If you click only one link in this newsletter make it
I have an amazing collection for a Christmas - New Year newsletter, but I wanted to get this out while there was still time to book some great January & February trips.
In this issue
Last chance. The three February trips below do not yet have the bookings we need to guarantee departure. They will be confirmed or cancelled by 16 December at the latest.
Special OfferBook any of the four trips listed below, quote this newsletter and take 20% off the list price. Our past client and membership discounts apply as well.
If you have 15 minutes or more to spare and want to learn the truth about our wet season, the best place to begin is with our Wet Season page. This links to a second page which links to a third. By the time you've read them all, you will have a real understanding of what the wet season is like — and why I enjoy it so much.
Warning. These pages are not designed for mobile devices. You'll get much more out of them on a full size screen.
I had a section about Facebook in Newsletter 84. Thanks to those who replied with a few suggestions. It's still not working. Have a look at the last post on our Facebook page. It reached a lot of people but the only real comment was one I put up on behalf of someone who is not on Facebook. Without comments from others, it is less likely to get new people engaged. Without new people, the business will slowly fade away.
If you are on Facebook and get a notice about a post we have made, (I'm planning an interesting new post about a week after this newsletter goes out) please consider posting a comment. If you have any other suggestions as to how to make Facebook work for us, please let us know.
I was more surprised by the magnitude of Trump's victory than by the fact that he won. It was inevitable that an outsider like Trump would eventually win. If you didn't read it before, or even if you did, have a look at Trump and the Rise of the Unprotected in my Newsletter 84. When the losers in a democracy begin to outnumber the winners, something has to change.
The mainstream press, for the most part, still doesn't get it. Below is a collection of some of the better articles I've seen.
This is the time when the wet season gives way to Banggerreng — The Knock 'Em Down Storm Season. We already have three trips with bookings.
Note 1. If any of these trips interests you at all, please make sure to click the link to the detailed trip notes at the bottom of the HTML page.
Note 2. As of late November, none of these trips was a definite departure yet. The first two will be confirmed or cancelled during the first week in January. The third at the beginning of February.
Bushfires are a major problem in Australia. Governments feel that they need to be seen to be doing something. Pity their choices don't work.
New modelling on bushfires shows how they really burn through an area
"in the past two hundred years, Australian forests have been getting more fire than at any time in the tens of thousands of years before, and all of the controlled burning is not helping.
For 26 out of 30 bioregions in south-east Australia, there is no evidence that prescribed burning has reduced bush fire sizes." "... forests are dying. They are being burnt so often that they may be gone by the end of the century. Like the tallest hardwoods in the world and the thousand year old King Billy pines of Tasmania, they are places we have no room for in our fossil fuel economy."
Small mammals have been declining in Kakadu more or less since I first arrived in 1974. Current burning practices have not stopped the decline. In Fire and spear grass: a case for wet-season burning in Kakadu former, long-time Kakadu Ranger Greg Miles explains what's happening now and makes a good case for changing burning patterns. Having walked through areas which had been burnt in the Wet, I believe he is onto something that needs to be tried on a larger scale.
"If you don't read the newspaper, you're uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you're misinformed." (Quote supposedly from Mark Twain, but no known source I can find.)
The following articles give different views as to how we get a distorted view of the world around us.
These are so big, they need a section of their own.
It would appear that the ABC is continuing the dumbing down of its content.
If you're not happy with the changes, why not contact them and let them know what you think.
Over the years we have offered trips to Patagonia, other parts of Chile & Argentina, Peru, Bolivia, South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Vanuatu, northern Canada (Yukon, Northwest Territories, Baffin Island and elsewhere in Nunavut), Alaska, New Caledonia, Japan and Madagascar. If you are curious and have a bit of time on your hands, try looking for one of those places by using the search button on our website. You can find the trip notes for many trips we have offered in the past. This will give you an idea of what we can still offer and might suggest a trip you'd like to do.
You might also be interested to know that the area where we have run our last three Patagonia trips is #6 on Lonely Planet's top ten list of places you should visit in 2017.
The Kangaroo Island 5 day, 61 km walk is now open. Do it with or without a guide.
Here is an email I received from George Kulek earlier this month. I haven't looked at any of his books myself, but several do look quite interesting — and useful.
You may be interested in several books that I have published this year. Of particular interest to bush walkers are two bush food books that would prove useful in the outback. Kimberley Bush Food is a very comprehensive guide to edible plant food in this region and describes over 200 edible species on 430 pages. It is by far the most informative book available on this subject. The other book is Wild Edible Plants in Western Australia and this comprehensively describes 400 edible species with over 950 photographs. This is also by far the most informative book available on the subject. These books and other bush books can be viewed and bought on website au.blurb.com. I have lived and travelled throughout the Kimberley region for over 30 years and have also conducted rock art tours on Mt. Elizabeth station often with Scotty Martin (Ngarinyin elder).
