skifree

A disciple of the blessed avi giraffe
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Skiing from the Bluff over Howitt to Speculation is a very hard ski per km.

I thought Bluff to Howitt OK.

Have had issues with Spec to Howitt, tho the most issues was when a cold front came thru and hit about 2/3 the way to Howitt. I ended up a little down the Thorn Range spur with the 2 man tent but no stove. The other 2 got to the back of Howitt but could find the Macalister Springs Spur exit had had t share the 1 person tent but had two stoves. We did meet up in the morning after they did get to Vallejo Ganter Hut expecting to find me there. But it was empty so after a cup of soup dumped kit and headed out to look for me and found me wandering in from the Cross Cut. A very pleasing meeting around.

The powder on the Cross Cut that day prior to front hitting was sublime, pouring and sluffing everywhere.
 

Mister Tee on XC Skis

Not your average unconventional eccentric.
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I thought Bluff to Howitt OK.

Have had issues with Spec to Howitt, tho the most issues was when a cold front came thru and hit about 2/3 the way to Howitt. I ended up a little down the Thorn Range spur with the 2 man tent but no stove. The other 2 got to the back of Howitt but could find the Macalister Springs Spur exit had had t share the 1 person tent but had two stoves. We did meet up in the morning after they did get to Vallejo Ganter Hut expecting to find me there. But it was empty so after a cup of soup dumped kit and headed out to look for me and found me wandering in from the Cross Cut. A very pleasing meeting around.

The powder on the Cross Cut that day prior to front hitting was sublime, pouring and sluffing everywhere.
When we are released from CV19 jail then I am going to scout out the foot route from Brocks road at the junction of Cairn Creek track up to King Billy Saddle. I will then bushwalk down the KB track to the Macalister river and back up to Howitt Plains car park. From there I will use the GPS to mark the foot route from Howitt Plains Car Park to Mac. Springs Hut.
The route is a 2 day trek to get to Mac. Springs but as I think the AAWT from King Billy to Mt. Howitt to Mac. Springs could be potentially diabolical the more sheltered route via King Billy Track could be less challenging for ski touring.
Some hiking boots to ski boots transitions would be obligatory.
In white season as @Bogong has remarked in the past a white out along that route from the Howitt plains car park to the A frame hut at Mac. Springs can be challenging. It is obvious in green season , as most things are.
Once that is done I will most likely return a few weeks or months later and do a
supply drop at Mac. Springs coming in by car from Licola and also do one at The Bluff Hut .
So I will have two options for that area for 2022 for back Country ski touring.
When I retrieve or restock my supply drop at Mt. No.3 Refuge hut then I will do the Bluff hut supply drop.
@pegasusSki and I have talked about driving up to 8 Mile Gap and trekking in/ skinning in to the Bluff Hut and making it a base for skiing the Bluff and touring out towards King Billy 1 for a number of ski seasons.
Well now that I know I can skin up hills and sort of classic ski with a multi night pack using kicker skins then these trips are now must do kind of things.
@beefa skiing is also interested in doing these trips.

Anyone who goes across the Cross Cut saw on skis is hard core and gets a standing salute from me
with a Tim Brooke Taylor style speech
with " Land of Hope and Glory"( Elgar )
playing in the back ground.
:)
 

Xplora

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When we are released from CV19 jail then I am going to scout out the foot route from Brocks road at the junction of Cairn Creek track up to King Billy Saddle. I will then bushwalk down the KB track to the Macalister river and back up to Howitt Plains car park. From there I will use the GPS to mark the foot route from Howitt Plains Car Park to Mac. Springs Hut.
The route is a 2 day trek to get to Mac. Springs but as I think the AAWT from King Billy to Mt. Howitt to Mac. Springs could be potentially diabolical the more sheltered route via King Billy Track could be less challenging for ski touring.
Some hiking boots to ski boots transitions would be obligatory.
In white season as @Bogong has remarked in the past a white out along that route from the Howitt plains car park to the A frame hut at Mac. Springs can be challenging. It is obvious in green season , as most things are.
Now that would be the long way around. On par with the Bogong Village to Roper hut plan.
 

skifree

A disciple of the blessed avi giraffe
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Getting to the Crosscut in winter is certainly a better part of the challenge

Our experiments strongly suggest the Lake Cobbler access is easiest.

