Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche


‘Leaked takayna 4WD track decision a betrayal of reconciliation’

*Pic: The Wilderness Society’s pic of 4WD tracks at Pieman Heads …

The Wilderness Society today condemned the action of the Hodgman Government to seek approval to expand destructive 4wd tracks across an Aboriginal cultural landscape on the takayna coast, describing it as a betrayal of trust and goodwill that run counter to any notion of reconciliation.

The announcement of the referral, through a Friday afternoon exclusive to a single media outlet, without release of documentation or discussion with key Aboriginal stakeholders, lacks transparency and goodwill and demonstrates this move is motivated by base, divisive politics in the marginal electorate of Braddon.

‘Ignoring the wishes the Aboriginal community and expanding 4WD tracks across a nationally significant Aboriginal cultural landscape is indictment enough on Premier Hodgman and Environment Minister Matthew Groom, but to do it for pure political gain is shocking.’

‘Just one month ago, Premier Hodgman stood on the stage with Aboriginal leaders and his Governor, pledging to progress Reconciliation, but today he has turned his back on that relationship and Aboriginal heritage in the most manipulative and political way.

The takayna coastline is listed as National Heritage for its outstanding Aboriginal heritage values and the Hodgman plan to expand 4WD tracks in the area has been the focus of several Federal Court processes, the conclusion being that Tasmanian Government must refer its plan to the Commonwealth for assessment under federal law.

‘This referral is both controversial and a process ordered by the Federal Court, yet it has been announced without a credible consultation with stakeholders, without being released publicly and without so much as a media release.’

‘How can Premier Hodgman claim to be able to progress reconciliation on behalf of white Tasmania, when he so blatantly acts in his, and not the Aboriginal community’s interest?

Liberal Members for Braddon Joan Rylah and Adam Brooks: Government moving ahead with commitment to reopen Arthur Pieman tracks

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens’ Leader and Aboriginal Affairs spokesperson: Reckless, Desperate Liberals No Respect for Aboriginal Heritage

Adam Brooks, Liberal Member for Braddon, Joan Rylah, Liberal Member for Braddon: Government moving ahead with commitment to reopen Arthur Pieman tracks

Adam Brooks, Liberal Member for Braddon: Where do Labor actually stand on the Arthur Pieman tracks?

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  1. Robin Charles Halton

    September 20, 2017 at 10:43 pm

    Labor’s Rebecca White has offered them a “mothering” deal they couldn’t refuse, a whopping $3M Pieman plan consisting of a new cultural management plan, tourism infrastructure and employing four “Aboriginal” rangers.

    Nor good enough for the already spoilt band of hangers on, Michael Mansell retaliates and claims “Labor is weak on its policy around tracks”, welcomes the badly needed funds to include better Aboriginal interpretation and training of Indigenous rangers but the Labor party has avoided the real issue— whether we allow destruction of Aboriginal heritage by 4 x4’s!

    The Tas Aboriginal Centre can’t have it both ways however if nothing constructive is done then I would expect that the natural course of justice will continue take place over the final 37Km of the 100 Km track network to the Pieman River which has been “closed” since the 1980’s.

    The governments’ whether Liberal or Labor are basically helpless to do anything while the High court legally prevents the reopening of the tracks so no deal no money!

    Stalemate, let nature take it discourse, no more mothering!

  2. Robin Charles Halton

    September 17, 2017 at 12:06 pm

    Most 4×4 users are interested in using existing vehicular trails as outdoors recreationists who like the adventure of driving to Cape York which is one of the most popular pursuits in Australia.
    West coast of Tasmania tracks are rated highly as a place to visit by 4×4 mainland recreationists.

    More challenging is driving across the Simpson Desert, the Birdsville track and many places in the NT top end that require prior permission from traditional owners suitable outside the wet season.

