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Question Razorback Overnight / Couple days

Discussion in 'Backcountry' started by Ricardo64, Jul 23, 2018.

  1. Ricardo64

    Ricardo64 Hard Yards

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    Hi Everyone,
    I am aware that I have rehashed a past thread here, but it seems year after year the goal post move on us, as to what we can and can't do in the vincity of resorts and parking and camping seems to be items I am noticing.
    I am planning a couple days away with my daughter, snow camping and some nice lines off the razorback with all the freshies and all.
    With the mother nature throwing so much white stuff at us recently(thank you for that too), I thought there may be a few people thinking the same thing as I am. Where to to park the car as close to the razorback trail head as possible.

    Correct me if I am incorrect, you can't leave cars at Loch carpark overnight as you will get a fine. If you are parking on the side of the Great Alpine road at the moment it will be at your own peril unless your interested in digging the thing out after being buried and spray with grit by the Mr plow. I believe the entrance to Diamantinas is closed off which leaves little options to leave cars parked at the machinery shed the only viable place and hiking back to the trail head. If this our only resort what are the legalities of leaving a vehicle here over a couple of days and do you have to pay for parking( I am pretty sure I would be outside the resort boundaries, but could be wrong.
    Are these our only options ?:confused:
     
    #1 Ricardo64, Jul 23, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2018
  2. Xplora

    Xplora One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    There is a map here http://planning-schemes.delwp.vic.gov.au/schemes/alpineresorts/ordinance/21_mss06_alpr.pdf that will give you some idea how far you would have to park to not be in the resort. Go here and it will tell you about resort entry and what that means. https://www.mthotham.com.au/discover/explore/getting-here/resort-entry but essentially you cannot stop your car (unless for emergency) within the resort boundary without paying. Most people walk up Bungalow spur from Harrietvelle. It will be busy on any given weekend.
     
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  3. Ricardo64

    Ricardo64 Hard Yards

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    What sort of distance are we looking at from the bottom of bungalow spur to federation hut?
    As this is my daughter's first ski tour(she is excited as a budding photographer) and keen skier I want this to be a positive experience for her, are there toilets at fed hut? where are some good sheltered camp sites if the weather turns pear shaped?
     
  4. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    It’s a big walk and Feathertop doesn’t offer much sheltered skiing at all.

    For a first tour I’d go to Stirling. Reason I say this was my first big Oz BC snow camping trip was to Feathertop ;)
     
  5. Team Weasel

    Team Weasel One of Us

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    About 10km, and around 1100m elevation gain. A solid few hours if you add in the relatively low snowline. Heed @CarveMan - Stirling is a great place to start.
     
  6. Boodwah

    Boodwah One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Feather can be a hairy mountain and it is very serious terrain. Quite a few very experienced skiers have died on it. Not sure how appropriate a choice it is for a first ski tour. You should be mountain fit, and have had a lot of ski touring experience.
    As mentioned above, Stirling is a much better choice.
     
  7. Boodwah

    Boodwah One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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  8. Ricardo64

    Ricardo64 Hard Yards

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    have been to Stirling several times, with my son and alone before, is their any other alternatives ..Main range ? Kosi ?
     
  9. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yep plenty to do on the Main Range - starting out at Guthega you can skin essentially from the carpark.
     
  10. Xplora

    Xplora One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Are you trying to avoid the entrance or parking fee for resorts? If that is not an issue then Falls Creek offers a great variety. How much does it cost for NSW entry now? Fed hut has a toilet and you may be able to get a sheltered spot for a tent but I concur with the other advice. If you are not fit then Bungalow will be a slog but not still quicker than slogging it up the road from outside the resort then across the Razorback.
    Buses run from Mt. Beauty to Falls which may be cheaper option.
     
  11. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend Ski Pass: Gold

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    KNP is $29 per 24 hrs per car in winter.
     
  12. Greybeard

    Greybeard Addicted

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    Or $190 per year
     
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  13. Ubiquitous Steve

    Ubiquitous Steve A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    The trip report has Mt Wills detailed just the other day....the driving is longer but very rewarding as a first experience ...good hut with wood stove ,bunks etc.....you can take your tents but for a first trip MtWills is a winner....Mr T may be able to offer some advice....has dunny and one of the best Huts withviews and large windows .......a safe ski trip in snow gums....at moment there is good snow up there.
    No parking fees but having a chainsaw with you and 4x4 is best.....
     