I do like the look of the Licola access for Winter but it's a bit of an addition to the trip when coming from SA. Where is the locked gate on this access?
 
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Chaeron

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Near the junction of Zeka Spur Track and Butcher Country Track with the Licola access road.(Howitt Plains Road)
BEBCB1EA-B6B6-4AB7-B821-3FB47554EA1D.jpeg
 

Xplora

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Chaeron

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I think it is much further back than that from memory. See here https://www.parks.vic.gov.au/get-into-nature/safety-in-nature/seasonal-road-closures map 35B

This would be correct but the drive in to Lake Cobbler is longer.
You’re correct.

https://www.bushwalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=37&t=23602#p304979 (a thread you initiated I think)

“Howitt Rd is always gated in the same spot, near the Gorge carpark, at the northern end of Kellys Lane. This would be some 7 or 8 km south of the airstrip.” (2016 info before the fires went through there, could be different now)
 

legend

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Better to leave the car at Lake Cobbler (not often under heavy snow and downhill drive on north side when leaving). The Gorge carpark can be under heavy snow (you also have a much higher point to cross at Lost Plain under Mt Arbuckle. Lots of trees can come down too along this route. It's a popular 4wd drive to the gate with around 20km in snow.
We've done Speculation in a day from Lake Cobbler when able to ski it all, but normally it would take two days if you're walking most of it (normal season). Our last trip to Howitt was via Brocks Road to the gate. Then it's a two day walk/ski to the Mac Springs (gentle uphill to the King Billies) then skiing.
 

Mister Tee on XC Skis

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Our experiments strongly suggest the Lake Cobbler access is easiest.

I do like the look of the Licola access for Winter but it's a bit of an addition to the trip when coming from SA. Where is the locked gate on this access?
The Locked gate coming from Licola is at the Gorge Gap car park on the Howitt road. That is where The Howitt road intersects with Kelly Lane. Both are seasonally closed within
a short proximity of each other.
The issue with the Licola approach in August is getting the 4 WD stuck in deep snow drifts which have been reported to form from time to time at Arbuckle junction.
There is good parking at the Gorge Gap car park.
The Howitt road has two locked winter gates from there on. The road climbs up to 1600 M. + ASL. from the winter gate.
Early September in a good snow season could be better for access to Mac. Springs from that route via the Howitt road but even still it is a two day trek/ ski in from Gorge Gap car park.
 

Untele-whippet

beard stroker
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I’m confused, do I post a turn pic in bc or the Perisher thread?
In neither, nowhere..
Inconsiderate.
How about you go home now with your new lightweight indestructible tweeny bindings and beautique skis and fall sleep on some tram tracks!
At least then, Adelaide would be newsworthy! ;)
 

hongomania

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Time to get back out there after a late season break

First time up the cobberas. Views for days. Stunning country. Have done the 4wd track a few times but never the walking trail

Took over 3 hours to do 21.5km with 900m vert gain

There is alot of horse hoof damage on the lower wetter sections; their piles of waste litter the landscape

Lots of fallen timber; also horse pads everywhere. Whilst there are lots of track markers, you do have to concentrate on where you are going. Not head down and bang it out kind of terrain

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Screenshot_20210910-195556_Gallery.jpg
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zapruda

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Time to get back out there after a late season break

First time up the cobberas. Views for days. Stunning country. Have done the 4wd track a few times but never the walking trail

Took over 3 hours to do 21.5km with 900m vert gain

There is alot of horse hoof damage on the lower wetter sections; their piles of waste litter the landscape

Lots of fallen timber; also brumby pads everywhere. Whilst there are lots of track markers, you do have to concentrate on where you are going. Not head down and bang it out kind of terrain

Screenshot_20210910-195513_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195520_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195556_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195705_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195734_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195811_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195837_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195946_Video Player.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200021_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200225_Video Player.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200307_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200329_Gallery.jpg
Nice one!

The Cobberas are some of the best fun in the high country. Cleft Peak via Middle Peak packs in so much interesting stuff in such a short amount of time.

