Walking SA Leadership Development

Walking SA, as the peak body for recreational walking in South Australia, has received funding from The Office of Recreation, Sport and Racing to assist clubs in capacity building over this financial year.

We are embarking on a program to help you develop your club leadership skills base to maintain and grow your club walks program. Essentially – to get more people walking more often.

This project is being delivered in the following ways:

  1. Survey to determine need, complete the survey
  2. Leadership Development Workshop April, 2021 – tailored to recognised needs based on survey responses and club consultation
  3. Heavily subsidised places in Bushwalking Leadership SA courses for 2020/2021

For club members interested in participating, applications are through your club committee.  You can either go directly to the club, or get in touch with us indicating which club you belong to, and we will notify the club of your expression of interest.

Each club has a minimum of one 97% subsidised place on the Day Walk Course ($15 investment saving $495 discount), with limited spots available on the extensive Bushwalking Leadership Certificate ($50 investment saving a whopping $1370 – over 97% subsidised).  preference given to clubs running, or intending to run, overnight bushwalking events.

For individual members: The leadership project is for you too!  There are limited discounted places available on the leadership courses for individual members.  We also welcome your input on other aspects of the program. Please get in touch with project officer Rod: rod.quintrell@walkingsa.org.au to express your interest.

July 13: Covid-19 update for walking club activities

Relevant to walking clubs:

[view previous June 19 advice on numbers]

SA Health and SAPOL have made factsheets available to clarify restrictions related to:

Of particular note, the SA Health food safety team have clarified with SAPOL that BBQ’s will now be classified as “take away food” rather than communal food, which allows sausage sizzles and BBQ’s to be held at recreation/sporting venues. Certain measures must still be taken to reduce the risk of infection, including:

  • People being served must practice physical distancing when lining up to order and practice good hygiene.
  • No self-service of condiments etc. (person serving the food must apply condiments).
  • Cooked food must be protected from contamination and stored away from the area where orders are placed.

SA Health have also advised that shared food (i.e. oranges, lollies and recovery food) is still considered communal food and is not permitted.

Please refer to covid-19.sa.gov.au/emergency-declarations/public-activities for the latest information.

In accordance with Step 3 of the Roadmap and Emergency Management Directions, please note the following:

Density and Physical Distancing

  • Physical distancing measures must still be followed.
  • 1 person per 2 square metres.
  • 1.5 metres between people.
  • Room/venue limits will be subject to the 1 person per 2 square meters rule, so size of the room will determine capacity.
  • Outdoor recreation activities (such as walking/hiking) do not need to maintain records for the purposes of contact tracing.

Food and beverages

  • Purchase and consumption of food or beverages (including alcohol) is permitted as long as no communal food or beverage service areas are used (i.e. buffets, salad bars, water/beverage dispensers)
  • Team sharing of food during and after training and competition is not permitted (i.e. half time oranges, recovery food etc).
  • Food or beverages can now be consumed whilst seated or standing.

Communal facilities

  • Communal changing rooms, shower facilities and sauna or spa facilities and toilets are now permitted to be used.

Please refer to the Covid-19 Frequently Asked Questions for any questions you may have.

Covid-19 restrictions easing from 19 June: Walking Groups may increase numbers from 20 to 75

From this Friday, 19 June 2020, each walking group can increase from 20 to 75. Physical distancing of one person per 4sqm must still be maintained. The total number of people who can gather in one location has increased from 80 to 300 (up to 4 groups of 75). Each group of up to 75 should remain separate.

It is anticipated that the next stage of easing will occur on Monday 29 June. From this date, it is expected that group number limits will be removed, however, the limit of one person per 4sqm will remain in place.

Hygiene and cleaning practices should remain in place, and clubs should continue to maintain a process for tracking participants (in the event of an infection outbreak, this will be important to minimise the spread).

Please note the above restrictions are not recommendations by Walking SA, these are legally enforceable restrictions that we are passing on from the Premier, through the Office of Recreation, Sport and Racing (ORSR).

