Mt. Torbreck 27.7.16 Trip report. My friend and I went to Mt. Torbreck(1516 M ) today and went to the top. On the way we stopped in Narbethong at Mystic mountains ski hire and hired some snow shoes and poles for my friend and some wheel chains and I bought a map ( just in case). It was raining along the way but it was cold enough for that to be snow above 1400 M so off we went. The road out there along Snob’s Creek road is good for 2 WD. It has been cleared of fallen timber too. We left the car at the bottom of the junction with Conn’s gap rd. and walked the rest of the way up to Barnewall plains road where the gate is locked to 4 WD vehicles in white season. That road has many fallen logs on it which will be cleared in November. The snow started to appear on the ground half way up Conn’s Gap road. I don’t know who Conn was but he may have been a Greek bushwalker or mountaineer , or maybe not. Further up I took off a layer of clothing and put on flexible microspikes/ crampons because it was icy and slippery going up the winding hill jeep road. I had two sets of MSR snow shoes strapped to my pack. Once we reached the picnic table area at Barnewall plains we started the true ascent of Mt Torbreck. The track notice says it is 2.1 kms one way and it's very steep and has obstacles along the way. A little way further along we both put on the snow shoes. It became very steep quite soon just as the Snow gums began to appear. I was kicking steps with the snow shoes , using the heel lift and actually was using the ice axe blade on the self-arrest pole while ascending crab like on all fours on some very steep sections which were at least 40 cms deep in deep soft wet snow. This sort thing continued as I followed the orange arrows on the snow gum trees until at summit plateau I ran out of orange arrows. It was snowing up there and it was very cold with everything covered in ice and festooned with snow, I could not see much and the summit cairn was not located on this trip. It could have been any of the huge rocks covered in snow. Since this was the first time I had been there I decided to turn back only to find my walking companion still plodding up the mountain. We had a thermos of hot tea. She found my snow shoe extension which had snapped off and subsequently also found my orange pack cover. After my friend went on to see if she could find the summit marker we descended. This was verging on semi technical mountaineering. One had to go backwards like a crab, kicking steps, down some slippery chutes that were easier to deal with climbing up . I had the whippet out and was using the blade to brake and get purchase in the snow and ice so I could stay in control on the steep descent. My friend opted to toboggan without the toboggan on her derriere , often out of control after she had started to slide :-0 It was very beautiful , very cold indeed, snowing and wild up there at the 1500 M area and we didn’t see anybody else on the mountain. Mt Torbreck doesn’t cost anything to visit and is way more adventurous than going to Lake mountain .It is about two and half hours from Melbourne and is a winter day trip adventure that I will certainly do again next year , armed with a real ice axe. In fact we will go back in green season to find the summit cairn and maybe even visit the plane crash site when there is more daylight later in the year. It is interesting that this site was once planned to become a downhill skiing resort. It is steep enough for the creation of some black diamond ski runs, it is higher up than Lake Mountain is in terms of elevation and the Chalet etc. would have been easy to build on Barnewall plains at the foot of the final ascent to the top. Moreover it is one hour closer to Melbourne than Mt Buller or Mt Baw Baw are. Local towns such as Eildon would have done well out of it too. It is good that such a thing never took place because it is a tranquil and wild place in winter that only adventurous , fit people on two legs can reach. Mt. Torbreck rocks!