And the views!
 

skifree

A disciple of the blessed avi giraffe
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In neither, nowhere..
Inconsiderate.
How about you go home now with your new lightweight indestructible tweeny bindings and beautique skis and fall sleep on some tram tracks!
At least then, Adelaide would be newsworthy! ;)

The sacrifices I make to keep the snow honest and this is the thanks I get.
 

snowgum

A Local
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Time to get back out there after a late season break

First time up the cobberas. Views for days. Stunning country. Have done the 4wd track a few times but never the walking trail

Took over 3 hours to do 21.5km with 900m vert gain

There is alot of horse hoof damage on the lower wetter sections; their piles of waste litter the landscape

Lots of fallen timber; also horse pads everywhere. Whilst there are lots of track markers, you do have to concentrate on where you are going. Not head down and bang it out kind of terrain

Screenshot_20210910-195513_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195520_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195556_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195705_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195734_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195811_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195837_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195946_Video Player.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200021_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200225_Video Player.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200307_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200329_Gallery.jpg
Stunning! Been too long for me!
Not a high snowfall zone as noted earlier this year! Still great to see some drifts - perhaps had much more cover before the last deluge? And great snowgums and hybrid varieties on the mtn!

There’s really nothing else in Vic like Cobberas - a sort of lower, less snowy, Jungungal complex?
 

Mister Tee on XC Skis

Not your average unconventional eccentric.
Ski Pass
Jul 29, 2015
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Melbourne, Lockdown-i-stan .
soundcloud.com
Time to get back out there after a late season break

First time up the cobberas. Views for days. Stunning country. Have done the 4wd track a few times but never the walking trail

Took over 3 hours to do 21.5km with 900m vert gain

There is alot of horse hoof damage on the lower wetter sections; their piles of waste litter the landscape

Lots of fallen timber; also horse pads everywhere. Whilst there are lots of track markers, you do have to concentrate on where you are going. Not head down and bang it out kind of terrain

Screenshot_20210910-195513_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195520_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195556_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195705_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195734_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195811_Gallery.jpg
Screenshot_20210910-195837_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-195946_Video Player.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200021_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200225_Video Player.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200307_Gallery.jpgScreenshot_20210910-200329_Gallery.jpg
Quite Impressive. I have not been there yet.
 

Endless_Winter

One of Us
Apr 23, 2013
547
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Melbourne
Couple of photos from a Mt Loch walk earlier this week.

Mt Feathertop, high knob and diamantina spur through the gums near Eagle Ridge.
Mt Hotham 2021-09-05 005.jpg


Village looking a little snowy.
Mt Hotham 2021-09-05 006.jpg


The temp has remained quite high overnights, which made the snow not quite so nice and stopped a classic corn cycle, as well as accelerating the melt.
Mt Hotham 2021-09-05 008.jpg



You can't see it in this photo, but I doubt orchard will run anymore this year, the middle of the pistes were getting quite bare and it will only have got worse, although there is a little top up due tomorrow.
Mt Hotham 2021-09-05 007.jpg


One more Feathertop. If you look at the 1st ridge with the gums, you'll be able to see how blowy it was from the snow going over. Howling.
Mt Hotham 2021-09-05 009.jpg
 

rowdyflat

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Stunning! Been too long for me!
Not a high snowfall zone as noted earlier this year! Still great to see some drifts - perhaps had much more cover before the last deluge? And great snowgums and hybrid varieties on the mtn!

There’s really nothing else in Vic like Cobberas - a sort of lower, less snowy, Jungungal complex?

Yeah Cobberas are nice remote high > 1800 but quite dry in a rain shadow except ? S or SE winds ?.
i remember being up there when it snowed on BHP but none where we were .
 

snowgum

A Local
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Yeah Cobberas are nice remote high > 1800 but quite dry in a rain shadow except ? S or SE winds ?.
i remember being up there when it snowed on BHP but none where we were .
Weird eh? have camped up top in summer one Nye - no one else on MtCob 1 that night! Magical looking over snowy valley, and Kosi, Pilot & all Vic complexes!

Snowy Plains are similar. Great skiing on Reynard when vover is there. - only 1700m mrn on range sth of howiit.

V few ski these hills. Summer 4wheelers rarely leave their gravel? Thankfully i gues
 

snowgum

A Local
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Weird eh? have camped up top in summer one Nye - no one else on MtCob 1 that night! Magical looking over snowy valley, and Kosi, Pilot & all Vic complexes!

