‘Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing’ upgrade

Discussion in 'Backcountry' started by Cam Walker, Dec 3, 2013.

  1. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    And yet they take well heeled, and high paying people out there, who don't really deserve to enjoy it!
     
  2. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Part of the Furniture
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    Deserve? Deserve???

    Are you serious? Who decides on who "deserves" to be out there?
     
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  3. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    ME!!!!!
     
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  4. ladycamper

    ladycamper Dedicated Member
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    Inside the hut one summer I saw an old box with old newsletters and some beautifully written passages by club members farewelling members who came to grief in Australian or overseas Alpine tragedies. Brought a tear to my eye reading. Lots of history and tradition tied up in the huts. I see any new hut will develop its own tradition and history over time.
     
  5. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    Seriously though, I have no problem with commercial operators. But commercial operations should develop with regard to the NP's, not the other way around. Good operators will do well, and provide an experience their clients value, with out the need for particular development. though I personally would pay for a ticket to get me to the top of Carruthers, landscape be dammed. And a nice meal at the top with a good topless bar, why not?
     
  6. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    Topless MOTBC that is.
     
  7. ladycamper

    ladycamper Dedicated Member
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    http://parkweb.vic.gov.au/explore/p...s/falls-to-hotham-alpine-crossing-master-plan

    My 2c is that a hut on High Knobs should be discreet and with public access or otherwise not built. I have concerns, though, about the abilities of inexperienced persons to manage the Diamantina Spur. When I did it I had a 1kg 44 litre pack, a 600gram ultralight shelter, and my heaviest piece of kit was my shellite stove. I drank a litre of water at the base and started the ascent with 2.5l. Before the top I had consumed all my water that sunny late November morning and was desperate for more. I have deeper concerns that the most iconic parts of a walk may be shut off to public walking or even camping, such as the Three Capes Walk near Hobart.

    Quoted from the report grrr

    "Currently the Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing and its existing network of trails caters to
    a minority sector in the walking market – a large portion being educational groups as well
    as ‘adventure seekers’. This group values the ‘wild’ experience, is rela vely self-su cient and generally spends li le in the region. Es mates show that these current users only make up 30% of the poten al demand for walker nights that could be released by the implementa on of the Master plan and the expanded services o ered."
     
    #157 ladycamper, Nov 26, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2016
  8. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Part of the Furniture
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    I lol'd. Well fished @telecrag
     
  9. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    There is such a venue already there if you know where to look and have been graced with an invitation
     
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  10. CarveMan

    CarveMan aussieskier.com
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    I know he was fishing, but there was an element if truth in the attitudes of the 'primitivism' followers & who 'deserves' to be able to use our public spaces.
     
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  11. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Part of the Furniture
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    I can see that angle for sure. But I'll still argue that fitness is a lower barrier to access than the expense of the "luxury experience" is.

    There are plenty of good arguments for the "luxury walking" model especially more management of park users to reduce their impact. Having a sook because someone thinks you should physically, rather than financially earn the experience is not a good argument.
     
  12. DJM

    DJM Dedicated Member
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    Making everywhere accessible to everyone is not about being elitist. It's like bolting all the best climbs in the mountains. Via ferrata.....
     
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  13. CarveMan

    CarveMan aussieskier.com
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    I find among my friends that gear is the biggest barrier of entry. It took me 5 years of doing BC camping trips until I was fully self-contained.
     
  14. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Part of the Furniture
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    The initial financial outlay is a big barrier for sure. No argument there. Its somewhere that clubs are able to help out, such a shame that the club culture is dying in our modern individualist culture.
     
    #164 Telemark Phat, Nov 26, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2016
  15. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Part of the Furniture
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    You do understand that objecting to bolting is an elitist paradigm? We decide who should climb what, and the way they should climb it.
     
  16. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Part of the Furniture
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    I don't think "luxury walking" really increase access very much for locals. If you're fit enough to walk that track with only a day pack you're pretty much fit enough to do it on your own. Where the access argument becomes a lot stronger is for interstate and foreign visitors who can struggle to bring all of their kit with them.
     
