The Falls to Hotham Crossing is a lovely three day walk from the resort town of Falls Creek, across the Bogong High Plains, to Mt Hotham. Managed by Parks Victoria (PV), you need to book to use the designated campsites near Cope Hut and Dibbins hut. It is a hugely popular walk.
There are also plans to extend and reroute the Crossing, turning it a five day ‘serviced hiking opportunity’ in the Alpine National Park. After the finalisation of the Master Plan for the walk, the state government allocated $2 million of funds in the 2018/19 budget. Then additional funds were allocated to continue the planning for the project, including Stage 1 of the construction.
Parks Victoria say ‘The Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing will be one of Australia’s outstanding alpine walking experiences that captures the essence of the Australian Alps – the solitude, the seasons, the breathtaking beauty and the stories of the High Country’. However there has been sustained opposition to the proposal because it will see development of private commercial infrastructure (including small accomodation ‘pods’) within the Alpine National Park.
PV are currently focused on completing the Environmental Values Assessment. PV say that the assessment will ‘ensure potential impacts are identified and that the appropriate avoidance and mitigation measures are put in place. The planning process is aimed at reducing current and future impacts on the values of the national park’.
They are also developing a Business Case and ‘research into operating models, as well as undertaking the scoping stage of a Visual Landscape Assessment’.
These assessments will assist with refining:
- The placement/location of camping and accommodation sites
- Accommodation details and design
- Trail alignment, surface and grading
PV also say
‘As a result, the final proposed trail, overnight sites and accommodation could differ from those shown in the original Master Plan to ensure all environmental and landscape aspects have been appropriately considered. This planning work is expected to be completed in early 2022.
In addition to the original $2 million announced in 2018, a further $15 million was allocated by the Victorian Government late last year for implementing Stage 1 of the project. Stage 1 includes doing track upgrades and creating up to two overnight campgrounds including roofed accommodation options.
The planning and assessment work from the first $2 million will guide what is delivered for Stage 1 of the project, including which parts of the proposed 57 -kilometre track will be upgraded. This stage of the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2023.
Completing the final parts of the crossing will be subject to future government investment’.
Want to know more?
PV will be running community information sessions to ‘give people an update on where the project is currently at. During these sessions you will be able to learn more about progress on the project, next steps, and ask any questions you may have’.
Online Information Session
Wednesday 27th October 2021
You can register for the session here.
There is also an email list for updates:
You can email PV at firstname.lastname@example.org and express interest in getting the FHAC updates.
HEADER IMAGE: Rolf Schonfeld.
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