Leave a map

Are you planning a hike, going somewhere remote or where the weather can be extreme and terrain challenging? It’s important to tell other people about your trip and leave a map, so they can contact Police if something goes wrong.

As part of your hike planning I recommend you prepare a route map that includes details of your group and emergency contacts. In addition to sending this map to your emergency contact, leave a map or a copy of these documents in your vehicle at the trail head so that rescuers know your intended route and will have greater success at locating you if something goes wrong. Reminder again, a copy of these documents should also be left with your reliable emergency contact.

In addition to registering my trip intentions, the information I generally include on my map are:

  • Dates of hike
  • Summary of hike including distance, duration, grade, direction of travel, group size and experience, equipment
  • Start and end point
  • Intended campsites
  • Known or potential water sources
  • Possibly emergency extraction/evacuation points
  • Summary of group members including name, age and mobile phone number

Leave a Map


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21 thoughts on “Leave a map”

    • In principle but I really dont like the idea of leaving on/ in my car that says how long im going to be away from it. Only encourages theft and/or vandalism….besides..how do they which car to break into to find the details unless its diplayed on the dashboard..which brings me back to the first point.
      If one is going seriously bush then a PLB is a must. Granted there could times when its not possible to activate.ie solo hiking and a fall renders loss of consciousness. Thems the risks I suppose but I always carry a PLB . Even at Wilsons Prom in summer!

    • i think the fact that your car would be parked at the trail head of a multi day hike kind of indicates how long you will be gone for. You might not be lost or injured but you maybe completely unaware that a bush fire is burning out of control in the back it’s of your hike. If emergency services can access your map they know where you are headed and can act accordingly. Sometimes you may just need to be rescued without you even knowing.

    • We may as well wear tracking devices. When i started hiking it was map,compass and whistle. Whilst one should always take due diligence I think we as a society are becoming increasingly risk averse. My wife knows where Im headed and I carry a PLB and good first aid kit and am sufficiently trained in its use.
      Accidents will always happen but we can over prepare or try to be considerate of others. What happens when we get to the Himalaya….you’re pretty much on your own.
      Be prepared and if you’re uncomfortable with self reliance and rescue stay at home..its mych safer. In bushfire season it would be wholly unwise to head in to an area that would not provide some form of escape or shelter. I plan for this too and will often not venture out if conditions look bad. If the zombie apocalypse happens then just leave me where I am. I for one dont want do gooders deciding I need to be rescued.

    • Yup. Were promoting an environment where ill experienced and ill equipped people are heading into the bush because they’re being told ” its OK someone will come get you if you look like you might be in trouble”
      Each to their own. The only person I rely in the bush is me. End of story.

    • the only person I rely on is me. So by your thinking I should shut down my website and not provide any information on how people can access hikes and do it safely. Only the experienced are allowed to hike. And how does one gain experience? By hiking.

    • No . I think your site provides an excellent resource. I use it a lot.
      I’m simply grumpy today and don’t know anyone who leaves ingo in their car. Personally I think its overkill..but each to their own. Apologies if I have come across overly difficult.

    • cheers Nick. Haha, we all have our grumpy days. On all hikes into remote areas that are more than two days in length I always carry my PLB, register my intentions with the government authority who monitors the PLBs, leave my intentions with a friend or relative and leave my intentions in my car. I do this as I have been asked to pass on a reinforce this message from Parks VIC, BSAR and the VIC Police. They are asking for this practice so all I can do is deliver what they are asking. So many people head off into the bush without telling a soul and the authorities would prefer to find a map in a a car than to be searching for days with no avail. I agree that people should not head off un prepared but the reality is that they do so all we can do is ask them to do it safely.

  1. I did a solo across the Razorback to Feathertop . I carried an PLB , left 3 intentions sheets with my wife a friend and the police at Bright. I covered my arse pretty well. AT 62 I made sure someone could get me.

  2. Yes nice stuff. Sometimes maps don’t work if you do exploratory stuff. So sometimes rough notes of where your heading and when you are due back to the car plus carrying a PLB and GPS work OK. Good for me as I do a lots of site searching in the Snowy Mtns and don’t always follow any trail. Actually have been looking for old trails. PS I am 69. Real old bugger eh!

    • So true Darren. Means you know how painful the planned trip will be. And those legs don’t seem to go as fast as they used to. And you know just how cranky the missus will be when you get home !!!

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