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Bogong High Plains Loop? 2N / 3D

PostPosted: Thu 09 Sep, 2021 1:20 pm
by Staceykate
Hi All,

I'm back again!
We had ANOTHER group who we were going to take to the Prom and have just found out it is still flood damaged. Prom off again, trying for a new plan B!

Our Hotham- Razorback - Feathertop - Diamantina - Dibbins - Hotham loop we did in April was amazing! We absolutely loved it so are thinking of taking this group to Alpine Country too! One friend did the loop with us for Feathertop who would be joining, the other 2 are newbies.

Planning late November (pending lockdown....) looking for an easier route for this group than the last group (some hip injuries in one friend).
Toilets preferable at camp sites... but not a dealbreaker. I am slowly getting more adventurous :P But it is definately preferred!!

I'm thinking around 10km a day is more the distance that this group will be able to do... and nothing like Diamantina :lol:

Any suggestions for a 3 day/ 2 night hike? We will be coming from Melbourne so even if it was a 3 night / 4 day hike with short days 1 and 4 would be doable (ie , the day we drive there and the day we drive home....)

I've looked at the recent threads about it and whilst me and hubby might manage, the hip injury friend is not going to make any of those suggestions I don't think :(

Thanks in advance!

Re: Bogong High Plains Loop? 2N / 3D

PostPosted: Thu 09 Sep, 2021 3:49 pm
by Staceykate
Lop hop haps suggested this route previously.... is there a way to cut this down so it's less Km's? I assume just cut some of the side trips?

Jaithmathang circuit
Go through Falls Creek to near the dam wall. Turn right and follow the road signs to Pretty Valley, about 30 minutes from the bitumen. There's a hut and I expect this to be crowded.

Day one
Pretty Valley, Jaithmathang, Tawonga Huts, SEC Hut, circa 14 km, 400 metres of climbing, 7-8 hours
Take the Fainter Fire Trail west, gentle descent to Pretty Valley Pondage. Walk across this ... on the FT, not the water. Up about 130 metres on the other side, past the memorial cairn on the right, then down to the pole line, about 4 km and 1.5 hours from the start. Most people go down the road, but there's an easier option. Drop packs, take day packs. Keep the height and contour 1.5 km into the saddle south of Jaithmathang where a track is picked up. and climb Jaithmathang, past a creek. (I just typed pasta creek. With anchovies!) Down the track to Tawonga Huts, then up the FT to the packs.
Option: bad weather at the pole line, go to the huts (good flat camping, water) or leave packs at the saddle, then down to the huts.
Back at the packs go uphill for about 30 minutes to pole 333. Go south with Mount Jim on the left. A few poles are down, just follow the foot track. Don't drink the water here - feral horses cause pollution.

After an hour, at pole 267 the main pole line goes west to Dibbins Hut. Take the secondary pole line south to the SEC Hut, often called Youngs Hut. The poles are at long intervals in places, especially the clearings, so be careful. Once you leave the ridge bear generally left. About 500 metres from the hut the track is easier to follow.

This is about 14 km, a few climbs of 1-200 metres, mostly easy gradients, all on tracks except for the pole-saddle bit. You can cut the day short when you reach the pole line - 30 minutes downhill to Tawonga Huts.

Day two
SEC Hut, Mount Jim, Mount Cope, Cope Hut, 16 km, circa 300 metres of climbing, 7-8 hours
Take water for the morning. Back up the track to the treeline at 1740 metres, a good place for a rest. Up to poles 267 and 317. Side trip to Mount Jim. Pole 333 and Cope Saddle where there's a small SEC Hut. About 1.2 km past Cope Saddle where the poles leave the road drop packs for a side-trip to Mount Cope. It's off track but light scrub, easy going, around 140 metres of climbing. If the weather's fine there are good summit views at dawn and dusk, but carting water uphill is painful. Coming back veer a bit right, a little west of true north. This will bring you to the road, so turn left. If you go to the left the road is before the poles, and it's confusing.

Back at the packs, follow the pole line past Cope Creek to Cope Hut. This will be crowded. The campsites are behind the hut, past the toilet, platforms on the left, better spots in the trees further along, costs nothing. Water is in the creek below the hut. It's easier and more certain to pick up water at Cope Creek around 40 minutes from the campsite.

Day three
Cope Hut, Pretty Valley, 4-7 km, flat, 2-4 hours
You can follow the poles back to Cope Saddle but there's a nicer way. From the Cope Hut car park turn the headwaters of the creek on the north (right), then contour west. After about 1.5 hours you will hit the pole line between Cope Saddle and Pretty Valley. Follow the poles or road north to Pretty Valley.

Re: Bogong High Plains Loop? 2N / 3D

PostPosted: Thu 09 Sep, 2021 4:40 pm
by north-north-west
That's a good little walk. There are ways to shorten it and plenty of other places to camp along the way. Get a good map and check how the route goes and where other tracks exist - probably best to stay on the tracks/snowpole lines with newbies.

Re: Bogong High Plains Loop? 2N / 3D

PostPosted: Thu 09 Sep, 2021 9:45 pm
by Staceykate
Thanks nnw!!

Have ordered a map just waiting for it to arrive in the post... not sure why I'm impatient in lockdown :)

Re: Bogong High Plains Loop? 2N / 3D

PostPosted: Sat 25 Sep, 2021 10:46 pm
by paidal_chalne_vala
I walked a loop from Howman's gap via Rocky Valley Creek crossing/ Spion Kopje/ Mt. Nelse/ Fitzgerald's hut/ Cope Hut/ Ryder's hut/Cope saddle hut// Pretty Valley Hut/ Mt. Mckay summit and Road No. 24 back to Howman's gap one summer. It took a friend & I three days and two nights. Mind you we walked 9 hours a day and covered about 20 kms a day!!.

Re: Bogong High Plains Loop? 2N / 3D

PostPosted: Tue 26 Oct, 2021 9:36 am
by scroggin
I did a similar walk as @StaceyKate with less walking and CW with my boys. it was pleasant and easy.

Day 1 - Pretty Valley to Ryder Huts
Drop the Boys and my pack at the junction of Pretty Valley Road and Pretty Valley Track
Drive to Pretty Valley Pondage car park and make my way back to the junction.
Walk to Ryders Huts and set-up camp.
Side trip to Mount Cope (trackless) - just head east crossing the creek past the aqueduct and you eventually get there.

Day 2 - Ryder Huts to Towonga Huts
Head off along Cope West Aqueduct Road - side trip to the falls
Head North near the wier to AAWT and walk to pole 333 - side trip to Mt Jim
Follow track to Tawonga Huts
Side trip to Mt Jaitmathang or leave until the next day if tired.

Day 3 - Tawonga Huts to Pretty Valley
We were going to climb up the fainters but it was pouring with rain so took the tack back to the car.