Arrabri Ski Club 2018 4WD Weekends.

Session 3. Advanced 4WD Weekend.

Skill Level – Some 4WD Experience Required.

Dates – Arrive Friday 16th November – Trips 17th & 18th November 2018
Cost- $50 covers both days per vehicle.

Some of Australia’s best 4 wheel drive tracks are found around Mount Hotham, a picturesque four-hour drive from Melbourne. Many of these tracks follow routes carved in by early cattlemen and gold prospectors who opened up what was then uncharted territory. The views on all the seasonal road-opening tracks will literally take your breath away.

The tracks we are doing in November are rated up to difficult in dry conditions. This is a copy of the “difficult” rating extracted from the Beyond Hotham brochure.

Difficult
Significant Low Range 4WD with standard 4WD ground clearance. Should have 4WD driver training.

Expected terrain & track conditions

Tracks with some steep and/or rocky/slippery/sandy sections. May have shallow water crossings.

Vehicle suitability

Suitable for medium clearance vehicles with dual range and all terrain or road tyres.

Driver training experience

Recommended that drivers have experience or 4WD training. Recommended to be done in groups of vehicles.

Weather

Will be more difficult in wet conditions.

However if the weather turns bad you will need to be prepared for far harder conditions. You will need to understand your vehicle and have it prepared properly. It is also important to know your level of experience and drive in accordance with it. We will help you complete each section and ensure you are safe and have maximum fun.

VEHICLE

Your vehicle will need to be well prepared. That is, it needs to be in good running order. The engine will be working harder than normal and you will be going slower than normal. Know your vehicle. Know where the tow points are and what their capacity is in case you get stuck. Be sure your tyres are in good condition and that your spare is fully inflated. Soft tyres handle rough conditions better than firm tyres. I would suggest that you air down to about 18-22 psi depending on your own preferences.

Understand your 4WD system. Know how to engage 4WD and engage and disengage low range.

RECOVERY

Carry your own recovery gear! You need snatch strap and rated D shackles is an absolute minimum. Don’t rely on other people’s good nature to supply your recovery equipment. It is considered poor etiquette within the 4wd fraternity. If you have traction aids such as Maxtrax please bring them along as a little bit of rain can change everything. I would suggest that everyone bring along their snow chains as these can be an invaluable aid in the mud as well as in the snow. A shovel or mattock can also be handy.
A 12volt air pump is almost an essential 4wd accessory. Please consider investing in one if you don’t already have one together with a tyre repair kit.
I will be carrying a chainsaw. Hopefully we won’t need it but if someone else has one a back up would be good.

FUEL

You will be doing about 250 Km on dirt roads and 4WD tracks. I suggest that you arrive at Hotham with sufficient fuel to do 400 km in normal driving so it is essential that you top up with fuel before coming up the mountain or you carry a spare jerry can of fuel. Fuel is available at Bright, Omeo and Dargo.

Last year, most of us ended up emptying our spare jerry cans into our vehicles to get us to Bright or Omeo on the Sunday.

UHF RADIOS

I have 3 hand held units and an in car unit. If any one has a 80 channel, could they please bring it along. 40 channel radios are not really suitable.

CLOTHING

We are in the Alpine. Make sure you have clothing suitable for any conditions from snow to sleet to torrential rain to mud to dust and hot conditions.

FOOTWEAR

We will be doing exploring over uneven terrain. We may be doing recovery work on the tracks. Make sure you have good solid footwear.

LUNCH

The club will be providing a simple BBQ lunch each day. This may be plenty for some and not enough for others. I’m sure we will have plenty but please respect we will be catering for an average appetite for this level of activity. If in doubt please bring extra snacks.

WATER

Bring enough water or other beverages for each day.

SNACKS

A simple BBQ lunch will be provided and we will be stopping for boiling the billy. Bring whatever snacks you desire to get you through the day. Remember you will be driving for about 5-6 hours each day in conditions that will require a reasonable amount of concentration and even a fair bit of effort.

PHOTOGRAPHY

Unless the gods are unkind to us we should have some magnificent scenery. Perfect opportunity to add to your album or Facebook page.

ITINERARY FOR WEEKEND

This is the proposed Itinerary for our Arrabri Ski Club Advanced Level 4WD weekend. Remember the club will be providing BBQ lunches both days included in the $50 per vehicle charge.

We are using this weekend and the other 4WD trips to help promote some of our summer activities up here in the Great Alpine National Park and surrounding state forests.

The accommodation costs are the standard summer rates Adults $30 per night, $15 Kids (17-6) and Under 6 Free. We are looking at having 10-15 vehicles for the trip, so please book early to avoid disappointment. These trips are very popular due to the low price providing a very cheap action packed family weekend away.

Day 1 Saturday

Trip briefing in lodge lounge room at 8.45am.

Leave lodge around 9:00AM and head to the old Buckland’s Gap ticket office. We then drive up a nice long rocky track before heading back down with the East Buckland River Valley on our left until we reach Mt Sugarloaf where we have magnificent views over The Great Alpine Road back to Hotham. From here we return back to the East Buckland River Valley and we drop down to Beveridges, an old cattle station where we will stop for a stretch by the river.

From Beveridges we then follow the Australian Alpine Walking Track through to Mt Selwyn which you will be absolutely blown away at what your 4WD can do in low range. Weather dependent we will stop here for lunch or drop down to a more sheltered spot. A brief diversion out to Mt Murray (Personally one of the best locations to take awesome images of your 4WD in the Alpine) with views over the Wongungarra Valley looking across to Blue Rag Range, and then from here it’s off to explore the range behind Mt St Bernard. We head off along the Twins Jeep Track and soon cross over to the North side where we have the East Buckland River valley to our left. Soon after we will drop down to the old Mt St Bernard Hospice site on the Great Alpine Road.

Diner Saturday night – Use the lodges commercial kitchen or BBQ or eat out at The General Store, a short walk from Arrabri Ski Club.

Day 2 Sunday

Trip briefing in lodge lounge room at 8.45am.

Leave lodge around 9:00AM and head to the Dargo High Plains turnoff and follow until we get to the Blue Rag Range Track on right. From here we will essentially be in low range 4wd until we return. Make sure your camera is up and running for what is claimed as “One of the most iconic tracks in all of the High Country, Blue Rag Range Track is a visual spectacle that can create some nervous moments for drivers attempting to scale its heights.”

Upon returning to the Dargo High Plains Rd we will turn right and head to King Spur Track where we turn left and stop at Lankey Plain. Here we will find a nice spot for our lunch stop over whilst enjoying great views looking out over the Dargo Valley towards Mt Hotham.

After lunch we will continue along King Spur Track down to Mayfords on the Dargo River. A time for a bit of a play before returning back to the main Hotham Road. From here you can then return to the lodge for an extra night to relax or head off back home to Melbourne.

To Book – Call 1800 651 451 or use the link below for our bookings page.

Book in your vehicle now. Limited spots available. Click here.

Read more: 4×4 Australia Hotham | Beyond Hotham PDF | Arrabri 4wd info
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Accommodation on Hotham: Arrabri Ski Club