Trip Report Mt.Stirling. July 8,9,10th 2018

Discussion in 'Backcountry Trip Reports' started by Mister Tee on XC Skis, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Hi, I just came back from Mt. Stirling: Two nights of snow camping at King Spur hut. I had a one hour private skiing lesson at the Hut . Yes the instructor skied up the hill from TBJ to King Spur hut in 58 min.s on boiler plate ice!!.He gave a me a one on one ski lesson at King Spur Hut. It was good but it was not cheap .The surface was ICY so that made it more difficult for me.

    Skiing the Blue run loop from the hut to the Cricket Pitch and back to the tent at No. 36 Hut set the world record for crashes and new ways to fall over without causing any major damage. I was wearing my cycling helmet just in case!
    The weather on Sunday was just horse poo. If I 'd have stopped too long to have a breather at Machinery Shed shelter I could have become hypo bleeding thermic. It was wet , cold and miserable. The tracks were not groomed so slogging it up the hill with a heavy pack with skis strapped to the pack in snow shoes was a slow slog , really solid work.
    It started snowing quite a bit above The Weather station and daylight was fading . I made myself go directly to the bleeding hut and stamped out a camp site, erected my snow tent and was thankful I had arrived safely. I dried out my gear near the cast iron wood burner , feathered my snow camping nest , put on dry clothing , cooked some food and vegged out in front of the wood heater. Eventually I could feel that my feet were still connected.
    My ski boots are not rain /slush proof in horse poo weather, so I need to spray them with water stopper.
    I have realized that I am a basket case on skis when I am skiing terrain that is not a Green Run. Mt. Stirling had very good weather both yesterday and today but trails such as the icy Race Loop were scary for this learner and I just either side stepped down them and herringboned up them or conceded defeat after a nasty spill and took the skis off and walked.
    I will get more lessons and aim to improve the very basics of skiing on less scary terrain such as Dinner plain's down hill slope .
    One hopes that this will make XC skiing a pastime that is more enjoyable for this slow and timid learner and will involve gaining more confidence and crashing less.
    However I am not a quitter. It may take 3 years or more to get the hang of this!!!.
    On the return walk with a ludicrously heavy winter snow camping pack going from the King Spur hut to GGS hut , over the Mt. Stirling summit and down the Bluff Spur hut and back to TBJ, one of my snow shoes broke.
    Right along the pole line near the Dug Out Bowl I had to strap the snow shoes to the pack along with the skis and go to back up plan "C" . Yes out came the Kahtoola micro spikes. It was beyond Boiler Plate up there today so they were perfect and it made getting back to TBJ easy.
    The Blue Runs at Mt. Stirling are way more challenging for this learner skier than the Blue Trails are at Lake Mtn. Since I have snow shoed Mt. Stirling so many times I have never really thought about all those twisty down hill bends that ice up in the shadows at Mt. Stirling, in terms of actual skiing.
    Mt.Stirling has a full staff of youthful Estonian Ski instructors who all look like Skater skiers. They look well fit and can whiz around in a way that is at a level that some of us mere plodding and crashing neophytes may never attain .
    My next Mt. Stirling trip will be a Green run based trip at the Razorback hut. I will leave the upper mountain's ski trails to the experts ;-P.
    Photos are coming soon.
     
    Born2ski, neilmny, blowfin and 3 others like this.
  2. GS

    GS A Local
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    Hey mr t, can you change the font colour? I'm only seeing black text on dark background and can't read it
     
  3. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Hi, I just came back from Mt. Stirling: Two nights of snow camping at King Spur hut. I had a one hour private skiing lesson at the Hut . Yes the instructor skied up the hill from TBJ to King Spur hut in 58 min.s on boiler plate ice!!.He gave a me a one on one ski lesson at King Spur Hut. It was good but it was not cheap .The surface was ICY so that made it more difficult for me.

