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Mountain Journal

Environment, news, culture from the Australian Alps

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cross country skiing

Winter 2019 is go!

With continued snowfalls expected this week, we’re looking as if we will have a proper (settled) base across higher ranges and hence an early start to the ‘season’ (yes, ‘ski season’ is just a capitalist construct).

You’re probably planning trips. Here are a few resources that might help:

Continue reading “Winter 2019 is go!”

Backcountry festival program launch

The Victorian Backcountry Festival will happen at Hotham, over the weekend of Sept 7 and 8. The program has just been released and is available here.

So far the program has 27 tours and workshops, from beginner to advanced, covering snow shoeing, splitboarding, alpine touring, telemark, and cross country. There will be skillshares in fat bikes, snow and avalanche safety, navigation, snow camping, rescue and a film making workshop.

The program:

  • Start the weekend with a drink at the Snowline in Harrietville on Friday night
  • Meet at The General early on sat for a briefing and tours (there are currently 19 tours and workshops on offer)
  • Speaker’s program from midday at The General
  • Then head to the outdoor bar (1 km ski/ skin in) and then kick on at Blizzard brewery in Dinner Plain
  • Sunday is mostly longer tours (there are currently 8 tours planned for that day)
  • The weekend finishes off with an evening brought to you by Protect Our Winters, featuring great speakers and 2 films, at The Bird
  • Then Monday morning, the 3 day Feathertop camp out starts
  • Alpine Access Australia is offering 2 day AST 1 avalanche courses before, during and after the festival.

The program is here.

Please remember to buy tickets for the weekend if you haven’t already (it’s $10 a person for the weekend)

The 2018 Victorian backcountry festival

Thanks to everyone who made the effort to come along to the inaugural Victorian backcountry festival (BCF). More than 200 people attended over the two days, with more than 20 sessions being held, including clinics, tours, skillshares, presentations, and a film festival.

BCF grew from the world telemark day celebrations that have been happening at Mt Hotham the last 5 years. After deciding to bring it to Falls Creek, the idea morphed into an ‘all things backcountry’ event which would aim to bring together some of the backcountry (BC) community and offer an opportunity for ‘first timers’ to get involved. We focused on many forms of human powered winter adventure – including cross country, snow shoeing, alpine touring, telemark and splitboarding.

Continue reading “The 2018 Victorian backcountry festival”

Kangaroo Hoppet 2018

The Kangaroo Hoppet is Australia’s International Ski Marathon. It will happen out of Falls Creek resort on saturday August 25.

There are three races:

The 7km Joey Hoppet course is a single anti-clockwise loop into Sun Valley.

The 21km Australian Birkebeiner is the Sun Valley loop followed by the anti-clockwise Heathy Spur loop.

The 42km Kangaroo Hoppet course is 24km lap consisting of the Sun Valley loop and the Heathy Spur loop with a diversion to the right at the Park drink station. the second lap (18km) consists of another Sun Valley loop then the Langfords loop and return along the Two Pauls track.

For full details (and to register) check here.

 

One month til the inaugural Australian backcountry festival!

Media release. August 1, 2018

Ski / Ride Hard. Do Good.

The Backcountry festival will happen at Falls Creek, over the weekend of September 1 and 2, 2018.

It aims to celebrate all things backcountry – telemark, split boarding, cross country, snow shoeing and alpine touring.

Festival organiser Cam Walker said “our vision is to host a grass-roots gathering at Falls Creek for backcountry skiers and riders of all abilities.  If you’re interested in any form of human powered adventure in the winter backcountry, you should be there. Beginners to advanced, all are welcome.

Continue reading “One month til the inaugural Australian backcountry festival!”

Falls Creek’s annual Ski de Femme

Since its early beginning, Falls Creek’s annual Ski de Femme has evolved into a very popular day. In 2018, it will be held on August 11.

Continue reading “Falls Creek’s annual Ski de Femme”

Traverse Hotham cross country and snow shoe tours

Traverse Hotham is offering cross country (XC) and snow shoe tours at Mt Hotham. The aim is to make both these activities accessible to a new generation of people by offering tours of the trail network, scenic snowshoe walks and introductory lessons in XC skiing.

Hotham has a great network of XC trails but many visitors to the mountain are unaware of them. These are largely centred on the Wire Plain area including the unique Brabralung Trail right through to Dinner Plain and can be accessed via XC trail from Davenport Village or via the village bus network.

Continue reading “Traverse Hotham cross country and snow shoe tours”

Australia’s first backcountry festival

The Backcountry festival will happen at Falls Creek, over the weekend of September 1 and 2, 2018.

It aims to celebrate all things backcountry – tele, split boarding, cross country, snow shoeing and alpine touring.

Our vision is to host a grass-roots gathering at Falls Creek for backcountry skiers and riders of all abilities.  If you’re interested in any form of human powered adventure in the backcountry, you should be there. Beginners to advanced, all are welcome.

We now have a fantastic program for the festival. Thanks to the generosity of the folks at Falls Creek Cross Country, we have some great telemark clinics and snow shoe tours, which are being offered for free.

A range of people have also offered to lead tours or offer skills workshops, like navigation skills and snow camping 101.

There will be demo skis available for hire, an outdoor bar in the afternoon, and a mini film festival featuring Australian made backcountry films and some great speakers in the evening.

Sunday will see the world telemark day gathering, with skiing both in and out of the resort as an option.

The program is available here.

What now?

Please invite your mates and spread the word. Facebook page available here.

Please register. This is free and makes planning easier if we know numbers. People who have registered will have first option on getting tickets to the film festival.

Start to build some stoke. If posting pics through winter, please feel free to tag us #VICbackcountryfestival

We know of one person who is planning to walk and snow shoe to the festival from Walhalla (!!). Where are you coming from?

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Timely drive for ski patrol volunteers

With the arctic blast that is currently hitting the alps and (hopefully) heralding the approach of winter,  Lake Mountain Ski Patrol (LMSP) has launched a timely drive for volunteer patrollers for the 2018 snow season.

The patrol is looking for people who can cross country ski, have basic first aid training, love to work outdoors and are keen to join the weekend roster for volunteers over the winter.

Continue reading “Timely drive for ski patrol volunteers”

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