Following the recent announcement by the Victorian government that it would restructure ski resort management boards at four resorts, there has now been a call for expressions of interest for 13 positions across the boards responsible for managing Falls Creek, Mt Buller/ Mt Stirling and Mt Hotham.
The high range of mountains that stretch from the western end of The Bluff to Mt Howitt then north to Mt Cobbler contain some of the best alpine country in Victoria.
Long a popular hiking destination, its always tempting to want to walk from one end to the other. But the logistics of doing a car shuffle are complex – it’s a long drive between the Howqua and Lake Cobbler. There is an obvious circuit you can walk, with Mt Stirling being a good start and end point. But the Howqua and King valleys are deep and the scrub along the Stanley Name Spur can be brutal. While there are many variations that are possible, any way you do it will be a serious undertaking, requiring good stamina and navigation skills, experience in backcountry travel, and at least five or six days.
Now the ‘Buller huts trail’, which links these mountains into a seven day circuit, has been launched.
GET HIGHER WITH JEREMY JONES
23 JUL 2017
Internationally renowned big mountain snowboarder Jeremy Jones is highly regarded for what he can do on a snowboard and now also for his important work leading the non-profit organisation “Protect Our Winters” (POW) championing awareness and action on climate change.
Jeremy is visiting Mt Buller and will present his award-winning snowboard film “Higher” on Sunday 23 July at 7.15pm. He will also speak about his passion for protecting the mountains he loves and why ‘we need winter’.
“Higher is the third in an inspiring trilogy of films that started with “Deeper” and “Further” and documents Jeremy taking on extreme snowboarding adventures deep, far and high into the mountains starting near his home in Squaw Valley, then Jackson Hole Wyoming, Alaska and Nepal.
Many snow films, including some he’s made earlier in his career, use helicopters to access the lines they ride and film. In “Higher” Jeremy climbs each peak under his own steam working with his brother Todd and Steve at Teton Gravity Research to create the film.
***The night will book out quickly with tickets on sale at the Rip Curl store and Photo Shop at Mt Buller ***
Jeremy will take part in a Q&A and talk about his snowboarding career, his work with POW and his passion for riding which has seen him create his own snowboard range and spend time riding with his wife and children. He is on holiday in Australia but accepted an invitation from his friend Tony Harrington to come and speak. Jeremy is planning a ‘ride’ day in which he looks forward to exploring Mt Buller with local boarders and experiencing snowboarding amongst the snow gums.
Protect Our Winters began ten years ago. Since founding the organisation Jeremy has grown the awareness and action of POW to include a global network of over 130,000 supporters and engaging with 60 million + snowsports enthusiasts. As Jeremy explains,
“Though we can dress up for meetings, in the end we are pro athletes, dirtbags and diehards; for us, winter is not just a passion, but a way of life. Right now, we have the luxury of worrying about how climate change might impact the outdoor industry. Right now, we get to help dictate the outcome rather than react to a foregone conclusion. If we sit on our hands for the next two decades, we won’t be worried about powder days, tourism or having fun. We’ll be worried about the stability of our environment, our jobs and our economy.”
It has recently been reported in regional media and The Age newspaper that allegations had been made that members of the Mount Buller and Mount Stirling Resort Management Board had misused their position and public funds.
In late March 2017, the Victorian Ombudsman released a report into the allegations of improper conduct by officers of the Board.
The report implicated officers of the resort in the misuse of public funds and public resources.
Since 2008, the Mount Buller Mount Stirling Alpine Resort Management Board (MBMS ARMB) has been trying to build a Link Road between Mount Buller and Mount Stirling via Corn Hill. Mountain Journal has reported on this proposal.
In November 2015, the Planning Minister rejected the Link Road. And the Environment Minister stated “I don’t anticipate any further proposals of this nature.”
Now, Friends of Mt Stirling report:
Guess what ? We now have a new road across Corn Hill.
The following comes from Chris Harrington.
A survey is currently being conducted Mount Buller/ Mt Stirling resort management, canvassing the idea of introducing a summer resort entry fee. A recent article in the local press notes that the “Mount Buller/ Mount Stirling Alpine Resort Management Board (ARMB) has confirmed it will not be charging a summer gate entry for the 2015/2016. However, the survey being conducted is investigating resort visitation, visitor patterns and habits with the intent of considering potential summer revenue streams” (Mansfield Courier 9/12/2015). The article also notes some opposition, and some support for the introduction of summer access fees.
Mountain Journal has previously reported on the plans to build a “Buller Stirling Link Rd” between the two mountains. It has been argued by the proponent (Mt Buller Resort Management) that the road will provide a second escape route off the mountain should a bushfire or land slide close the main road from Mirimbah to Mt Buller. There has been the argument that a link road will encourage more tourists in the ‘green season’ as it is sometimes argued that tourists don’t like going up a dead end road (this argument was used in the unsuccessful campaign to put a road in from the Baw Baw village and across the Baw Baw plateau).
Mountain Journal has previously reported on the proposal to build a new road from Mt Buller to the Mt Stirling ring road. This has been pitched as being a safety issue, to allow a route for people to escape from Mt Buller in the case of a fire blocking the main road.
But given that this road would also travel through a (longer) section of dense forest, it is quite unlikely that the road would serve this purpose. The money needed to build the road would be better spent on upgrading fire fighting infrastructure around the Buller village.
The issue refuses to go away. Charles Street provides some history behind this proposal and an update on the current state of play.
Sugar Mountain is an Australian ski film set in the wilds of Alaska. Described as a ‘cosmic ski odyssey’, its a great film about a bunch of Australians who head to Alaska in search of the mythical peak. It is directed by Richard James, and produced by Oscar and Watkin McLennan.
Now its being toured through the Australian Alps, with three shows planned for this winter.
“Now is the time to hit the Australian slopes and here is where you can couple your Aussie skiing adventure with a quite or rowdy night at the movies”.
MT Hotham – With DJ EDDY
- MON . JUL 13 | The General, Mt Hotham | 8:00 pm
Mt Buller – Cinema
SAT . JUL 18 | Cinema, Mt Buller Community Centre | 8:00 pm
SUN . JUL 26 | Banjo Paterson Inn | 8:00 pm