Rat-a-Tat History

Queensland specific bushwalking discussion.
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Queensland specific bushwalking discussion. Please avoid publishing details of access to sensitive areas with no tracks.

Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Danielclimbs » Thu 24 Aug, 2017 11:16 pm

Just curious having returned frpm the Rat-a-Tat site. Was there actually a hut at some point? And what happened to it? Thanks
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby tomh » Fri 25 Aug, 2017 7:34 am

This doesn't answer your question but an article Blazes on the Border - A bushwalk to remember in the Feb 2017 Sydney Bushwalker magazine is an interesting read and includes a visit to the rat-a-tat 'hut' in 1979.
http://www.sbw.org.au/images/documents/magazines/201702_February_SBW_Magazine.pdf
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby kbm63 » Fri 10 Nov, 2017 9:35 am

That is a great story. Thanks for providing the link.
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Waipuna » Mon 05 Feb, 2018 5:11 am

Danielclimbs wrote:Just curious having returned frpm the Rat-a-Tat site. Was there actually a hut at some point? And what happened to it? Thanks


The hut was still there in the late 90's.

I have camped in the hut a few times through the 80's and 90's.
The last time I was there was 1996 and I spent 3 nights camped in the hut due to blizzard conditions making the hike back from the Stinson really challenging.

It had a dirt floor and 3 x corrugated iron walls (open front) and had enough room to set the tent up at one end and sit and cook at the other end.

There was a small permanent creek behind for water.

Disappointed to hear it is not there any more.

W
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Danielclimbs » Thu 26 Apr, 2018 2:49 pm

Waipuna wrote:
Danielclimbs wrote:

W


That's quite remarkable that there was a hut there - How would they have managed to get those materials in so deep?

I think it would be an excellent idea for QPWS to rebuild a hut there.. We have them down south as emergency refuges, and they at times erect one when someone perishes.. I know it would probably increase traffic (of the good kind) too.

What are your thoughts?
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby weeds » Thu 26 Apr, 2018 3:46 pm

Didn’t realize there was once a hut....

We camped by the creek a couple of years ago.......planning another visit this winter


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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Aardvark » Thu 26 Apr, 2018 5:55 pm

I think it would be an excellent idea for QPWS to rebuild a hut there.. We have them down south as emergency refuges, and they at times erect one when someone perishes.. I know it would probably increase traffic (of the good kind) too.

They won't put any hut anywhere in SEQ. We just don't have the climate to require huts and all the trouble that goes with them. The history of Barney hut is a perfect example.
Why would you want to put a blight on the landscape? Why not keep the bush for those who can be self sufficient?
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Waipuna » Thu 26 Apr, 2018 7:55 pm

Aardvark wrote:
I think it would be an excellent idea for QPWS to rebuild a hut there.. We have them down south as emergency refuges, and they at times erect one when someone perishes.. I know it would probably increase traffic (of the good kind) too.

They won't put any hut anywhere in SEQ. We just don't have the climate to require huts and all the trouble that goes with them. The history of Barney hut is a perfect example.
Why would you want to put a blight on the landscape? Why not keep the bush for those who can be self sufficient?



Yeh I wouldn't quite be so harsh about a simple 3 walled tin hut in a very remote location.

In August 1996 I had 2 x 15 year old students with me doing a Duke of Edinborough hike to the Stinson when the weather turned really sour.
We were completely self sufficient and had the ability to get warm and dry in a good quality tent. But the mere presence of Rat-a-tat Hut meant that 3 drenched a weary hikers, one who was showing early signs of hypothermia were able get dry quickly, and with the help of some shellite fuel, start a fire and keep it going for the next 3 days.

Without the hut it would have been a horrible 3 days with 3 people in a single tent battling trying to cook meals to stay warm. Instead it was a very memorable and even life -changing time for those 2 x young people.

Who knows, strategically placed huts like this have the potential to save life but can also make great destinations even more memorable for those who make the effort to get there.

W
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Champion_Munch » Thu 26 Apr, 2018 8:38 pm

Have to agree with aardvark. Yes, there will always be convenience with a hut (or in this case a shack). But by that reasoning there should be a hut at every campsite. The rat-a-tat site is less than one day walk (even in poor weather) from the resort at O’Reillys. Few parties would stay more than one night.