  17. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Part of the Furniture
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    Your argument is the opposite of the not bolting argument. The argument against any bolting is that the rock decides who can and can not climb that face. The moment you start to bolt you place that decision in to the hands of people.
     
  18. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    Who is this "we" you speak of?
    No one forces anyone to climb anything but the individual themselves.
     
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  19. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Part of the Furniture
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    This is getting into serious woo woo territory. The rock decides?
     
  20. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Part of the Furniture
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    "We" is the elitist snobs who make the rules, apparently.
     
  21. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    Climbing --- there are no rules, just grey areas of ethics.
     
  22. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Part of the Furniture
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    And elitist snobs.
     
  23. DJM

    DJM Dedicated Member
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    I'm probably not thinking about the broader issues in terms of "access", and have less of a problem with seasoned walkers (think Tassie/NZ setups) as I would.....how can I put this without sounding elitist.....Cashed up tourists that don't really appreciate the wild places they seek. I'm not close enough to the Vicco scenario to comment properly but have walked the areas in question and would hope that Parks get it right. There are some switched on people involved but I'll always be of the opinion that the areas are tiny and the less we build them up, the better preserved they will be for the next generation.
     
  24. Kletterer

    Kletterer Addicted Member
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    Off Belay --------
     
  25. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Part of the Furniture
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    Jesus. How the **** would you know what they "appreciate"? Elitist goddamn snobbery rules.
     
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  26. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    Mainly ground feeders
     
  27. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    Think Everest
     
  28. DJM

    DJM Dedicated Member
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    Ok,
    I'll put it another way, it's like putting a new resort in on the Western Faces. It'll always sound elitist to some but there is an underlying concern for simple overdevelopment.

    You can ski until you drop in the resorts and then challenge yourself to step outside your comfort zone. Why move the goal posts to suit your own inadequacy.
     
  29. Kletterer

    Kletterer Addicted Member
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    Just send us more lace curtain mo@#$ther f****rs to put extra bolts between the existing ones and fill our gullies with excrement. Consumerism overrules ethics ? :confused:
     
  30. Mister Tee on snow shoes

    Mister Tee on snow shoes Well-Known Member

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    What one of the moderators on the bushwalking website has offered as counter arguments to the fanciful master draft of the Falls to Hotham redevelopment plan reads something like this
    :

    Do the maths on 17,000 people over 8 months of non-winter, and it comes to 18 people every day at every campsite. Nope. I've seen just two people at Cope Hut, maybe 10 at Tawonga, maybe 8 at Westons, one at Blairs, and Federation with the usual 20-30. On that trip, I met one party at the top of Diamantina Spur, maybe 8 people. This was Easter, peak season! It was similar at Christmas-NY for the High Plains, Bogong Jack, Fainters, Cope, Nelse and Bogong. In fact I met more people on Bogong that for the rest of the trip.

    Give P.V. some facts and say that the facts do not support the 17,000. Say gently that it's hard to see how the 17,000 figure was obtained. Say that there is no room at Diamantina Spur saddle and Federation Hut for more than the current usage. The tank at Federation runs dry now and again, and most likely so will the one at Diamantina Spur saddle. Question the zoning of a hut at Diamantina Spur saddle . Ask how trad campers at Federation hut will continue if there are platforms or fees. Ask how the fees will be enforced and if P.V. will risk the publicity. Ask if they support the higher risk of wannbe walkers on Diamantina Spur , sucked in by glossy art four colour process hype about walking at 2000 metres above sea level.

    There are plenty of questions that can be asked, plenty of facts to counter the PV report.

    Dimantina spur is a category 5 ascent. It is one of the toughest uphill/downhill hikes in the region, (Although the last bit of the NW spur going down to the creek is very steep indeed).
    No amount of glamping cash and glossy brochures can get newbies up there if they are not able to physically do it. Even if P.V. clears the track which is overgrown at the bottom and realigns the track with handrails and steps it will still be tough. At least the Handrails and steps might make white season usage safer. I would not go near it in Mid winter. There are too many deep drifts of snow and icy /slippery 70-80 degree scrambly bits for me.
     