Related previous advice:

  1. Effective June 1: Walking Club Activities, transition to Step 2 of the SA Roadmap for Easing COVID-19 Restrictions
  2. Effective May 11: Plan for resumption of walking club activities – Level B

The Office of Recreation, Sport and Racing official advice effective 19 June 2020 is:

The key points that relate to sport and recreation are as follows:

Introduction of Stage 2.5 – from Friday 19 June

  • This will be an interim step before we move to Stage 3 of the roadmap
  • The number of people allowable in a room (or a group outside) within a venue will increase from 20 to 75 providing 1 person per 4 square metres can be accommodated. This will apply to training or competition groups.
  • The total number of people allowed in a venue will increase from 80 to 300 providing 1 person per 4 square metres can be accommodated. Again this will apply to all people, indoor and outdoor who are gathered at a club.

Stage 3 will commence earlier than expected on Monday 29 June

  • There will be no room or venue limit. This will be replaced with only a density requirement of 1 person per 4 square metres

From Monday 20 July

  • Border restrictions will be lifted
  • There will be no requirement on entry to SA to self-isolate for 14 days

While gyms for individual workouts can increase numbers in line with the above roadmap, increasing the cap of 10 participants in dance and fitness classes is still being considered.

We are still waiting on guidance regarding indoor contact sport.

As always organisations must submit their COVID Safe Plan before commencing activity and should ensure that cleaning and hygiene regimes are enforced.

Walking Club Activities, transition to Step 2 of the SA Roadmap for Easing COVID-19 Restrictions, effective June 1

This advice has since been updated

From this Friday, 19 June 2020, each walking group can increase from 20 to 75. Physical distancing of one person per 4sqm must still be maintained. The total number of people who can gather in one location has increased from 80 to 300 (up to 4 groups of 75). Each group of up to 75 should remain separate. Read more.

Restrictions and advice affecting walking clubs

Effective June 1

Today we have received confirmation from the Office of Recreation, Sport and Racing (ORSR), that walking clubs will be able to increase walk numbers up to 20 participants per group (plus 1 walk leader, totaling 21 people), from 1 June 2020. Other than the increase in numbers, all recommendations around distancing and hygiene maintenance still apply (1.5m between participants should still be maintained, and 1 person per 4 square metres). No more than 4 groups of 20 should be ‘gathered’ at any one time.

The ORSR is recommending that all clubs complete a COVID-19 Safe Plan prior to recommencing, however this is only mandatory for groups/clubs using clubrooms.

The recent specific advice issued by ORSR can be viewed on their website.

View the supporting advice (but note the above changes).

Covid-19: Plan for resumption of walking club activities – Level B – effective Monday 11 May 2020

This advice has since been updated

From this Friday, 19 June 2020, each walking group can increase from 20 to 75. Physical distancing of one person per 4sqm must still be maintained. The total number of people who can gather in one location has increased from 80 to 300 (up to 4 groups of 75). Each group of up to 75 should remain separate. Read more.

As restrictions from COVID-19 ease, the Office of Recreation, Sport and Racing advised all peak sporting and recreation bodies of the requirement to submit a plan for resumption of activities, which adhered to the national and state regulations. The formal, approved plan for walking is below. The key points are to:

  • Maintain walking groups of 10 or fewer
  • Maintain physical distance and hygiene practices
  • Avoid sharing equipment

Covid-19: Plan for resumption of walking club activities – Level B

Covid-19 return to sport – Level B – effective Monday 11 May 2020

This plan for walking clubs has been formulated in accordance with, and is effective immediately:

National guidelines

South Australian Restrictions

Overview

The resumption of walking activities can contribute many health, economic, social and cultural benefits to Australian society emerging from the COVID-19 environment and international evidence to-date is suggestive that outdoor activities are a lower risk setting for COVID-19 transmission.

The resumption of activities should not compromise the health of individuals or the community and will be based on objective health information to ensure activities are conducted safely and do not risk increased COVID-19 local transmission rates.