    Skiing the Blue run loop from the hut to the Cricket Pitch and back to the tent at No. 36 Hut set the world record for crashes and new ways to fall over without causing any major damage. I was wearing my cycling helmet just in case!
    The weather on Sunday was just horse poo. If I 'd have stopped too long to have a breather at Machinery Shed shelter I could have become hypo bleeding thermic. It was wet , cold and miserable. The tracks were not groomed so slogging it up the hill with a heavy pack with skis strapped to the pack in snow shoes was a slow slog , really solid work.
    It started snowing quite a bit above The Weather station and daylight was fading . I made myself go directly to the bleeding hut and stamped out a camp site, erected my snow tent and was thankful I had arrived safely. I dried out my gear near the cast iron wood burner , feathered my snow camping nest , put on dry clothing , cooked some food and vegged out in front of the wood heater. Eventually I could feel that my feet were still connected.
    My ski boots are not rain /slush proof in horse poo weather, so I need to spray them with water stopper.
    I have realized that I am a basket case on skis when I am skiing terrain that is not a Green Run. Mt. Stirling had very good weather both yesterday and today but trails such as the icy Race Loop were scary for this learner and I just either side stepped down them and herringboned up them or conceded defeat after a nasty spill and took the skis off and walked.
    I will get more lessons and aim to improve the very basics of skiing on less scary terrain such as Dinner plain's down hill slope .
    One hopes that this will make XC skiing a pastime that is more enjoyable for this slow and timid learner and will involve gaining more confidence and crashing less.
    However I am not a quitter. It may take 3 years or more to get the hang of this!!!.
    On the return walk with a ludicrously heavy winter snow camping pack going from the King Spur hut to GGS hut , over the Mt. Stirling summit and down to the Bluff Spur hut and back to TBJ, one of my snow shoes broke.
    Right along the pole line near the Dug Out Bowl ,I had to strap the snow shoes to the pack along with the skis and go to back up plan "C" . Yes out came the Kahtoola micro spikes. It was beyond Boiler Plate up there today so they were perfect and it made getting back to TBJ easy.
    The Blue Runs at Mt. Stirling are way more challenging for this learner skier than the Blue Trails are at Lake Mtn. Since I have snow shoed Mt. Stirling so many times I have never really thought about all those twisty down hill bends that ice up in the shadows at Mt. Stirling, in terms of actual skiing.
    Mt.Stirling has a full staff of youthful Estonian Ski instructors who all look like Skater skiers. They look well fit and can whiz around in a way that is at a level that some of us mere plodding and crashing neophytes may never attain .
    My next Mt. Stirling trip will be a Green run based trip at the Razorback hut. I will leave the upper mountain's ski trails to the experts ;-P.
    Photos are coming soon.
     
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  4. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    Are you using the dark or the light theme?

    The little box at the very bottom section of a thread.

    MrTs colour text choice reflects his use of the dark theme.
     
  5. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    And the lessons are;

    Light is right and

    If it’s not waterproof it’s no good?
     
  6. Seth

    Seth Old n' Crusty
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    Er, think you mean the other way round. Black text would mean he is using the light theme. It’s impossible to read black text with the dark theme.
     
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  7. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    Both of MrTs colour choices work fine for me using the dark theme.
     
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  8. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Skiing with any more weight in a day pack than my lunch, water, camera and a PLB leads me to lose it on turns and bends. The weight change is too much for this middle aged plodder and over I go, AGAIN.I need to fall over on the right side next session, just to even up the soreness and trauma.
     
    #8 Mister Tee on XC Skis, Jul 10, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  9. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    Just changed to the light scheme and while contrast is poor the text is readable.

    So @Mister Tee on XC Skis can you repost with normal colour font please.

    @GS maybe change back & forth between themes and see if that helps. Otherwise I think the issue is inside your device & it’s settings.
     
  10. GS

    GS A Local
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    I'm using the dark theme and reading on android phone
     
  11. GS

    GS A Local
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    Changing to light theme changes mr t first post to a very light blue on white background and still very hard to read. Other posts are then black on white. ..easy to read
     
  12. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    And seeing black text as per post #2.

    Post # text is aquamarine & post #3 is purple, while in dark theme.

    You may have a setting to play with.

    Otherwise it’s a curiosity for @Richard to look into.
     
  13. Seth

    Seth Old n' Crusty
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    The new ones do. He has used black a fair bit in the past. I reckon he might have edited the first post.
     
  14. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Hi, I just came back from Mt. Stirling: Two nights of snow camping at King Spur hut. I had a one hour private skiing lesson at the Hut . Yes the instructor skied up the hill from TBJ to King Spur hut in 58 min.s on boiler plate ice!!.He gave a me a one on one ski lesson at King Spur Hut. It was good but it was not cheap .The surface was ICY so that made it more difficult for me.

