Renewing your membership
Existing SCBW members - please renew your membership using this Member Renewal Form.
New and prospective members
You might like to look at our Recent walks program to get an idea of the sort of walks the South Coast Bush Walkers like to do. Our club does a mixture of day, overnight and longer walks, mostly grade 4 and above. See our Walk gradings to understand more about the various levels of walks.
There are certain things we expect of you, but also things that you can expect from us. See Expectation of Members.
If you are keen to join, follow the instructions on our Online membership form. If you are not sure whether a walk is right for you, email the walk leader. Allow yourself plenty of time to Book for walks.
Once you have booked your walk, it's time to work out What to bring. It sounds odd, but some members really find it fun to sort out their walking gear, especially once you have built your confidence a bit.
Some more information can be found in our Walker Guidelines document (click the link to view)
See below for more information on safe walking, car shuffles and car pooling.
- The Bushwalkers Code of Conduct is essential reading for all bushwalkers, so please take the time to read through it. Our ultimate goal is that you enjoy the bush and leave no trace. Anyone with some experience walking knows what it is like to come across toilet paper in the bush. Nothing worse!...... And it does not have to be like that.
- Hygiene - Read the Hygiene section in the Bushwalkers Code of Conduct. Another great approach is to have a ziplock bag for disposal of paper. If you are not going to carry it out , make sure that the hole is good and deep. Add a stone on top or a small log if you can. Animals are inquisitive and have a good sense of smell. Make sure your waste stays buried.
- Walk with a group - Not getting lost is just one of the many reasons why walking in a group is the way to go. Make it your aim to learn something new every trip. When you start out, you will be learning left, right and centre. But there is always something new to learn - whether from another group member or from an experience on the walk.
- Weather - It is essential that you know What to bring. A good rain jacket or extra layer of clothes can make the difference between a fun day out, and a day when you get hypothermia. Check the weather forecast. Dress and pack appropriately. And always be prepared for a change of weather. You should never leave home without certain essentials such as a raincoat. Bushwalking NSW has a great page on weather hazards that can arise, and what to do if you are caught out in such conditions. If you are caught in a bushfire, you will want to know what to do.
- Plans - Bushwalking is one of those things that are about the journey as much as the destination. As part of a club's safety a walk plan will be added to the walks program. But then on the day it will be the walk leader's call as to how the walk pans out, depending on variables including the weather, group abilities, any injuries that arise. Sometimes that might even mean that a walk is cancelled altogether.
- Lighting fires/cooking in the bush - Australia is a dry continent. The first consideration is safety. A total fire ban in NSW means no fires - indeed, no cooking with fuel burners either. Enjoy not having to carry the gear! Plan your food around this. See Fire safety in the Bushwalkers Code of Conduct for more information.
- Distance between walkers when in a group - At our club the leader will always request that that walking group stay together, and this is for safety. However there will always be a spread of abilities across a group, and some walkers will go up a hill faster than others. The group will only ever walk as fast as the slowest walker, which is why it is important to make sure the grading of the walk you choose is suitable for you. The leader can help you decide this. Choosing a walk that is too difficult for you could cause a safety hazard for the whole group.
- Walking on track - Wherever there is an option to go one way or another, or even a lack of clarity in the trail, wait for all group members to be together before proceeding. Keep an eye out for the person behind you and if you can't spot them, it's probably a good time to pause until regrouped.
- Walking off track - The distance between walkers will vary with the terrain. If travelling through denser shrubs, group members should be closer together - in some instances within sight of each other. Walking off track will take more time - not just to get through the vegetation, but also to navigate the terrain - and requires significantly more skill from the walk leader.
- First aid - Bushwalker health on the Bushwalking NSW site is a good place to start. See the first aid list. The more people with first aid training the better. If you don't know the difference between hypothermia and hyperthermia, you should.
- If you have a pre-existing medical condition, you must let the walk leader know.
See our What to know page for more sites to explore.
On some walks a car shuffle is needed. A car shuffle is when one or more cars are left at the walk destination, and walkers car pool to the start of the walk. Then at walk completion, owners are driven to the walk start to collect their cars. The walk leader will typically organise and negotiate this.
A car can typically accommodate 3-4 passengers, so for some destinations there is value in sharing transport costs for a group walk. The walk leader will typically organise or suggest this if it makes sense.
- It is polite for walkers to offer to pay the vehicle owner to cover the cost of fuel. Please bring cash of $5.00 $10.00 or $20.00 for this purpose if you are car pooling.
- If you are travelling in another car, don't forget to consider bringing a change of clothing and footwear, as its not uncommon to get a bit smelly and/or muddy on our walks!