Lake William Hovell Circumference

Lake William Hovell Walk 2.6.2018

Thirteen walkers left Wangaratta at 8.00am as we knew that the walk would use up most of our daylight. We parked at the exit from the Long Spur Track which is 2 km north of the dam wall Lake William Hovell. We left a car here and then ferried people 3 km along the track to where the track starts to become a 4WD track.

We approached the walk in an anti-clockwise direction. (There was a reason for this. If we had walked the 15 km in a clockwise direction then found the King R. in flood then it is a long way back to our cars – whereas if the King R. was too deep going in an anticlockwise direction we only had 8 km back to our cars!) Walkers were given advice to bring poles to assist with the steep decent once we crossed the King River, old runners to help them walk across the knee deep King River as well as a small towel.

The first 8 km. traversed the western and southern sides of the Lake. Where the vehicular track crosses the King River at Sandy Flats we traversed the King River after 2 hours of walking in undulating bush lands.

The next 2.5km was straight up climbing 400 meters vertically for one hour. This track is quite tough and walkers were very glad of the advice to use poles as the track was also slippery at times. Here we stopped for lunch.

We then walked north and North West along the Long Spur 4WD track. This was undulating and quite easy for the first 2.5km. We then descended quite sharply for another 2.5km on the same track until we came to a flatter and very pristine mountain ash forest area…

The whole walking time on this Long Spur Track was about 2.0 hours.

We again had to traverse the cold waters of the King River before climbing steeply uphill for 10 mins till we reached the car and afternoon tea next to the main road. We used this car to ferry the drivers 3km along the track on the west side of William Hovell to where we left the vehicles. We then ascended through the tunnel; below the dam wall and looked at the water gushing out of the portal on the dam wall.

We then walked back to the cars at the Lake picnic area and all had a cuppa before driving back to Wangaratta. We arrived back in Wang at about 5.00pm which was nearly darkness.

We saw kangaroos, an azure kingfisher and heard a few lyrebirds on the plateau.

This is a walk only for those who are reasonably fit and with the slight changes can now be classified in the future as “Medium/Hard” The walk took exactly 6 hours for 17.5km distance with stops for morning tea and lunch.

Bob Shaw, Leader.

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