AAWT Chapman guide book

A forum for discussing the Australian Alps Walking Track. This is a 655 km long track from Walhalla (Vic) to Tharwa (ACT)

AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby Happy Pirate » Tue 04 Apr, 2023 7:34 pm

I have Chapmans' 2009 (4th Ed) AAWT guide as well as the Far Out app and complete topo map coverage with the new (free to download) NSW topos.
Is it worth updating to Chapmans' 5th edition? Does the new one detail the redirected route from Charlottes Pass to Guthega?
Cheers, Steve
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby peregrinator » Tue 04 Apr, 2023 8:43 pm

NSW Parks has lots of information online about the new route.
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby Joe J » Wed 05 Apr, 2023 7:05 am

The 5th edition still has the track following the Main Range track past Mount Twynum. However, there is a page detailing the alternate 'official' route across to Charlotte's Pass then up to Guthega and is also shown on the maps.
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby Happy Pirate » Wed 05 Apr, 2023 7:45 am

Thanks!
Is there enough else in the guide to warrant updating from the 2009 version?
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby Joe J » Wed 05 Apr, 2023 8:54 am

Hey. Can't really answer that, I've only got the 5th edition.
Maybe contact the authors to see'what's new' in the latest edition.
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby Cleanboots » Sun 06 Aug, 2023 9:32 am

I’m a bit late to reply but I recently walk from Valhalla to VG’s hut with a mate. He had the 5th edition I had the 4th. I’m a nervous walker, especially concerning water and I felt his version was much better for details. Personally, I would recommend using the latest version but as I say I get quite nervous out there.
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Thu 18 Apr, 2024 7:04 pm

I met John and Monica Chapman in March 2024. They were nice people.
Their new guide book for the AAWT is the way to go. The bush is always changing and the latest information in the latest edition guidebook
is the best to go by.
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby bigkev » Sat 11 May, 2024 8:54 am

Hi Guys. I'm a bit late to this thread, however I've recently finished my second AAWT walk - sobo this time - so I can share a few observations re nav.

For what it's worth I used AllTrails, Far Out and Chapmans maps and notes on this latest walk. While AllTrails and Far Out are handy as they were on my phone, Chapman's notes and maps are still the most accurate. There are spots where it looks like the AllTrails route was created from software and not actually out on the walk as it sometimes straight lines fairly long sections and at other times it uses older alignments (that are mapped but haven't really been used for a long time - the sidle of Square Top being an example). Far Out is a bit more reliable than AllTrails but still uses older alignments sometimes. The digital maps will get you through however the Chapman guide is pretty well always spot on and will make the walk far more enjoyable, imho.

If anyone is thinking of just using an app then the AllTrails topo maps (downloaded) cover a wider area away from the actual AAWT which can be handy for side trips, variants or if needing to get off the track. The downloaded Far Out tops are a much narrower corridor along the track, however their alignment is slightly more accurate and current.

As far as the difference between different editions of the Chapman book go then I think use the latest. The small cost of the latest book pales in relation the cost, time and effort that walking the AAWT involves. The free updates on the website are also in relation to the current book. That said, I've got editions going back decades to Mr. Siseman's originals and they are all useful, however the older the edition the more nav and other maps you'll have to carry as the track is a very fluid thing in spots.

Which brings me the current conditions. Mr T and his track clearing friends are doing an amazing job keeping this track walkable - for such a remote and lightly trafficked walk it's remarkably clear atm... for the most part it's way clearer than when I walked the whole track last time back in around 2017. The only area that is tougher now (nav and scrub) is the 2020 bushfire zone that runs roughly from Buenba Creek up to Deadhorse Creek. There has been a couple of bulldozed tracks pushed through between Buemba Creek and Mt Hope Road and again between Buckwong Creek and Misery Trail that are now the routes to use... the section from Misery Trail to Deadhorse Creek is a scrubby walk through regrowth, however it's only a couple of hours and the regrowth is fairly 'soft' so it's not too bad... there are bugger all markers and only an intermittent pad though, so it definitely needs some concentration.

Cheers Kevin
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Re: AAWT Chapman guide book

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Sat 11 May, 2024 10:10 am

Thanks for the update Big Kev.
The BTAC web site can show people where the latest AAWT track clearing working bees will be held or are being planned .

. This month there will be one from Low Saddle to Mt. McDonald.
I look forward to walking that section in Late Spring 2024.

All new volunteers are welcome. If you can walk then you can help. You don't have to be a chain saw expert.

https://bushwalkingvictoria.org.au/btac/
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