01 October 2013

That's it for 2013

What a strange season we've had! I've been skiing at Falls for over 30 years and it's the weirdest I can recall.

We had some fabulous snow falls and great fun in deep fresh snow. The second week of Vic school holidays saw 7 days in a row of beautiful dry snow under blue skies - a rare treat. We've had a landslide that isolated the village overnight. We've had torrential rain that has turned slopes into rivers. Away from the groomers, the base never really consolidated. Despite reaching a peak depth of approx 1.6 metres, spring touring was almost non-existent. But most weeks have had some great skiing and boarding.

Falls Creek once again proved itself the most reliable ski resort in Victoria. Buller and Hotham struggled to keep slopes open in September and both called it quits a week early. Falls still had Towers and Ruined Castle providing some fun until the official end of the season on Sunday 29th. You'll be pleased to know that Andrew was one of the dedicated bunch who were there for the last ride on Scott chair.

AAC Falls Creek has had a pretty good season with good occupancy from late June through to the end of August, and again for the last week. Thanks to Andrew & Myra for being such great hosts.

Since the start of the year we have welcomed 9 new members. Some are familiar faces who have been guests of family & friends in the past. Others are new to the club. New members keep clubs vibrant and we are very happy to welcome them all and encourage them to make the most of the lodge and the friendships they find there.

And of course we did do rather well in the interclub races too.

Hope you all had as much fun as I did in this weird season.

Hero Pass - closes 10 October

It's on again. Pay a $199 deposit now and the $550 balance in April to get your season pass. Children, secondary students and seniors  pay $99 now and $330 in April.

If you intend to ski or board more than 7 days at Falls and Hotham in 2014, this is a great deal.

Details at www.heropass.com.au

Ski lockers are not forever

The committee has been pondering the problem of over-full ski lockers. They are so full that it can be almost impossible, and sometimes dangerous, to get bags in and out. Secure ski and board storage is a great facility that many members value. At this stage it is free and unrestricted. It would be good if we could keep it this way.

One of the causes (written about here recently) is that some members have been packing clothes, boots and other gear into their ski/board bags. We have reminded you that this is not appropriate and that offending bags will be removed.

Another cause of the very full lockers is leaving old gear there. The intention was always that lockers were for storage during the season, not between seasons. The policy is that bags are to be removed by the end of the season. That time has come and the lockers are still pretty full. Doubtless some of the gear has been there for some years. The worst scenario is when new equipment is added but old gear is not removed.

Whether we decide to give the current system another try from a fresh start, or install another solution, the cages need to be empty.

Accordingly the committee requires that all bags be removed from the lockers before the end of September 2014. If you have old gear, please remove it as early as possible. Your current gear needs to be gone before the end of the season.

30 September 2013

Summer in the mountains

Don't forget that Falls Creek is a great place for a summer holiday too  and the lodge is available for booking all year.

When the rest of the state swelters, the high plains offer a cool alternative, typically 10 degrees cooler than the valley below. There are plenty of cycling options, from the sealed Bogong High Plains Road, to gentle aqueduct tracks to the exciting new mountain bike trails.
The Bogong High Plains offer great bushwalking. Cattleman's huts are a fascinating part of our history.There's canoeing on Rocky Valley Dam, fishing in the dam or at Pretty Valley or the aqueducts or nearby streams & rivers. Photographers and artists find inspiration in our magnificent alpine environment.

New Mountain Bike Trails

For a few years Falls Creek has been planning a network of mountain bike trails, both downhill and cross country. Last summer saw construction work on Stage 2 of the project. This summer those trails will open and hopefully Stage 3 construction will begin.

FCRM have put out a call for Expressions of Interest for running a bike hire.

Click the map to see a larger version.

Stage 2 has purpose-built cross country trails near Wombats Ramble and the nordic bowl, and a downhill trail near International. Stage 1 is the village aqueduct trail that opened a couple of years ago. As well as an easy family ride, it will provide the trunk connecting the other trails.

There is also talk of an eventual Stage 5 Falls Creek to Mt Beauty trail.

Of course there are already fire trails and aqueduct trails around the high plains for those who enjoy that style of riding.

The moutain bike trails hould bring a fantastic new dimension to summer at Falls Creek

29 September 2013

Committee Weekend

The committee holds its September meeting at the lodge. This allows our Manager to report on the season and make suggestions for the future, and allows the committee to inspect the lodge and consider future maintenance and improvements. If we are lucky we even get out for a few runs.

Robert Lake has stepped down from the committee and the September meeting saw Garry Hayes join us to take up the role of membership officer. Thanks to Robert for his contributions, especially in shaking up our marketing and processes.

Normally the manager cooks Saturday dinner for the committee but this year we turned things on their head and the committee cooked for the managers. Apologies to the other guests for the havoc as the committee descended on the kitchen to cook a 3 course meal as a team.

More pics

05 September 2013

clean sweep by AAC Falls Creek

AAC Falls Creek played host on Saturday 31/8/13 to teams from Anton, Dinner Plain and Niseko. On a fine (and unseasonally warm) Saturday morning, 4 clubs battled it out on the Nastar course.

The home team made a clean sweep with the youngsters starting to make their presence felt.

The races concluded with presentations and a lovely dinner prepared by Andrew and Myra.

