Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal routes?

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Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal routes?

Postby YoungCodger » Mon 10 Feb, 2020 7:24 pm

Hi there. Is there a list, directory or index of Australian trails? Ideally an index that is searchable by characteristics, like distance, difficulty and elevation.
My aim at the moment is to choose a 100-160km trail (or longer), which is currently open and not too hard to navigate.

Also, I am really interested in which aboriginal routes still exist as walkable trails? For example, The Bundian Way, though I understand that the trail is not fully formed or accessible yet.

I'd like to have a go at establishing a FKT (fastest known time) along a pre-existing route. An Aboriginal trail would be most interesting to me, but I'm interested in any recommendations. Has such a list has been compiled anywhere?

Thanks!
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby Zapruda » Tue 11 Feb, 2020 6:27 am

To answer part of your first question - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_l ... _Australia

Difficulty is up to the individual. If you want a track that is easy to navigate then I assume you have little experience. There is an abundance of easy to navigate tracks out there.

Why not put together your own track/route by joining several different tracks up in your favourite area?

To answer your question on aboriginal tracks – I don’t think there is a list. Sadly “tracks” used by indigenous people are long forgotten or are obscured by infrastucre and farms. That’s not to say with a bit of research you can’t find out roughly where they went. They mostly followed rivers, creeks and valleys. If you are willing to go out and explore off track these thing become pretty apparent.

Personally, I think wanting to FKT an aboriginal track is in poor taste. For example, the Bundian way was used for the summer moth harvest in the alps. These journeys and large gatherings often happened in conjunction with sacred male initiations and inter tribe peace.

Racing through something like that to be the fastest sounds narcissistic. If you must FKT something do it on an established track that lacks the cultural heritage an indigenous one might.

If you are indigenous, go and talk to one of your elders about old tracks and song lines.
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby crollsurf » Tue 11 Feb, 2020 7:32 am

Some Aborigine tracks are now roads. The Pacific Hwy along the North Shore of Sydney was a major Aboriginal track before the area was developed.
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby Warin » Tue 11 Feb, 2020 11:24 am

crollsurf wrote:Some Aborigine tracks are now roads. The Pacific Hwy along the North Shore of Sydney was a major Aboriginal track before the area was developed.


The Pacific Hwy along the North Shore of Sydney was a goat track in my mothers day. It was the easiest path along the ridge lines to ease the work done by the horse. Aborigines and others used it for the same reason - least amount of work. I would think other Aboriginal paths would have similar features.
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby YoungCodger » Tue 11 Feb, 2020 12:04 pm

Zapruda wrote:To answer part of your first question - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_l ... _Australia

...

Why not put together your own track/route by joining several different tracks up in your favourite area?

...

Personally, I think wanting to FKT an aboriginal track is in poor taste.
...
If you are indigenous, go and talk to one of your elders about old tracks and song lines.


Wiki resource: thanks, perfect!
I discovered that AllTrails also has some long options indexed by characteristics.

Linking together existing routes: that would be the ideal option, but the areas I know are all fire-affected and closed for now. But that's a great approach, and that's what I'm researching in other areas. Perhaps someone has a good suggestion? My preference for easy-to-navigate is simply because it's a very long run and I'll be exhausted, and constantly navigating is an extra energy drain whilst running (whereas I find it's a lot of fun when walking).

FKTing an aboriginal route could be in poor taste: I agree completely. It's delicate area, and I would never attempt an FKT along an aboriginal route without the blessing of the relevant elders. I've reached out about the Bundian Way and will do so for any route I'm considering. The report from the local aboriginal land council about The Bundian Way describes how their goal is to bring people through the area to learn. I'm hoping for a route which the communities would like to have attention drawn to. For me it will be a chance to learn more and study the area ahead of the FKT, then study it as I do recon. Afterwards I can point others towards the knowledge and the route. I've been inspired by reading Dark Emu. If I receive a "No, and the idea of this along any route is disrespectful" from an elder, I'll drop the idea.
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby YoungCodger » Thu 22 Oct, 2020 3:59 pm

Zapruda wrote:Why not put together your own track/route by joining several different tracks up in your favourite area?


Thanks for that idea.

I spent the next two months doing just that, and linked trails into a 130km loop of the Blue Mountains where I grew up. It passes over both the North and South sides of the Blue Mountains, sticking to trails as much as possible, taking in some of the beautiful spots that are often overlooked https://fastestknowntime.com/route/blue-mountains-creek-peak-loop-nsw-australia.
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby ribuck » Thu 22 Oct, 2020 5:02 pm

That is one nifty loop, Young Codger. I hope to do it (somewhat slower than you) when I can get back into Australia.
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby YoungCodger » Thu 22 Oct, 2020 7:00 pm

Glad to hear it! I enjoyed scouting the trails and piecing together the puzzle as much as the running of the finished route itself.

It would be best run over two days - so that you get all the scenery. I missed fourteen hours' worth during the night, which inspired me to do that section over again.

Enjoy! Let me know if you have any questions - where taps are, etc.
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby ribuck » Thu 22 Oct, 2020 9:02 pm

YoungCodger wrote:It would be best run over two days - so that you get all the scenery.

I was actually thinking of walking it over a week :)
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Re: Directory of 100+km trails? Directory of aboriginal rout

Postby YoungCodger » Wed 19 May, 2021 2:29 pm

ribuck wrote:I was actually thinking of walking it over a week :)


The route I posted earlier was ideal for an ultra-marathon, in that it finished with an easy, uneventful leg from Tableland Rd to St Helenes Ridge fire trail. Perfect for when you are brain dead, but a little boring for a bush-walk.

Since I posted last I've spent seven months exploring the Blue Mountains each week on long runs and exploratory hikes. I'm concocting a remote route which I think is much more interesting and spectacular. When I settle on it I'll post it here in case you're interested ribuck. In essence I would eschew the uneventful sections in place of some spectacular passes into the upper or lower Grose, on and off Narrow Neck, and possibly into the Wild Dogs. That might mean it has to become a point-to-point, or perhaps two loops.

In the meantime, if you're still looking for an outing - have you tried Bruce's Walk? It's nice to then continue on the Old Point Pilcher Track into the Grand Canyon walk at Blackheath, emerging at Evan's Lookout. Very pretty, some steep sections. Great day out. https://www.plotaroute.com/route/1554424
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