    Skiing the Blue run loop from the hut to the Cricket Pitch and back to the tent at No. 36 Hut set the world record for crashes and new ways to fall over without causing any major damage. I was wearing my cycling helmet just in case!
    The weather on Sunday was just horse poo. If I 'd have stopped too long to have a breather at Machinery Shed shelter I could have become hypo bleeding thermic. It was wet , cold and miserable. The tracks were not groomed so slogging it up the hill with a heavy pack with skis strapped to the pack in snow shoes was a slow slog , really solid work.
    It started snowing quite a bit above The Weather station and daylight was fading . I made myself go directly to the bleeding hut and stamped out a camp site, erected my snow tent and was thankful I had arrived safely. I dried out my gear near the cast iron wood burner , feathered my snow camping nest , put on dry clothing , cooked some food and vegged out in front of the wood heater. Eventually I could feel that my feet were still connected.
    My ski boots are not rain /slush proof in horse poo weather, so I need to spray them with water stopper.
    I have realized that I am a basket case on skis when I am skiing terrain that is not a Green Run. Mt. Stirling had very good weather both yesterday and today but trails such as the icy Race Loop were scary for this learner and I just either side stepped down them and herringboned up them or conceded defeat after a nasty spill and took the skis off and walked.
    I will get more lessons and aim to improve the very basics of skiing on less scary terrain such as Dinner plain's down hill slope .
    One hopes that this will make XC skiing a pastime that is more enjoyable for this slow and timid learner and will involve gaining more confidence and crashing less.
    However I am not a quitter. It may take 3 years or more to get the hang of this!!!.
    On the return walk with a ludicrously heavy winter snow camping pack going from the King Spur hut to GGS hut , over the Mt. Stirling summit and down to the Bluff Spur hut and back to TBJ, one of my snow shoes broke.
    Right along the pole line near the Dug Out Bowl ,I had to strap the snow shoes to the pack along with the skis and go to back up plan "C" . Yes out came the Kahtoola micro spikes. It was beyond Boiler Plate up there today so they were perfect and it made getting back to TBJ easy.
    The Blue Runs at Mt. Stirling are way more challenging for this learner skier than the Blue Trails are at Lake Mtn. Since I have snow shoed Mt. Stirling so many times I have never really thought about all those twisty down hill bends that ice up in the shadows at Mt. Stirling, in terms of actual skiing.
    Mt.Stirling has a full staff of youthful Estonian Ski instructors who all look like Skater skiers. They look well fit and can whiz around in a way that is at a level that some of us mere plodding and crashing neophytes may never attain .
    My next Mt. Stirling trip will be a Green run based trip at the Razorback hut. I will leave the upper mountain's ski trails to the experts ;-P.
    Photos are coming soon.
     
  15. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    Now that is dark blue on black & useless.
     
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  16. Seth

    Seth Old n' Crusty
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    Navy is unreadable as well.
     
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  17. GS

    GS A Local
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    Now looking on an iPad with dark theme and first post is quite readable...aquamarine on black. My Samsung s5 must do something weird with colour formatting.

    Sorry for the hijack @Mister Tee on XC Skis
     
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  18. GS

    GS A Local
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    Fun times!

    Don’t feel too bad, descending Stirling on skis with a decent backpack can be challenging on less than ideal snow. All to often the descent can be a mix of beautiful dry forgiving snow at the top, through to icy rock dodging crap at the bottom. My first ski descent was on skinny skis with hopelessly useless boots with an overnight pack and The only time I was upright was transitioning between sliding on my face or on my butt. I was 18 though....major kudos to you for giving it a crack at 49
     
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  19. Richard

    Richard Maintenance Dept
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    Peeps are mucking about with font colours. Next time I upgrade I may remove the ability to change font colors - it does not add much, few use it, and when they do, the opposite theme can't read it.

    Or.. I let you have choices and you live with them.
     
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  20. stansi

    stansi One of Us
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  21. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    I am 48, but I am turning 49 in September. I hope I emerge from these next 2-3 months without any serious injuries from being a basket case on skis because I am booked and paid to go Himalayan trekking in INDIA in late September . I could n't /can't ski with any kind of heavy pack on, even for the day trip to the Cricket pitch shelter I had too much stuff in my " day pack" hence the snow shoes/ microspikes with the full winter pack hike up and back down the mountain.The sunny weather on day 3 was a real plus.
     
