Conrad Wood – Bushfire Biggles.

If ever anyone could claim (not that he ever would) to have pioneered modern aerial firefighting and forestry aviation in Australia it was Conrad Wood. Woody graduated from the Victorian School of Forestry in 1957, and after postings with the Forests Commission Victoria (FCV) at Swifts Creek and Sirex surveys, he gravitated into the orbitContinue reading “Conrad Wood – Bushfire Biggles.”

Firebombing Folklore, Fantasy & Fairytales.

Late one summer afternoon in the early 1980s, a small fixed-wing firebomber was dispatched from Benambra to a smoke sighting near Gelantipy which had been reported by the local firetower. The experienced bush pilot took-off in the fading light and lengthening shadows to try and locate the fire but couldn’t find it. On the returnContinue reading “Firebombing Folklore, Fantasy & Fairytales.”

Florrie Hodges – 1926 bushfire heroine.

The 1926 Black Sunday bushfires are largely forgotten now, being overshadowed by the catastrophic 1939 Black Friday bushfires thirteen years later. The fires on Saint Valentine’s Day, February 14, 1926, swept across large areas of Gippsland, the Yarra Valley, the Dandenong Ranges and Kinglake. The figures vary, but it’s thought that as many as 60Continue reading “Florrie Hodges – 1926 bushfire heroine.”

Wilsons Prom bushfire – 1951.

In early February 1951 a couple of small fires were burning unchecked near Yanakie, at the northern end of Wilsons Promontory National Park. One was believed to have escaped from a campfire left unattended at Tin Pot Waterhole which was outside the northern boundary of the park. They had been burning for almost three weeks,Continue reading “Wilsons Prom bushfire – 1951.”