Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

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Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Frederik Ramm
Hi,

the DWG was drawn into an edit war regarding several paths that were
mapped in this area:

https://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=16/-34.3740/150.8761

The argument is about in how far the (largely north-south running) paths
are "illegal" and whether they need to be removed from the map because
they would lead to people trespassing.

The argument is two-fold; part applies to the paths that are on private
land where, I understand, it is the land owner's prerogative to allow or
disallow whatever they want, and another part applies to the paths that
run into NPWS managed conservation lands.

These paths were originally tagged "foot=yes" and with no further access
descriptions; one had an "mtb:scale" added.

From reading the Illawara Escarpment Plan of Management
(https://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/-/media/OEH/Corporate-Site/Documents/Parks-reserves-and-protected-areas/Parks-plans-of-management/illawarra-escarpment-state-conservation-area-plan-management-180505.pdf)
I get the impression that mountainbiking on any paths not explicitly
open for it is illegal. But what about walking - the plan says a lot
about maintained walking tracks but it does *not* explicitly say that
walking is limited to these.

There's also a published "draft strategy" for mountain biking in the
area, however I don't know in how far a draft strategy would influence
the current legal situation.

Anyway, for the time being I have added an access=no to the paths on
private land because the landowner doesn't want people to use them and I
guess it is their prerogative; and I've removed the explicit foot=yes on
the other paths (becasue I'm not sure) and added a "bicycle=no" to close
them for mountainbiking. My changeset:
https://www.openstreetmap.org/changeset/74355243#map=16/-34.3750/150.8730

I would however be grateful for any input from the Australian community
on this matter.

I've also been told that NPWS were keenly looking to sue whoever
publishes "illegal" trails or uploads them to OSM; in fact such a legal
threat was the reason why DWG got involved in the first place.

Bye
Frederik

DWG Ticket Ticket#2019090110000071
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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

forster
Hi Frederik

This reminds me of a thread that I started on this list about 2 years  
ago. It related to illegal mountain bike tracks in Lysterfield Park,  
Victoria Australia.

The construction and use of unauthorized trails is illegal with large  
penalties (though I have never heard of a prosecution). An issue is  
that mapping these trails encourages use and consequent environmental  
damage. There is also the risk that innocent users will think that a  
mapped trail is legal and get prosecuted.

The compromise was to mark the trails as access=no but not delete them  
till they had been made untrafficable for sufficient time to become  
overgrown.

Since then the pressure from the mountain bike community to has map  
everything has reduced,  presumably the mountain bike  community has  
realized that OSM is one of the tools the authorities use to locate  
illegal trails.

The policy in OSM to map everything that exists ignores the fact that  
not all mapping is in the community interest. I would like to see a  
more nuanced policy. We might see a policy that addresses the following

Private land and the right of privacy
Military land
National Parks
Other public land.

Thanks
Tony


> Hi,
>
> the DWG was drawn into an edit war regarding several paths that were
> mapped in this area:
>
> https://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=16/-34.3740/150.8761
>
> The argument is about in how far the (largely north-south running) paths
> are "illegal" and whether they need to be removed from the map because
> they would lead to people trespassing.
>
> The argument is two-fold; part applies to the paths that are on private
> land where, I understand, it is the land owner's prerogative to allow or
> disallow whatever they want, and another part applies to the paths that
> run into NPWS managed conservation lands.
>
> These paths were originally tagged "foot=yes" and with no further access
> descriptions; one had an "mtb:scale" added.
>
> From reading the Illawara Escarpment Plan of Management
> (https://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/-/media/OEH/Corporate-Site/Documents/Parks-reserves-and-protected-areas/Parks-plans-of-management/illawarra-escarpment-state-conservation-area-plan-management-180505.pdf)
> I get the impression that mountainbiking on any paths not explicitly
> open for it is illegal. But what about walking - the plan says a lot
> about maintained walking tracks but it does *not* explicitly say that
> walking is limited to these.
>
> There's also a published "draft strategy" for mountain biking in the
> area, however I don't know in how far a draft strategy would influence
> the current legal situation.
>
> Anyway, for the time being I have added an access=no to the paths on
> private land because the landowner doesn't want people to use them and I
> guess it is their prerogative; and I've removed the explicit foot=yes on
> the other paths (becasue I'm not sure) and added a "bicycle=no" to close
> them for mountainbiking. My changeset:
> https://www.openstreetmap.org/changeset/74355243#map=16/-34.3750/150.8730
>
> I would however be grateful for any input from the Australian community
> on this matter.
>
> I've also been told that NPWS were keenly looking to sue whoever
> publishes "illegal" trails or uploads them to OSM; in fact such a legal
> threat was the reason why DWG got involved in the first place.
>
> Bye
> Frederik
>
> DWG Ticket Ticket#2019090110000071
> --
> Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail [hidden email]  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"
>
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> see http://www.australiaonline.net.au/mailscanning
>





