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Mountain Journal

Environment, news, culture from the Australian Alps

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Alpine national park

Victoria moves to reduce wild horse numbers

The Andrews government has released a long-term plan to protect the Alpine National Park in Victoria from the threat of feral horses.

Minister for Environment Lily D’Ambrosio launched the Protection of the Alpine National Park – Feral Horse Strategic Plan 2018-2021 this week, which aims to radically reduce wild horse numbers in the park. In announcing the plan, Minister D’Ambrosio said “feral horses cannot be allowed to run rampant in the Alpine national park – their hard hooves damage the precious environment and destroy the habitats of threatened species.”

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state budget allocation to Falls to Hotham Crossing

Mountain Journal reported recently that Parks Victoria had released its final Master Plan for the Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing: a five day serviced hiking opportunity in the Alpine National Park. In the state budget for 2018/19, there was an allocation of funds to help make the project a reality.

The proposal has been widely criticised because it will help open up previously undeveloped areas near Mt Feathertop and allow private development within the Alpine National Park.

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Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing Final Master Plan released

Several years ago, Tourism Victoria suggested that Victoria needed four ‘iconic walks’ in order to help ensure the state became a bushwalking destination. One of these was the ‘Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing’.

After a great deal of work, the final masterplan for the walk has been released by Parks Victoria.

Continue reading “Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing Final Master Plan released”

Impacts of Feral Horses on the Bogong High Plains

Feral horses pose a threat to and damage the environmental values of the Victorian alps, including areas of the Bogong High Plains. This impact has been well documented in the past.

To address this threat, Parks Victoria has for some time undertaken a trapping program to reduce the number of horses, and hence the damage they have on sensitive alpine flora and fauna.

A new report has been released based on assessments of impacts on a number of locations across the Bogong High Plains in north eastern Victoria, and how these impacts have changed over the last decade.

Continue reading “Impacts of Feral Horses on the Bogong High Plains”

The Parks Victoria Volunteer Track Ranger Program

This is a great program: Parks Victoria (PV) Track Rangers are volunteers who walk and camp along popular tracks during peak holidays in order to provide a presence in key visitation areas and providing hikers with up-to-date park information.

If you have good experience in remote area walking plus appropriate skills and the right personality, it’s a great opportunity to be out in some fantastic country and contribute in a positive way to the management of some of the state’s best parks.

It involves a 4 to 6 day commitment. Full details below.

Continue reading “The Parks Victoria Volunteer Track Ranger Program”

The Alpine Challenge – 6 major climbs of Victoria’s highest peaks

The Alpine Challenge is without doubt the toughest, most challenging, most spectacular and rewarding mountain trail run in Australia – if not the southern hemisphere over four separate routes of varying lengths (36 km,  60km, 100 km and 160km). The 100 mile (160 km) course takes in 6 major climbs with 7,600 m of ascent and descent including Mt Feathertop, Mt Hotham, Mt McKay, Spion Kopje, Mt Nelse and Victoria’s highest mountain, Mt Bogong, plus five river crossings. The 100 km involves over 4,000 m of ascent and descent and the 60 km course over 2,000 m of ascent and descent, whilst for those undertaking the 36 km run you will have over 1,300 m of ascent.

Key Information

Date: Saturday 25 November–Monday 27 November 2017

Location: Alpine National Park, Victoria, Australia

Start/Finish: Slalom Plaza, Falls Creek

You can find further information and register here.

 

Falls Creek Hawkweed Eradication Program Volunteer Surveys.

As you may know, Hawkweeds are a highly invasive pest plant species which could cause major environmental damage in alpine and sub-alpine areas of Australia if not eradicated early.

For several years there have been summer field trips where volunteers join with Parks Victoria to identify and remove Hawkweed from the Bogong High Plains. They will be on again this summer and you can register now.

Continue reading “Falls Creek Hawkweed Eradication Program Volunteer Surveys.”

Time to make Mt Stirling part of the Alpine Park

With a review of alpine resorts being carried out by the Victorian government, the Victorian National Parks Association (VNPA) has renewed its campaign to have Mt Stirling incorporated into the Alpine National Park.

There is a small window of time remaining to provide input to the review, supporting the call for the inclusion in the park. The following information from the VNPA explains how to have input into the process.

Continue reading “Time to make Mt Stirling part of the Alpine Park”

Alps blueprint proposes major cull of horses

Recently the Victorian government released a ‘blueprint’ plan for the national parks in the Alps, which aims to guide management over the next 15 years.

The plan identifies eight priorities for urgent action, one of which is feral horse control.

Peter Hunt from The Weekly Times has looked into one aspect of the plan which will cause concern among groups who have campaigned against shooting feral horses. However, the environmental impacts of wild horses are well documented and numbers of these animals needs to be radically reduced.

Continue reading “Alps blueprint proposes major cull of horses”

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