You could even argue that huts in wilderness areas actually have the potential to cause more harm to people than good. Huts are likely to draw less experienced hikers to remote places, who will rely too heavily on the shelter for protection.

When it comes to wilderness areas, it’s hard to see how increased traffic can have a positive effect on the environment. Last time I was at that campsite, there was a well formed (and apparently recently used) fire pit. This despite Lamington np being a fuel stove only area. Where do you imagine people are getting the firewood from? I’m sure they didn’t carry it in.
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Aardvark » Thu 26 Apr, 2018 10:54 pm

Huts are likely to draw less experienced hikers to remote places, who will rely too heavily on the shelter for protection.

Yes, and those very people would also claim that having a fire is an integral part of the camping experience. Then they will denude the surrounding bushland of any wood and all animals in the area will vacate because there is nothing to provide their shelter. Why is a fire ever necessary in SEQ?. You should be carrying your own means of retaining warmth.
I am often disappointed at reaching a site to find someone has left a fireplace. Classic examples are : the clearing above the Superbus bomber wreck; the top of Mt.Huntley; Lizard Point; East Pk of Barney; Point Lookout above the Stinson Wreck and the clearing below Rum Jungle where the old Barney hut used to be.
These are all in NP's and are fuel stove only.
I have a story i used to relate to people alot about a time i was leading a walk for a club down the east peak of Barney. We saw a wisp of smoke coming from the clearing.
As we entered the clearing some fifteen minutes later, i saw a group of boys with one bending over a 'miserable effort of a fire' to burn rubbish. I stood over him and quietly advised him that a fire for that purpose was impractical and i would prefer to carry his rubbish out for him. I added that if the rangers knew he was lighting a fire, they would take a dim view. It seemed the mention of a ranger was enough to evoke a response from an older gentleman who i had not as yet noticed was there. He was immediately compliant and apologetic. We found out they were scouts. I was even more disappointed hearing that. I was a scout.
It made me realise that all the progress i had imagined we had made as a society toward sustainable practices was non-existant. We haven't gone far at all .
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Waipuna » Fri 27 Apr, 2018 7:36 pm

I here what you guys are saying but I still support the notion that our fantastic Australian bush is not for an elite few and anything that encourages more people out of the cities to spend nights out in nature can only increase the ratio of people who respect the environment over time.

You don’t learn the deep respect that we have until you have overcome the physical challenges and sometimes the personal fears to achieve a goal and reach a challenging destination in the bush.

Of course there will always be idiots and we will all do what we can to minimise their impact but the rest should not miss out because of them.

I own an 1100 hectare nature refuge of untouched and pristine steep mountains and rainforest that we’ve been hiking and enjoying for the last 12 years. It is remote and challenging country with a boundary hike taking several days.

It hosts an incredible number of threatened and endangered species of flora and fauna that we actively manage and protect. It is a special place which is why I have taken measures to protect what is there in perpetuity through the negotiation of a legal conservation agreement over this property.

But you know what? I also consider this property to be a people refuge and encourage as many people as possible to get out there and learn to understand and respect nature.
I have rules and people who have broken them have never been back but almost all, whether experienced or novice have returned home learning something new and experiencing some personal growth.

Those that disrespect the bush frustrate me equally as much as you. However I would prefer to still focus on how we can have a positive impact on the planet through training and educating those who have not enjoyed the same same opportunities as we have and encourage them to experience first hand some of the best and remote places Australia has to offer.

If a few shacks here and there scattered through the most remote sections of National Parks means that a few extra people get out there.....then I support the idea.

Once there and the more often they return, Nature itself will teach them the rest.

W
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Lyrebird » Wed 13 Jun, 2018 4:54 pm

Yesterday I walked to Rat - a - Tat and return from Green Mountains as a full day walk.
I remember someone asking if it can be done as a day return walk, and the answer is yes. However it's a long day, taking me nearly nine and a half hours including about half an hour in smokos. I'm not the fastest walker around (the Stinson return took me around nine hours) so speedier people could shave a bit off that.