  14. Ubiquitous Steve

    Ubiquitous Steve A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Mt Wills is a bit out if the way compared to everything else......but I think it’s worth it...thise pics of Chocken Chicken show it’s got pretty good coverage....right now the Omeo Highway is probably a mess near there.....total speculation on my part....xplora can provide more accuracy there....so Team Bears can see that you have referred to trips out along Razorback....it’s not to far up to Mt Wills Hut from the Barrier.Easier than Bungelow to Federation.....less likely to be folk on weekends too.....

    Oh I didnot mention that Tallangatta Ski Lodge Private sits near the locked entry gate...so it’s likely that others may be using the road and making wheel ruts up to the Carpark near the gate.
     
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  15. Barras

    Barras Addicted

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    What about Mt McKay and stay at Pretty Valley?
     
  16. Ricardo64

    Ricardo64 Hard Yards

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    I think I will settle for Mt Stirling at the moment and look at doing a few NSW trips if I can.
     
  17. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    There's also Baw Baw NP - either from Gwinear or BB resort. Snow cover is a bit more day to day but a gentler first O/N tour than F'Top /R'back or even much of the high plains.
    With a good snow cover, Lost Plain on the Snowy Plains is another flatfish option (& free!) but more remote if you need help.
     
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  18. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    You can rent the Tallangatta ski lodge when they are not using it. Look up their contact details on the interwebby.Last season they got heaps of snow at the Tallangatta ski club hut / gate . I think Mt. Wills would be magic in white season. It is in my IN TRAY. If I don't go up to Trapyard gap to access Faithful's hut on the Eastern BHP for free ,at the end of August then Mt. Wills would be the next choice. It is not a big hike up the track from the gate to the hut with a pack .I can't ski with a full pack on my back ( have trouble with just my day pack ;-P ) so snow shoes or Kahtoola micro spikes over ski boots would be good. Take a 4x4 car or a high clearance AWD with off road tyres,chains and a chainsaw as well as a snow shovel. It is a long way from anywhere so be sure you can get in and OUT. If in doubt ,park opposite the turn off on the Omeo highway and walk up to the Tallangatta ski club and past the gate to the summit hut etc.
    Next green season I will scout out Mt. Reynard for free overnight XC ski options. Kelly's hut is not far from the winter gate out there. A 2WD car in winter would not be suitable for the Snowy plains terrain access north of Licola.
    Mt.St. Gwinear is free and easy to get to . There is no hut as such but people do snow camp out that way.
    The KNP is a bit of a drive for many Melbourne based people but it is value for money in terms of how much you have to pay for your car per night in the park. Horse Camp Hut is a good hut that has been renovated and is not that far from Guthega Power station. The Aquaduct track above the hut would be fab to XC ski on in the right conditions .
    I am going to the KNP in September ,possibly camping at Island Bend and visiting Charlotte Pass by the over snow service.
     
  19. Xplora

    Xplora One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Who told you this hut was for general rent? A member of the club (whose father was a founding member and builder) told me recently it was available to club members and family of members only. Possibly if you knew a member very well then you could get it but I was also told it had been booked every weekend for the season. @telecommuter or @Budgiesmuggler may be able to shed more light on this. https://www.ski.com.au/xf/threads/mt-wills-19-20-aug-2017.79215/#post-3375052
    We have had this discussion at length before. https://www.ski.com.au/xf/threads/m...ks-prime-for-white-season.77145/#post-3205889 When the snow is good then Mt. Wills is good but you could also have difficulty getting up the Omeo Hwy until it is cleared. The snow plough also pushes the snow into a bank which can prevent entry into this parking area. Yesterday (so I was told) the snow was not good and you had to walk most of the way up. Quite different from a week or so ago and even a couple of days ago. You also have to like skiing between trees and rocks. See a recent post from Chockinchicken. https://www.ski.com.au/xf/threads/the-bc-chatter-thread.47700/page-242 That was a good day.
    A bit of an overkill for Mt Wills most of the time. Like Mr. T said. If in doubt just park at the bottom but there are a couple of pull over areas up the road to the hut. Mostly the track is in good condition until the last pinch near the hut. It was graded in January of this year. I saw a Ford Transit van with chains on the back wheels parked at the gate last Monday. A chainsaw is always advisable but more the Omeo Hwy (if you chose to walk from there up the hill). Vic Roads patrol and clear the Omeo Hwy when problems are reported but if you don't want to wait for them, then being prepared is better. No phone service on most of Omeo Highway except at the turnoff to Mt. Wills with an external antenna boosted phone. Hand held phone service at the hut.
     
