Find out the latest news about the Track and the Foundation before you set off for your next walk.
2 November 2019
After 21 years as Chair, Mike Wood stood down from the role on 31 October 2019.
Mike’s involvement with the Track started around 1993 when he joined a steering committee that oversaw the Building a Better Bibbulmun Track Project that resulted in the current alignment and the construction of the campsites.
He was instrumental in establishing the Bibbulmun Track Foundation and has been Chair of the Board since it was incorporated in 1997 (as the Friends of the Bibbulmun Track).
In addition to chairing the Board, Mike, personally and through his businesses, has been, and continues to be, extremely generous in sponsoring and supporting the BTF. For over 20 years he provided free office space and donated hiking equipment for hire to walkers, as rewards for the BTF’s volunteers and as prizes for fundraising. He also assisted with community talks and promotion. He is a strong advocate for the Track to the WA Government and others.
On tendering his resignation Mike said “The Foundation is in a great position with an excellent board, strong community support and a fantastic team of staff and volunteers. I feel now is a great time to hand over the reins.”
Peter Sharp, Director of DBCA’s Parks and Visitor Services thanked Mike on behalf of the Department and stated that, under Mike’s leadership, the Foundation has become an outstanding example of a successful community partnership, having the common goal of the protection and enjoyment of a community asset that we are passionate about.
Kathleen Broderick was elected the new Chair and we are delighted to welcome her to the role. Kath has been on the Board since 2016 and a Bibbulmun Track member and maintenance volunteer for many years prior to that.
She has over 30 years’ experience in the education and natural resource management sectors, and has contributed strongly to regional development.
We are sure that Kath will continue to take the organisation from strength to strength.
25 October 2019
On Wednesday 9th October, Carolyn Riordan and Penni Ellis took the final steps of an incredible end-to-end to raise awareness and funds for the Lung Foundation Australia; and as a tribute to their father’s epic contribution to the creation of the Bibbulmun Track.
Their father, Peter Hewett, was the Superintendent at the Forests Department at the time the Track was being proposed. He was instrumental in ensuring district offices in the south west supported the formation of a long-distance walk trail. The first campsite from the northern end, Hewett’s Hill, is named after him.
Carolyn was diagnosed with stage-4 lung cancer in May 2018 despite having never smoked. She, and her sister Penni, decided it was time to walk the length of the Track to raise awareness of the disease, raise funds for the Lung Foundation, as well to honour their father. As Carolyn is still receiving treatment for her lung cancer, it meant that the walk needed to fit in with medical appointments in Sydney. Their amazing feat was celebrated at an event in Kalamunda’s Zig Zag Centre organised by the Lung Foundation and supported by the Bibbulmun Track Foundation office staff. Supported by friends, family and the Lung Foundation, Carolyn has already raised funds well above her target and will generously donate 10% of these to the BTF. 100% of all donations to the BTF go to the Track.
There are many ways to donate - Donate Online; Donate by Phone - Call us on (08) 9481 0551 - have your credit card details on hand to donate over the phone; or Donate by Mail - Post a cheque or money order to us at Bibbulmun Track Foundation, 300 Wellington Street, Perth WA 6000.
Federal Member for Hasluck, Ken Wyatt walked the final stages of the Bibbulmun Track with Carolyn Riordan. Read more here...
24 September 2019
On the ealry hours on Monday (23rd September) morning a fire broke out in the Balingup Tavern. Thankfully, the owner managed to get out of the building avoiding harm, however the fire has caused a substantial amount of damage to the Tavern. The tavern will be closed for some time but reports say there are plans to repair and re-open for business in the future. For Bibbulmun Track walkers please plan ahead as there are limited (if any) options for a hot evening meal in Balingup, enquire with the Visitor Centre for alternate options. Further details here.
20 September 2019
A boardwalk / possible bench seating will be built around the tree to protect the root system.
Discussions around relocating the Southern Terminus of the Bibbulmun Track and Munda Biddi Trail near the new visitor centre in York Street have progressed with a meeting held in Albany last week. The major redevelopment of the public space areas around the visitor centre, including Alison Hartman Gardens, has been undertaken in stages and we are hopeful that the development of a joint trailhead will occur within the next few months.
As both long-distance trails are named in recognition of the Noongar people and their connection to country, Foundation and DBCA representatives suggested that the trailhead signs be positioned with the Mokare statue as the backdrop. The statue is in recognition of the role Mokare played in the peaceful coexistence between Noongar people and the first European settlers, and in particular his friendship with Dr Alexander Collie, explorer and botanist.
Southern terminus signs for BT and MB will be placed with the statue in the background.
The proposed trailhead location is visible from inside the visitor centre and from the street - and would greatly increase awareness of the trails. It will be a much better experience for both Bibbulmun Track and Munda Biddi end-to-enders to complete their journey by walking up the main street of Albany.
More information about the development of Alison Hartman Gardens is on the City of Albany website.
Bench seating just next to proposed trail head location.
16 September 2019
The Southern Forest Irrigation Scheme is an agricultural irrigation scheme being developed in the Manjimup-Pemberton area in south west Western Australia. The proposed scheme will comprise a 15 GL reservoir located on Record Brook and a pipeline distribution network that will supply water to irrigators who have purchased a water entitlement for the scheme.
In June 2019, a meeting was held with Jeremy Bower, SFIS project manager, to discuss the scheme and identify any potentially negative impacts on the Track and walkers.
The Foundation’s primary concerns were:
- Noise impacts along the Track (and at the Chappell’s Bridge recreation area) from any pumping system – and particularly at Boarding House Campsite which was estimated to be 3–400 metres from the pump house.
- Visual impacts of the pumping station and associated infrastructure.
As a result of the meeting, amendments have since been made to the pumping system to reduce possible noise and visual impacts. An underwater pump will be used so no pump house or weir needs to be built and there is minimal disturbance to the river bed. We were also advised that water will only be extracted when bigger flow events occur in the river. The Board is satisfied that the concerns of Bibbulmun Track users have been mitigated.
DBCA’s Recreation and Trails Unit will look at the final plans when available.
Download the SFIS fact sheet. NOTE: this was produced prior to the amendments to the scheme mentioned above. No weir will be constructed.
For more information visit the website.