Snow Report Hotham 2022 - Trip Reports, Pics & Conditions

Chaeron

Ski-Hike-Blade-Bike-Kayak
Ski Pass
Jun 24, 2014
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For interest’s sake what’s the approximate gradient of that slope - seems way less than the classical “30’” which many people use as a benchmark for ‘not likely to slide’….
 
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StashyMcStash

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Jun 16, 2021
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Harris's is the middle gully between Aussie Drift and Av Gully, isn't it? Pretty sure Harris's cornice and rollover comes into view top right of image. I've never known a name for the gully pictured that is a nice shortcut to the drift T.
 

Tanuki

Part of the Furniture
Ski Pass
Sep 29, 2010
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For interest’s sake what’s the approximate gradient of that slope - seems way less than the classical “30’” which many people use as a benchmark for ‘not likely to slide’….
The pic of the avi below summit chairlift is def over 30 degrees, classic converse slope that get fully loaded at the top. Not sure of the slope angle for avi out past Loch.
 

GobrinIce

One of Us
Ski Pass
Jul 9, 2019
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Called it quits early after only one backcountry run. Avi danger too high in the backcountry.
Some old chalky pow in some spots inbounds, but lift queues built up.

20220719_091825.jpg

What did you see that helped you to identify that?
 

Any

One of Us
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Aug 23, 2015
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What did you see that helped you to identify that?
my pit tests showed that 25cm layer was extremely ready to go, sometimes triggering very easily.
cutting and even a jump turn on the same face seemed ok, so I hesitantly continued a somewhat mitigated line. But just before I took that photo a whole southwest facing slope whumfed big time as I was touring next to it.
combined with other online reports, and slides that had triggered in the area, and that I spend a lot of time solo, it was enough for me to decide I didn't want to be backcountry in those conditions anymore.
I considered a lower aspect, or going north facing, but reports suggested north was thin and icy underneath, and I've had enough of both of those conditions over the last couple of weeks.

I highly recommend doing ast1 and 2 courses. A lot of backcountry is just experience, making mistakes and learning from them and other peoples mistakes and gut feeling, but those sort of avalanche safety courses give you a head start so you can make less mistakes than I have over the years ;P
 

Any

One of Us
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Aug 23, 2015
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my pit tests showed that 25cm layer was extremely ready to go, sometimes triggering very easily.
cutting and even a jump turn on the same face seemed ok, so I hesitantly continued a somewhat mitigated line. But just before I took that photo a whole southwest facing slope whumfed big time as I was touring next to it.
combined with other online reports, and slides that had triggered in the area, and that I spend a lot of time solo, it was enough for me to decide I didn't want to be backcountry in those conditions anymore.
I considered a lower aspect, or going north facing, but reports suggested north was thin and icy underneath, and I've had enough of both of those conditions over the last couple of weeks.

I highly recommend doing ast1 and 2 courses. A lot of backcountry is just experience, making mistakes and learning from them and other peoples mistakes and gut feeling, but those sort of avalanche safety courses give you a head start so you can make less mistakes than I have over the years ;P
today I've been on some lower altitude 30-35 degree south east faces that had me less exposed, so I was prepared to give it a go.
so far they haven't bitten me yet, except for a whole bunch of pow going down my pants vent and a very soggy boot ;P

as with most days I ski, the exit and route out and skiing solo mean I haven't got any photos of it. but if you don't post on instagram it didn't happen right? :p
 

doddles

Addicted
Oct 9, 2001
173
214
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I'll be heading up to Hotham tomorrow morning for my first ski of the season. Be there until Monday evening. Will be taking it easy and getting my legs back in action, but if anyone wants to meet up on the mountain let me know (I'll be staying down in Omeo, driving to DP and taking the bus from there - much cheaper and easier parking).
 

Any

One of Us
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Aug 23, 2015
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Man its getting toasty in the sun. The snow is starting to turn in spots.

Got some nice stuff before it got too sun baked.
Both tracks are mine. I really shouldn't drag the poles so much.
20220721_093918_HDR.jpg


Ate shit not paying attention at top of a double black. Only a sprained wrist thankfully. Oops. At least it doesn't hurt if I don't move it ;P

Really noticeable today how much its starting to quiet down again.
With Orchard open each day everyone gets to spread out too.
 
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Tanuki

Part of the Furniture
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Sep 29, 2010
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Brockhoff cam looks great this morning. Could be dust on crust but from Melbourne it looks awesome.
 

dmz

Puzzles solved here.
Ski Pass
Jun 25, 2001
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Having not been for ten years and going in a couple of weeks. Just checking my car routine is still OK.
Stop at Jack Frost - Unload and one person pays a mozza to take the stuff to the lodge via skidoo and the other parks the car down the road.

On leaving. Early on the morning of leaving go get the car and park in the strip along the front of Kalyna/Asgaard. Then do a leisurely pack up and get the stuff to the car.

All the above still doable?
 