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  20. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    I’m pretty sure non members can stay if they get in contact with the club in advance.
     
  21. Xplora

    Xplora One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Not saying you are wrong, just different to what I was told and seeking some clarification. Telecommuter may be able to bring some light on the subject as they booked the hut. I couldn't find any reference on the internet to the club but I did not look exhaustively. Just curiosity for me. I would never book the hut. I think there are some issues with the old rope tow. Doubt it will see service again even if there is good low snow. I think a shut off at the top was installed after a girl got her hair caught in it but the greater liability issues facing clubs could prevent anything of this type running again. I could be wrong as it is a vague recollection from a discussion a while back.
     
  22. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    The Tallangatta ski club 's old rope tow and the shed that houses it both looked cactus when I was last up there in January 2018. The road up to the gate from the Omeo highway had been graded. It was easy to drive up to the gate in my RAV 4 but there was no snow or ice then , which makes driving more challenging. Anyway the summit hut is fab. and is more scenic and you can always camp out near the summit hut.
     
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  23. Belly

    Belly A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    This thread says Vic access really is hard work, have lived that dream, could only imagine with kids. In NSW Ricardo you can park at the snowline at DHG hassle free and snow camp literally metres from your car (or as far away as you like), all sheltered.
     
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  24. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Diamantina hut is car camping with direct access to razorback and within 5 mins you can ski. The only bummer is the parking fee and the scungy hut but its about as easy access as it gets......I have to pay to park at DHG as well, albeit not as much. Id argue quick skiing access from diamintina is better than DHG. Diamintina end of razorback has skiing for most abilities.
     
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  25. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    We’ve been involved with the club for 30+ years and I’ve never heard of a girl getting her hair caught. The lift ran in the early 90s but they pulled the engine out a few years later. The reason was low snow and the effort it took to keep the lift running given it was used very sparingly during the year.
     
  26. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    The summit hut is an old fire spotted hut. I can remember being there when they had someone living up there over the summer.
     
  27. Ubiquitous Steve

    Ubiquitous Steve A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Mt Wills Hut is a scenic wonder..... Viccos are lucky to have this superb edifice !It is well worth the effort.If the weather turns to crap you will still have an enjoyable stay up there.

    Unlike NSW you where you will it be forking out 2x$29 =roughly sixty smakaas .....for your weekend .From Melb up the Hume it’s approx 460kms (well that’s what Camp. Mulhe is roughly).
    It sounds like folk are regularly using Tallangatta Ski Lodge so that means the road will most probably have wheel ruts in the snow at least.
     
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  28. Xplora

    Xplora One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    The ladies who told me could have been recounting a story from some time ago and made it seem more recent. They recounted many stories from their time at the hut with their father. He was of had been dead for many years and they had just lost their mother.
    I don't find it hard but then again I live there.
     
  29. Xplora

    Xplora One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    None now either but you probably don't want to go all that way when it is like it is today. Many times last year we parked at the Highway and had the skis on straight away and you could ski all the way down to the car from the top. This year not as yet. I would not plan a ski trip there unless you knew it was going to be good. Someone on one of the other threads said when it was good there it is better elsewhere. Also not good to plan the trip in for after a big dump and find the Highway closed for the day or more.
     
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  30. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    It is not sure fire bet for BC XC skiing , that much has been established on this forum. I am more inclined to try my luck at Trap Yard Gap gate and slog it over to Cope or Faithfuls hut as a base for day touring on XC skis.
     
  31. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    The Diamantina hut is a shitehole. I have snow camped next to it. It is not hut that leaps to mind when thinking of white season Oz Alps huts that leave a glowing impression.
     
  32. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    There are some posts on here somewhere - apparently the lodge was supposed to be the other side of the mountain but they couldn’t get the road in, so they located it for easier acces. The other side holds more snow apparently
     
  33. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Diamantina is a very noisy hut in the wind btw! Shakes rattles & rolls, so very hard to sleep unless you're exhausted. Handy but certainly has its limitations.