    Currently I am not a 4×4 owner, however on occasions I go away with friends on passive off roading weekends into places such as Adamsfield where there is no need to create any environmental damage with reasonable off road driving techniques. Parks at Mt Field are obliging with allowing keys for access.

    Theme Parks on public land are not the answer, they are only for brainless yobs who enjoy damaging the landscape, as well as their vehicles.
    I have seen more than enough of this in the Southport Lagoon area in the past when Parks officers were too afraid to tackle this scum of society (citing abuse by intoxicated drivers) who literally destroyed parts of a wild coastal system including crisscrossing buttongrass plains and poorly drained eucalypt woodlands in the area reducing the place to mud.

    Parks have since changed the access route to higher ground, I have heard complaints from users that the extent of the access is too restricted and some 4×4 owners still violate the area by making their own tracks!

    I haven’t a clue what Parks response is but the area is controlled by Parks from Hastings.

    Later this year I am hoping to lead a small group of 4×4 recreationists on trip beyond the gated section of South Cape Road to inspect the historical McKenzie coal mine site 1923-1930 which was a significant find by the Forest Prectices Authority and FT from Geeveston while planning harvesting coupes in the area.

    I would not expect actual off roading as such, the area is now under the shadow of WHA administration was roaded and extensively and successfully regenerated back to native forests by FT when classified as State Forest.

    I am hoping it will a good field exercise for showcasing responsible forest practices as I expect we will access most points of interest on foot.
    I am yet to discuss the planned exercise with the Ranger in charge at Hastings but I dont expect any opposition for what should be a straight foward request for short term access arrangements.

  3. Robin Charles Halton

    September 16, 2017 at 2:28 am

    #9 I think there are a few 4×4 (theme parks) or mud runs as I call them conducted on private properties.

    There is an unofficial one on the White Timber Mountain trail on the edge of where the Wellington Range above Judds Ck. its now a part of no mans land administered by DPWIE, on the edge of what was State Forest and Greater Wellington Park.

    I suspect the battle for opening the West Coast tracks officially may continue.

    Gates would not stop the ruthless activities, the local police are not interested as they have better things to do addressing the increasing crime due to drug usage as jobs are rapidly being lost in Circular Head due to too many changes to the dairying forcing people out of work.
    West Coast tracks are a worthy lifetime adventure for 4×4 users but it’s the wrong types that make it hard for the genuine off road trekker.

  4. Russell

    September 15, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    Re #8
    Like I said, why don’t they go there and to all the abandoned mining areas?

    Using your own logic about supervision and protection, the west coast should also be gated.

    Psst, I know, so why don’t these responsible 4WDers use them?

    I’m with Pete #2 “using some old mine site and setting up a 4WD theme park. That would attract many of the types who are now destroying the area.” Even construct a camping area for them to stay overnight or the weekend and have their family and friend get togethers.

    I think the main problem is they currently have nowhere legal to go which suits their activities.

  5. Robin Charles Halton

    September 15, 2017 at 9:36 am

    #6, You mean South Port Lagoon area which is popular with 4×4 users.

    #7 Unlikely, unfortunately areas that cant be regularly supervised are most likely gated and FPC applies post harvest, burn and seeding, temporary fire lines are meant to regenerate during the revegetation sequence.

    Psst, there are plenty of tracks on Wood production land that can be accessed by 4×4, if one cares to look.
    Most of our firewood extraction routes that I use are disguised in such a way on purpose so as to maintain environmental protection for occasional use.

  6. Russell

    September 13, 2017 at 4:04 pm

    Re #4
    Why can’t all the abandoned and disused mining areas and un/under-utilized public forestry tracks be opened up to the 4WDers?

    If they care for the environment as much as their supporters like RCH say, then I can’t see any reason why this can’t be?

    It treads on no cultural toes, so why not?

  7. Chris

    September 12, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    I recall a girl from Hobart relating how they had to churn up the environment near Cockle Creek every holiday to have a bit of fun, why would God allow such wanton destruction in order to gain votes for the Liebrals.

