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Mountain Journal

Environment, news, culture from the Australian Alps

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bushwalking

Connecting Melbourne and Canberra to the Australian Alps Walking Track

The Australian Alps has hundreds of fantastic trails. The iconic long distance trail is the Australian Alps Walking Track, which stretches from Walhalla, east of Melbourne, almost to Canberra. The AAWT was created in stages, starting with the Victorian Alpine Walking Track, which was developed in the 1970s as part of a larger vision of linking the Australian Alps with a three-state trail. The dream of a long distance track was only fulfilled after years of work and a lot of ‘big picture’ thinking by many people.

Now there are plans to extend the track network all the way to Melbourne and right into Canberra. There are two alternatives for the track from Melbourne, and a proposed route into Canberra, which are outlined below. This well researched proposal identifies gaps in existing tracks and a number of options for connecting up with the existing AAWT.

Continue reading “Connecting Melbourne and Canberra to the Australian Alps Walking Track”

The ‘Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing’ upgrade

The Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing is described as “a mid-distance hiking experience through the unique and captivating Australian alpine environment”. There are plans to re-route it to make it a 56 kilometre trip and a Draft Master Plan has been released. Public comment is welcome before December 19.

Parks Victoria says “the walk will be supplemented with high quality accommodation options and interpretation that enable a range of visitors to fully immerse themselves in the beauty and stories of Victoria’s High Country”.

Continue reading “The ‘Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing’ upgrade”

The Victorian Walking Festival

The Victorian Walking festival starts on April 1 and goes until May 8.

You can choose walks by date, theme or region. There are walks in Melbourne and regional VIC plus lots of specialised themes like night walking, food culture, natural history, etc.

The following information comes from the organiser, Stephen Ingrouille

Continue reading “The Victorian Walking Festival”

A Victorian walking festival

The following comes from Stephen Ingrouille.

We are planning a Melbourne / Victorian Walking Festival for the month of April, 2016 [finishing on May 8]. This inaugural festival will encourage people, groups and businesses to organise walks during the month, which can then be advertised via a website, a printed program and through social media.

Continue reading “A Victorian walking festival”

Bike packing

If you drive up any of the sealed roads into the mountains outside of winter, you will be aware of the incredible surge of interest in road riding in the Alps. From the Seven Peaks concept (ride up the seven key roads at your own pace during ‘riding season’) to events like the Tour of Bright (which has two substantial hill climb stages including the road to Hotham), road riding is huge.

Mountain bike riding is equally a wildly popular pastime, with Mt Buller in particular being an early adopter in terms of putting in infrastructure. The riding is great, and a growing number of other resorts are seeking to increase tourist visitation through developing infrastructure like single track networks.

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New walking and riding map of Lake Mountain

Lake Mountain Alpine Resort has produced a great new A2 sized map which details the walking, mountain biking and ‘shared trails’ on the mountain.

snowgumsThe map covers the area from Keppel’s Hut up to the plateau and all its ski trails, and then all the way down to the entry station at the turn off on the Woods Point Road.  There is now an increased range of tracks then were previously available as a result of work by Lake Mountain staff in connecting existing separate tracks, and this has opened up some really great extended day walks.

The map contains details of a number of suggested walks, as well as photos of some common flora which visitors may encounter at Lake Mountain.

The map will be available at the Lake Mountain resort and a number of tourist, bushwalking and cycling outlets.  Anyone having trouble finding a copy is welcome to contact Sue Parry, the Lake Mountain Environmental Officer via sue@lakemountainresort.com.au


snowgums2

Treading softly in the bush

The Australian bush is fragile. Bushwalking Victoria has produced a brochure called Tread Softly that explains how to walk in the bush in the way that conserves Victoria’s natural environment.

Tread Softy lists 10 recommended practices that will help protect the natural environment, without detracting from enjoyment. Each practice takes the form of a commonsense and easy-to-do action.

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Major re-route of Falls to Hotham alpine crossing proposed

Tourism North East has called for feedback on the master plan for the Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing walk. This has been billed as an ‘iconic’ walk which links the two resorts via the Bogong High Plains and Cobungra Gap, and is generally done over three days. A permit is required to camp at the Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing campsites.

There is a proposal for a major re-alignment of the walk, which instead of skirting the High Plains, cuts out to Tawonga Huts then down into the Kiewa Valley and up Mt Feathertop. This new proposal would require substantial new track building up the Diamantina Spur. The initial public consultation period for the Plan is over.

Continue reading “Major re-route of Falls to Hotham alpine crossing proposed”

Three Tassie eco-tourism projects approved

In theory, new eco tourism projects are a good idea, and will get more people out into wild environments in a way that doesn’t damage the environment. But when it comes to the current Tasmanian government, I wouldn’t trust them as far as I could throw them.

The following comes from The Great Walks website.

Three eco-tourism projects have been given the green light to operate in Tasmania as part of the Government’s bid to open up the state’s national parks to eco-tourism.

Continue reading “Three Tassie eco-tourism projects approved”

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