At some time on the weekend of 30-31 March, following 46mm of rain, someone their horse the plantings in Forest 20 in the far north-west corner of the Arboretum, down the hill from the horse yard. Forest 20 is a small regional botanic garden for Southern Tablelands native vegetation and is developed and managed by volunteers, not Arboretum staff. These volunteers are understandably very upset about the damage which they reported to Arboretum management – with photographs. You can imagine their feelings when the damage was repeated this past weekend.
There is no need to go through this Forest. There is a perfectly good fire trail around the outside.
Additionally,staff have been noticed more horse poo in some of the high public visitation areas including the Events Terrace and in Central Valley.
In the early days some members of the Friends of the Arboretum were strongly against horses being allowed on the site at all. We have worked hard, continuously, to have a good relationship with staff and it is frustrating when thoughtlessness provides ammunition to people who are not so welcoming.
Today we have access to all the fire trails and the allees and a yard near the Visitors Centre for the coffee dependent. Horses, however, are specifically excluded from some high traffic and vulnerable areas. This seems a small price to pay for continued access.
Please spread the message as widely as you can that thoughtless, illegal behaviour could lead to our expulsion from the Arboretum.
- Horses are welcome on the fire trails and the allees between the planted forests on both sides of the mountain. The maps at the 3 entrances suggest routes to the yards or to the BNT route. These maps are also available on the Arboretum website at https://www.nationalarboretum.act.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0020/1031834/FINAL-Equestrian-Map.pdf
Horses are NOT welcome
on the area around the parking lot near the Visitors Centre
on the walking trails around the top of the hill
on the Amphitheatre and the grassy area between it and the Visitors Centre
on the Zig Zag path up the hill from the dam to the Visitors Centre
on the top of Dairy Farmers Hill (with the Eagles Nest)
in among the trees in the individual forests.