During Level B restrictions, walking club activities will be restricted to groups of 10 or fewer. Moving to the next stage of restrictions (Level C) will be dependent upon National, State/Territory and/or Local Public Health Authority guidance.  Importantly, resumption of walking club activities may be non-linear. Increasing restrictions may be required in response to fluctuating numbers of COVID-19 cases. All organisations need to be flexible to accommodate and respond to changes in community transmission rates and the associated changes in advice from Public Health Authorities.

At all times walking clubs must respond to the directives of Public Health Authorities. Localised outbreaks may require organisations to again restrict activity and those organisations must be ready to respond accordingly. The detection of a positive COVID-19 case in a sporting or recreation club or organisation will result in a standard public health response, which could include quarantine of the group, and close contacts, for the required period.  Due to the risks associated with large gatherings all walking club activities should limit those present to the minimum required to support the participants. All meeting venues should be assessed to ensure precautions are taken to minimise risk to those participating by accommodating social distancing requirements. Ideally, meeting points should be outside at the walk location and walk routes should favour loops or ‘there and back’ to avoid car-shuffles, noting many cars would not meet distancing requirements. Some walking clubs meet indoors prior to commencing walks or finish their walks with a social activity indoors. As recommended by the national guidelines, the current approach to club activities should focus on ‘get in, walk, get out’, minimising unnecessary contact in bathrooms and indoor areas. During Level B restrictions, walk leaders should choose clearly marked walking trails to minimise the likelihood of any first aid contact being required.  Ensure club safety protocols are in place, including a communication plan for each activity undertaken (e.g. mobile phones are carried, and numbers exchanged). Clubs and individuals should apply a graded return to mitigate injury risk, understanding that sudden increase in training load will predispose to injury.

All walks should be conducted with the social distancing and other requirements in place at the time, ensuring no contact between participants. This includes:

  • 1.5 metre minimum distance between participants
  • 4m2 minimum area per person
  • No single gathering shall exceed 10 people

For these purposes, a walk conducted by a club or involving club members is considered a gathering. Walks involving more than one club should not be held unless the total number attending is fewer than 10. Where a walking group exceeds 10 people, the walk should be split into 2 or more separate groups so that none exceed 10 people. If there is a possibility the number of people attending a walk will exceed 10, the leader should organise additional leaders for the separate groups. Where the groups intend to follow the same route, the leader of each following group must ensure that the group does not overlap or merge with the group ahead.

The configuration of each group shall not change during the walk. Except as necessary to deal with an emergency, participants should not move into a different group part way through the walk. Where possible, the walk participants should register with the walk leader before commencing. A simple record of all participants in each walk should be kept for at least 2 months to assist with contact tracing in the event a participant becomes unwell.

Steps for clubs to take prior to recommencing activities:

  • Provide advice to all participants not to return to club activities if in the last 14 days they have been unwell or had contact with a known or suspected case of COVID-19. Any individual with respiratory symptoms (even if mild) should be considered a potential case and must immediately self-isolate, have COVID-19 excluded and be medically cleared by a doctor to return to the training environment.
  • Create a club-specific protocol for recording walk participants and managing illness or injury (both during walks and if alerted to a participant’s illness after a club activity). Special consideration should be made for any participants with medical conditions as they may be more vulnerable to COVID-19 infection.
  • Have cleaning protocols in place for any equipment and facilities utilised.
  • If relevant, provide hand hygiene (hand sanitisers) on entry and exit to meeting venues
  • Advise walk leaders to plan walks based upon the guidelines contained within this plan.
  • Communicate this plan (and any club-specific steps) to all club members.

Steps for all club members:

  • Apply personal hygiene (wash hands or use hand sanitisers) pre and post activities. Consider bringing hand-sanitizer for personal use.
  • Do not share drink bottles, food, cups, plates, or any utensils for cooking, eating or drinking, or other personal items.
  • Do not attend any walks or activities if unwell (contact doctor).
  • Spitting and clearing of nasal/respiratory secretions while walking must be strongly discouraged.
  • Thorough full body shower with soap before and after walking club activities (at home).
  • No socialising or group meal.

