High Country of North East Victoria
Description: This trip will traverse the High Country of north east Victoria, covering an area from Bruthen in the south to Omeo in the north. 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 on Friday morning 19 April , from where we will 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 will 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.
From Native Dog Flat, we will then head towards Omeo where we will finish this Easter trip at Omeo on Monday afternoon. The participants on the Easter trip can then head back to Melbourne with the participants on the extended trip heading out from Omeo the next day, back to Native Dog Flat, re-joining the Limestone Creek Track heading towards Tom Groggin on the NSW- Victoria border.
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 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 400km.
Duration: The trip is for 4 days finishing at Omeo on the Monday afternoon 22 April. Omeo to Melbourne is 400km.
Convoy limit: 8 vehicles.
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.
POST TRIP REPORT
DAY 1. 6 vehicles. From Bruthen, Nicholson Creek Rd, Store Point Rd, Farm Tk, Deptford Rd, Deptford (morning tea), Deptford -Sugarloaf Rd, Engineers Rd- all easy roads/tks. Dawson City Tk very steep down to Dawson City (Lunch). Haunted Stream Tk from 1.30pm. Narrow and difficult to pass other vehicles/convoys. Busy track. 52 fords. Slow going. Two big bog holes. Interesting tk . Camp at Stirling at 5.30pm.Good campsite over the ford. DAY 2. Continue for 1.5 hrs to Great Alpine Rd. Ensay morning tea. Little River Rd, Bentley Rd, Upper Little River Tk, steep and rocky up to Mt Nugong fire tower, (lunch) good views Nunniong Rd, Washington Winch, Moscow Villa hut, Flinns Rd, Nunniong Rd, all easy roads to Nunniong Plains Tk. Good grassy snow plain campsite just off Nunniong Rd along Nunniong Plains Tk. 4.30 pm DAY 3. Nunniong Plains Tk, Ezards Tk, Jeep Tk, Murphy Ck Tk, (morning tea), Moss Bed Rd, Mellick Rd, all easy, Mundy Plain, Mundy's Plain Tk to and out of Buchan River ford (lunch) tk steep and rocky . Bald Hill Rd, Seldom Seen Tk, rocky and steep, Lookout Tk easy up to fire tower, great views, Seldom Seen Rd, Snowy River Dve, Suggan Buggan, Ingeegoodbee Tk, steep and rocky to poor ridge campsite at 5.30pm. DAY 4. Early 8.30 start. Expect long day. Steep and rocky track to ford at Ingeegoodbee River which drops steeply, very scalloped and loose. Lunch. Rock and steep in places to ford at Berrima River. Two difficult rock shelves along Cobberas Trail require rock ramps or winching. Arrived Limestone Rd at 4.00pm. Cobberas Trail slow, steep and rocky in places. 50 km in 7 hours. To Omeo along 2WD Limestone Rd. Arriving Omeo at 5.00 pm. Distance travelled 400 km