Walking Since 1939

Covid-19 status

17/2/21 Walk Program continues

 

As the government has ended lockdown, all walks currently on the program will continue as planned, with a limit of 20 per walk.

 

Please note the mask requirements means they are needed outdoors in settings where you cannot socially distance.

 

Walkers will be required to book in to each walk (including Sunday walks). Bookings for members will open one week before non-members, as at present.

 

Please note the start point and time for all walks, including Sunday walks will be advised by your Leader.  DO NOT assume for Sunday walks that the meeting point is 9am at Flagstaff station.

 

All walk fees for non-members will be prepaid to avoid Leaders having to handle cash.  There will be no refunds, unless there are exceptional circumstances (e.g. someone cancels because they have Covid-19 symptoms – they are being considerate of others).

 

Please note that car-pooling arrangements are different under Covid-19. Walkers will be advised via the event description (including Sunday walks) that:

  • If you don’t have a car, we can’t guarantee to provide you with a lift – this will depend on available drivers and their locations. Drivers can choose whether they wish to take passengers or not.
  • If you choose to car pool with another person, you do so at your own risk.
  • If you choose to use public transport to get there, you do so at your own risk. Please follow government guidelines for car-pooling and the walk itself and practice social distancing and good hygiene.

 

12/2/21 Lockdown impact

At this stage, all walks on the program are expected to go ahead, as they are after the scheduled end of our  lockdown on Wednesday 17th February.  Accordingly, walkers can continue to book in.  However, if the lockdown is extended walks will be cancelled, and we will advise you at that time, of what the arrangements are for refunds, rescheduling etc”.

 

12/11/20 Walk Program recommencing


Types of Walks on the Program
  • Depending on Leader availability, we may offer day or evening walks, multiple walks per day, weekend and weekday walks
  • We can do pack-carries or base camps, provided only one person per tent, except for couples or persons from the same household
  • There will be a maximum of 10 people, including the leader, on all walks – including Sunday walks.  At the leader’s discretion there may be less (minimum of 4 for remote bushwalks).
  • Leader’s have discretion as to start times and duration of walks (they may choose to start the walk earlier or later than normal to minimise crowding at popular walks)
  • As leaders nominate walks they will be advertised on the website.
  • We won’t advertise walks on Meetup, as we expect more than enough interest from our members and the non-members on our mailing list.

Booking and Prepayment

Walkers will be required to book in to each walk (including Sunday walks). Bookings for members will open one week before non-members, as at present.

All walk fees for non-members will be prepaid to avoid Leaders having to handle cash.  There will be no refunds, unless there are exceptional circumstances (e.g. someone cancels because they have Covid-19 symptoms – they are being considerate of others).


Walkers please notify Leaders immediately if you need to cancel, so that someone else has the opportunity to book in.

 

Walk Locations

At this stage, there is no restriction on how far we can travel within Victoria.

 

Transport to and from Walk Location

Leaders will generally not arrange car-pooling. Walkers will be advised via the event description that:

  • You need to make your own way to and from the walk location.
  • If you choose to car pool with a friend or family member, you do so at your own risk.
  • If you choose to use public transport to get there, you do so at your own risk. Please follow social distancing and good hygiene practices.

Restrictions on Participation

The website walk description for your event will provide walkers with the guidelines below as to whether you should participate and this will be a condition upon which you book in.   The Leader has Club authority to remind your group of these restrictions as required, e.g. at the meeting point, the night before the walk and/or when they provide you with the meeting point details:

 

We need to follow all state government guidelines regarding COVID-19, hence if you are required to be in quarantine or isolation, live in a restricted area (if and when designated by state government) or are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms (https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/victorian-public-coronavirus-disease-covid-19#what-are-the-symptoms-of-coronavirus-covid-19)  including the following, you should NOT be doing this walk:

  • Loss or change in sense of smell or taste
  • Fever
  • Chills or sweats
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Runny nose
  • In certain circumstances headache, muscle soreness, stuffy nose, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea may also be considered.


If you or anyone in your household feels sick in any way, please cancel. If you become unwell during the walk please notify your Leader immediately.


If you are in a high risk category, including being elderly or having a pre-existing medical condition, you should consider carefully whether you participate as the Club will accept no liability if you choose to participate.


Social Distancing and Good hygiene

Please practice social distancing and good hygiene before, during and after the walk.

 

The website event description will set out the following, so that walkers know what is expected of them:

  • Wear a mask. Walkers not wearing a mask covering nose and mouth will be asked to leave.
    • Refer to: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/face-masks-vic-covid-19
    • Note that there are situations where you are allowed to remove your mask (e.g. out of breath or puffing, food/drink break, medical condition, emergencies).
    • You must wear a mask when indoors (e.g. public toilets, huts, exploring a cave, cafe).
  • Maintain a distance of 1.5 metres between yourself and other walkers.
  • Do not share food / water / equipment, or shake hands.
  • Use tissues and do not dispose of these in the bush. Carry a plastic bag for disposing of tissues.
  • Cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow.
  • Wash hands or use sanitiser after contact with shared surfaces, e.g. gates, fences, benches, petrol pumps.

 

Refer also to https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/staying-safe-covid-19

 

If anyone on the walk is not practicing good hygiene, the Leader will provide them with one reminder. If they continue inappropriate practices the Leader has Club authority to ask them to leave the walk.

 

8/7/20

The walk program has been suspended with immediate effect given the Melbourne  restrictions that are now in force.  Resumption will depend on lifting of restrictions to enable groups of at least 10 and leaders being willing to restart.