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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Frederik Ramm
Tony,

On 9/11/19 21:31, [hidden email] wrote:
> The construction and use of unauthorized trails is illegal with large
> penalties (though I have never heard of a prosecution).

Are there sources that are not restricted by copyright that we could use
to determine which trails are authorized and which are not?

> The policy in OSM to map everything that exists ignores the fact that
> not all mapping is in the community interest. I would like to see a more
> nuanced policy.

There are indeed some nuances, for example there is general agreement in
the community not to map the nesting places of rare birds (lest eggs be
stolen), and a similar general agreement exists for things like women's
refuges. This is in addition to the respect for privacy that is shared
by most mappers - where the term "privacy" is generally interpreted
narrowly to mean "things about your life that you cannot see from the
aerial image".

Some people come to DWG claiming privacy because someone has traced
their driveway from aerial imagery; this is not usually a complaint we
entertain.

But the things I mentioned are not really codified anywhere, and there
are often corner cases that lead to lengthy debates. A remotely related
case for example was in Germany recently, where forest management and
tourism authorities had agreed to a careful scheme of "trekking" camp
sites in forests where camping would not normally be allowed. Their plan
was to keep the exact location of these places secret, and require prior
booking by users, who would only upon booking be told where exactly to
find the spot. This was part of the compromise they reached - the forest
authorities didn't want any people camping, the tourism people wanted to
offer something for nature lovers, so they agreed on this scheme which
at least promised that the places would not be overrun. You can imagine
how the story went on - things being kept secret piqued the interest of
mappers, and before too long all the places were mapped
(tourism=camp_site, camp_site=basic, backcountry=yes). The authorities
complained, but of course they have no legal recourse... still, this led
to some discussion in the German mapping community in how far official
wishes/demands for secrecy should be respected.

We certainly cannot respect *every* local government law or else we'd
likely have to purge our maps of all content in China, North Korea, and
some Arab countries, delete all military areas in many others...

It is an interesting topic for a general discusssion. Though in this
concrete case I wonder how to determine whether what looks like a
footpath in the Conservation Lands is legal to use or not... should
*all* the trails drawn in the area be marked access=no? Should we ask
the adminstration for a list?

Bye
Frederik

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Andrew Davidson-3
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
On 11/9/19 23:38, Frederik Ramm wrote:
>
> I've also been told that NPWS were keenly looking to sue whoever
> publishes "illegal" trails or uploads them to OSM; in fact such a legal
> threat was the reason why DWG got involved in the first place.

Unless you have an officer's name, position title and which office they
work in so I can write to the NSW Minister for the Environment to
complain, then you should consider any threat to sue as not being real.

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Andrew Harvey-3
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
On Wed, 11 Sep 2019 at 23:40, Frederik Ramm <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi,

the DWG was drawn into an edit war regarding several paths that were
mapped in this area:

https://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=16/-34.3740/150.8761

The argument is about in how far the (largely north-south running) paths
are "illegal" and whether they need to be removed from the map because
they would lead to people trespassing.