    Mm, Be nice to have a ski in / walk in only hut down the bottom of Dargo Bowl etc...very few tourists would make the effort. (;-)

    Possibly one at the treeline on The Twins too? :)-D
     
  34. Belly

    Belly A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    You haven't been on here very long, I used to live in Vic and have posted multiple trip reports of Mt W with the old dog clan as well. Many would agree Vic BC access is more challenging than NSW but it's a subjective thing.
     
  35. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    I went and scouted out the Twins in green season. I did not see any hut anywhere up there. There is a reliable spring that flows across the Jeep track near the Twins. It has some of the best drinking water in the Vic. Alps. Because that jeep road is shut in white season you could camp on the road next to the said spring. I am going to scout out Mt. Murray (Barry Mtns.) next summer coming in from the upper Buckland valley. Any free of charge BC XC options need to be explored.
     
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  36. Xplora

    Xplora One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    I was having a dig in good spirits. It is about 20 min to skis on for me in Vic BC. I am sure there have been many great trips to Mt. Wills and the point I was making is more about either being lucky or being close when the snow is good.
    It is a bit of a story and I may have it somewhere in a book. No doubt there would be some posts that could be searched. @Bogong is good at that history stuff. He may have better information but from memory you are close, if not on the mark. The hut was supposed to be up on the mountain and my memory of the conversation with the two ladies is the road may have been cut. There is an old road on the other side toward Mt. Wills south. I think the club had plans to make it into a resort or some kind.
     
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  37. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    I reckon Vic is in general more challenging than NSW but it's also more interesting by many measures - there's snow in various parts of eastern Victoria. But you often have to work quite hard to get to the snowline where as in NSW one tends to get a sealed road to the same (generally).

    As to good value alternative/ cheap 'bets' for people in SE Melbourne, The Snowy Plains offer much potential - on the proviso that the cover is there. It does blow a bit hot and cold (STS) as despite having some decent height (to ~ 1700m), it can often be in a snow shadow at the southern end. The northern end (Howitt) doesn't suffer this shadow (I understand) but loses the DSE car access.

    But it does have some interesting rolling high country with a free road to the snowline with numerous small plains for exploring - something often lacking in the 'southern' Vic alps.

    I like Mt Wills (summer visit only for me) but being practical its hours further from SE Melbourne than BBAw or Snowy Plains. Something I'll knock off another year.
     
  38. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Lots of Wills history here: https://www.ski.com.au/xf/threads/downhill-resort-potential-in-victoria-besides-stirling.47209/
     
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  39. Ubiquitous Steve

    Ubiquitous Steve A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    With the money squandered on the Iconic FH Walk .....remedial work could have been conducted on the A frame structure Diamintina Hut....Team Bears used to drop off about two tons if firewood preseason up there .....as described by others it is cold breezy and noisy.The doulble wooden doors have been off fir a long time.A decent shelter could have been developed....weather tight with large glass windows looking out over the Razorback.This development would have been far different than the proposed hut out near High Knob.It could have been utilized by tourists and walkers and had a small car park off the main Rd ploughed by Vic Rds in the snow season when time permitted.

    But authorities have squanded our monies and lost the opportunity to do something mega useful !

    The shelter at Mt St Guinear Carpark springs to mind when Team Bears think of money well spent!
     
  40. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Slept in the MSG shelter on a very rainy night summer 85/86. Nice weather protection. Quiet. Agreed good VFM. (;-)
     
  41. sidetrack

    sidetrack One of Us

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    I think the best way to do the razorback- Feathertop trip is to park in Harretville and catch the bus up. It’s then a quick ski back down to the start of the razorback .Then a nice dawdle out camping at Twin knobs etc and then ski Feathertop the next morning before using Bungalow back to Harretville
     
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  42. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    Has anyone been out on the Northern Razorback and that approach to Mt. F.T. in white season? I scouted it out in April from Stoney tops.
     
  43. Endless_Winter

    Endless_Winter One of Us

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    Summer trailhead super close (4km), winter trailhead i reckon about 7km making it a shorter route than from the Great Alpine Road, but winter trailhead subject to snow on dirt road.


    In general, if you've never skied Feathertop and want to do an overnight, I'd recommend doing a day trip in spring/late winter to scope it out (start early and bring a headlamp). The later in the season you go, the more booting you will do (mainly in the middle 1/3rd of the razorback), but the day light will be longer. I did a day trip and rode a line on Feathertop in the middle of last october (season was about 3 weeks longer than normal due due exceptional late winter / early spring storms). At the time, after getting back to the car, I swore I'd never do a day trip with a snowboard to Feathertop again but thinking about it I really want to do a day trip in winter.


