The Big Walk Mt Buffalo - grade 3, 11km one way, 22km return

From October 07, 2023 9:00 am until October 08, 2023 3:00 pm
At Eurobin
Posted by Sharon OToole
Hits: 883

Length: 22 km over two days, or 11km one way (with car shuffle)

  • Duration: 4 hrs each way

  • Grade: 3

  • Style: Overnight backpack.

  • Start: Eurobin Creek Picnic Area

  • End: Eurobin Creek Picnic Area

  • Closest Town: Porepunkah

  • Location: Mount Buffalo National Park

  • Distance from state capital: 319km

  • State: VIC

  • Start Time: 9.00 AM

Overnight backpacking, full pack carry, camping near the historic stone hut at lake Catani. The campgrounds are seasonally closed so no facilities are available except for a drop toilet located behind the hut. It is possible for people to organise a car shuffle and only walk one way as a day walk or overnight hike without a full pack carry. For people wanting to car camp, connecting roads will be seasonally closed, meaning you will need to carry camping equipment for approximately 1km. I plan to full pack carry in preperation for the Overland Track, but you don't have to, just let me know your intentions when you book please. Depending on weather and energy levels, other short walks/ explorations may also be undertaken over the weekend.

Information; The big walk is the longest walk in the Mt Buffalo NP. It begins at the bottom of the plateau at the park entrance and climbs all the way to the historic Mt Buffalo Chalet and day visitor area. 

The Big Walk begins at Eurobin Creek picnic area, just inside the national park, and initially heads away from Buffalo. Across a swing bridge over pebbly Eurobin Creek, we step up into eucalypt forest.

The first 2km are the steepest but the well-formed track allows steady progress.

Criss-crossing the road and continuing uphill, those 2.9km take us through massed handsome flat pea bushes (yellow flowers and heart-shaped leaves), hickory wattles (distinctively veined leaves) and tree ferns, and they also give us through-tree views of the valley, the sometimes snow-capped Alps and a waterfall splashing down Buffalo’s granite flank.

The Big Walk heads south-east below Mackey’s Lookout and traverses a great granite slide decorated with lichen rosettes and moss. Facing the granite, we can now see the summit, suddenly within reach; backs to Buffalo we overlook the first of many views that still our feet.

A zigzag crazy-paved path that can run with water like a stream takes us onward and upward to a seasonal waterfall forming rock pools.

Above Marriott’s Lookout, from which we watch geology performing a balancing act with monumental granite wall and boulders and scarlet robins darting from tree to tree, we enter the realm of snow gums and disconcertingly beautiful skeletal mountain gums burnt in bushfires. Fording creeks and wetlands on stepping stones and boardwalks and traversing more granite, we get increasingly stunning views, with Mt Bogong, Victoria’s highest peak, showing itself on clear days.

A massive boulder guards the track junction where we are turning right to follow the Gorge Heritage Walk.

Tips

Hikers should be reasonably fit and have strong footwear as The Big Walk ascends over 1000 metres in only 9 kilometres! Water and snacks should be carried along with a jacket as it is often cooler at the top.

Total distance: 10473 m
Max elevation: 1367 m
Min elevation: 320 m
Total climbing: 1340 m
Total descent: -315 m

Mobile Phone Coverage:  Yes, but patchy and coverage varies by provider

Mandatory Gear: Conditions in Alpine Country can change quickly. The weather at the bottom of the mountain may also be different than at the top. In light of this – the following gear MUST be carried. Jacket – it must be waterproof! Beanie or Buff, Gloves, Space Blanket, water purfication tablets, Whistle and 2L of fluid and a snack or energy food and personal first aid kit.

Overnight Event Packing list

Current Medical Information Form LOGIN FIRST  and then it can be FOUND ON THE WEBSITE HERE  

  • Tent (sharing sections of the tent with a partner is an option)
  • Tent footprint (optional but recommended)
  • Sleeping Bag rated to -5 comfort level minimum
  • Bag Liner
  • Mattress
  • Pillow 
  • Bed Clothing (suggest using your thermals for bedding)
  • Thermals - top and bottom
  • Second layer - top and bottom
  • Spare dry socks 
  • Keep clothing in a water tight bag - zip lock - dry bags etc.. 
  • Wet Weather / Cold
  • Rain jacket
  • Down jacket
  • Fleece jacket
  • Warm Gloves and Water Proof Over Glove plus a beanie 
  • Suitable walk hat
  • Boots in good condition 
  • Essential toiletries
  • Tooth Brush and paste
  • Small hiking towel and facecloth, preferably reusable
  • Any medication (please inform leader if necessary Allergies etc)
  • Personal first aid
  • Snake bandage 
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellant
  • Whistle
  • Space blanket
  • Head torch and batteries/charger
  • Charged powerbank plus charging cords
  • Water to drink and prepare meal (some locations and walks have water on site or en route)
  • Leader will inform the group re water supply each day
  • Tablets or filter for water treatment (be safe rather than get a bug) (water purification tablets)
  • Hydrolyte tablets or powder
  • Toilet paper and trowl to dig appropiate hole.
  • For females a pstyle and or bushcloth is highly recommended, otherwise please carry used wet toilet paper in a ziplock bag to dispose of in the toilets at trailhead campsites.
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Dehydrated food for weight considerations
  • 3 Meals, plus snacks, per day.  
  • Stove and gas (another item that can be shared with a partner) 
  • Lighter or matches
  • Plate/bowl and cuttlery 
  • Cup for warm drinks, soups etc
  • Hiking poles - highly recommended
  • Water / Camp shoes - sandals or thongs
  • EXTRA ITEMS
    Fully charged and credit loaded up phone
    Camera
    THE LEADER MUST TAKE A RESCUE BEACON