The argument is two-fold; part applies to the paths that are on private
land where, I understand, it is the land owner's prerogative to allow or
disallow whatever they want, and another part applies to the paths that
run into NPWS managed conservation lands.

These paths were originally tagged "foot=yes" and with no further access
descriptions; one had an "mtb:scale" added.

From reading the Illawara Escarpment Plan of Management
(https://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/-/media/OEH/Corporate-Site/Documents/Parks-reserves-and-protected-areas/Parks-plans-of-management/illawarra-escarpment-state-conservation-area-plan-management-180505.pdf)
I get the impression that mountainbiking on any paths not explicitly
open for it is illegal. But what about walking - the plan says a lot
about maintained walking tracks but it does *not* explicitly say that
walking is limited to these.

There's also a published "draft strategy" for mountain biking in the
area, however I don't know in how far a draft strategy would influence
the current legal situation.

Anyway, for the time being I have added an access=no to the paths on
private land because the landowner doesn't want people to use them and I
guess it is their prerogative; and I've removed the explicit foot=yes on
the other paths (becasue I'm not sure) and added a "bicycle=no" to close
them for mountainbiking. My changeset:
https://www.openstreetmap.org/changeset/74355243#map=16/-34.3750/150.8730

I would however be grateful for any input from the Australian community
on this matter.

I'll break it down into two issues, 1. mapping the paths, 2. setting the access restrictions.

On the first issue, my stance is that mapping these trails is fair game, regardless of the legal ownership of the land and/or any access restrictions. If there is a path on the ground it should be in OSM's database, and would be harmful to delete and any edits which outright deleted paths which do exist on the ground just because of access or use restrictions should be blocked/reverted.

We have suitable lifecycle tags https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Lifecycle_prefix which can be added to paths which have been abandoned and no longer in use but still have evidence on the ground. Paths which have been used in the past but are now closed for remediation back to natural bushland can and should be mapped as abandoned: or demolished:. This is important information for researches and the public to understand conservation and remediation efforts taking place.

On the second issue regarding access restrictions, if the NPWS puts up signage restricting cycling then we can correctly mark this with bicycle=no, this could be at the path level or on park wide signage. If there is a private property no access sign, then that would be access=no.

It's always better to have this mapped based on confirmations on the ground, and it appears in this case that the local mapper Zhent, has been mapping based on local knowledge.
 
I've also been told that NPWS were keenly looking to sue whoever
publishes "illegal" trails or uploads them to OSM; in fact such a legal
threat was the reason why DWG got involved in the first place.

Gosh that's a big claim, if either individual contributors or OSMF are being threatened like that, can this be backed up with evidence so we as the community know what's happening and determine what if any support can be provided to those being threatened?


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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Andrew Harvey-3
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
On Thu, 12 Sep 2019 at 06:23, Frederik Ramm <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 9/11/19 21:31, [hidden email] wrote:
> The construction and use of unauthorized trails is illegal with large
> penalties (though I have never heard of a prosecution).

Are there sources that are not restricted by copyright that we could use
to determine which trails are authorized and which are not?

Not that I'm aware of. NPWS do publish tracks as CC BY open data and they have completed the waiver to allow OSM to use this data (see https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Australian_data_catalogue), however local knowledge and local surveys should still prevail.
 
It is an interesting topic for a general discusssion. Though in this
concrete case I wonder how to determine whether what looks like a
footpath in the Conservation Lands is legal to use or not... should
*all* the trails drawn in the area be marked access=no? Should we ask
the adminstration for a list?

If no access is the intention then they should put up signage saying no access, then we can map that access accordingly.

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Andrew Davidson-3
In reply to this post by forster
On 12/9/19 05:31, [hidden email] wrote:
> Since then the pressure from the mountain bike community to has map
> everything has reduced,  presumably the mountain bike  community has
> realized that OSM is one of the tools the authorities use to locate
> illegal trails.

