High Country- Licola to Mansfield
via Wonangatta Station
Trip : High country - Licola to Mansfield via Wonangatta Station
Date: Saturday 2 November to Tuesday 5 November 2019
This trip travels over the Victorian high country from Licola to Mansfield visiting iconic peaks, ridgelines valleys, huts and historic places.
We depart from the Licola General Store at 0900 on Saturday morning and travel along the Tamboritha Road up onto McFarlane saddle where we will enjoy morning tea amongst the snow gums. We then continue onto the Moroka Road and turn onto the Mount Wellington track to Mount Wellington for stunning views over the Latrobe Valley to the south. Depending on time, we may drop down to Millers Hut. Returning to the Moroka Road, we then visit the Moroka Hut before arriving at our overnight camp on the Moroka River at Horseyard flat. Time permitting, we can walk to the upper part of the Moroka Gorge and waterfalls.
The next day we head up to the Pinnacles for one of the most panoramic views of the high country. We then drop down the iconic Billy Goat Bluff Track to and cross the Wonnangatta River, passing through Eaglevale and then up onto the Cynthia Range track, again traversing another scenic ridge top drive. Finally we drop into the Wonangatta Valley and travel along the picturesque valley to the Wonangatta homestead for our overnight camp. We will visit the site of the original homestead and the cemetery, both surrounded by 100 year old English trees and hear of the history of the homestead, including the mystery of the unsolved murder.
On the third day of our trip, we head further up the valley before climbing Zeta Spur track up onto the Howitt Road along the Snowy Range and then visit Howitt Hut. We then drop down to the headwaters of the Macalister River before climbing up the King Billy Track for our overnight camp at the King Billy saddle amongst the snow gums.
On our final day we travel along the ridge line with panoramic views to both the north and south, passing by Lovicks and Bluff Huts before dropping down to the Howqua River and then heading back to Mansfield either via Sheepyard Flat or the Stirling Ring Road, anticipating an arrival in Mansfield of around 4.00pm
Meeting place and time: Licola General Store at 0900. If you are camping at Licola on Friday night, as I will be, please let me know and I will book a site in the Licola Caravan Park for you as we can put a number of tents and people on the one site.
Weather: Alpine environment, potentially cold and wet. Bring appropriate clothing, footwear and sleeping bags.
Equipment: Vehicles are to have low range 4WD capability, good ground clearance (minimum 200mm) , good all-terrain tyres and be UHF radio equipped. Usual recovery gear is to be carried.
Trip Standard: Hard. Some steep, low-range hill climbs and descents and some rocky tracks with a couple of river crossings.
Fuel: a full tank ex Heyfield. Whilst there is fuel at the Licola General Store, fuel at Heyfield is better priced. As we will be camping one night 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. Torque Icebreaker is such an additive.
Convoy limit: 8 vehicles
Trip Leader: Graeme Allen
Contact Graeme on 0477488434 email@example.com for any queries. There is no mobile reception at Licola, so if delayed in arriving, pls ring the Licola General Store on (03) 51
POST TRIP REPORT
DAY 1. 7 vehicles. Left Licola 0920. Tamboritha Rd. Moroka Road. MacFarlanes Saddle morning tea. Moroka Range Tk, Mt Wellington Tk, Millers Hut for lunch at 1300 . Return on Mt Wellington Tk, Moroka Range Tk, Moroka Hut, Horseyard Flat campground (toilet) for overnight camp at 1600. 90km
DAY 2. 5 vehicles (2 returned to Melbourne due inclement weather). Due overnight rain, Billy Goat Bluff/Wonangatta Station bypassed due to heavy overnight rain and likely track conditions, especially at the bottom of Billy Goat Bluff Tk, with route taken direct to King Billy Saddle. Left Horseyard Flat at 0930. Pinnacles Road, Pinnacles, back on Pinnacles Rd, morning tea at Moroka River campground. Moroka Rd, Arbuckle Junction, Howitt Rd, Howitt Hut for lunch at 1300. King Billy Tk to King Billy Saddle for good overnight camp at 1630. King Billy Tk now well graded and widened track. 90km
DAY 3. 5 vehicles. Bluff Tk, Lovicks Hut for morning tea, Bluff Hut, 16 Mile Jeep Tk, Pikes Flat, Bindaree Hut for lunch at 1230. Bindaree Rd, Monument Tk, Craigs Hut, Circuit Rd, Speculation Rd, King River Hut(toilet) for overnight camp at 1600. Again heavy overnight rain.70km
DAY 4. 5 vehicles. King Basin Road, Circuit Rd, King Saddle, Merimbah and then return to Melbourne. King Basin Road recently graded and very muddy. Tried Black Landing Tk as alternate route to Circuit Rd but to slippery with red clay.