks and hard ground rather than trampling vegetation.
  • Never mark your route.  Blazed trees are susceptible to fungal attacks that can kill the tree.  Markers can confuse other walkers.
  • Remove rubbish, even biodegradable food scraps can upset the balance and cause weeds. Use toilets when provided.
  • Bury human waste 15cm underground at least 100m away from tracks, campsites, watercourses, lakes and drainage channels.
  • Do not bury tissues and toilet paper. They must be carried out in snaplock bags.
  • On beaches bury human waste below high-tide level.
  • Wash yourself and equipment over 100m away from streams or lakes.
  • Use no soap, toothpaste, shampoo or sunscreen in lakes or creeks.

Walking Safely

  • Know where you are going; if possible take compass, maps and GPS.
  • Do some of your own research about the walk, so you know what to expect, and can be prepared. If you are unsure talk to the Walk Leader.
  • Never walk alone in the bush, always take friends or family with you.
  • Always let someone know of your plans in case you get lost.
  • Stay on the track.  Read all signs carefully.
  • Think before you swim.  Never dive or jump into any waterhole.
  • Try to avoid walking on wet rocks, they will be slippery.
  • Avoid drinking creek water it may be contaminated.  Take your own.
  • Stay well back from cliff edges and waterfalls to avoid any accidents.
  • If you do dislodge a stone, warn others below of the danger – yell “Rock.” It is important to notify others however small or large the stone.
  • On loose terrain try not to follow each other up in a direct line.  Rather try to angle up the slope and if there is need to switch back ensure that everyone below is out of the line of a falling rock.
  • Become aware of where you have been, always look backwards and note the other side of natural features that may help to find the way back if necessary.

Camping Softly

  • Plan your route carefully so you arrive at a prearranged site rather than creating a new campsite.
  • Camp well away from walking tracks, lakes and creeks.
  • Never dig trenches around your tent.
  • Take your own poles. Don’t cut them from the bush.
  • Remove all rubbish. Never bury rubbish, animals always dig it up.
  • Dismantle your fireplace.  Check the fire is completely out.
  • Leave your campsite better than you found it.
  • Never camp on frontal sand dunes.
  • Carry a fuel stove for heating food and water.


  • Getting close to nature is one of the best rewards for your bushwalking efforts.  Whilst see native animals is a bonus, close encounters with wildlife can be risky.
  • Remember! This is the animals’ home! Look after the bush so animals can continue to live here. Look but don’t touch!
  • Detour around any snake.  Never poke then with a stick.
  • Go spotlighting, but remember that bright lights can damage animals’ eyesight.  Never shine a torch on an animal for more than a few minutes.
  • Keep wildlife wild for your sake and theirs don’t feed native animals.  Not only can human food harm them; fed animals have been known to attack people.
  • Keep your food secure away from hungry animals.  Apart from the mess, you might have cut your walk short if you have no food left!
  • Keep your noise down.  You’re more likely to see native animals.


  • Fires are not permitted in National Parks and fire restrictions may apply in other areas or seasons. ALWAYS check first.
  • Light fires in cleared areas, away from vegetation and tents.
  • Keep your fire small. Preferably using an existing fireplace.
  • Be careful if putting rocks around the fire.  Rocks conduct heat which may damage the surrounding vegetation.
  • Collect timber only where permitted.  Use only dead, fallen timber.
  • Always put the fire out.  Douse with water, not earth.  Embers can smoulder for days.
  • NEVER light fires during high bushfire danger periods or in places where the fire might spread.