It was an absolutely lovely walk and I'm glad to have done it. Once departing Echo Point the vegetation changes frequently, with walking stick palms, Antarctic Beeches and damp rain forest in patches depending on altitude. It was steep in sections but not impossibly so, and for the most part the foot-pad is largely well defined, well taped and seems to be in regular use. I only had to scratch around two or three times to find the path.

The camp site itself is pretty and much larger than I expected. There was plenty of water at the described point which figures, as Lamington has been wetter than usual for this time of year. Unfortunately I had to remove a bunch of Other People's Rubbish (several metal food tubes, which are hardly biodegradeable), and to add to the knuckleheadedness they were left partially hidden beside the water source :( . Given the relatively obscure location you'd hope visitors would be responsible and know better, but obviously not.

Anyway, it was a great walk and IMO perfectly doable as a day return, provided you don't stop too often and are prepared to either start or finish in the dark for a couple of hours along the Border Track. My plan involved being back at Echo Point no later than 1530 whether I made it to Rat-a-Tat or not, because I certainly woudln't want to be stuck up there overnight without gear.

P.S. Thanks for the add to the forum, and thanks for all the wonderful advice that's on here. I've only just returned to trail walking after a number of years, and it's great to be able to get up to date conditions and opinions. :)
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Aardvark » Wed 13 Jun, 2018 6:09 pm

Four of us went out to Kalinya Lookout on May 6 from O'Reilly's . With the return it also took 9.5 hrs. The taped route from the saddle below Throakban to Kalinya was diverted well west of the ridgeline. Long ago i recall the vegetation on the ridgeline below Kalinya was becoming a huge obstruction.
I suspect the tape was placed whilst travelling south. The tape was difficult to spy on our return.
DSCN9991 (2).jpgcopy_1024.jpg
Cloud cascades down over the slopes of Durigan

Taken from Mt.Throakban.
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Lyrebird » Wed 13 Jun, 2018 7:00 pm

Lovely photo! Is Kalinya Lookout between Mt Durigan and Mt Throakburn where Finch's Creek starts, or south of Throakburn? I couldn't find it marked on the Sunmap topo.
You obviously move a bit faster than I do :wink: . I would have liked to make it to Mt Throakburn and find the Robert's tree, but darkness was approaching. Maybe next time...

I also found the pink tapes favoured the southern path, so I guess that's they way they were placed. Either way they're not essential, but they do save a lot of scraping around. I think I came north from Mt Worendo to Echo Point campsite on a different trail from the one I went south on; it didn't seem as steep but led to the same NP warning sign.
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Aardvark » Wed 13 Jun, 2018 9:08 pm

Kalinya Lookout is on all my Tyalgum maps but then i don't have the latest sunmap version.
The track used to be very close to the escarpment and Kalinya LO was just a few large rocks to the east of the track that you could step up onto to get a good view into NSW. The clear area was steep and only suitable for a bivvy. I hammocked there with two others in 1999 on a three day walk from Numinbah tick gate to Tyalgum via Butlers ridge. I'd like to repeat that one.
Kalinya LO is about 60m higher up the hill SW of the saddle which is SW of Throakban. Above the north branch of Christmas Ck. Not as far as the 1035m summit.
The taped route we followed last month, i thought inevitable because it took a wide berth of the escarpment, to the west. The sharpies (nettles and spikey vines) were taking over on the ridge twenty years ago. The track was breaking up as people were finding various ways through the sharpies. There was a particularly bad patch starting directly below the lookout. I believe we bypassed the LO completely last month and maybe it's been cut off by the vegetation.
On that note, twenty years ago the saddle below was also swamped in wait-a-while and the route twisting all over due to treefall. A few years before that there were a series of clearings along there that would have accommodated multiple tents. I recall a sign indicating water 20 mins to the west.
I've seen plenty of evidence to suggest off track routes in SEQ have received less traffic as years have gone by.
However, the saddle i speak of above was cleared by someone recently to at least allow a straight line of travel.
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Re: Rat-a-Tat History

Postby Lyrebird » Wed 13 Jun, 2018 9:48 pm

Thanks for the info, I've pegged it. I'll go take a look.
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