Dave Byrnes' Adventures

Australian Alps Walking Track - 2011

Overview     Planning     Schedule     Map     Diary     Pictures


(sourced from http://www.australianalps.environment.gov.au/walktrack/index.html)

The Australian Alps Walking Track winds through the high country of Victoria, New South Wales and the ACT. It traverses rugged remote alpine country and bushwalkers must always be experienced, self reliant and have good navigation skills. On the Australian Alps Walking Track you will visit some of Australia’s finest alpine national parks. The track climbs our highest mountains and crosses exposed high plains. It passes through magnificent tall forests and stunted snow gum woodlands, and discovers sites rich in history.

Origins:  The Australian Alps Walking Track is an extension of the Victorian Alpine Walking Track, through New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. For many years bushwalking enthusiasts from the Federation of Victorian Walking Clubs and various government agencies promoted the concept of a long distance walking track from Walhalla to Canberra. The Victorian Alpine Walking Track, developed in the 1970s, was the first stage in the dream of linking the Australian Alps with a three-state trail. Continuing the Australian Alps Walking Track through Kosciuszko National Park (NSW) and Namadgi National Park (ACT) turned that dream into reality.

On the right track:  The 650 kilometre track generally follows ridges and high plains through some of the highest country in Australia. It is mostly far from any towns or other settlement. You can join the track at many places between Walhalla and Canberra, as it joins popular walking tracks in the Baw Baw, Alpine, Kosciuszko and Namadgi national parks. You can walk the track in eight weeks, but many people choose to walk shorter sections such as those on the Baw Baw Plateau, the Bogong High Plains, and in the Jagungal Wilderness Area.

Navigation:  The track is distinctively identified at track and road intersections for its entire length. It follows well maintained walking tracks, barely visible foot pads, grassy fire access trails, and four-wheel drive vehicle tracks. To tackle the track you should be an experienced bushwalker, used to travelling in remote areas, and skilled in the use of map and compass. In some heavily forested sections of track in Victoria where it is difficult to navigate, the yellow track markers will be placed on trees. Please note there are no markers in Wilderness areas. A GPS and EPIRB may be useful. You must not depend on track markers for navigation.

Wilderness:  The track passes through five wilderness areas: Razor/Viking, Cobberas, Pilot, Jagungal and Bimberi. There are no directional markers or signs within these areas and walkers must be prepared for remote area navigation.

Weather:  Weather conditions in the mountains are colder, wetter and much less predictable than at lower altitudes. During winter and spring snow can cover long sections of the track. In summer, thunderstorms are common and snow may fall, especially on the higher mountains. You need to be equipped for camping in all conditions and to be familiar with the symptoms and treatment of dangerous cold stress (hypothermia) and heat stress (hyperthermia).

Water:  Water can be scarce along some sections of the track, especially in summer and along the drier ridges and spurs. Boil or filter all water. Be prepared to carry water, enough for two days. 



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