Over 300km of tracks that traverse the top of the Great Dividing Range in Central Victoria
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GDTA Guided Walk – Climbing Mount Kooroocheang – Sunday 18 April
Time: 9:30 -12:30 or 2:00pm (add-ons after the climb for those so inclined) Walk Leaders: Barry Golding and Gib Wettenhall
DESCRIPTION: Approximately 4-6km. Medium difficulty. We start with a steep, exposed climb across three farming properties to reach the 678m summit of what was once the most sacred mountain to the Dja Dja Wurrung people in the volcanic plains. Involves going over fences and following a footpad. From the top, there are amazing views of what explorer Major Mitchell described as Australia Felix (the blessed country). We will peer down, and later visit, a 75m wide, oval-shaped double ceremonial ring, three-quarters of the way down Kooroocheang’s southern face. Hidden away from view at ground level, the ceremonial ground sits in a natural amphitheatre and its faint outlines are still just visible from the summit. Surrounded by oven mounds and more campsites than found anywhere else in Australia Felix, Kooroocheang held a central role in the spiritual and ceremonial life of the Dja Dja Wurrung people for tens of thousands of years.
In 1838, sailor-turned-squatter Captain John Hepburn overlanded from Sydney with 3,000 sheep, 10 armed men, his pregnant wife and son and a ten pound government licence giving him the right to seize as much land as he could forcibly control. He spied Koorocheang through his telescope, standing out like a beacon on the volcanic plains and navigated to its base, seizing not only the sacred mountain and its ceremonial ground, but 30,000 acres of land in all directions. To be discussed!
HEALTH AND SAFETY: COVID-19 restrictions in place at the time of the walk will apply. If restrictions on group size occur prior to the walk, it may be necessary to cancel the walk or further restrict numbers.
BRING: Long pants are recommended because of tall grass and thistles alongside footpads. Walkers should bring their own first-aid kit and any required personal medications, water bottles, sunscreen and personal hiking gear (sunglasses, walking sticks, small pack, etc). Wear clothing appropriate for the predicted weather conditions on the day. Bring morning tea for the summit and lunch if you choose to stay on and separately visit the ceremonial ground and perhaps an oven mound and Hepburn’s gravesite across the road.
MEET: Location and time details will be confirmed on registration. Registrations are essential before noon on Friday, 16 April.
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