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  31. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    You could get yourself a pretty good kit by NOT going on a commercial BC glamping trip and using the saved fees for gear :confused:
    It comes down to an individual's own priorities
     
  32. ladycamper

    ladycamper Dedicated Member
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    Quoted. All campers will have to pay, feeling angry now.

    "Designated campsites will be provided to Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing trail walkers at all overnight nodes. Dispersed camping will be prohibited within 500m of the trail. All camping facili es will require a booking and fee, open to licensed tour operators (LTOs), independent hikers or groups. "
     
  33. Mister Tee on snow shoes

    Mister Tee on snow shoes Well-Known Member

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    You could get yourself a pretty good kit by NOT going on a commercial BC glamping trip and using the saved fees for gear :confused:
    Yes, this has nailed it. Join a BC hiking/snow sports club, pay for the top shelf gear , the trip leader in the club will know the ropes and the newbie will have a buttockial kicking set of BC kit. The incremental development implied in the scheme means that we will never see the meadows on the Diamantina spur saddle as they are now once a mini tourist village is built there. The wise apes don't just want to put one user pays hut there. They have 5 more "demountables" and a dunny and a water tank planned for what is a lovely remote and unspoiled bit of the high country.Plus they will build a helipad to service these things .That is what is also missing, a chopper coming and going all the time in green season.:(.
    One of the reasons a resort was never built at Mt. Bogong is that it is too steep to put a road in there and another reason is it has its own nasty micro climate which has killed people.That has kept it more or less undeveloped in a broader sense.
    Now I like the High country huts and they do save lives but too many huts which are just for cashed up glampers is not the way to go.
     
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  34. Mister Tee on snow shoes

    Mister Tee on snow shoes Well-Known Member

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    Quoted. All campers will have to pay, feeling angry now.

    "Designated campsites will be provided to Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing trail walkers at all overnight nodes. Dispersed camping will be prohibited within 500m of the trail. All camping facilities will require a booking and fee, open to licensed tour operators (LTOs), independent hikers or groups. "
    Yes, it is pay or push off. Putting user pays platforms at Fed. Hut will be an eyesore too. There is not that much space on that saddle near the hut. They could build another hut 2 Kms down the Bungalow spur where the old hut was. That would take some pressure off the increasingly popular Fed. hut. Even so ,it should remain free to hike up there and camp out all year round. I cannot see how P.V. will police this. "Ranger Iqbal/Samina"( Nice Pakistani origin male and female Parks Rangers ;-P ) are not a cops and they have a shiteload of other jobs to do too. At least in white season they won't bother us BC snow shoe nutters.
     
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  35. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    Cant they just chopper everyone, and everything they need, in for day trips? Solves all the problems!
     
  36. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    Lets look at this from another angle.

    Why shouldn't nature lovers, be able to enjoy nature, in the middle of the city? Lets remove all the buildings so that tour operators can operate closer to the international airports, in an authentic natural environment
     
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  37. DJM

    DJM Dedicated Member
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    You should run for president. You're a think outside the circle kinda guy.:D
     
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  38. Hully

    Hully Dedicated Member

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    "Designated campsites will be provided to Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing trail walkers at all overnight nodes. Dispersed camping will be prohibited within 500m of the trail. All camping facili es will require a booking and fee, open to licensed tour operators (LTOs), independent hikers or groups.
    This is a very major issue with the plan. Essentially this is a 1km wide swathe of land from the Razorback, over Feathertop and across the Bogong High Plains to Falls Creek where you will not be allowed to overnight bushwalk without paying and booking in advance (assuming that it isn't all booked up in advance by commercial operators). This restricted access should not be part of the plan. These are strategies to manage high numbers on hugely popular trails. There are not the numbers utilising this trail to necessitate these measures, leave access as it is and if numbers reach a point where management strategies are needed then the park management authority, Parks Victoria, can implement appropriate measures, not commercially driven restrictions.
     
