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Mountain Journal

Environment, news, culture from the Australian Alps

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Mt Buffalo

7 peaks ride

Its October, so its ‘officially’ road riding season. While there are endless riding opportunities across the entire Australian Alps, the ‘iconic’ series of rides in Victoria is called the 7 Peaks Ride.  It’s designed as an ‘at-your-own pace’ cycling challenge which runs from October to April.

The rides take you to the top of the seven Victorian Alpine Resorts, each one ranging from 6 to 40 kilometres in length.

The idea is that you register online and track each ride using the 7 Rides app. You can find out more and register here. Of course you can get out there and do the rides. Either way its epic, with a total distance of just over 450 kilometres.

Victoria’s national parks for sale – again

National Parks, World Heritage Areas and other parts of the conservation estate are not simply handed to the community by governments. Wild areas are hard fought for, sometimes for decades, before they gain protection. But once created, that is not the end of the story. Traditionally parks can face a range of problems and pressures, including under funding and over use, and invasion by feral species. In recent years it has become ever more apparent that climate change poses a huge threat to most ecosystems in the country, and hence the integrity of our national parks.

They are sometimes also threatened by proposals for commercial development. The following summary of current threats to national parks in Victoria comes from Phil Ingamells.

Continue reading “Victoria’s national parks for sale – again”

Weatherproofing the Buffalo Chalet

The Mt Buffalo Chalet was built in 1910 and run for many years by the Victorian railway authority. It is an incredible building in a remarkable location, just near the Gorge in the Buffalo National Park.

It has been closed since 2007 and fallen into disrepair. Sections of the building have been demolished because it would have been prohibitively expensive to renovate the whole complex.

Continue reading “Weatherproofing the Buffalo Chalet”

Works Begin To Preserve Mount Buffalo Chalet

The following comes from the Victorian government:

The Andrews Labor Government today announced the newly appointed members of the Mount Buffalo Destination Advisory Group, which will work with Parks Victoria to identify future tourism options for the Mount Buffalo Chalet.

The advisory group was established to consider future options for the Chalet so it can stay safe and secure for generations to come.

Continue reading “Works Begin To Preserve Mount Buffalo Chalet”

Parks Victoria Volunteer Track Ranger Program

Last year Parks Victoria (PV) ran a Volunteer Track Ranger Program in north east Victoria. They received a very positive response from both the people who volunteered and those who were out hiking in the areas where volunteer rangers were present. PV has decided to run the program again this year and is seeking expressions of interest from suitably qualified people.

Being involved in the program will enable participants to expand their volunteer experience while exploring some of the remote terrains and campsites in the Alpine National Park. This helps Parks Victoria during peak times of visitation.

Continue reading “Parks Victoria Volunteer Track Ranger Program”

The Buffalo Stampede

The Buffalo Stampede is a ‘SkyRunning’ race event that will be held over three days in April 2016 on a variety of courses near Bright.

SkyRunning events are held around the world. This will be the third time Bright has hosted it. There are a range of options, from kids races, a 12 kilometre event to the top of Mt Porepunkah and Apex Hill, plus a 42 kilometre Marathon and 72 kilometre Ultra Marathon. The Ultra follows a course from Bright to Mt Buffalo and back. There is also the option to join the Grand Slam, three days of running which sees participants cover 142 km and 9,000 metres of ascent.

You can find further information and sign up here.

7 Peaks Alpine Ascent Challenge

The 7 Peaks Ride is an iconic set of rides up seven mountains in the Victorian High Country. You do each ride when it suits you, but has a five month window, with riders being encouraged to do at least four of the rides. The riding season starts this week.

The peaks are Mt Baw Baw, Mount Buffalo, Mt Buller, Dinner Plain, Falls Creek, Hotham, and Lake Mountain. Each ride involves a serious ride from the valley.

As you go you get your 7 Peaks passport stamped.

You can tackle the 7 Peaks any time from October 16 2015 to March 31 2016.

Full details here.

Skiing the High Plains

This is one of the finest books written about the Australian Alps. Self published by Harry Stephenson in 1982 and long out of print, this compilation of essays about the development ok skiing in Victoria is exhaustive. Coming in at almost 500 pages, it must have been a massive effort. It is an incredible cultural history of skiing, based on a series of stories and recollections from key players in the development of skiing in the state. While we are generally offered a cattle grazing heavy history of the Alps, this book fills in details on some of the other actors in the early days of European settlement.

It’s various chapters cover the developments at key mountains across the state, from Buller and Hotham to Donna Buang, where skiing was popular in the 1920s. It doesn’t neglect wilder and more distant areas like Bogong or Mt Howitt. And it is inter-spaced with fantastic photo galleries by a range of photographers.

There is a review available here.

Tours of Mount Buffalo Chalet

The following comes from Parks Victoria:

It’s your last chance to tour the Mount Buffalo Chalet prior to the commencement of refurbishment works. Free one hour tours will be held on Saturday 21 February. Tours will run on the hour from 10am to 3pm and bookings are essential as tickets are limited. Book online here.

Accessibility: there are numerous steps up into and throughout the chalet as part of the tour.

 

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