Monday, March 30, 2015

Sixteenth Australian TrailRider announced - Cradle Mountain

Last March the four of us (Ros, Jo, Rodney and me) went down to Tasmania and, together with a TrailRider, visited Cradle Mountain and talked to the folk there. They went right ahead and purchased a TrailRider principally with mountain rescue in mind.

Click on the picture to visit the ste
Since then they have been busy rescuing people from the nearby rugged tracks. Between four and six leg-wounded-walkers have been rescued so far and by my calculations the chair has been paid for two or three times over. No helicopters, no huge - andvulnerbale - teams with stretchers.

Now the TrailRider is going to be made available to disabled park visitors.

The hire details are in the Directory.

Friday, March 27, 2015

One sign, three signs

A couple of posts ago I showed you the TrailRider direction sign developed by the school group in Daylesford to mark the Cornish Hill track. At the time it was a world first. Almost at the same time Parks Victoria were working on their signs and the accompanying  grading of tracks for TrailRider use.

John Kenwright has put considerable thought into this.

For a start the term Sherpa was too specialised and unusual (just consider overseas visitors) for Park use. As you will see here Operator has been used instead.

The principal factor that determines the number of these people needed is the grade of the track and John has represented the steepness of the track and the unevenness - what I would be inclined to call stepiness in each of the signs.

Whereas the Daylesford signs were based on a photo and we could hazard a guess who of the folk here are purely diagrammatic.

I am left wondering what the 5 Operator sign would look like!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Dr Dave Tackles Mountains

To my consternation I saw that a friend's Mac was only showing a blank grey square. This should be better I hope.

One of my greatest joys in life is impressing my daughter Dr Jo Stratton and her husband Sander Jansen. It is even better when they let me know. A  bit over a year ago they surprised me with a copy of Dr Dave Tackles Steps which turns the tale of securing better access in Newstead into a delightful children's book.

Now they have produced the second in the Dr Dave series telling the TrailRider tale.

The next step is to publish properly - any thoughts?

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Two world firsts in Daylesford

Signs at critical points along the track. Don't try to  ascend into
the sky here!
30 people today gathered in Daylesford today for the official launch of the 5km Cornish Hill track.

This track has been surveyed and signposted by the Year 12 students at Daylesford Secondary College. The designation and signage of a TrailRider specific track is, we believe,a world first.

The signs, shown in the picture, were based on a beachside TrailRider photo found on the Internet. This means that the rider is me. Careful study leads us to think that the front sherpa is John Kenwright with Josh Hart at the back.

The youngest sherpa team ever - Years 9 & 10 from Daylesford
Secondary College
The second world first is in the other photo - the school kids learning to be sherpas. Rodney Brooke, sherpa king and teacher extraordinaire taught the six year 9 and 10 kids how to do it and I was competently and energetically guided the entire 5 km by the youngest team of sherpas ever.

This feels like the tip of a very big iceberg - namely the introduction of the TrailRider into school curricula and associated contact with the disabled wherever there is a TrailRider.
Huge thanks go to Brendan Murray, schoolteacher and Cornish Hill aficionado and to Fiona  Robson from Hepburn Health who pulled it all together and continues to champion the TrailRider in Daylesford.

Photos by Genevieve Barlow

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

A guest posting circle

Click on the screenshot >>>
to visit Julie's Blog

First Julie Jones (Have Wheelchair Will Travel) guest posted here then I guested on her blog

This, for me, was fascinating as her blog has far more of a personal story flavour than this one. The invitation basically was to tell my story again, from the start. I enjoyed writing the story down in its entirety - probably for the first time since composing the script for the Wild Places video.

Now I am going to complete the circle by posting my contribution. Click on the picture to see it online.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

An Invitation to Ballarat

For the second year in a row the Ballarat Special School Fun Run will feature TrailRider competitors. See the last time

This could be your chance to try being a sherpa. Rodney will be there showing people the ropes and this event is somewhere along the track towards a Sherpa Volunteer Program in Ballarat.

Come and have a sausage!