That's only going to work if they all learn not to use Strava. Two
minutes is all it take for the authorities to login and see everywhere
in the 'Gong where there are MTB tracks.

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Frederik Ramm
In reply to this post by Andrew Harvey-3
Hi,

On 12.09.19 06:27, Andrew Harvey wrote:
> It's always better to have this mapped based on confirmations on the
> ground, and it appears in this case that the local mapper Zhent, has
> been mapping based on local knowledge.

I have a feeling that Zhent's "foot=yes" might not mean "there is a sign
here allowing access" but more "I walked here and wasn't arrested" ;)

Question is, can we assume that any path leading into Conservation Lands
that does *not* have a sign forbidding something, allows it? Probably
not - NPWS can hardly be expected to continuously patrol the area for
new "things that look like paths". Mind you, some of the paths that were
added here have "sac_scale" and "trail_visibility" tags that do not
sound like these are obvious trails actually prepared by NPWS for walkers.

This might also tie in with the concept of "default rules" - for
example, if "everyone knows that horse riding is only permitted on
explicitly signed trails" in Conservation Lands then do we apply a
blanket horse=no to everything else, or not...

Bye
Frederik

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Andrew Harvey-3
First up, I appreciate your work mediating here Frederik, thank you.

On Thu, 12 Sep 2019 at 15:46, Frederik Ramm <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 12.09.19 06:27, Andrew Harvey wrote:
> It's always better to have this mapped based on confirmations on the
> ground, and it appears in this case that the local mapper Zhent, has
> been mapping based on local knowledge.

I have a feeling that Zhent's "foot=yes" might not mean "there is a sign
here allowing access" but more "I walked here and wasn't arrested" ;) 

Question is, can we assume that any path leading into Conservation Lands
that does *not* have a sign forbidding something, allows it? Probably
not - NPWS can hardly be expected to continuously patrol the area for
new "things that look like paths". Mind you, some of the paths that were
added here have "sac_scale" and "trail_visibility" tags that do not
sound like these are obvious trails actually prepared by NPWS for walkers.

Within the Illawarra Escarpment State Conservation Area, NPWS says the only two things prohibited are Pets and Smoking, https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/visit-a-park/parks/illawarra-escarpment-state-conservation-area/visitor-info#Prohibited.

Normally for most National Parks and SCA's you're allowed to walk anywhere unless otherwise prohibited.

> NPWS can hardly be expected to continuously patrol the area for
> new "things that look like paths"

On the flip side, how are we as mappers or the public meant to know that we can't use this path unless they put up signage?

In my opinion paths signposted or otherwise for walking should be foot=designated to indicate there is signage saying this path is explicitly for walking. This provides a way to distinguish NPWS designated walking paths. Any path they want people not to use they'd need to put sinage and we'd tag as access=no, and any other path with no sigage would be somewhere in the grey area between access=no and access=designated (which I always saw access=yes as that middle ground tag).

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Frederik Ramm
Hi,

On 12.09.19 08:16, Andrew Harvey wrote:
> Within the Illawarra Escarpment State Conservation Area, NPWS says the
> only two things prohibited are Pets and
> Smoking, https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/visit-a-park/parks/illawarra-escarpment-state-conservation-area/visitor-info#Prohibited.
>
> Normally for most National Parks and SCA's you're allowed to walk
> anywhere unless otherwise prohibited.

The link you posted contains the following wording:

"Come for a serious bushwalk or a casual jog, visit a lookout in the
winter for whale watching off the coast, or break out the binoculars for
birdwatching. There are cycling opportunities on fire trails and plenty
of chances to cool off in summer by retreating to a rainforest track."

Would "serious bushwalk" be a term that NPWS could be using for walking
only along pre-established trails, or is this a clear invitation to walk
wherever you want?

> In my opinion paths signposted or otherwise for walking should be
> foot=designated to indicate there is signage saying this path is
> explicitly for walking.

