Protest walkers finish long trek at Mount Kosciuszko

The Kosciuszko Wild Horse Heritage Act, commonly referred to as the “Brumby Act”, seeks to protect horses in NSW National Parks.

Protest walkers finishing their 560 kilometre trek in Kosciuszko National Park. The group believes the Kosciuszko Wild Horse Heritage Act, commonly referred to as the "Brumby Act", prioritises introduced horses over native species and overrides the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974. The "Brumby Act" remains contentious. Photo supplied.

Protest walkers finishing their 560 kilometre trek in Kosciuszko National Park. The group believes the Kosciuszko Wild Horse Heritage Act, commonly referred to as the "Brumby Act", prioritises introduced horses over native species and overrides the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974. The "Brumby Act" remains contentious. Photo supplied.

Fiver protest walkers, who argue the “Brumby Act” damages native ecosystems, walked for 36 days, or 560 kilometres, from Sydney to reached the summit of Mt Kosciuszko to register their opposition to the legislation.

The long-distance “Save Kosci” walkers, who started out from Sydney on Saturday, November 3, were joined on the summit by more than 100 supporters converging on Mt Kosciuszko.

Alan Laird, who trekked the entire 560km distance, loves the Snowy Mountains.

“I did the walk because I love the Snowy Mountains. I have been skiing and walking for over 50 years and it is a tragedy to see the mountains being ruined by feral horses.

“I have been overwhelmed by the level of support for our cause, especially in Monaro, the state electorate of John Barilaro, the man who brought forward the law protecting the horses.

"It's a silly idea to provide more protection to feral horses in a national park than we provide to our own native species."

Save Kosci walk organiser Linda Groom cannot stand the thought of Kosciuszko National Park being overrun by feral horses.

“I organised this walk because bad legislation requires a public response. National parks are a national treasure and I want my children and my grandchildren to enjoy them as I have.

“We have to repeal the Kosciuszko Wild Horse Heritage Act and reduce the number of horses in the park.”

About 500 walkers participated in the march and have been supported by almost 60 volunteer marshals, drivers and providers of cakes and other food. Supporters from near and far accompanied the long distance walkers each day.

The original five walkers will complete their trek today by covering the final 11km from Charlotte Pass to Mt Kosciuszko. They will be joined by other walkers linking up with them from Thredbo and other more rugged destinations.

The five, Alan Laird, Paul Millgate, Donna Powell, Marg Sharp and Tom Vaughan, come from all walks of life. Alan is a retired scientist, Paul was a financial manager and Tom is an army veteran.

Reclaim Kosci campaign coordinator Richard Swain says the walkers have shown incredible grit and determination during their five week march.

“The Save Kosci walkers have sent a strong message to the NSW Government, treating our national park like a horse paddock is not acceptable,” Mr Swain said.

“The campaign to overturn legislation will become a major issue in the NSW March state election,” Mr Swain said.

 Lower Kosciuszko National Park area along the Snowy River October 2.

Lower Kosciuszko National Park area along the Snowy River October 2.