Tanuki

Part of the Furniture
Ski Pass
Sep 29, 2010
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Having not been for ten years and going in a couple of weeks. Just checking my car routine is still OK.
Stop at Jack Frost - Unload and one person pays a mozza to take the stuff to the lodge via skidoo and the other parks the car down the road.

On leaving. Early on the morning of leaving go get the car and park in the strip along the front of Kalyna/Asgaard. Then do a leisurely pack up and get the stuff to the car.

All the above still doable?
Yep, other than than the skiddoo that has always been how we do it when staying at Bundarra or around there.
 
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mr

Old n' Crusty
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Oct 24, 2003
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You can park for half an hour in signed bays for dropoff, so we just do the walk to the lodge together with the gear, and then one takes the car ands the other cooks dinner / warms the wine / bed.

Collecting the car early on last day is still the winning strategy, we always ski down the xc trail to make it more fun
 
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Any

One of Us
Ski Pass
Aug 23, 2015
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Having not been for ten years and going in a couple of weeks. Just checking my car routine is still OK.
Stop at Jack Frost - Unload and one person pays a mozza to take the stuff to the lodge via skidoo and the other parks the car down the road.

On leaving. Early on the morning of leaving go get the car and park in the strip along the front of Kalyna/Asgaard. Then do a leisurely pack up and get the stuff to the car.

All the above still doable?
Yep, other than than the skiddoo that has always been how we do it when staying at Bundarra or around there.
Many lodges have push ski carts you go grab and load up and trip back and forward with.
 

cqen2l

Part of the Furniture
Ski Pass
Feb 7, 2003
16,025
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Northern Beaches
Having not been for ten years and going in a couple of weeks. Just checking my car routine is still OK.
Stop at Jack Frost - Unload and one person pays a mozza to take the stuff to the lodge via skidoo and the other parks the car down the road.

On leaving. Early on the morning of leaving go get the car and park in the strip along the front of Kalyna/Asgaard. Then do a leisurely pack up and get the stuff to the car.

All the above still doable?
$50.00 on Snowtow is a winner, cheaper if you book a return. Hardly a mozza unless you're a total tight arse like @Astro.66
 
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Dalesh

Hard Yards
May 2, 2020
16
19
53
the southwesterly 4cm or so in extremely high winds will probably be challenging to find epic spots to ski, but pretty much everything should be quite nice today tho.
Best spot I found today was the drift, made for some great runs in the soft stuff!
 
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mr

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Oct 24, 2003
20,323
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melbourne
Its the full spectrum!

Summit poma and the poo farm trail bus loops from skiers crossing were our go to's when it was feral with little kids. Or a drive to DP to walk on dirt.
 

Claude Cat

On my bike
Moderator
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Platinum
Jul 6, 2001
141,359
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Older son is up there this week. He says the orchard and the drift have been really good.
Slush Gully is a menace by lunchtime. Generally the snow's great though.
 
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Seth

I am figure skating
Ski Pass
Jun 6, 2000
45,555
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The Higher Ground
Its the full spectrum!

Summit poma and the poo farm trail bus loops from skiers crossing were our go to's when it was feral with little kids. Or a drive to DP to walk on dirt.
We are starting out at Dinner Plain on Monday. Looked at the forecast and figured it would be less hostile.

Tuesday looking good. Just getting worried about Wednesday now.

I need these kids to like it!
 

Tropical

One of Us
Apr 28, 2000
2,370
33
198
36
Brisbane
I'm heading to Hotham with some mates next week. Skiing Monday to Friday. Although it seems that we'll be skiing Monday/Tuesday and bit of Wednesday before it turns to :crap: Hopefully we can make it out for a ski on Friday before heading home.
 
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andrew7

One of Us
Ski Pass
May 3, 2007
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castlemaine
Damn windy though, we left early having had 2 lovely sunny albeit hard packed days Friday/Saturday. Missed skiing Mary’s which was a shame always my fave area to ski in Oz (good cover but closed due to icy conditions).
 

Any

One of Us
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Aug 23, 2015
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20-25cm of windpacked backcountry powder all to myself.
Perhaps the high winds and whiteout conditions had something to do with it ;P
Quite wind effected, so only sinking 5-7cm or so on 108mm skis, could have gone skinner, but I really like these contour skins. The low vis means I had to push the contrast way up to get any photos to show up.

Still getting over a cold, but obliged to do my best on the first fresh pow day in ages. Had to call it quits after 3 runs when I started coughing too much. Quite sore now, but it was worth it.

At one point I was considering opening the "Andy school of kick turns". So steep and skinny I had to do 12 kick turns within 10 minutes.

Strangely low avalanche danger tho. Like almost zero.
I've got a badly sprained/fractured right wrist (It's ok, I'm used to breaking stuff), and now my left hand is sore from beating the snow trying to get it to slide.

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20220801_101506.jpg
 

dmz

Puzzles solved here.
Ski Pass
Jun 25, 2001
9,506
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melbourne
It takes about 5 1/2 hours to drive to Hotham for me via Harrietville. I just looked at getting to Hotham via Omeo and google maps says 5 1/2 hours. Funny - I thought via omeo would be way longer.
 