That makes sense.

> Any path they want people not to use
> they'd need to put sinage and we'd tag as access=no

That too, though if they were to say "mountainbiking on designated paths
only", we might consider tagging all non-designated paths with
cycling=no - that's essentially the old question of whether defaults
should be tagged.

> and any other path
> with no sigage would be somewhere in the grey area between access=no and
> access=designated (which I always saw access=yes as that middle ground tag).

In my opinion a foot=yes, while not necessarily indicating that there is
a sign, is more than a grey-area assumption. It is an assurance given by
the mapper to others that "it is ok and legal to walk here", based
perhaps not on signage but on local rules and customs.

I would not use foot=yes for "well there is a path here and I've walked
along it but I'm not sure what would have happened had I met a ranger".

Bye
Frederik

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Andrew Harvey-3
On Thu, 12 Sep 2019 at 17:29, Frederik Ramm <[hidden email]> wrote:
"Come for a serious bushwalk or a casual jog, visit a lookout in the
winter for whale watching off the coast, or break out the binoculars for
birdwatching. There are cycling opportunities on fire trails and plenty
of chances to cool off in summer by retreating to a rainforest track."

The way I read that this is cycling is only permitted on fire trails (highway=track), not single path tracks (highway=footway/path). If that's the case I think it's fine to add bicycle=no to all paths, unless anyone with local knowledge knows better.

Would "serious bushwalk" be a term that NPWS could be using for walking
only along pre-established trails, or is this a clear invitation to walk
wherever you want?

They would only be promoting on track walking, but it's quite common for people to walk where there is no track which is fine. When there's a track they don't want people to use it's common for NPWS to put up signage saying the area is closed for remediation, etc. ie. access=no.
 
> In my opinion paths signposted or otherwise for walking should be
> foot=designated to indicate there is signage saying this path is
> explicitly for walking.

That makes sense.

> Any path they want people not to use
> they'd need to put sinage and we'd tag as access=no

That too, though if they were to say "mountainbiking on designated paths
only", we might consider tagging all non-designated paths with
cycling=no - that's essentially the old question of whether defaults
should be tagged.

Exactly, it does come down to tagging defaults or not. By default I'd assume any highway=path in a national park or SCA to be bicycle=no unless signposted as it being allowed and tagged as =yes or =designated, but so far I've only been tagging ones as =no when I encounter signage. I'm not too fussed, mapping a default bicycle=no seems sensible to me.

Either way even if both foot=no and bicycle=no, the path can and should still be mapped in my opinion, if for nothing else but for aiding conservation efforts so we can keep track of unsanctioned tracks, closed tracks and their regeneration status. After all OSM is a database of geospatial data, the map on osm.org is for contributors to help map...
 

> and any other path
> with no sigage would be somewhere in the grey area between access=no and
> access=designated (which I always saw access=yes as that middle ground tag).

In my opinion a foot=yes, while not necessarily indicating that there is
a sign, is more than a grey-area assumption. It is an assurance given by
the mapper to others that "it is ok and legal to walk here", based
perhaps not on signage but on local rules and customs. 

I would not use foot=yes for "well there is a path here and I've walked
along it but I'm not sure what would have happened had I met a ranger".

+1 Fair point. 

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Frederik Ramm
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
Hi,

On 12.09.19 09:29, Frederik Ramm wrote:
> "Come for a serious bushwalk or a casual jog, visit a lookout in the
> winter for whale watching off the coast, or break out the binoculars for
> birdwatching. There are cycling opportunities on fire trails and plenty
> of chances to cool off in summer by retreating to a rainforest track."

Specifically for the Lower Escarpment Trail, I found this co-authored by
the NPWS office:

http://www.visitwollongong.com.au/uploads/308/illawarra-escarpment-trails-pdf.pdf

"Lower Escarpment trail ... This unsealed vehicle-width trail traverses
the lush middle slopes between Tarrawanna (Hawthorn Street) and Bulli
(Bulli Pass) ...  Ideal for: fit walkers, joggers and cyclists."

