13-14 Sep 2008
by Jesse S
A small experienced group, coupled with firm snow, resulted in rapid skiing. Within two hours we had skied from Falls Creek resort to Edmondson Hut. An hour later we had lunched and were ascending Mt Nelse. The steep southeast face of this peak presents tremendous skiing - largely avoiding the alpine sun and capturing a winter's worth of spindrift - perfect for telemarking! But spring snow is ideal for touring, and under clear skies we turned north to further explore the Bogong High Plains.
Beyond Mt Nelse the High Plains are rarely explored by the club - it is just too far for day trips from the resort - yet it provides magnificent skiing, with gentle undulating terrain, spring fed creeks and terrific views. At Tims Lookout, the plateau dropped away at our feet. Across the valley Mt Bogong dominated the skyline.
The ski back to the hut was quite memorable, with a full moon rising to our left, the sun setting to our right, and Mt Buffalo framing the view.
At dusk, the weather turned. During dinner preparations in the hut we were entertained with a spectacular sound and light show as an electrical storm passed over us. There is something uniquely exciting about lying in an alpine tent and listening to the growing crescendo of the wind as it whistles up from the valley.
The next morning found us unscathed but facing penetrating cold conditions, sporadic rain and gale force winds. We took advantage of the high cloud and returned to Rocky Valley pondage.
A safe trip home, punctuated by a visit to the cellar door of Gehrig's Winery, capped another classic YHA ski club trip.