Nigel Weaver
Nigel on the clifftops of Lord Howe Island
Nigel on the clifftops of Lord Howe Island
What started you bushwalking and when did you really get into it? I have been a bushwalker virtually all my life, starting at age 8 with 1st Crows Nest cubs and later with 2nd Roseville scouts. I then began leading one-day and overnight walks with a youth group way back in 1965 at the ripe old age of 18.  In the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s I was a regular participant on day-walks, overnight walks, and multi-day treks with a couple of other bushwalking clubs before joining SBW in 1996.
Why do you bushwalk? (What motivates you?) I enjoy being in the great outdoors, a feeling of adventure, and the pleasure of enjoying wonderful scenic views.
When did you join SBW? I joined SBW in 1996, and I began leading SBW walks almost immediately.  Most of my SBW walks are one-day walks, but I have also led walks over long weekends in the Gardens of Stone (Mount Genowlan area), the Goulburn River, and in the Wild Dog Mountains (Splendour Rock, Knights Deck, Mobbs Soak).
What were the 3 Q test walks you did and what memories do you have of them?

One of my one-day walks was in the Megalong Valley area of the Blue Mountains. It was the circuit from Carlons Farm to Breakfast Creek, Cox’s River, Galong Creek, and back to Carlons Farm.  Another one-day walk was from Waterfall to Palona Cave, followed by a rough off-track ascent of Neram Spur to Uloola Falls, and finally across to Heathcote.  For my overnight walk I was in the Budawangs, where we camped in a big cave on the edge of Mt Tarn. This walk included a major ascent of Mt Owen using a rope to help us ascend two steep defiles in the clifflines. At night there was heavy rain, so we were glad to be able to move around nice and dry in the cave. 

What's your favourite piece of gear in your pack and why? My GPS is my favourite piece of gear because I have done a lot of off-track walking. If I am on a walk where there’s tricky navigation, I like to record waypoints on the GPS so that I can then note them down on my maps for future use when I want to return to that area.
Which piece of gear couldn't you live without and why? I could not live without my maps!  In the bush I always like to know where I am, and where I am going, so I am often looking at my maps. I now have a large collection of maps, and I have made extensive track notes on them over the years.
Volleys, runners or boots? I normally wear boots, especially when I know that I will be going on an off-track walk, or on rough or soggy tracks.  I only wear runners or volleys on walks where I know that the tracks are going to be in reasonably good condition.
Average, Light or Ultra Light pack? I go mainly on day-walks nowadays, and I take a day-pack with a 30-litre capacity, which is ideal for me on these walks. I do not need an ultra-light pack.
What is the weight of your standard weekend pack not including water? When I regularly did overnight walks, the weight of my loaded pack was often around 12 -15 kgs.  I could get that figure much lower these days by using a lighter weight sleeping bag. 
What's your walking motto? Just be out there in the great outdoors and enjoy yourself in the company of likeminded fellow walkers.
What's one piece of advice you can offer new walkers that you wish you knew when you started? Make sure you take enough water!  I suggest walkers take 3 litres in warmer months, and 2 litres in cooler months.  Depending on the length and toughness of the walk, these figures can obviously be varied up or down.
Favourite walking areas? My favourite walks are in the hills and ridges that flank the lower Hawkesbury River between Wiseman’s Ferry and the sea.  I love the sweeping panoramic views of the river that you get from ridges and clifftops in national parks such as Kuringai Chase, Dharug, Marramarra, Popran, Bouddi, and Brisbane Water. My other favourite walks are the Mt Solitary traverse, and the Wild Dogs area of the Blue Mountains.
Most memorable walks? Undoubtedly my most memorable walks are the multi-day traverses I did of the spectacular Western Arthur Range in southwest Tasmania. Other great Tasmanian multi-day trips have been the South Coast Track, the Overland Track, and my two rafting trips down the Franklin River. I have also greatly enjoyed memorable multi-day treks in the Bogong high plains of Victoria and the high country of the Snowy Mountains in NSW.  Closer to Sydney, my several Easter trips over four days from Kanangra to Katoomba or Carlons Farm are truly memorable for their absolutely spectacular scenery.
Describe the kind of walks you like to do and your style?

I mainly lead one-day walks, and they always have wonderful views. My walks are all about great scenery!  Most walks are medium grade or easy walks.  I much prefer ridges and hilltops rather than valleys and creeks, and I often include off-track and exploratory sections. I prefer a moderate pace rather than a fast pace, so I am definitely no tiger walker. But I go fast when I am doing long walks like the Mt Solitary traverse and Bundeena to Otford, when you have to walk hard and strong! ;On my walks I like to have plenty of stops on hills and ridges so that we have time to savour the great views.

What's your walks philosophy? A sense of adventure, a moderate pace, and enjoying scenic views with fellow walkers.
What's on your walking wish list? I have done little bushwalking in Europe, so that is something I would like to do.  For example, a long distance walk in the Black Forest sounds great to me, or walks in the Pyrenees, the High Tatry Mountains of Slovakia, or walks in northern Italy. In Australia some enticing places I would like to visit are the Grampians and Wilsons Promontory in Victoria, and the Flinders Ranges in South Australia.

New Members Information Night
New Members Information Nights are held every month except January, at 16 Fitzroy Street Kirribilli, 7:30pm - 8:30 pm on the second Wednesday the month.


February 2017 - Autumn Program released!

The Autumn Program for 2017 is now out and has been emailed to members. Check it out for lots of great walks around Sydney and beyond. If you haven't got your copy, it can be downloaded from the Member's Area of the website. You'll need to login to access it.


Prospective Members, watch your Qs

Are you a Prospective Member and have completed your Qualifying (Q) day walks and overnight trip as well as the first aid and navigation training requirements? If yes, then you're eligible to become a Full Member!


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