Any

One of Us
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Aug 23, 2015
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It takes about 5 1/2 hours to drive to Hotham for me via Harrietville. I just looked at getting to Hotham via Omeo and google maps says 5 1/2 hours. Funny - I thought via omeo would be way longer.
A lot of people chose the Omeo way because it requires chains/etc far less often, especially if you're staying in DP.

However the last 2 hours are significantly different conditions imo.

Wangaratta to Harrietville is all straight(ish) roads, 100kph with a few 80's and 60kph intermissions. You're there before you know it, and doesn't feel like it costs much effort wise.
Bright has several full sized supermarkets for last minute frozen/cold groceries, plus a chemist, and Gum Tree Pies (yum), and lots of other things.
Harrietville to Hotham, we've a 4wd, and usually only the last 10km to Hotham requires chains (if at all), but you get stuck behind 2wd doing 10kph anyway. Worst case, its less than 5 mins to put chains on and off so for us lately. The road still scares me a little even to this day, it just requires a very healthy dose of respect. It's certainly a big negative, I'm not arguing that.

Bairnsdale to Oemo is all windy, speed going up and down, few overtaking opportunities, frequent rockslides, slow big trucks and pot holes everywhere. It just seems to take forever, requires much more attention, and we feel much more tired having driven that route. (disclaimer, we've only done it 4 or 5 times).
Omeo has that small foodworks, with a small range and higher prices. and whilst I don't notice/care, ms pink jacket (vegi) hates that all their fruit n vege is always on the verge of expiring. And not much else in town unless you like 10 day old deep fried bad smelling, uh, whatever that is.
Omeo to Hotham, doesn't require chains as often, but you get stuck behind the 2wd's doing 10kph anyway, there's more icy shaded corners than you think.

So the math just doesn't work out for us.
 

dmz

Puzzles solved here.
Ski Pass
Jun 25, 2001
9,506
10,279
563
melbourne
A lot of people chose the Omeo way because it requires chains/etc far less often, especially if you're staying in DP.

However the last 2 hours are significantly different conditions imo.

Wangaratta to Harrietville is all straight(ish) roads, 100kph with a few 80's and 60kph intermissions. You're there before you know it, and doesn't feel like it costs much effort wise.
Bright has several full sized supermarkets for last minute frozen/cold groceries, plus a chemist, and Gum Tree Pies (yum), and lots of other things.
Harrietville to Hotham, we've a 4wd, and usually only the last 10km to Hotham requires chains (if at all), but you get stuck behind 2wd doing 10kph anyway. Worst case, its less than 5 mins to put chains on and off so for us lately. The road still scares me a little even to this day, it just requires a very healthy dose of respect. It's certainly a big negative, I'm not arguing that.

Bairnsdale to Oemo is all windy, speed going up and down, few overtaking opportunities, frequent rockslides, slow big trucks and pot holes everywhere. It just seems to take forever, requires much more attention, and we feel much more tired having driven that route. (disclaimer, we've only done it 4 or 5 times).
Omeo has that small foodworks, with a small range and higher prices. and whilst I don't notice/care, ms pink jacket (vegi) hates that all their fruit n vege is always on the verge of expiring. And not much else in town unless you like 10 day old deep fried bad smelling, uh, whatever that is.
Omeo to Hotham, doesn't require chains as often, but you get stuck behind the 2wd's doing 10kph anyway, there's more icy shaded corners than you think.

So the math just doesn't work out for us.
Thanks for that. I may not have a choice on Friday 12th Aug.
 

doddles

Addicted
Oct 9, 2001
173
214
113
Thanks for that. I may not have a choice on Friday 12th Aug.
Fair points, including supermarkets (I always load up before leaving or at Bairnsdale or Sale).

BUT

Not the point about food. The Omeo Bakery has excellent pies, sausage rolls and the cafe just a couple of doors down does really nice stuff too. And the food at the Pub over the road is also excellent. The steak I had there two weeks ago was delicious.
 
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Any

One of Us
Ski Pass
Aug 23, 2015
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Blowing like crazy up here tonight.
I went out to take a look at the weather, and it was so warm (relatively) that I was fine standing in 70-100kph winds in trackkies. We think our window has come close to breaking a couple of times with the flying ice debris.
Not good!
2022-08-02 22_31_13-Latest Weather Observations Mount Hotham AWS.png
 

cheekie

A Local
Ski Pass
May 29, 2002
9,525
972
563
Mentone VIC
Blowing like crazy up here tonight.
I went out to take a look at the weather, and it was so warm (relatively) that I was fine standing in 70-100kph winds in trackkies. We think our window has come close to breaking a couple of times with the flying ice debris.
Not good!
2022-08-02 22_31_13-Latest Weather Observations Mount Hotham AWS.png
Hey Andy what are the chances of lessons being cancelled. I really don't feel like getting saturated at 830
 
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