general snow

dear idiots

(An open letter to the common-sense impaired group who we met up at Mt Stirling)

Hello. While your spur of the moment decision to ‘go for a hike in the mountains’ was a reasonable one, and you seemed quite nice people, there are a few points I’d like to mention.

1) It’s a good idea to check the weather before you go to the mountains for the weekend, particularly to an alpine area.
2) Dress suitably! This means bring a waterproof layer, and warm clothes. We do not recommend wearing jeans (which end up wet thanks to hiking in the wet snow, and then stay wet) and sneakers (which also stayed wet all weekend).
3) Bring some form of light. You arrived in the hut at night, and had no source of light at all. If we hadn’t lent you a headlamp, how were you planning to cook your dinner?
4) Bring some matches, or a lighter. This was the second flaw in your plan: you couldn’t see, AND you had no way to start a fire.
5) A compass and map are also recommended items. You had neither. And when you don’t have a map, and have very poor senses of direction, DON’T TAKE RANDOM SHORT CUTS!
6) Sleeping bags that are actually suited to the temperature are a good idea. If you don’t have a warm enough sleeping bag, then have lots of warm clothes to wear IN your sleeping bag. If you have neither of these, and can’t acquire them, then DON’T GO TO THE SNOW!

Other points of note:

1) The Coles Green Bag was an interesting choice for carrying your stuff up the mountain. But amusing.
2) The bag of plastic knives and forks, and paper plates. The six pack of steak knives. All still in their packaging straight from the supermarket. Also amusing.
3) The use of a cake tin as a saucepan. Entertaining.
4) Do not toboggan on the emergency rescue sled!

general snow trip reports

invisible toboggan

It was the last Mt Stirling trip of the snow season, and the snow was thin on the ground. Happily flowing streams took all the snow away, and mud was everywhere. But there was still enough snow to play on…

And the snow shovel tobogganist glides off into the distance.

There is one good thing about skiing at the end of the season though – the beautiful weather (as long as it’s not raining).

general snow trip reports

alpine whaling

We prepare the whale for our alpine whaling expedition at Mount Stirling.

We have a whale. His name is William the Third. Also known as Willie the Whale.

We take the whale down some gentle slopes. Getting the correct balance takes a bit of practise.

Then we take the whale on some steeper slopes. He gets up quite some speed, and the foot braking mechanism can lead to tumbling falls if misapplied.

Now whaling off into the sunset.

general snow trip reports


And more snow. Soft and fluffy for a weekend at Mt Stirling, infinitely more appealing than paying $95 for a lift ticket to queue at Mt Buller.

Pointing and laughing at the people over on Buller

Because the snow? The snow was good. And we hardly had to share – certainly not with millions of snivelling school kids.

Tree lurking on horizon line as the sun sets.

Skiier lurking suspiciously on snow-covered mountain as the sun sets.

Then came the snow shovel races!

Meanwhile, we spent the weekend cowering in fear in the face of the fluoro yellow pants of DOOOOOM

general snow

tent testing

update: the tent works.

camping in the snow at mt. stirling