Which clearly seems to indicate that cycling is allowed - would that
include mountain biking? Unsure, this mountain biker web site

https://www.trailforks.com/route/lower-escarpment-trail/

says:

"Unlicensed motorbikes have resulted in a number of head on accidents
with riders. ... This route is Unsanctioned, Ride at your own Risk!"

Bye
Frederik

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Andrew Harvey-3


On Thu, 12 Sep 2019 at 18:05, Frederik Ramm <[hidden email]> wrote:
Specifically for the Lower Escarpment Trail, I found this co-authored by
the NPWS office:

http://www.visitwollongong.com.au/uploads/308/illawarra-escarpment-trails-pdf.pdf

"Lower Escarpment trail ... This unsealed vehicle-width trail traverses
the lush middle slopes between Tarrawanna (Hawthorn Street) and Bulli
(Bulli Pass) ...  Ideal for: fit walkers, joggers and cyclists."

Which clearly seems to indicate that cycling is allowed - would that
include mountain biking? Unsure, this mountain biker web site

Yes, the Lower Escarpment Trail https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/202909480 is a fire trail (highway=track), which your linked PDF is referring to when talking about cycling. Cycling there is fine.


> In accordance with NPWS policy, cycling is generally permitted
> on park roads and management trails in state conservation areas. Cycling on walking tracks
> is prohibited for safety and environmental reasons.

management trails is highway=track, so bicycles there are fine.
 

https://www.trailforks.com/route/lower-escarpment-trail/

says:

"Unlicensed motorbikes have resulted in a number of head on accidents
with riders. ... This route is Unsanctioned, Ride at your own Risk!"

That's just saying if you mountain bike here watch out for (illegal, ie. access=no) motor bikes.


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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Ewen Hill
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
Frederick,
   If I use the term bush walking colloquially, then it means to use a track that already exists., either single track or 4wd track (fire trail) predominantly however there might be times where you cross a grass land where there is no well defined track. 

If you are talking about walking through a forest not on a track or the track is hideously overgrown than I would call that "bush bashing".  The term hiking has connotations mainly of trails with the odd bit of bush bashing included. 

Large wombats and kangaroos who can create tracks in sparse undergrowth that is hard to tell from a man-made walking trail on the ground. Another issue is old bulldozer tracks or firefighter tracks that were used to stop wild fires (sometimes called mineral earth breaks). Normally these are removed post the wildfire but sometimes only at the start of the new track.

In the brochure, that sounds like I should stay on the trails.if walking

Ewen


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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Sebastian Spiess
Good discussion,
I also think the track should be mapped.
Aside from access no I think it might be worthwhile adding decommissioned or rehabilitation tags to tracks that should not be used to indicate their intended end.

Other thoughts are:
- why show access=no tracks on the map? Admittedly this comes down to the data consumers and their rendering.
- would tagging the whole area with access=conditional add any value?
- how will this discussion that will end in some form of agreed practice be documented on the map, aside from revised tracks that is?
- have they also threatened other mapping companies with legal actions? ianal but my response would be highlighting the various mismatches as already pointed out in the thread.
--
Sent from my Android device with K-9 Mail. Please excuse my brevity.

On 12 September 2019 6:27:23 pm AEST, Ewen Hill <[hidden email]> wrote:
Frederick,
   If I use the term bush walking colloquially, then it means to use a track that already exists., either single track or 4wd track (fire trail) predominantly however there might be times where you cross a grass land where there is no well defined track. 

If you are talking about walking through a forest not on a track or the track is hideously overgrown than I would call that "bush bashing".  The term hiking has connotations mainly of trails with the odd bit of bush bashing included. 

Large wombats and kangaroos who can create tracks in sparse undergrowth that is hard to tell from a man-made walking trail on the ground. Another issue is old bulldozer tracks or firefighter tracks that were used to stop wild fires (sometimes called mineral earth breaks). Normally these are removed post the wildfire but sometimes only at the start of the new track.

