Snowy Mountain area??

Submitted: Monday, Mar 28, 2016 at 23:13
ThreadID: 131955 Views:2355 Replies:4 FollowUps:3
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Years ago I have been all through these areas NOT towing. Now I am older with a caravan and it is time to go back for another look but I guess I have to consider the extra weight and length. Prado with an 18 foot van. I absolutely forget what the roads are like. I need an insight into the towability of these roads. I am assuming The Monaro Hwy and The Snowy Mountains Hwy are fine but the ones I am unsure about is Wondonga to Corryong. Corryong to Jindabyn. Jindabyn to Cooma. Kiandra to Cabramurra.
This trip is end of April early May. Cheers.
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Reply By: mountainman - Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 02:05

Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 02:05
Wodonga to corryong is no worries.
milk tankers and fright companies frequent this route.
havent ever been over the other side as of yet
AnswerID: 597885

Reply By: Member - Allan L2 - Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 07:30

Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 07:30
As Mountain Man said the road from Wodonga to Corryong is fine but from there to Jindabyne is another story. The section from Khancoban to Thredbo is sign posted as "Unsuitable for Caravans". I have towed a boat through there on many occasions & its not uncommon to see vans in that area. I wouldn't hesitate to tow our 19 ft van through but in saying that it is very steep in places & some very tight switch backs. The other option is to go Corryong, Cabramurra, Kiandra, Adaminaby, Berridale Jindabyne. This also is windy & steep but not as bad. Just be conscious of conserving your brakes.

AnswerID: 597892

Reply By: Erad - Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 12:41

Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 12:41
As Allan2L said, the Alpine Way is designated 'Unsuitable for Caravans'. Going from Khancoban towards Thredbo, it has some steep sections but is quite do-able with your rig as far as Tom Groggin. Then it gets steep. There are switchbacks, but they are not too bad. If you take this rounte, make sure that your cooling system is in good condition because it is about 20 km of solid uphill going. An excellent spot to camp en route is the Geehi Aristrip. Superb setting, beautiful river.
Another thing to consider is weather. From now on, snow can come at any time, and the idea of towing a largish van in snow scares me somewhat and I live in the area.
There is an alternative to the Alpine Way. This is to go via Corryong and then up to Cabramurra. Again, this road has a steep climb. and it is narrow and winding, but I recently took my van over it with no worries. Just ensure that you keep to your side of the road and hope that the on-coming traffic does the same. If you take this road, once you pass Round Mountain and the Happy Jacks turnoff, you will have a long, steep downhill drop into Tumut Pond Dam. Make sure that you engage low gear and don't ride the brakes down here and you will be fine. There is a restaurant at Cabramurra (Actually it is the old Snowy Mess) which serves good reasonably priced food at meal times and is worth a stop there.
Yet another alternative is to go via Tooma. This is called the Elliot Way. I think it is easier than the Cabramurra road. It is scenic. Again, you have a long hard climb up past Tumut 2 Power Station, but this should not be a problem to your rig. Just stay on your own side of the road. If it has been icy, you may have fun getting up Powerline Hill, near Three Mile Dam. Whichever way you come (Cabra or Elliot Way), you face this hill any way. It can be icy and the alignment is such that you have no hope of getting a good run at it. If you go up late in the afternoon, hopefully the ice will be melted by then and you will have no troubles.
Another way (again!) is to go via Tumut and up the Snowy Mountains Highway. This is pretty around Blowering and then you climb Talbingo Mountain. Steep and winding, but relatively short. As a guide, my Pajero pulled my 16.5 ft Jayco van up there is 2nd and 3rd gears - I only used 2nd to ease up on the inlet air temperatures to the turbo. Once up there, it is a continual gentle climb until you get near Kiandra and from then on it is fairly easy.
Sorry for the long winded reply, but there are the options. In winter, if it is icy, sadly I don't even try to cross the mountains with my caravan - I go around via Canberra and the Hume Hwy. Normally I am not in a hurry so the extra 100 km or so doesn't really matter to me.
AnswerID: 597903

Follow Up By: Been-Everywhereman - Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 13:20

Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 13:20
It is the exact type of response I wanted. Lengthy, detailed and exact. Thank you thank you.
FollowupID: 866958

Follow Up By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 13:43

Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 13:43
If you are going from Khancoban to Cabramurra check if roadworks are still underway. They were cutting dangerous trees from the road edges last week and the road was totally closed for up to 2 hours. We were lucky it was only 45 minutes for us
FollowupID: 866960

Follow Up By: Member - Allan L2 - Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 14:28

Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 14:28
Yes snow & ice can occur at any time in that area but as a regular traveller of these roads I wouldn't expect it to be a problem in early May. Check the recent weather pattern & forecast. If in doubt give Nat Parks at Khancoban or Tumut a call.

FollowupID: 866962

Reply By: Member - Odog - Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 18:06

Tuesday, Mar 29, 2016 at 18:06
I have been along the Alpine way, plenty of times, but, personally, I find the stretch between Geehi and Kancoban, to be the worst section, very narrow, and the cuts in the hill seem to slope in at the top, with the camber of the road, felt like i was going to loose the awning off the side of the prado.. In places it seems only wide enough for one vehicle.. It's a favourite for motorcycles too, through there.. On the other hand, I have see lots of vans use this road.. Last time, we used Elliott Way, and found it much wider, and a great drive too.. Happy travels.. Odog
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