Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Winter (bush paddock dreaming)

For some people winter is a season to persevere through or avoid altogether by traveling to tropic destinations. I have already noticed people complaining about the rain and the impending chill. Their moods darken and they scurry home as quickly as they can to sit by a heater and watch TV. Each to their own.

Winter has the opposite effect for me, it beckons me to leave my abode and head into the wilderness. I was fortunate enough to grow up on a farm. We lived a fare way out of town so for entertainment on the weekend I used to go for a walk up to the back bush paddock. My favourite time of year was winter, I would dress for the occasion wearing my flannel shirt footy jumper and my grandfathers old world war one trench coat. The coat would skim along the ground as i was only around 13 years old. Those old trench coats were as rough as guts and felt very abrasive around your neck, but they were bloody warm (wish I still had it). Initially I would take along a BSA air rifle and latter I was given an old single shot .22 rifle. The skill of hunting rabbits was honed to a fine art over time and I could often get to within meters of my prey. I still have the old hunting knife which must be over 30 years old (a made in japan bowie).

Truth be told I enjoyed just being out in the mist, rain and the bitter cold afternoons. The solitude of walking through the forest, the smell of the rain on the eucalyptus trees and the sound of the bird life are all etched into my mind.

Nowadays I'm a long way away from that top bush paddock, but every year as winter approaches memories of my childhood beckon me to head outdoors and seek the solitude of a winter forest.


  1. Winter is my favourite time of the year here in New England NSW. Winter is when we do most of our 18th century Historical Trekking and camping. No bugs, ants, mossies or snakes to worry us, just quiet seclusion in Wychwood Forest.
    We are very stong on learning and practicing wilderness survival skills, and winter is a good time to do this. We enjoy the challenge. If you ever get interested in what we do, we would love to have you as a member, where ever you are in Australia.
    Regards, Le Loup.

  2. No too fond of sub-zero temperatures myself and we've had a couple of nights like that in the Wombat State Forest lately, one HUGE bonus of winter however is no darn mozzies!

    Looking forward to the upcoming Aussie Bushcraft Forum...

  3. I'm not too fond of sub-zero nights and we've had a few of those lately here in Central Victoria, however like the previous poster has already commented No Mozzies!

    Avidly awaiting the Aussie Bushcraft Forum launch!

  4. Hi All,
    I grew up in Stanthorpe in QLD and love the cold winter camping trips. I know it's not the coldest place in Aus but theres really something special about those -6 and -7 degree mornings. There's alot to being prepared for the cold and if prepared correctly it really isn't a drama.
    Ross's initial post - Bush paddock dreaming - I couldn't agree more... Oh for the good ole times...