In the brochure, that sounds like I should stay on the trails.if walking

Ewen


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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Phil Wyatt
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
You may also need to check the legislation for NSW

Often bicycles are classified as 'vehicles' under the legislation and are only allowed on designated vehicular roads, purpose built mountain bike trails or designated shared trails which would normally be signposted.

It will also likely differ between states.

Cheers - Phil

-----Original Message-----
From: Frederik Ramm [mailto:[hidden email]]
Sent: Thursday, 12 September 2019 6:04 PM
To: [hidden email]
Subject: Re: [talk-au] Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Hi,

On 12.09.19 09:29, Frederik Ramm wrote:
> "Come for a serious bushwalk or a casual jog, visit a lookout in the
> winter for whale watching off the coast, or break out the binoculars for
> birdwatching. There are cycling opportunities on fire trails and plenty
> of chances to cool off in summer by retreating to a rainforest track."

Specifically for the Lower Escarpment Trail, I found this co-authored by
the NPWS office:

http://www.visitwollongong.com.au/uploads/308/illawarra-escarpment-trails-pdf.pdf

"Lower Escarpment trail ... This unsealed vehicle-width trail traverses
the lush middle slopes between Tarrawanna (Hawthorn Street) and Bulli
(Bulli Pass) ...  Ideal for: fit walkers, joggers and cyclists."

Which clearly seems to indicate that cycling is allowed - would that
include mountain biking? Unsure, this mountain biker web site

https://www.trailforks.com/route/lower-escarpment-trail/

says:

"Unlicensed motorbikes have resulted in a number of head on accidents
with riders. ... This route is Unsanctioned, Ride at your own Risk!"

Bye
Frederik

--
Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail [hidden email]  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

forster
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
Frederik

Sorry for the delay replying

> There are indeed some nuances, for example there is general agreement in
> the community not to map the nesting places of rare birds (lest eggs be
> stolen), and a similar general agreement exists for things like women's
> refuges

Ecological damage from the use of unauthorised trails arguably falls  
into the same category. For example there are just 9 calling males of  
the frog species pseudophyrene semimarmorata in Lysterfield  Park,  
this species is thought to be extinct in South Australia and is listed  
as vulnerable in Victoria.  A single unauthorized trail could destroy  
50% of the park's population.

> are there sources that are not restricted by copyright that we could use
> to determine which trails are authorized and which are not?

Unfortunately the easiest source is a map of uncertain copyright. In  
some information signboards they are listed and the information would  
be unrestricted. If you physically there there's little doubt what is  
an illegal trail. A phone call or email would get you the information.

The Park's services and OSM already have considerable goodwill and  
shared purpose, better communication is all that's needed.

Andrew  Davidson wrote

> That's only going to work if they all learn not to use Strava.
The authorities know about Strava and the illegal riders are learning  
not to use Strava

Finally I doubt that any Australian Parks service would ever threaten  
legal action against OSM, an individual might threaten it but the  
people who could authorize it would have more sense.

Tony



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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Warin
In reply to this post by Phil Wyatt
On 13/09/19 10:38, Phil Wyatt wrote:
> You may also need to check the legislation for NSW
>
> Often bicycles are classified as 'vehicles' under the legislation and are only allowed on designated vehicular roads, purpose built mountain bike trails or designated shared trails which would normally be signposted.
>
> It will also likely differ between states.

Think you will find all Australian States and Territories classify bicycles as 'vehicles' (including Ebikes).
This gives them the ability to police things like stop lights etc on legal public roads.
Being a 'vehicle' does not say anything about areas not part of the 'vehicle' legislation,
that comes from other legislation and usually (? allways) applies to the person.


