High Country of North East Victoria
Description: This extended trip will traverse the High Country of north east Victoria and the Kosciusko National Park, covering an area from Bruthen in the south to Corryong in the north, being undertaken from Easter through to the weekend following Anzac Day. It will offer some of the best four-wheel drive touring in the Victorian High Country, taking in stunning mountain scenery, historic cattlemen's huts, great camping destinations, beautiful autumnal colours of the poplars within the old gold mining areas, as well as the history and folklore of the High Country.
The route is based on a number of the treks in the recently published “4WD Treks of the High Country “by Craig Lewis and Cathy Savage, published by the same publisher as the Robert Pepper book of 20 Treks around Melbourne, which is currently being validated by our club.
The trip will commence in Bruthen and travel north through the former gold mining areas of the 1850’s, visiting sites of old mining towns and then crossing (52 times !) and following the Haunted Stream down, coming out onto the Great Alpine Road near Ensay.
We then head north along the Great Alpine Road to just north of Swifts Creek where we then wind our way east over Mount Nugong, visiting the historic Washington Winch and the Moscow Villa Hut before arriving at Gelantipy.
We then turn and head north along the Gelantipy Road to Suggan Buggan, visiting the historic school house. Turning west from Suggan Buggan, we travel along the Cobberas Track, passing between Mt Cobberas at 1833m and the Rams Head Range, to Native Dog Flat. We then travel to Omeo where the Easter trip participants will leave the trip and head back to Melbourne.. We then return to Native Dog Flat and head then north along Limestone Creek Track, crossing the start of the headwaters of the Murray River, onto the iconic Davies Plain track, travelling along beautiful snow plains, before arriving at Tom Groggin, on the Murray River at the Victorian/NSW border on the Alpine Way.
From Tom Groggin, we ford the Murray River into NSW and head up the Alpine Way to Geehi where we travel along the Geehi Walls Fire Trail visiting a number of historic Snowy Mountains huts and viewing the craggy western side of towering Main Range before returning to the Alpine Way and making our way to Corryong through Khancoban.
From Corryong, we head south to Surveyors Gap and visit the memorial to where Jack Riley died, being the inspiration for Banjo’s Man from Snowy River. We then drive up to the summit of Mount Pinnibar at 1773m, with a spectacular 360-degree view over the Kosciusko Main Range. Continuing south we drive up to another summit, Mount Gibbo at 1750 m and then make our way to Benambra and finishing at Omeo.
Weather: The trip will be undertaken in late Autumn within an alpine environment, so be prepared for cold and wet weather and even a light dusting of snow! Take appropriate clothing, footwear and weather protection and a warm sleeping bag !
Equipment: As a minimum, basic recovery gear including a rated snatch strap, dampener, rated shackles, gloves and a shovel is to be taken. Maxtrax or the like would be advantageous, a set of basic tools, vehicle spares and puncture repair kit are to be taken. A second spare tyre fitted to a rim would be beneficial in the event of side wall damage to a tyre. Vehicles to have low range capability, be in sound condition, UHF radio equipped, with good, high profile, all-terrain tyres and good ground clearance (200mm minimum). A snorkel is preferable for water crossings, which at the time of the year should be relatively shallow.
This trip is not suitable for camper trailers. Tents or swags only to be taken.
Trip Standard: Track classification - Difficult. According to the trek notes, the majority of the tracks will be easy and moderate in dry weather but some will be difficult so drivers must have the confidence and competency to tackle the difficult tracks, particularly in the event of wet weather that may make the moderate tracks difficult, recognizing that the trip is in late Autumn and in the Australian Alps. There will be a number of water crossings.
Fuel: A full fuel tank out of Bruthen with refuelling available at Gelantipy, Omeo, Khancoban and Corryong with a final refuel at Omeo before heading home. As we will be camping at a high-altitude alpine environment, diesel fuel is to have an additive to avoid a possible gelling of the fuel if temperatures drop below zero. Icebreaker is such an additive.
Distance: The total distance is approximately 800km, with approximately 100km on sealed roads between the off-road routes.
Duration: The trip is for 9 days finishing at Omeo on the Saturday afternoon 27 April , allowing either a return drive home that night or the next day by staying overnight at Omeo. Omeo to Melbourne is 400km.
Convoy limit: 8 vehicles including the participants on the Easter trip..
Meeting Arrangements: Meet at the general store in Bruthen on Friday 19 April at 9.00am. Melbourne to Bruthen is 300 km.
Trip Leader: Graeme Allen – 0477 488 434 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t hesitate to contact Graeme for any queries you may.