  22. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Hey Mr T, glad you're down OK. I did Stirling as my second ever ski and it can be a very tough hill. Stanley bowl looked like a cliff down to an abyss! It gets easier.

    Just wondering. If I recall you've got Nnnbc binding /boot set up. My understanding is that's better on gentle rolling terrain - more like Lake Mtn, BHP and much of BBaw.

    Fwiw: you may not want to hear - 75 mm gear is thought to be a lot more capable in tough terrain - others might disagree. If you became sufficiently despondent with your progress - and if you could afford/justify the cost - a second set up of: shorter/wider shaped skis, a beefy cable 75 binding (Rotefella/G3/Voile/Black Diamond) and lighter-end place boot like the Garmont Excursion (if available) or Scarpa T4, plus kicker skins - would see you in a much better/safer/happier position on Stirling and any similar tough, steep, icy terrain.

    Even after 30 years, I dislike my Trusty old 200 cm Morotto Telemark Step base skis on Stirling's Summit/upper slopes - esp in ice. If I stay too long on the summit and descend in the gloom (as if!) I've descended on my fat waxy skis and kicker skins, slowly but safely. To do so on my Ottos would have been terrifying in spots.

    ...Early days, but it's tough (well in Vic) relying on a one ski quiver.

    .., if you followed this suggestion some stage in the future(?), you might find a good second hand ski/binding - perhaps on this site. Boots are better new, with heat able infers and preferably replacement beatable footbeds (bliss!)

    Enjoy your break too.
    SG (;-)
     
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  23. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Yes, Mt. Stirling is very good for snow shoes/ micro spikes but very tough for learner skiing. I can see already that having NNN BC is right for BHP/ LM / Baw Baw. My real interest is in the BHP, that undulating easier terrain away from resorts . That is why I have started with BC XC skis with NNN BC boots and ski bindings . I saw other skiers using Madshus Epoch skis with much more complicated bindings, bear traps, AT set ups and so on. I didn't see any 3 Pin Duck Bill 75 mm set ups on my time on that hill this trip.
     
  24. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 2 . Sunrise at King Spur Hut. The sun seemed be coming up from behind Mt. Cobbler.
     
  25. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 2 .The morning after the storm. My snow tent and skis( instruments of torment ;-P )
     
  26. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Ye Olde King Spur Hut. I shared it with a Lawyer named Brendan and his two well behaved primary school aged children. The little girl despite being a good skier on boiler plate ice had a mishap and had to be transported back up to their camp at the hut from the Howqua Gap track on a skidoo by the ski patrol.
     
    #26 Mister Tee on XC Skis, Jul 11, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2018
  27. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Inside the hut. This is a quieter and more secluded place to camp than the Bluff Spur hut is.
     
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  28. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    The Loo has a view. The Cross cut saw and Mt. B*ggery.The King Spur Hut loo has a door that won't close properly but it faces away from the hut and towards this vista.The walk over to the loo can be interesting , sinking past your knees in deep snow if you miss the trodden path in haste.
     
  29. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Another view of ye olde hut. Don't any of you NSW people dare sneeze at our wonderful huts, loos and snow poles!!! ;-P.
     
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  30. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    The Water Tanks at the Hut were flowing so that made life easier.
    I had a lesson , the instructor came to the hut :) and that was good at getting my basics straightened out on slight slopes that one can ski from either approach to the hut.
    Now for the ski terrain ….Icy , twisting, steep drops and ascents. OMG what have I signed up for ??
    This is the RACE LOOP.I call it the Crash loop.
     
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  31. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    My skis on the Suicide mission track ( Race loop). The groomers were out so there was more corduroy than a folk festival.
     
  32. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    I made it to my lunch spot uninjured and sat on the snow in the sun at the Cricket Pitch camp area.There I ate my lunch.
     
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  33. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    I made it back to my camp site and took the skis off and had a well earned hot cuppa , started the fire in the hut and popped some neurofen tablets.I then went out and skied some more around the hut for another hour, drilling stopping and turning.
     
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  34. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Lunch at The Cricket Pitch.
     