Snowy Plains are similar. Great skiing on Reynard when vover is there. - only 1700m mrn on range sth of howiit.

V few ski these hills. Summer 4wheelers rarely leave their gravel? Thankfully i gues
Apologies for the crappy ‘speeling and grandma’ - was on my phone on a break, while cycling. Silly little keyboard and keys - too small without glasses.

btw: How good is reaching well into one’s 50s and needing glasses to do stuff. Read labels and navigate? ;):p:whistle:
 

Mister Tee on XC Skis

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Weird eh? have camped up top in summer one Nye - no one else on MtCob 1 that night! Magical looking over snowy valley, and Kosi, Pilot & all Vic complexes!

Snowy Plains are similar. Great skiing on Reynard when vover is there. - only 1700m mrn on range sth of howiit.

V few ski these hills. Summer 4wheelers rarely leave their gravel? Thankfully i gues
I am going to hike to Mt. Reynard from Kelly's hut this summer. It is on my list of places to ski.
 

telenomore

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A spring snow storm today painted the mountains in moody greys. The melt is slowly creeping up the valleys but up high the snow pack is tenaciously holding on. I toured up Guthega Creek, over and arorund lots of exposed bushes which made for challenging route finding. Tounges of snow were my friend. Up into the edge of the Rolling Grounds then back to Guthega via Guthega trig. Snow was truly delightful to ski on, 5 plus cm of soft (albeit wet) snow on a hard base made for some fun turns. Kick and glide rules.
Guthega Creek # 1 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek # 3 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek # 11 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek #7 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek #12 (1).jpeg
Gutthega CReek#5 (1).jpeg
 

Craig B

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A spring snow storm today painted the mountains in moody greys. The melt is slowly creeping up the valleys but up high the snow pack is tenaciously holding on. I toured up Guthega Creek, over and arorund lots of exposed bushes which made for challenging route finding. Tounges of snow were my friend. Up into the edge of the Rolling Grounds then back to Guthega via Guthega trig. Snow was truly delightful to ski on, 5 plus cm of soft (albeit wet) snow on a hard base made for some fun turns. Kick and glide rules.
Guthega Creek # 1 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek # 3 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek # 11 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek #7 (1).jpeg
Guthega Creek #12 (1).jpeg
Gutthega CReek#5 (1).jpeg
Great perspective on that second photo, you've made it look like a big landscape with cliffs in the background, alas it's just the melting snow bank. Love it!
 

AndrewA

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Jun 26, 2012
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4yrs ago on Bogong, Les Southwell died, aged 88. He’d been up there ski touring with a mate, and on the way from Cleve Cole back to the summit by himself, had presumably become unwell, set up his tent off the ridge line, and was found dead next to it the following day.

Like many, I have missed 2 ski seasons due to CV lockdowns, and am aware that I am getting older, and sometimes wonder how many more years I’ll be interested in going up Boges…..and then I think of Les, and realise there’s potentially another 30 ski seasons in me! How wonderful.


AndrewA
 

snowgum

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Dead Timber Hill.
5 min walk from JB hut carpark.
The main lookout is NW to Hoth Loch and Feather. But if you bushbash or ski 300m SE you can often get these amazing views of the MR.
Cheers, have ski/walked around DP but have never done DTH. That’s a better view than much further down to the north of the GAR - 15 mins above Omeo.

I note the BHP complex Especially Nelse, Holland’s Point etc… blocks much of the view of Kosi from the lower Hotham ridge lines.

On behalf of the ski.com community- we city folks love your blogs, lifestyle & presumably, WL balance? :thumbs: (Food for thought for our future planning)
 

Boodwah

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Cheers, have ski/walked around DP but have never done DTH. That’s a better view than much further down to the north of the GAR - 15 mins above Omeo.

I note the BHP complex Especially Nelse, Holland’s Point etc… blocks much of the view of Kosi from the lower Hotham ridge lines.