WEA Ramblers June Long Weekend

WEA Ramblers walking in Padthaway Conservation Park on their long weekend hiking trip

WEA Ramblers walking in Padthaway Conservation Park on their long weekend hiking trip

We received this recent hiking weekend report from our Member Club, WEA Ramblers Walking Club:

On the recent June long weekend, 14 walkers of our walkers stayed at Cockatoo Downs Farm-stay in the northern Limestone Coast, 15km out of Keith. We were accommodated in cottages and camping. There is also bunkhouse accommodation available. We hired the farm-stay function hall for Saturday and Sunday where breakfast and excellent dinners were provided. This venue has great views from large windows and a wood fire provided warmth. We would recommend this accommodation and catering to other walking groups.

The Ramblers walked a 15km loop through the woodland at Padthaway Conservation Park on Saturday, and a 13.5km loop in the mallee at Desert Camp Conservation Reserve, with a visit to Mt Monster Conservation Park, on Sunday. On Monday morning we walked the 5.6km Tym’s Lookout Hike through the heath on sand dunes in the Mt Rescue section of Ngarkat Conservation Park.

View maps and photos of the walks.

As part of Walktober, WEA Ramblers will be hosting a walk on Sunday 22 October on the Sea-to-Summit Trail, walking in reverse from Belair to Kingston Beach. All welcome.

Public Consultation on Adventure Activity Standards (AAS) Sought

The Australian Adventure Activity Standards (AAS) are a voluntary best-practice framework for safe and responsible planning and delivery of outdoor adventure activities with dependent participants.

These new national standards are intended to replace existing Adventure Activity Standards (AAS) that are different in each state. Like the existing state-based standards, the new National Australian AAS are voluntary and are being designed primarily for groups with dependent participants such as school groups, scout, church and youth groups as well as commercial guides and tour operators. They are not intended to cover individual bushwalkers. Bushwalking clubs generally have a different duty of care and use different procedures to ensure the safety of walkers. Nevertheless, clubs may find the new standards useful when updating their own rules and safety procedures.

While both the existing and new standards are voluntary, there is some concern amongst the bushwalking community that government land managers or private landholders could in future seek to impose AAS on all bushwalkers as a condition of entry. Bushwalking Australia which is represented on the National Australian AAS Working Group, is working hard to make sure this does not happen. AAS applied in that way on clubs could become a bureaucratic nightmare for clubs with little benefit for walker safety.

Comments on the new draft standards are welcome and need to be submitted by May 29.

Success of the 2017 Hiking Expo

What an event! Hiking Expo 23 April 2017 at Belair National ParkWhat an event! At yesterday’s Hiking Expo between 1,500 and 2,000 people attended and over 550 people enjoyed the free guided walks around Belair National Park.

Our vision is to see more people walking more often, and yesterday we connected those people with new walking opportunities. We hope you found it as rewarding as we found in hosting the event!

But Wait, There’s More to Come!

Last week we received the great news that we have received funding from the Office of Recreation and Sport to conduct Walktober – a month long celebration of walking this October.

There will be a series of walking and hiking events (such as 2016’s Trails Less Travelled) and walking promotion throughout the month. Whether you walk for leisure, health or transport there will be something for you!

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, subscribe to email news about events, or watch our website for updates in coming months.

To see more events like this

Support walking and Walking SA to see more great events like this. Walking SA is the peak body for all forms of walking in South Australia, our vision is to see more people walking more often.

Support us with a membership from as little as $22 and together we can achieve that!

Maps from the Guided Walks

At yesterday’s Hiking Expo over 550 people enjoyed the free guided walks around Belair National Park.

We know some people missed out on a walk or their preferred walk. We’ve updated our event webpage with the walk maps, so you can undertake the walk yourself.

Please do note that most of these guided walks are walking routes, not walking trails, which means you will need to undertake the navigation yourself. Also some walk leaders may have modified the route during the walk to adapt to yesterday’s conditions.

