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Mt Buller and Cattlemen’s Huts

  • 12 Feb 2022
  • 9:00 AM
  • 13 Feb 2022
  • 4:00 PM
  • Mt Buller
  • 4

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Mt Buller and Cattlemen’s Huts

Date and time:  9:00 am Friday 12th February to 4:00 pm Sunday 13th February

Description:  This year again because of COVID concerns, I am proposing that the weekend will be a bush camping basecamp.  This is an ideal trip for members that want to experience great 4WDriving, mountain views and high country history.  Highlights include visits to Bluff Hut, Lovick’s Hut, Craig’s hut and stunning views, plus some challenging 4WD tracks.

We will camp the first night at Sheepyard Flat area which is approximately 3 1/2 hours from Melbourne and 40 Km (1 hr) from Mansfield.   The campground has creek water only (bring your own drinking water) and bush toilets.  The route on Saturday will finish at Bindaree Flat and both Saturday and Sunday will include many medium/hard 4WD tracks, therefore making it is unsuitable for any type of towing.

Getting to Sheepyard fairly easy, so there is an option for anyone who feels able to, to make their own way there.  I will be in Mansfield at about 7:00pm Friday to have a bite to eat before leaving to drive to Sheepyard about 7:30 pm.  You are most welcome to join me at Mansfield, but if you are going to do this, please let me know and I will wait for you in Mansfield.  We will meet near the large first roundabout in the centre of Mansfield between 7:00 and 7:30pm on Friday night

Day 1.  Starting at Sheepyard Flat, we will climb up into the mountains to the south of Mt Buller and visit Bluff Hut and Lovick’s Hut before reaching Bindaree Flat.  If we have time we will visit Bindaree Falls in the late afternoon.  There is a short 400m walk to the falls, from where you can look down the valley from behind the waterfall which can be quite pretty.  The distance on day 1 is approximately 70 km of mainly low range driving.  

Day 2.  From our overnight camp, we will pack up and follow Bindaree Road and Monument Track to our morning tea stop at Craig’s Hut.  We will drop down into the King River valley to Pineapple Flat for lunch before a long climb to the summit of No 3 mountain for more spectacular views  The distance on day 2 is approximately 130 km with 90 km of mainly low range driving.

Weather:  :  Alpine environment, potentially cold and wet.  We have had wet weather in the past, so please bring clothing, footwear and camping gear suitable for the conditions and keep an eye on the weather forecast for the Alpine area. 

Equipment:  Good off-road tyres (All Terrain, 60 profile recommended as a guide), UHF radio (or one borrowed from the club), a well-maintained vehicle with low range (or equivalent), good ground clearance (200mm recommended as a guide), recovery points, standard recovery gear including dampener, rated snatch strap and shackles, shovel.  

Additional Equipment required:  Camping gear food and drinking water for 2 days / 2 nights in the bush.  Clothing for wet and cold conditions.  Morning tea and lunches will be in the bush each day – byo simple, “on the move” lunches and morning teas (byo thermos, etc).

No camper trailers, pets or firearms

Trip Standard:   Medium/Hard with some rocky tracks and river crossings.  This trip will be suited to confident 4WDrivers with some previous experience. Drivers must have completed the RRCV club training or equivalent. 

Fuel: Full tank ex Mansfield (the BP servo closes at 9:00 pm Friday night, but there is a 24 hr Caltex card only servo near the second roundabout driving through town from Melbourne).  There is no fuel along this route, so you will need to carry enough for the entire trip.

Distance:  :  Mansfield is approximately 200 km from Melbourne.  The trip distance from there is approximately 270 km of which 160 Km is mainly low range driving.

Duration:  2 days

Convoy limit: 10 vehicles

Meeting arrangements:   We will meet at Mansfield at 7:30 pm on Friday night (this can be flexed depending on peoples ability to arrive sooner or later – discuss with Graeme (TL)).

As above you can also make your own way to Sheepyard Flat.  If you wish to do this, the directions are as follows (Google maps shows the Howqua track to Sheepyard Flat)

  • From Mansfield, take the Mt Buller Road for 20 Km to Merrijig. 
  • 2 Km past Merrijig, turn right onto Howqua track (the turnoff is well signposted)
  • Follow Howqua Track (a well graded 2WD dirt road) for 19 Km (approx.) down into the valley to a bridge over the Howqua River.  Ignore any minor roads branching off Howqua Track
  • Turn right immediately after the bridge.   I will try to find a camp site for our group just past the bridge in the large flat camping area on the right.  I will have channel 15 open, so you can call on the UHF if you cannot find us.  I would advise if you are not familiar with the area that you look these up in Google Maps beforehand, since there is no phone reception in the area.

Trip Leaders Graeme Carter Members click here for contact details

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