Thursday, April 14, 2011

The Bluff Trail

Went hiking last weekend. It was fun. Starting near Howqua (past Mansfield) at 8 mile flat, we did the bluff trail circuit (details here).
This starts off as a moderate climb over some mountain along 8 mile spur and then down again.

8 Mile Spur views

Then the fun came when we had to climb The Bluff itself which is a huge mountain (1726m). Well worth it though as the views were fantastic - especially Mt Eadley Stoney to the east:

Mt Eadley Stoney

Climbing the bluff was quite difficult, there was some pretty serious rocks to climb up to get to the summit. Difficult with an 18kg pack on your back.

Slept the first night at the Bluff Hut which is a few k's from the summit of The Bluff. Handily, there were already some people there with a fire going for us. It then was massively windy and rainy ALL night - had to get a good nights sleep.

The Bluff Hut - early morning

The next day we travelled along the 16 mile jeep track (not for 16 miles) which was mostly down hill to the Howqua River. We missed the turnoff to the west to go along the river and ended up about a half k out of our way at Pikes Flat (no big deal, I always wanted to see Pikes Flat anyway).

Pikes Flat

Walked along the river to Ritchies hut for lunch (no pre-made fire this time).

Ritchies Hut

Then along the 'high track' back to 8 mile flat (the start/finish point of this circuit). There was the option of taking the 'low track' but there were some pretty serious river crossings (like up to my waist serious) that would have sucked.

High Track


Unknown said...

Hi mate,

I was wondering whether you know the location to eight mile flat? I can't seem to find it on google maps (going to get a map of the area hopefully today). Also is the start of the walking track accessible by non-4WDs? There's no river crossings or anything?

Great post by the way.


poho said...

Hey Tony,

Go and grab Rooftop's Mansfield - Mt-Howitt adventure map - its got the locations of 8 mile flat and the entire walk on it.

8 Mile flat is about 6k's east of tunnel bend which in turn is a few k's east of Sheepyard flat.

As far as I can tell on google maps from the shape of the roads and rivers, it should be right about here:,146.424102&ll=-37.201458,146.438264&spn=0.029226,0.066047&num=1&t=v&z=15

From what I remember non-4wd should be ok getting to 8mile flat but I suppose that depends on the conditions.