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Reg passed away peacefully in the early hours of yesterday morning. Funeral will be held at Turnbulls, 71 Letitia Street, North Hobart, 10am, Tuesday 8th May.

Reg (Dad) was active in the Tasmanian climbing community in the mid to late 60's.  I am hoping to get word out to people who knew Reg, particularly those who would like to attend his funeral.

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  1. Obituary - Reg Williams
    By Lyle Closs.

    1935 - 2012

    Take yourself back to 1970. There are maybe 30 routes on the Organ Pipes, Stacks Bluff and Coles Bay have not felt a climber’s touch, the hardest grade in town is Mild Very Severe (about 17) and the Climbers Club of Tasmania is a small, sociable group that sees rock climbing as a natural extension of bushwalking.

    A stalwart of the club is Reg Williams. He had arrived in 1966 from Victoria where he had climbed with the leading lights of the day and made the first ascent of Emperor at Mt Buffalo. He has a fine beard, a cheeky smile, a stutter, and is a strong as an ox. He can crush a bottle top between his thumb and finger, carry a 60 pound H-frame rucksack all day long without losing his smile, and is utterly reliable and resourceful.

    Reg had brought a new standard of climbing to the Tasmanian scene and put up classic Organ Pipes routes such as Moonraker and Ozymandias with Tasmanian hard men Mike Douglas and John Whelan and Faust and Mephistopheles with John Moore on one of his regular trips over from Victoria.

    The ’67 bushfires had devastated the bush below the Pipes and many climbers of the day didn’t like climbing there. The CCT had walking/climbing trips most weekends and even owned a boat on Lake St Clair to enable easier access to the mountains. The boat was called the Venus after the bawdy song ‘Aboard the good ship Venus’. The support boat was called Uranus. This gives just a hint of the good times and humour of the CCT members of the day.

    Eight of us piled into Col Hocking’s old military ambulance and drove to Lake St Clair some time in 1971. The back doors were left open, with rucksacks piled up at the back. We were on the trail of another one of Reg’s tick list of big routes, and in a long day from the Pine Valley campsite Reg and I did the first double traverse of the Geryon peaks. My memories of the day are snippets – Reg telling me to lower the abseil ropes down the wall below the North Peak so the high winds wouldn’t blow them out into the air, the step across a corner that soared down the east face, a quick sandwich on the North Peak, but most of all watching Reg hammer a rock into a crack on the Foresight then tie a thin bit of rope round it, loop the ropes through, and pass them to me for the abseil with that cheeky grin.

    That year we also did the first ascent of the Candlestick from sea level, the first Coles Bay sea level traverse, the first recorded route on Ben Lomond – Brunhilde at Stacks Bluff, and ascents of the Golden Deidre and the North-East Face of Federation Peak. Adventure climbing at its best, and every one on a CCT trip with raucous good company.

    But climbing changed and the CCT slowly faded. Reg became a stalwart of the Hobart Walking Club, and his son Al became part of another generation. When I last saw Reg he was making a replica steam train, machining the parts from raw metal. He used to print his own black and white photographs and had made his own rucksacks and sleeping bags. One day we were driving back along forestry roads when we came across a fallen tree that blocked the road. If it had been my car, we would have had to drive back and find another way through. We were in Reg’s car though – he opened the boot, took out an axe, and we chopped our way through in a few minutes.

    Obituaries are an opportunity to say just the good things about people, but I can’t imagine anyone finding anything bad to say about Reg. He was steady and true in the old-fashioned meaning of the words. Strong, reliable, resourceful, honest, good, warm, witty, trustworthy. Sadly, his light faded towards the end and the Reg we all knew and loved departed some time ago. But such memories, such good memories remain.

    Reg Williams on Pegasus Direct 1971

  2. Hello,
    My name is miss laura, i saw your profile and it drew my attention to write to you. I would like you to communicate me through my e-mail address