Andersons Catastrophe

Tuesday 24 July 2018

Problems first arose with this walk to Andersons Nature Reserve in the planning stages, when the apparent road shown on the map ended earlier when viewed on the satellite image. This necessitated finding a new start spot and several were noted, and land owners contacted. But only one call didn’t go to a message bank and it seemed easiest to go with that one, even though it wasn’t the shortest route.

The reserve is a sandstone area and some interesting rock formations were passed, although nothing spectacular. One of our objectives, Rodneys Gully had a few small caves, but the more significant ones were further down gully which I didn’t get to see. The reason for this was the need to evacuate me following an accident.

I was exploring some caves and was returning to the party when a branch I was attempting to use broke and I slid down a slope. It wasn’t a long way, but I am told I kept sliding for several metres before coming to a halt. I quickly realised my shoulder was strange and painful and I suspected a dislocated shoulder. Attempting to walk out from this rugged location was going to extremely hard, so I gave the OK to set off the PLB.

Dave T, Greg and Christine waked out to raise the alarm and Dave H stayed to look after me. The helicopter arrived in the area within about an hour, flew close but not enough to spot us. Eventually the others were seen, and the Police were able to get our precise location from them and at last we heard the comforting sound of the helicopter coming towards us.

I think Dave enjoyed the helicopter journey more than me.   That said, I was so very pleased to be on my way to hospital. The Police  Search & Rescue  were fantastic and equally so the staff at the Royal Hobart Hospital.  And thanks to my walking companions for the help and support you gave me; I am very grateful.

The GPS was on from the start of the walk through to the ambulance ride to the hospital and ran out of power there.  This enable me to work out the timing of events.   The accident was at 12:26 and the PLB was set off about 1:10 and I was being flown out at 3:25, landing at the Domain at 3:39.

The dislocation was remedied, ending the awful pain immediately, and because of the trauma and all the drugs used I was kept under observation until being released about 9:30.

Photo taken just before the accident.
One I certainly wished I had not bothered scrambling up to get.

There is a photo album from the walk here 

The walk and helicopter route 


  1. Good to hear that you are okay, Peter

    1. Thanks, Denis. Shoulder back to normal, and i am continuing doing the weight exercises set by the physiotherapist as they are beneficial.


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