10-07-2012, 10:06 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Melbourne, VIC, Australia
My Ride: 2008 E92 M3 Coupe
| There's less than 3 weeks to go now and from talking to people at yesterday's SAM, anticipation is building. So I thought it's time we put some more detail into the plans. So here goes my 2.5 cents.
As per the original plan we should meet at Maccas Fawkner which is at 1424 Sydney Rd, Fawkner (Corner of the (old) Hume Hwy and Mahoneys Road) at 4am. We then aim to depart as a group at 4:30am. Please arrive with a FULL TANK OF FUEL already. It's important we leave then because it's going to be a LONG day. I've mapped out the route and some regrouping/event points along the way. From the initial meet point you'll note it's straight onto the Ring Road and then exit shortly after northbound onto the Hume Fwy.
The schedule for the day would then go like this.
1. Re-group at the BP Service centre northbound just before the Glenrowan to Myrtleford Road. It's around 2.5 hours to here from Fawkner so we should arrive about 7am. This is a pure freeway run with a 110kph speed limit for all but the first 10-15 minutes where it is only 100kph. I think they've turned on the cameras again too so say hello to your cruise control if you have it. This BP is big and sells 98 octane so I plan to top the tank up to full here again. There is a Maccas here but I say we save breakfast till Bright because it will be sensible to stop there for another splash of fuel.
2. Depart BP about 7:20am and Head to Bright via Milawa and Myrtleford. After leaving BP we return to the Hume Fwy and then immediately exit again and turn right and cross over the Hume Fwy. This is why the BP is a regrouping point as we'd probably lose people otherwise. The road from here is fairly straight with the occasional bend. The cops love this road during the ski season, not sure about off-season. Near Miliwa there is a stupid (and very dangerous) cross roads that isn't actually a cross roads (it's twisted in the middle so we turn right and then immediately left). It has plenty of warning signs but be careful. We eventually meet the Great Alpine Road just north west of Myrtleford. There is a Shell service station in Myrtleford that sell's 98 but for maximum distance I suggest waiting till Bright.
We should get to Bright in about 1.5 hours arriving sometime before 9am. There is a bakery in the main street (on the right) just thru the roundabout. I'd suggest breakfast here or the cafe across the road. There is a BP and Caltex selling 98 nearby. This is the LAST 98 fuel we will find before getting down to Bairnsdale (230km away 3+ hours driving). Due to the extreme climbing/dropping and cornering you will use more fuel than usual for this distance so be aware. The air density is also much lower up there so most cars will feel like they've lost power.
3. Depart Bright for Mt Hotham around 9:45am all fueled up. After about 20 mins or so we hit Harrietville and then the road takes a 90 degree turn left and immediately begins to climb. About 30 mins into the climb the road opens out to breathtaking views and a cliff edge road. A minute before Hotham Ski Resort at around 1840m there is a gravel car park on the left next to a reservior. We will stop here to take in the stunning views and some photos. Assuming the weather is good we could spend up to 30-45 minutes here. Anyone needing a toilet break can pop around the corner thru the tunnel and visit Hotham ski village. We should get to this point around 10:30am. If we leave here at 11:15am it's a 2 1/4 hour trip to Bairnsdale via Omeo. We'd arrive in Bairnsdale around 1:30pm for lunch. Never been there, not sure where to go for lunch!
4. Fuel up and leave Bairnsdale around 2:45pm and get back to Melbourne around 6pm or so. We can have another rest stop somewhere along the way if desirable. This is highway/freeway driving, perhaps buy some energy drink at Bairnsdale.
Some things to note:
a) Bring warm clothes for the alpine part. It is very high, there will still be a lot of snow around (not on the road), it WILL be cold. Hopefully we'll jag some clear weather.
b) Bring water/drink and snacks or buy them at the BP stop. If for some reason you end up stuck, you'll thank yourself for doing this.
c) If you have a CB radio, bring it. Mobile reception for non Telstra customers is patchy to non-existant past Bright. Mt Hotham has good coverage and I suspect Omeo is OK too but beyond there it is VERY remote. Even Telstra coverage will be non-existant for most of the Bright to Bairnsdale stage. To conserve battery for when we most need it probably better to leave CBs off until leaving Bright.
d) All the petrol stops I've mentioned take EFTPOS/Credit but I'd carry some cash just in case.
It seems I'm going to be the lead car for this. As per previous trips I'm going to set a responsible (and legal) pace. The local police will have less traffic to handle during the off season so might take an unwanted interest. Be aware there is a decent sized police station even at Mt Hotham though I don't know if it's manned off season. So don't go assuming we won't encounter any across the high parts.
We'll work out on the day who wants to take up the rear of the group from Bright onwards and so ensure that everyone gets to each stop point OK.
Any comments, suggestions?
Last edited by netgun; 10-07-2012 at 10:29 PM.