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Shoalhaven Bushwalkers Inc.

PO Box 403
Nowra NSW 2541


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Walk Grading System (introduced December 2012)

We have three types of walks - Andante, On Track, and HOT walks (Hybrid / Off Track). Andante walks are usually Grade 1, On Track walks are Grades 2 and 3, and HOT walks are Grades 4, 5 and 6 - see below.


Grade 1 (Easy)A walk less than 10km on well-marked, even, man-made tracks that are not steep.

Grade 2 (Easy-medium)A walk less than 15km on well-marked tracks that are not steep and that are mostly of low gradient.

Grade 3 (Medium)A walk less than 20km with some hilly sections and/or rougher terrain on distinct tracks, that may be steep in places, requiring a moderate level of fitness.

Grade 4 (Medium-hard)A walk for surefooted walkers on steeper, rougher terrain that may have significant off-track sections and rock scrambling, or a lesser grade walk of more than 20km; unsuitable for most beginners.

Grade 5 (Hard)A walk for fit off-track walkers over difficult terrain that may have steep and uneven sections, long and steep ascents and descents, thick scrub, rock scrambling, creek walking and crossings, or a lesser grade walk of more than 30km.

Grade 6 (Very hard)A strenuous walk for fit and skilled off-track walkers over challenging terrain that may have steep and uneven sections, very steep and long ascents and descents, thick scrub, rock scrambling, exposure to heights, creek walking and crossings.

** Walks may also include these additional descriptions.

W (Wet) **The walk may include deep water crossings that may require wading and/or swimming.

X (eXploratory) **The leader has not been to the area of the walk.

Our Walk Grading System is similar to the Australian Walking Track Grading System (shown below)

Grade One is suitable for the disabled with assistance
Grade Two is suitable for families with young children
Grade Three is recommended for people with some bushwalking experience
Grade Four is recommended for experienced bushwalkers
Grade Five is recommended for very experienced bushwalkers


Old Walk Grading System (retired December 2012)

Walks are graded according to two factors - daily distance and difficulty. The gradings apply to all walks - mid-week, weekend, overnight pack walks or multi-day walks. "Andante" walks are always short and easy, and at a leisurely pace. Where possible, the actual length of the walk is stated, otherwise the distance gradings below are used.

Daily Distance
S = Short: up to 12 kilometres per day
M = Medium: 12-18 kilometres per day
L = Long: over 18 kilometres per day

Difficulty
E = Easy: these walks are on roads, fire trails, formed tracks, beaches and are mostly flat
I = Intermediate: may include bush tracks, rough underfoot, some scrub, moderate hills etc.
R = Rough: may include thick scrub, steep climbs and descents, rock scrambles, rocky creeks
W = Wet: the walk may include deep water crossings that may require wading and/or swimming
X = Exploratory: the walk leader has not been to the area and does not know what to expect

Examples :
17k / E = a 17 kilometre walk over easy terrain
S / R = a short walk (less than twelve kilometres) over rough terrain