  8. Robin Charles Halton

    September 12, 2017 at 5:55 am

    The former chair of the State Government Aboriginal Council for the last five years , Rocky Sainty has quit the body in protest to its make up along with a Zoe Rimmer and Clyde Mansell.

    Another group the Karadi Aboriginal Corporation CEO Rachel Dunn has also declined membership.

    All of the devisive sulking is over the Circular Head Aboriginal Corporation being granted a place on the council because of its previously voiced support for reopening of 4×4 tracks on the West C

    The Premier is accused of eligibility rules to bring tasmania into line with the Commonwealth by introducting non aboriginal members.

    According to Sainty who is obviously cheesed off unless he has his own way says the policy is shameful and disrespectful “Its no more than another attempt at assimilation!

    Also according to Mr Mansell, CHAC has broken ranks with what the council stands for in relation to the Aboriginal Community the permanent closure of the West coast tracks and return of more land to the Aboriginal community

    Its a most interesting comment by Sainty who clearly basically states that assimilation with the general Tasmanian Community is not on leaving a most divisive tone that should not be tolerated by the State government who is keen to see the tracks reopened to the community.

    I believe that the new Chair Rodney Dillon whose Tasmanian Regional Alliance attempting to engage with CHAC but appears to have some reservations about their objectives.

    As the West Coast tracks are located within the CHAC “region” then the State Government should be talking directly to them avoiding all of the confrontational anti assimilationers, such as Sainty and his mob.

    There are too many splinter groups to even bother to involve which is typical of aboriginal affairs and that is mainly why consensus is difficult to draw upon.

  9. TV Resident

    September 10, 2017 at 5:53 pm

    RCH…The gov’t dep’ts including PWS are totally useless with their permit and monitoring systems. If these tracks are opened up the bogans will just ‘thumb their noses’ at the aboriginals and their heritage. These idiots just can’t help themselves, so why give them the opportunity to destroy more of the coast and its heritage??? I don’t understand why there can’t be some part of the island that is not open to destruction by bloody idiots with theirlack of compassion, lack of brains and their ‘hoon machines’.

  10. Robin Charles Halton

    September 10, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    The current standoff is not helping anyone solve the problem of unsupervised wanton vandalism of the tracks!

    I know for a fact the aboriginal community and individuals are divided in the Circular Head area, many ‘see eye to eye at all and its not hard to see the bogan element are only stirring up more and more trouble as they have no respect what so ever for the environment let alone Tas Ab affairs!

    Total denial of usage is not the answer and if it continues all hell will break loose this summer, there will be blood letting!

    Most likely the best way forward is for the government to reopen the tracks on a limited basis with a permit and monitoring system only allowing those who have no known offences in relation to environmental damage in the area.

    Reputable 4×4 clubs have a code of practice and that would be a good starting point for government.

    Unfortunately I currently have no faith in the Tas Ab community to peacefully administer track 4×4 usage as they are also in continued conflict with the “broader” community re land rights!

    That never stops as they being urged on by the Greens who are out of touch with the general community!

    I believe that a fair and reasonable permit system should be introduced and administered by PWS this summer on a trial basis, this would greatly help reduce conflict and division that is too far pronounced.

  11. Peter Godfrey

    September 10, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    From the photos, it appears that people go to the Tarkine coast to test their skills and their cars’ capabilities.
    Reopening roads into the area will not stop them from trying out and making new tracks.
    The exercise is an ego boosting one, how far can I get in my car?, how good a driver am I, how good is my car etc.
    It is not about just going to the beach and enjoying seclusion.
    Really the government would be better off using some old mine site and setting up a 4WD theme park. That would attract many of the types who are now destroying the area.

  12. Chris

    September 8, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    FAT chance that any Braddon Member would be a conservationist in the National socialist Brethren club, run under the auspices of Herrbettz.

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