camping [32] | Walksafe


Stoves & Fires

In many bushwalking areas of Victoria, firewood has become scarce and fires are completely banned in an increasing number of places, specifically in alpine regions.  Dead wood makes an important contribution to natural ecosystems.  Be aware of any fire restrictions in force and use existing fireplaces.  Take care to keep any fire small, well contained and completely extinguished and cold when leaving the campsite.

For both convenience and conservation, most overnight bushwalkers use modern fuel stoves for cooking.  There are a variety of stoves on the market ranging from the noisy but efficient shellite burning "choofer" to the metho burning Trangia popular for its silence and simplicity, to the disposable mini gas burners and the emergency solid fuel contraptions.  All, unlike fires, are good in wet weather and safer in times of high fire danger. These stoves are relatively efficient, quick and easy to operate, lightweight, clean to use and have a reasonably controllable temperature.  Seek advice about suitable choice of stove and read the manual thoroughly before use.


Where there is a toilet please use it.  In areas without toilets, or if toilets are full, you should bury human waste at least 100 metres away from campsites, water courses and tracks.  Dig a hole 10 - 15 cm deep within the soil's organic layer. In snow, try to find a place where you can dig through to the soil.

Carry out sanitary pads or tampons as they do not readily degrade.

Always wash up at least 50 metres away from creeks or lakes and scatter the used washing water so that it will be filtered as it returns to the water course. Avoid using soap to wash dishes and billies. Sand or grass make excellent substitutes if you don't have a commercial pot scourer.


Campsites should be chosen with a view to minimum impact and areas with fragile vegetation or overuse should be avoided.  Carry out all your own rubbish and, if you can, clean up waste left behind by less considerate visitors.  The motto is " If you can carry it in, you can carry it out." It is therefore worth planning how to meet your trip needs with a minimum generation of rubbish.

Mountain huts form a valuable part of our historical heritage and their usage should be regarded as a shared privilege, not a right.  Some huts attract many visitors and thus highlight the need for minimum impact practices and self sufficiency with respect to camping equipment.  Leave huts clean and tidy for others.

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