Victoria: High Country - Day 24

Tuesday, Jan 18, 2005 at 01:00

ExplorOz - David & Michelle

We set off this morning with some trepidation as to what might lie ahead (by "we", I am referring to all except for David who was simply loving it). We were now so far into this "great shortcut" that we didn't want to have to backtrack if things got more extreme, however today took us along comparatively easy tracks with a great diversity of flora to keep One Eye so preoccupied that she didn't mind where she was. We drove along Lazarini Spur Tk, turned onto the very easy Heyfield Jamieson Rd via Mt Skene lookouts, saw a red belly blacksnake, turned off at Mt Sunday Rd, which is a steep, dusty, narrow and winding track - on which Colin and Sandy had their second episode with a logging truck. They were forced to do a fast reverse for about a kilometre with Sandy complaining to Colin "you should have pulled over at that place we saw before!" Of course, she has a photo - taken from inside the windscreen in hast, which is all dust and the truck driver's hand waving from the cabin.

We stopped for lunch besides a creek at Wrens Flat at the bottom of this hill (and yes, Sandy had a swim), there is a hut (rather foul due to vandals) and a large flat grassy area for camping. We then continued on the main track, which loops around an old mining camp, then swings right onto the Mt Sunday Trk. This track is clay based with large drainage runoffs. We found the first few sections had large amounts of water, with one or two a little slippery. Low range 2 used for most of first section then these ruts became dry and less frequent. Further along, we came across a young couple driving in the opposite direction and they said there was a big bog-hole ahead and they had turned back. There was no way David was going to take this person's view that there was any concern for us and so we continued ahead. We found the "bog hole" (puddle) right on the junction of the Low Saddle Road (near the National Walking Trail) and just an hour's drive further along was where we camped for the night on the Jamieson River.

The campsite was reached by what I felt was a very tricky track. It was steep, heavily overgrown, and the soil was soft and thick with deep ruts. It was the kind of track that if it rained, you'd be lucky to get out. It was only possible for one vehicle at a time to come down, so David took the lead and once at the bottom found a very lush campsite but it was extremely small and we could see that flat sites for tents were almost impossible. However, there was a short walking trail through thick ferns that looked inviting so we called for Colin to comes down and join us. David sent us all down to enjoy the river while he setup the camp and we let Charade continue sleeping in her carseat with the door open. By the time I returned I found Chardae had been bitten all over her face by mossies, and I had boots full of leeches. David really wanted us to enjoy this special spot we'd driven all day to find so he trimmed back the overgrown ferns to clear the path so that I might go down again. Whilst he was doing the gardening, I cooked dinner - Chinese lemon chicken stir-fry and nasi goreng with added prawns (from a tin). Probably the best part of the day was having a hot shower (water brought up in buckets from river).
David (DM) & Michelle (MM)
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Always working not enough travelling!
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