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Alpine tracks open thanks to four wheel help

Wednesday 12 December, 2012

Driving tracks in the King and Howqua Valley areas of the Alpine National Park are now cleared and ready for summer thanks to the combined effort of some four wheel drive club members and Parks Victoria. Members of the Wangaratta Four Wheel Drive Club, Melbourne Jeep Club, Victorian Police Four Wheel Drive Club and Mansfield Alpine Four Wheel Drive Club spent a very busy weekend last month removing debris and fallen trees from tracks.

“Many large trees had fallen across or blocked most of the tracks thanks to the wild, wet winter we’ve had,” said Parks Victoria Ranger in Charge Bart Smith. “The group split into three teams and worked in different areas of the park. They had to use both their chainsaw skills and driving expertise to deal with some really big trees. Over the weekend, the teams cleared eleven tracks in total which was a great effort.”

The Wangaratta, Melbourne Jeep and Victorian Police Clubs teams focussed on tracks around Lake Cobbler and the Upper King, while the Mansfield Alpine Club worked on tracks around The Bluff and Upper Howqua areas. Snow drifts in the upper section of Bluff Track proved quite a challenge.

It wasn’t all hard work. One team camped overnight at Lovick’s Hut, while the other teams met up at Pineapple Flat and enjoyed a camp under the stars. They all agreed it was great to be out in the bush and sharing stories around a camp fire.

Bart Smith says without the help from these Four Wheel Drive Clubs a lot of tracks would not have been open in time for Cup weekend. “We’re very grateful for the help from these Four Wheel Drive Clubs and enjoy the positive relationship we have with them.”  

The Yarra Valley Four Wheel Drive Club helped out in a different way as Camp Hosts at Pikes Flat over the Cup weekend. As well as general information they were able to provide up to date information on track conditions for visitors driving through the area.

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