  39. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    This seems to echo my memory of the Wilsons Prom loop. It was & I assume still a busy wander and the bookings & restrictions seemed a reasonable way of managing the numbers to keep the experience bearable.
     
  40. Hully

    Hully Dedicated Member

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    Same with the Overland Track, commercial operators functioned alongside casual independent walkers with very little restrictions and controls....as it grew in popularity restrictions and controls have been implemented by the National Park authority to maintain the experience for all walkers and minimise impact on the environment. This is vastly different to a tourism authority endeavouring to 'construct' a high demand (iconic!!) experience and formulating restrictions to satisfy commercial operators and commercial ski resorts.
     
    #190 Hully, Nov 27, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2016
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  41. skifree

    skifree Part of the Furniture
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    So PV & friends are looking to create what has grown organically at Wilson's Prom & the OT?
     
  42. Hully

    Hully Dedicated Member

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    There has to be a major cloud of questionable credibility hanging over this whole document. The majority of this work would have been prepared under the Parks Victoria leadership of the Canadian CEO who's appointment was hurriedly terminated under a cloud of questionable practices and integrity. There were some much publicised (by Parks Victoria) pics of him smoozing around the Alpine NP areas in question with the CEOs of both Falls Creek and Mount Hotham. I am sure that the Tourism Authority personnel and their vested commercial operators would have been closely in toe.
    The skill of organisations preparing plans such as these (apart from issuing huge invoices) is to manipulate the data and prepare the document to achieve the specified outcomes of those who have commissioned the report....in this case Tourism North East, Parks Victoria (under leadership that proved to have questionable int egrity) and the Falls Creek and Mount Hotham RMBs.
    This is not an issue of class war, it is an issue of access and equity and a truly missed opportunity to prepare and implement a plan to promote and manage a great walk in a fantastic part of our state. Instead we have a very expensive and flashy document prepared in the interests of two commercial ski villages and a couple of commercial operators.
    I am not against commercial operators within the park, in fact I have been one. Commercial lodges can have their place if done right (I was super impressed with how unintrusive the Cradle Mountain Huts on the Overland Track are), however, the priority is for the National Park to be managed under a mantra of protection, access and equity and for the commercial operators to fit within that, not for a management plan to be developed to assist commercial operators.
     
  43. DJM

    DJM Dedicated Member
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    Are there really that many people traveling along the Razorback? !
     
  44. Hully

    Hully Dedicated Member

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    This document is all about putting commercial operations as the priority at the cost of the traditional park user....independent bushwalkers, education groups, walking clubs etc. They are recognised in the document as not spending enough money. These are the groups that the popularity of Wilson's Prom and the OT are based on, commercial operations followed and fitted in with the way things worked. Promoting a 'curated experience' with restrictions on on the great unwashed to facilitate with 'high yield' customer is not what evolved organically at Wilson's Prom and the OT.
     
  45. Hully

    Hully Dedicated Member

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    No, not really. The walks in the area can get busy a couple of times a year, but if necessary it is the role of Parks Victoria as custodians of the Alpine National Park to implement management measures, not for a tourism body and a couple of commercial ski villages to implement restrictive access measures to suit commercial interests.
     
  46. Seth

    Seth Old And Crusty
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    I can understand why people are up in arms about this proposal based on what @Hully is saying.

    Amazing what a difference it makes when you strip out hyperbole and hysteria and have a measured, rational conversation.

    Anyway, I do question why it seems to be excluding of current users. leave things as they are but have this commercial operation along side. works for everyone.
     
    #196 Seth, Nov 27, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2016
  47. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    In the ACT NP you need a permit to camp, and only a certain number of people are allowed at any one time. The permits are free. Some formal campsites have fees. The rangers are pretty good about people who have gone in not knowing, the whole thing is protection driven, and I don't have a problem with it.
     
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  48. telecrag

    telecrag Part of the Furniture
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    Crazy talk!
     
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  49. DJM

    DJM Dedicated Member
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    This is the my sentiment completely.

    True, but if the above doesn't cause mild concern at the very least we'll be pressuring some of the core users out of the equation.
     
  50. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    OMG ---- logical, rational discussion
     
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