On behalf of the ski.com community- we city folks love your blogs, lifestyle & presumably, WL balance? :thumbs: (Food for thought for our future planning)
I do a lot of trail running and XCg w dog in that area bc it’s outside NP boundaries.
Found that view of MR by accident a few years ago. It also looks accross to Bundara wilderness where I’ve just been last few days.
We’re just really lucky, but I heavily prioritize outdoors stuff bc it’s in my blood, and want my kids to appreciate it too. And carry my shit when they’re stronger than me. My son saw a platypus swimming in the Cobungra on Monday.
The rural work i do doesn’t pay much but it’s pleasant and has been good for the Victorian police roadblocks.
 

skifree

A disciple of the blessed avi giraffe
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DSC00004.JPG
DSC00006.JPG


and from round the corner of Mt P on the Farm Creek side.

There were some folks heading to Paralyser and tracks of Little Paralyser today. Maybe the resort is being tracked out.

PS these were taken with proper camera so you can zoom in a little.

PPS yes I know I need to drop the exposure a 1/3 stop or more next time.
 

hongomania

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Dead Timber Hill.
5 min walk from JB hut carpark.
The main lookout is NW to Hoth Loch and Feather. But if you bushbash or ski 300m SE you can often get these amazing views of the MR.
Cheers, have ski/walked around DP but have never done DTH. That’s a better view than much further down to the north of the GAR - 15 mins above Omeo.

I note the BHP complex Especially Nelse, Holland’s Point etc… blocks much of the view of Kosi from the lower Hotham ridge lines.

On behalf of the ski.com community- we city folks love your blogs, lifestyle & presumably, WL balance? :thumbs: (Food for thought for our future planning)

Should check out DTH - there's patches of snowgums that survived the 1939 fires
 

hongomania

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Melbourne
I've had enough mentally and physically of big adventures and skiing for this season

Rather cruise and do some walks and check out new places, until I head back to Melbourne in 2 weeks

Checked out black duck hole finally - must have driven past it 150 times

Also nunniong / Bentley Plains area. Someone was living in the hut. Would be worth staying there overnight after a big dump and having a small day tour around the couple of snow Plains there. I would go in from ensay if not confident in snow driving

It felt seriously chilly up there

Also checked out Tambo Valley golf club, keen to whack a ball there. The entire valley is stunning

Nothing special pic wise but some good Intel

20210915_140928.jpg
20210915_153305.jpg
20210915_160008.jpg
20210915_160301.jpg
20210915_160517.jpg
20210915_162037.jpg
20210915_163123.jpg
 

Mister Tee on XC Skis

Not your average unconventional eccentric.
Ski Pass
Jul 29, 2015
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Melbourne, Lockdown-i-stan .
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I've had enough mentally and physically of big adventures and skiing for this season

Rather cruise and do some walks and check out new places, until I head back to Melbourne in 2 weeks

Checked out black duck hole finally - must have driven past it 150 times

Also nunniong / Bentley Plains area. Someone was living in the hut. Would be worth staying there overnight after a big dump and having a small day tour around the couple of snow Plains there. I would go in from ensay if not confident in snow driving

It felt seriously chilly up there

Also checked out Tambo Valley golf club, keen to whack a ball there. The entire valley is stunning

Nothing special pic wise but some good Intel

20210915_140928.jpg
20210915_153305.jpg
20210915_160008.jpg
20210915_160301.jpg
20210915_160517.jpg
20210915_162037.jpg
20210915_163123.jpg
The Moscow Villa hut. I will get up there one day. It is a fine structure that I wish to visit.
 

snowgum

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The Moscow Villa hut. I will get up there one day. It is a fine structure that I wish to visit.
It is indeed - somewhat unexpectedly fancy for the remoteness?

That clay soil forming the base of the road, looks slipper az - as indeed mountain roads tend to be in Vic

Anything red or reddy-brown is usually dire in the wet. :eek::rolleyes:
 

Mister Tee on XC Skis

Not your average unconventional eccentric.
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soundcloud.com
It is indeed - somewhat unexpectedly fancy for the remoteness?

That clay soil forming the base of the road, looks slipper az - as indeed mountain roads tend to be in Vic

Anything red or reddy-brown is usually dire in the wet. :eek::rolleyes:
There is a hill near there above 1400 M. ASL with a communications tower. The map says access is locked to vehicles in winter and that the road is steep. It could have BC ski potential ! .

You could skin up to the top and then ski down it .I will remember to pick a dry clear period of weather in green season to take my vehicle up to the Moscow Villa Hut. Bentley Plains hut is a different hut isn't it?
 
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