My local NP has a sign that says bicycles are allowed to use the management tracks (4WD) but not walking paths.
One walking path had specific signs against bicycles.. and some saying cameras were in use.
Later a track closed sign was put up, but only on the higher entry point.
There is still some evidence of bicycle use.
And I still walk up the hill - no signage to say otherwise unless you look backwards at the top.

I am yet to see any signs about 'off track walking'.
There are people who walk off tracks for along distances.
I do know of one area where this is encouraged so as to spread the impact and discourage those with less knowledge.

>
> Cheers - Phil
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Frederik Ramm [mailto:[hidden email]]
> Sent: Thursday, 12 September 2019 6:04 PM
> To: [hidden email]
> Subject: Re: [talk-au] Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands
>
> Hi,
>
> On 12.09.19 09:29, Frederik Ramm wrote:
>> "Come for a serious bushwalk or a casual jog, visit a lookout in the
>> winter for whale watching off the coast, or break out the binoculars for
>> birdwatching. There are cycling opportunities on fire trails and plenty
>> of chances to cool off in summer by retreating to a rainforest track."
> Specifically for the Lower Escarpment Trail, I found this co-authored by
> the NPWS office:
>
> http://www.visitwollongong.com.au/uploads/308/illawarra-escarpment-trails-pdf.pdf
>
> "Lower Escarpment trail ... This unsealed vehicle-width trail traverses
> the lush middle slopes between Tarrawanna (Hawthorn Street) and Bulli
> (Bulli Pass) ...  Ideal for: fit walkers, joggers and cyclists."
>
> Which clearly seems to indicate that cycling is allowed - would that
> include mountain biking? Unsure, this mountain biker web site
>
> https://www.trailforks.com/route/lower-escarpment-trail/
>
> says:
>
> "Unlicensed motorbikes have resulted in a number of head on accidents
> with riders. ... This route is Unsanctioned, Ride at your own Risk!"
>
> Bye
> Frederik
>


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Re: Paths in Illawarra Conservation Lands

Warin
In reply to this post by Sebastian Spiess
On 12/09/19 21:06, Sebastian S. wrote:
Good discussion,
I also think the track should be mapped.
Aside from access no I think it might be worthwhile adding decommissioned or rehabilitation tags to tracks that should not be used to indicate their intended end.

Other thoughts are:
- why show access=no tracks on the map? Admittedly this comes down to the data consumers and their rendering.

Same reason why private roads get shown - they can be use navigationally, for example, I am half way along the road because I  have just passed that track that has no access.
- would tagging the whole area with access=conditional add any value?
No. Not unless that area does truly have that. And then renders will have to recognise any thing inside it as having that access tag too.
- how will this discussion that will end in some form of agreed practice be documented on the map, aside from revised tracks that is?
- have they also threatened other mapping companies with legal actions? ianal but my response would be highlighting the various mismatches as already pointed out in the thread.
--
Sent from my Android device with K-9 Mail. Please excuse my brevity.

On 12 September 2019 6:27:23 pm AEST, Ewen Hill [hidden email] wrote:
Frederick,
   If I use the term bush walking colloquially, then it means to use a track that already exists., either single track or 4wd track (fire trail) predominantly

Some call that 'track walking'.

however there might be times where you cross a grass land where there is no well defined track.

And some would see that as true 'bushwalking'.


If you are talking about walking through a forest not on a track or the track is hideously overgrown than I would call that "bush bashing". 

The term 'scruby' is used by some for areas where vegetation causes scratched skin, ripped clothing.
Most tend to avoid these areas when ever possible after a few encounters, even if the distance is more than doubled.

The term hiking has connotations mainly of trails with the odd bit of bush bashing included. 

Large wombats and kangaroos who can create tracks in sparse undergrowth that is hard to tell from a man-made walking trail on the ground. Another issue is old bulldozer tracks or firefighter tracks that were used to stop wild fires (sometimes called mineral earth breaks). Normally these are removed post the wildfire but sometimes only at the start of the new track.

In the brochure, that sounds like I should stay on the trails.if walking

Ewen



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