Please note we have already extended any memberships active at 1 April or commenced or renewed after that date for an additional 6 months.  During this time we have not being sending membership renewal reminders.  Your membership expiry date is located under your member profile details.


06/7/20

 

To maintain the health of all walkers and leaders the following protocols apply:

 

    • Day walks only
    • Minimum of 4 and maximum of 10 participants (including Leader)
    • Leader discretion as to start times and duration of walks (these maybe at unusual times to minimise risk of encountering others)
    • Multiple walks per day and weekday walks possible (if there are enough leaders)
    • Remoter locations, or locations with wider paths
    • Walkers must book into each walk (including Sunday walks)
    • Prepayment of walk fees for non-members (generally no refunds if you cancel)
    • No carpooling arranged by Club. All participants must be able to make their own way to the walk start. If you can’t make your own way to the start, please do not book.
    • Good hygiene practices during the walk (social distancing, everyone to have their own hand sanitisers, no sharing food/water/equipment, care and extra use of hand sanitisers with public toilets, handrails, rocks etc where others may have touched).

As leaders nominate walks they will be advertised on the website.

 

Should you participate?

Leaders will be asking all walkers the following questions at the start of the walk:

1. Are you experiencing any of the following symptoms:
– fever
– flu-like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and fatigue
– shortness of breath; AND

2. Do you live in a restricted postcode?

 

If so, unfortunately you will not be able to participate in the walk.

 

If you or anyone in your household feels sick in any way, please cancel. If you become unwell during the walk please notify your Leader immediately.

 

Leaders will also ask the group to confirm the night before, including themselves, that nobody meets any of the criteria that would prevent them from walking.

 

If you are in a high risk category, including being elderly or having a pre-existing medical condition, you should consider carefully whether you participate as the Club will accept no liability if you choose to participate.

 

Maximum of 10 walkers, including Sunday walks. Prepayment of fees

There will be a maximum of 10 people, including the leader on all walks – including Sunday walks. At the leader’s discretion there may be less (minimum of 4 for remote bushwalks).

 

Members will still receive one week advance booking.

 

All walk fees will be prepaid to avoid Leaders having to handle cash. Unless there are exceptional circumstances there will be no refunds. So please do not book unless you are fully committed to walking. If you book and cannot do the walk, please let your Leader know immediately, so that someone else has the opportunity.

 

Accommodated and hut walks, overnight and extended walks, public transport walks

Accommodated walks, hut walks, overnight and extended walks and public transport walks remain cancelled until further notice.

 

Good hygiene

During the walk please practice good hygiene to minimise the risk of infection. Maintain a distance of 1.5 meters between yourself and your fellow walkers. Do not share food or water or shake hands. Use tissues and do not dispose of these in the bush. Cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow. Wash hands and use sanitiser after contact with petrol pumps,  public toilets, handrails, rocks etc, where there have been many hands.

If you are not able to practice good hygiene during the walk after repeated warnings, your Leader will ask you to leave the walk.

 

Car pooling and public transport

We encourage you to think carefully before using public transport to get to the walk meeting points.

 

The Club and Leaders will not organise carpooling. If you organise your own please follow government guidelines.

 

You will need to organise your own way to the start of the walk.

 

Before and After walk activities

Please consider carefully all before and after walk activities, such as takeaway coffee, cake, dinner etc and ensure you can comply with the social distancing and good hygiene recommendations.

 

Club nights

Club nights will continue virtually using zoom. Please register beforehand on the website to receive your invite. Participation is at your own risk, regarding security issues. However there should be no private issues discussed.

 

Cancellation of walks at short notice, different start times, duration and days

Walks maybe cancelled if Leaders no longer feel comfortable leading or the Committee considers the risks too high, if participants are not observing social distancing and good hygiene.

 

To minimise risks of encountering other groups start times may be earlier or later than usual. The walks may even be held on a weekday. With maximum participants of 10, there may be more than one hike offered per day, depending on leader availability.

 

We are continually monitoring the situation, and expert advice is changing rapidly, so please monitor the website and your emails the evening before, and morning of, your walk. We may need to cancel events at short notice.

 

11/5/20

The YHA Bushwalking Victoria Committee is meeting Wednesday night 13 May, 2020 to discuss what the relaxation of some restrictions means for the Club.  We will then schedule a meeting with leaders to determine who might be comfortable with leading walks and what constraints we will need to have to ensure the safety of all participants. We will keep you informed as decisions are made.

 

March, 2020

As a result of the Victorian and a Federal government announcements, our current walk program has been suspended until further notice.The Victorian Government has cancelled all non-essential activities including sporting events. All non-essential travel is to be avoided.  Bushwalking does not qualify as essential travel.

 

The safety and welfare of our leaders, members, walkers and the community is paramount.  We hope you can stay safe and healthy during this difficult time.

 

We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will resume walking as soon as it is safe to do so.

 

Please refer to the Victorian and Federal websites for further advice and support services.

 

Club nights

Physical club nights have also been cancelled until further notice. However we recognise it’s important to maintain connections during these strange and unusual times.  So we will be starting virtual club nights using zoom technology, commencing from 5 May, 2020. Further details are on the current walks program.

 

Membership fees

Given the current circumstances, all members as at, or joining after, 1 March, 2020,  will receive an additional free 6 months membership.  Your membership expiry date will be extended under your membership profile.

 

Please note we no longer use physical membership cards.