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Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18



The Melbourne Bushies - Fifty years along the track (1940-90)

worked on Saturday mornings and banks and post offices were open). That Saturday afternoon we tramped across wet, misty paddocks to the Yarra where it flows through the Yering Gorge. We searched the bush for sticks that could be used as tent poles - no one carried the collapsible metal rods that are used today - and erected our small japara tents.

The main topic of conversation around the camp fire that night was on 'The Split' (see page 12). There was much appraisal of the respective merits of the two clubs. The Trampers had gained the reputation of being somewhat 'tough' while the MBW were known to be more easy-going or even a bit lax. The critics seemed to have good inside knowledge and it soon appeared obvious that they had dual membership or were frequent visitors to both Clubs. Time, it seemed, had already soothed the wounds. Years later, when the Trampers were going through a low phase in their fortunes, the MBW gave them room on Gronow's van to share when travelling to their respective walks.

Crossing a watercourse, Werribee Gorge, April 1951.
Crossing a watercourse,Werribee Gorge,
April 1951. Horst Eisfelder

On the Sunday we walked for miles through undulating wattle country, passing old mine shafts and tailings grounds until finally reaching the township of Eltham, where we met up with other Club members on a day walk. Eltham, Diamond Creek, Hurst-bridge, Kangaroo Ground and surrounding areas were very attractive to walkers, not only because of the relics from mining days but also for the mosaic of small farms and orchards cut into the bushland and overlying the surrounding hills. When the fruit trees were in full bloom you should have heard the 'oohs' and 'ahs' of visitors from staider suburbs who encountered for the first time this picturesque scene so unexpectedly close to home. It was a landscape