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  35. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 3. Break fast at the hut. Day 3 July 10th 2018 had The best scenery, snow shoes/ micro spikes and no skiing= no crashes. I had the summit to myself. Oh what a life I have traded for the world of pain on planks!!
     
  36. GS

    GS A Local
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    Nice pics, always enjoyable skiing thru the snowgums on Stirling.

    Before groomers were on Stirling, repeated crashing was the only way to compact the snow!
     
  37. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Great shots, great vibe MrT.

    You were on the best side for true xc. Wombats is fairly friendly way up down too (as opposed to steeper lower stirling). New 3 side shelter is actually i nice lunch /chill spot if weather ok.

    Well done for peristing too.

    As for binding / boot combos - the variety is amazing with NTN (v slowly replacing 75 mm,) alpine touring tech toe ntn , ski bikes, snow shoes, boarders, even skaters....

    ...only ones stuffing it up are walkers without snowshoes postholing in soft snow.

    Quite dangerous for beginners with the hazads
    - something the resort needs to limit.
     
  38. neilmny

    neilmny Hard Yards

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    You need to get out there without the heavy load Mr Tee. If you persevere it will come to you.
    Most of us don't learn to ski to the point of carrying more than a day pack in the short time you've been at it, just don't give up.
    You are also in a hurry to get there and ending up with poor snow and weather conditions. Later in the season there should be more/deeper cover and the quality should be better.
    I was also a late starter (early 40's)...my mates always said if your not falling your not trying....:eek::thumbs:...........err that didn't make a fall any more pleasant though.
     
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  39. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 3. Mt. Howitt seen from the Upper Stirling track. A nice sunny day with peaceful views of the Vic. Alps.I did not ski anywhere with a heavy pack. I cannot do it at all so much of day three was made up of walking on snow shoes or Kahtoola micro spikes with my skis and subsequently broken snow shoes strapped to a pack that resembled a family sedan car strapped to a man . There were/are no photos from day one. It was too grim and too much effort to reach for the camera.
     
    #39 Mister Tee on XC Skis, Jul 11, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  40. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Mt. Cobbler as seen from near the GGS hut. Day 3.The ordeal of foul weather on soft snow on day one , multiple crashes on planks on ice on day two was becoming less onerous by day 3 and more enjoyable by this stage. The good weather was helping my outlook.
     
  41. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 3. The GGS hut. I did n't go inside this time. I was fixated on reaching the top while it was sunny and there was just a cool breeze, no nasty gale force wind.
     
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  42. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 3 . Perfect weather at Mt. Stirling. This was the best bit of the trip . I had to switch to micro spikes in order to proceed up the boiler plate summit. It was really hard wind scoured crusty nasty ice , not snow.
     
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  43. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 3. One day I will make it to MacAlister Springs in white season. If not on skis or snow shoes then on micro spikes and a pogo stick if that is the way it has to be. Meanwhile One can take in the views of the surrounding ranges of the Alpine N.P.
     
  44. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 3. Views from near the Top. You can see a bit of a cornice forming on the summit ridge of Mt. Magdala on the left.
    I am getting the hang of using this digital camera. King Billie peaks # 1, 2,3 are on the right.
     
    #44 Mister Tee on XC Skis, Jul 11, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2018
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  45. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Day 3 .Looking towards Mt. Cobbler and a faint silhouette of Mt. Buffalo .There was enough of a wind chill to warrant putting on my gore tex jacket once I was out of the tree line.
     
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  46. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Mt. Buller as seen from Mt. Stirling. Day 3. I had the summit to myself. It was all worth the effort in the end. I have never been to the summit with a family sedan strapped to my back so it was first in that regard.
     
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  47. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Your correspondent in the field sporting a new look: The cycling helmet , skis strapped onto a full pack and mirror shades plus the rest of the Bogong Equipment catalogue attached to the pack at the top of Mt. Stirling. There were some patches of vegetation showing through the ice and somebody had built half an igloo near the top, made out of ice bricks.
     
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  48. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    The summit marker at Mt. Stirling. July 10th 2018.My fitness has improved as result of this trip.
     
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  49. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    Many poles had ice encrusted upon them in a wind blown pattern. I guess Sunday at the summit would have been scary. I am glad I was lower down the hill that day.
     
  50. Mister Tee on XC Skis

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    My shadow for company at the top.
     
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