    I may have posted these photos previously, can't remember.


    Sunrise at Diamantina Hut and a long way from my intended line.



    Snow was in good nick by the time I got there. There'd been a really solid re-freeze the night before and, if anything, I was a little early.
     
  44. Bogong

    Bogong Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    The trip from Diamantina Hut across the (southern) Razorback is a brute in winter. Constantly undulating with alternating patches of soft snow and ice with the occasional unexpected small cornice just to make your life "interesting".

    You can drive a proper 4WD (equipped with chainsaw, tyre chains and a good shovel) up to 1300+ metres at Stony Tops and traverse the North Razorback, but there is the ever present worry of your vehicle being snowed in or a monster tree falling over the road, meaning you have a 5 hour walk back to civilisation.

    Perhaps surprisingly, the easiest way up Feathertop in winter is to walk up Bungalow Spur from Harrietville. The track is the former access to the Feathertop Bungalow, a hotel that used to operate on the mountain, so it was well built with easy gradients and isn't that hard, even with a full pack.

    If you want a real challenge, walk up North West Spur to MUMC Hut. It is a steep slog and it is sometimes difficult to stay on the correct route on the upper slopes.
     
  45. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    If you are super fit then you can slog it up the Bon Accord spur from Harrietville to the Start of the Razorback. That is a slog with a full winter gear laden overnight pack. If the snowline is low enough in winter then you can snow camp at the Bon Accord hut ruins site and melt snow for water.
    I will scout out Champion spur in late spring this year as a long day walk /hike and return via the Bungalow spur. It can function as another route from Harrietville to Twin Knobs on the Razorback.
     
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  46. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    I have hiked down the NW spur in green season. As long as you stay on top of the spur you should not lose the true route. In heavy snow and fog this could be confusing for some people. I do not think PV actively maintain the NW spur track and Team Bears have not been sighted working there for many moons either.
     
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  47. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    This was in September 2015 (?). Near the top of the Bon Accord spur. It was T O U G H going up the last 2kms which gains 400 M. vertical elevation from the Hut ruins site.
     
  48. Ubiquitous Steve

    Ubiquitous Steve A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    MUMC can undertake works on its own....if they can swing an ice axe they can lug a saw up there themselves!

    The Stoneytops Approach is an exciting one with nice views.....I would recommend that first time parties start from Hotham (Diamintina Hut).....finish over Feathertop and Nth Peak then descend along Stoneytops Walking track till it hits the 4x4 vehicle track....it’s a nice walk back to Germantown Bridge near the Ovens Valley Highway.

    But.......you need to come over Feathertop ....as in right over the summit ....so u must have reasonable weather and visibility......and u need to factor in some ice over that route .....so you need to be careful over the summit....once on Nth Peak you are kicking asse.
    Diwn hill basically
     
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  49. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Yes further to the Stonettops approach - great in summer for a shorter walk to F'Top - as long as you some ground clearance for the last few kms above the gate (from memory).

    There used to be summit bypas - fairly rough I recall at about 1700m (near treeline) that connect nth Razoback and the upper part of NW spur (well above MUMC). I think PV closed this to revel etc...

    It would have filled in, in the winter (just like the walking tracks nearBig Dipper on the southern end of the Razorback). Not a lot choice with big back and skis but to go straight up the ridge!

    Fwiw: My lungs are feeling squeezed just thinking about that 91' Razorback/F'Top/Bungalow jaunt - typical wind/blizzard/white out min winter conds. Very few views from F'Top - but fubulous during brief openings! No skis up summit - just axes and (crampons not needed). Makes one appreciate how much more challenging trees are on a steep incline/decline & no kicker skins on our skinny Morrotos & leather boots!
    :)-0. The memories (oh & the pleasure of seeing Fed hut after the crossing!)
     
  50. Ubiquitous Steve

    Ubiquitous Steve A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    so I suppose if you really wanted....you catch community bus from Bright....get dropped off at Diamintina Hut.....Germantown Bridge is only about 4kms from Bright Township along Ovens......

    Supposing you had three days ....you could do this trip easily without the hassle of cars or snow/chains or entrance fees.
    If weather goes a tad nasty u have Federation Hut and MUMC Hut to shelter in.....and a choice of Bungelow or NW spurs as an alternative escape route if Feathertop is socked in!
     
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