Hiking basics is a page on an American website. The page itself isn't much. The links on it are. Some things may apply only in America, but others are just as important in Australia. Run your cursor over anything beginning with a hyphen and it comes up as a link.
If you have children you'd like to take bush, I particularly recommend the three links in the Hiking With Family section.
Read this section to the end and you could save big dollars on your next trip.
Neither our website nor this newsletter are optimised for mobile devices. If we don't fix that, we are in trouble to the point where the business may not exist in another few years. Easier said than done.
I tried using different mobile phone emulators to see how this newsletter would look on a mobile. Some wouldn't recognise it. Some wouldn't show the landscape (horizontal) view. What I did see looked terrible. But, when I looked it on an actual smart phone turned horizontally, it didn't look all that bad. Not good, but not all that bad. If you are looking at this newsletter on a smart phone, What does it look like to you? click here and send me an email to let me know.
Fixing the whole website is almost certainly going to be a long, drawn out process. The end product has to be something we can edit ourselves. Depending on the quality of the suggestions, I'm offering up to $1500 in discounts, over and above our normal discounts, to the best suggestions/help I receive over the next 3-6 months. For now, I'll start with three relatively simple (I think) things.
If you think you can help with any of these, please click here and send me an email.
Finally, I would like to publicly express my thanks to a young woman, Gavrila Piper, who put in a lot of work showing me what could be done using a program called Squarespace. Sticking with them requires having them host the website so I may or may not do it. But, at least I have begun to see what is possible.
We do many trips in Kakadu. One of our guides, Don Butcher, asked us to mention Children's Ground, an organisation that "was established to work with communities experiencing disadvantage and inequity as they lead the way towards positive change." They are heavily involved with some of the traditional owners of Kakadu. Click the link and see what you think.
In my last newsletter, I said I had five free subscriptions to give away by Friday 14 October. I had a total of 17 requests, two of which came in after the deadline. I attempted to give them all a free subscription. It worked for most, including the last. I have no idea why it didn't work for the others.
The free subscription link still appears to be live.
If you are interested and want to test it, click here and send me an email.
The following note was at the head of previous issues. I've shifted it here to make the start of the newsletter less cluttered for people on mobiles.
Note. The NY Times allows non-subscribers to look at ten free articles each month. I've got more links than that in this newsletter so I've marked them with a red asterisk (*) so that you can choose which are of most interest to you.
This face-planting fox is a winner we can all get behind
Humourous animal photos — click through the lot for a smile.
Next Newsletter — Help!
Next one should be a special edition just before or just after Christmas. I'll be away for most of January. I'd like to include some good photos & videos. I don't have much. Suggestions welcome.
I had a lot more I could have included in this one but I thought it better to get it out sooner and start work on the next one shortly after this one goes out.
I'm also always looking for other interesting items I can add. I'm particularly interested in environmental issues, especially those which might affect bushwalking and in the technology which is shaping our lives. As I said in the last newsletter, Suggestions welcome.
Sending the newsletter
While I now send most of the newsletters using MailChimp, I still send about 200 newsletters using a program which is hosted on the same server that hosts our website. (MailChimp Free only allows 2000. The commercial version costs too much for an extra 200 people.) In both cases, the newsletters are sent from email@example.com. This is the contact address on our website. If you would like to continue to receive these newsletters, please include this address in your "friends list" so that it isn't blocked.
For some reason, some servers block the newsletters no matter what you try and do. I send these in small groups from my normal email. It's not a simple problem. If anyone thinks they might have an idea how to overcome the problem, I'd love to hear from you.
Emails sent to firstname.lastname@example.org are currently automatically forwarded to rrwillis at internode.on.net. If you want to send an email to that address, replace the word "at" with the symbol @. I am trying not to put that address any place where it can be harvested by spam bots.
We don't want to add to the mass of email spam. If you don't want our newsletter, please send us an email and let us know. We'll then delete your name from our newsletter list.
Our email address is email@example.com.
Note. Both MailChimp and the other program we use to send some of these newsletters have an automatic delete at the bottom. Clicking that link will delete you from the mailing list on the server but it will not delete you from our main database. One of the programs will not allow the auto delete to send me an email notifying me that a deletion has been made. If you want to be sure that you are removed from all further mailings, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you know someone you think would enjoy this newsletter, please forward it to them. The more people who get it, the more likely it is that I'll be able to run the trips which might interest you.
Just in case I don't get the next newsletter out in time, Happy Holidays!,
Willis's Walkabouts, 12 Carrington Street, Millner NT 0810, Australia email@example.com
Last Modified Wednesday, 01-Mar-2017 23:30:18 EST | Valid XHTML1.0