If you prefer to follow marked trails, read about that below.

Explore other hikes and walks

If you prefer to follow marked trails, check out the 8 walks around Belair National Park that are listed in our Find a Place to Walk directory.

There are 400 walks in our Find a Place to Walk directory, so you find hikes that suit what you like.

A big thanks to our volunteer walk leaders!

A big thanks to our volunteer walk leaders, lgAll our wonderful walk leaders were volunteers from walking clubs and event partners. A big thanks to them all who guided everyone on the walks around the park. We’ve had so much great feedback about the walks!

Find more details about walking clubs.

Grants available for walking clubs from the Office for Recreation and Sport

Active Club Program

The Active Club Program helps active recreation and sports clubs with:

  • program and equipment (up to $5,000) and
  • facility upgrade requests (up to $25,000)

Round 43 is currently open and closes on 10th April 2017.

Community Recreation and Sport Facilities Program

The Community Recreation and Sport Facilities Program helps eligible organisations to establish or improve sport and active recreation facilities that meet the needs of the community in South Australia.

Organisations can apply under the following categories:

  • Minor facility development (requests $25,000 – $200,000) and
  • Major facility development (requests $200,000 – $1,000,000)

The funding round is currently open and closes on 10th April 2017.

Trails Less Travelled – hike Mt Lofty from a different direction, Sunday 16th October 2016

Trails Less Travelled: Hike Mt Lofty from a different direction. Sunday October 16 2016. Hikes from 8am.Most Adelaidians are familiar with the Waterfall Gully track to Mt Lofty Summit but did you know there are at least 9 other routes that can get you to the top? Come and join one of our hosted walks and discover some of the lesser known trails exploring Cleland Conservation Park and the trails beyond.

There are walk options to suit everybody. If you’re after a serious climb along forest trails to get your heart pumping, a gentle ramble to take in the scenery or something in between then we have a walk for you. Check out the options and choose from various lengths, terrain and starting points. All walks will start at 8am and will be led by one of our member clubs so you don’t even need to read a map! Registration is free.

Once you’re at the top, you can refresh yourself at the Summit Cafe and stroll among the stall holders in the summit courtyard.

So whether it’s a new route or an old favourite, register for one of the Trails Less Travelled and we’ll see you at the summit!

Focus on a walking club: Skyline Walkers

Skyline Walkers logoAbout the hiking club: Skyline Walkers is a walking club that meets at different locations on Saturday mornings at 9am. Each walk, led by club members, has two levels and takes approximately 2 to 3 hours. Walks are within 30 kilometres of Adelaide. The walk schedule, with the meeting point, is circulated to all members. The members enjoy additional social outings including a mid year dinner and a end of year AGM and luncheon0

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Office of Recreation and Sport – Funding opportunity for clubs

The Active Club Program helps active recreation and sports clubs with program and equipment (up to $5,000 and facility upgrade requests up to $25,000 on a $1 for $1 basis.)

It has two funding rounds per year: facility requests and program and equipment (Round 41) and program and equipment requests only (Round 42).

Guidelines for Round 42 can be found at:
ors.sa.gov.au/funding/apply_for_funding/active_club_program

Applications close 10th October 2016.

Australian Adventure Activity Standards, September 2016 Update

Bushwalking Australia has been advised of the establishment of a national project to develop a set of Australian Adventure Activity Standards (AAAS) to replace the existing state-based Adventure Activity Standards (AAS).

Bill Gehling from Walking SA is Bushwalking Australia’s representative on this matter and has been advocating the Bushwalking Australia policy summarised as:

Bushwalking Australia’s policy is that the proposed National Bushwalking AAAS must specifically exclude applicability to non-commercial users such as volunteer-run recreational groups including bushwalking clubs and groups of private individuals undertaking recreational adventure activities.

For further details please refer to bushwalkingaustralia.org/overview/policies

Bushwalking Australia hold their annual conference in November and Walking SA will be attending representing the South Australian bushwalking community. If you have matters you would like us to raise please contact the office.