High country-Licola to Mansfield
Description: The Butcher Country trip has been an annual event on the club's calendar on the Queens Birthday long weekend for many years. After 10 years, Ross Dean has unfortunately decided not to continue leading this trip. The tradition that Ross has established with running a high country trip on the Queens Birthday long weekend will however continue but unfortunately this year, it will not be the Butcher Country track as Parks Victoria has closed this track early from May. However the spirit of the trip will remain with a revised route.
The trip will still start in Licola and travel to the base of the Butcher Country track after 7 crossings of the Macalister River. We will then continue along the river before shortly leaving the river and climbing up the Blue Plains Spur Track to the Great Dividing Range, with great views before descending Grimme Track to the Barkly River. We then cross the river another 7 times in 800m before ascending back up to the Great Dividing Range along the McDonald and Nobs tracks, crossing the Alpine Walking Track, with good ridge top views both to the north and south. We then again descend down to the Jamieson River and join Brocks Road travelling up to King Billy saddle where we join Bluff Track and head towards the Lovicks and the Bluff huts before descending to Sheepyard Flat and Mansfield. The campsites are uncertain at this stage but we need to take water in case the camps are on the upper ranges.
There are many river crossings required on this trip which will make it interesting and challenging. These crossings can vary in depth depending on rainfall leading up to the weekend. Depending on the river levels, snorkels may be required for vehicle safety. The level of the river will be monitored leading up to the trip and any changes to the trip will be advised to particants.
The route from the base of the Butcher Country track to Brocks Road is new to the club so it may require some adjustment along the way depending on the track conditions but lends itself to an adventurous trip.
The best map is the Rooftop's Jamieson - Licola Adventure Map edition three.
Weather: The trip is in winter within the Victorian Alps so cold and wet weather with snowfalls ( if we are lucky) are possible. Bring appropriate clothing and footwear.
Equipment: Vehicles need to have low range 4WD capability with good all-terrain tyres and good ground clearance and be UHF radio equipped. Usual recovery gear is to be carried.
Trip Standard: The trip is rated as medium to hard as some sections will be be steep, narrow and rocky and other parts may be muddy with the potential for the track to be snow covered on the upper parts. Weather conditions can impact on the rating. Participants will have completed driver training and preferably, but not essentially, will have previously completed a medium weekend trip. The tracks are challenging but it is the challenge and scenery of the high country that makes the trip well sought after by members.
Fuel: A full fuel tank as close to Licola as possible is required as fuel is not always available at Licola. A fuel additive for diesel cars is required as snowfalls have occurred on previous trips. Torque Icebreaker concentrate is a popular product.
Distance: From Licola to Mansfield is approximately 200 Km of mainly low range driving.
Duration: 3 days
Convoy limit: 8 vehicles
Meeting arrangements: Licola General Store at 9.00am. Camping is available at the caravan park at Licola and it is best to book if arriving Friday night.
We will aim to finish on Monday at about 4:00 pm at Mansfield
Trip Leader: Graeme Allen 0477488434 or firstname.lastname@example.org