Results were as follows:

Open Category

1st - Falls Creek Team A
Ross B
Mel C
Emma P
Gerrard G
Combined time 118.47 secs

2nd - Falls Creek Team B
John C
William C
James C
Carla B
Combined time 130.39 secs

3rd - Anton
Adam R
Jason R
Robert T
Trish M
Combined time 130.9 secs

Masters Category

1st - Falls Creek
John C
Malcolm M
Nigel C
Marj P
Combined time 132.82 secs

2nd - Anton
Russel M
Robert T
Trish M
Combined time 136.8 secs

Congratulations to all our racers. Thanks to Nigel, Emma and Marg for the report and photos

02 September 2013

Thinking about Niseko?

We received a note from AAC Niseko. It's almost time to throw bookings open to the general public, so if you are thinking about staying next northern winter, it's time to contact the club.

Dear Members,

The bookings for Niseko Accommodation have taken off and the AAC Lodge is filling.
I now have non AAC members emailing regarding bed availabilities and I think that it is important that I let you know that I am about to open the lodge bookings to the public.
Please let me know if you are thinking of coming as I am happy to put your name on a bed. Should I then have other parties interested in that time, you will be notified and given first preference.
Please feel free to tell you friends about the bed availability and get them to visit our new website http://www.nisekoclub.com.au/.
If they would like any information then email nisekoclub@optusnet.com.au.

Kind regards,

Sarah Gregson
Ph: 0403 236 616

30 August 2013

Spring Skiing... mmm

There's 1.25 metres of snow, International is open and we still have a month of the season to go.

We had a shakey start to the season and now it's time to make up for it with some spring fun. Fast morning groomers, blue skies, creamy corn snow, slush bumps, lazy barbecue lunches, maybe a spot of sidecountry touring.

There are still some vacancies at the lodge, especially from 8-21 September.

There are some good spring deals too:

Fathers Day special - DADCamp

If you have a Hero Pass, Season Pass or Spring Pass you can spoil your dad with a DADCamp package on Fathers Day

$59 includes
  • group lesson
  • a snowmobile-lifted run down Rocky Knolls (past Ruined Castle)
  • free use of lifts for the rest of the day
Sounds like a pretty nice deal

Queenslanders and South Australians - do you want to be able to get to Falls Creek faster?

Resort Management are trying to make it possible, but need your support. Tell your snow-loving neighbours too.

Ski Locker Reminder

Some years ago, large lockable cages were installed in the ski room for storage of skis & boards during the season. These have proved very popular - too much so in fact. The cages are very full and it can be difficult and even dangerous for people to get their gear in and out.

The situation is made much worse when other gear is stored in the cages too. It takes more room and makes the bags very difficult to move when trying to remove other bags.

So that everyone can continue to safely enjoy using these lockers, please follow these guidelines
  • skis, poles and boards only 
  • boards or skis must be in a bag with the owner's name clearly visible
  • no clothing, boots or other things in the bag
  • bags should be removed at the end of the season
The committee are considering other solutions for next season but alternatives could involve more expense and/or less flexibility.

In the meantime, the manager may remove offending bags from the secure storage to protect safe access by other members.

Benji at the lodge

We had a special visitor at the lodge during August

Benji is a mascot for Alzheimer's Australia. He came down from the Gold Coast with his handler Karin. Benji has a huge album of photos taken with celebrities and in great locations - now including Falls Creek.

 More pics

09 August 2013

International and Lakeside are Go!

Our trusty pomas are set to turn from Saturday 10th. And there is more snow forecast over the next few days. Jane's Weather is forecasting that it could be as much anywhere from 40cm - 90cm by Monday.

I'm grinning ear to ear because I'm at the lodge next week

New Deal for Mums in August

The lift company are coming up with some innovative ideas this season.

They've noticed that many mums are sitting around while the rest of family is out having fun on the slopes. So Mums that have a child in Snowclub or Juniour Workshop for the day can buy a special Coffee Club women only group lesson for $59 that includes use of the lifts for the rest of the day, as well as a  relaxing coffee before the lesson.

This deal is only for August.


Race Weekend 2013

The race this year was held on Nastar due to inclement weather conditions.

We had 35 competitors in what turned out to be a fun course that catered for all abilities but still allowed the champs of the club to show their class.

The day concluded with a Race evening dinner and a theme of "A Taste of Orange" which included Orange - music, decorations, food and fancy dress.

As always we would like to thank our Race Captain - John Cameron for his wonderful organisation of the event and to Andrew and Myra for the great evening.

Results were as follows:
1.    James
2.    Carla
3.    Ella
Some of the children are moving into the adult category next year but their times this year will already make them competitive in the next category.
1.    Mel
2.    Viv
3.    Natasha
Mel remains the female champ with Natasha joining the ranks.

1.    Ross
2.    Harrison
3.    William
Ross retains his Race champion status with a couple of the next generation reaching the podium.

More pics

Thanks to Nigel for the report and the photos

24 July 2013

What a great shot of the lodge

Just what we like to see, a blanket of snow around the lodge and still dumping.

Thanks Ian

20 July 2013

The snow is back

Somewhere in the darkness of Friday night, all that horrible rain turned to big white flakes and began to restore our beautiful snow.
This picture from Ian shows the accumulation on the lodge roof by mid afternoon, and it's still coming down heavily. It should snow for a few more days too.

The village is once again in ski-in/ski-out mode, after a brief period of regular vehicle access.

Myra to the rescue

The prettier half of our lodge management team found herself in the middle of a mercy dash on the Bogong High Plains.

In between washing all our linen and modelling the latest in pyjamas, Myra  has a job driving Husky oversnow vehicles for FCRM this year. On Friday 5th July she was just finishing her first Husky shift at about 4:30pm when she was asked to help with a medical rescue.
Myra at the wheel of a Husky

Rover Chalet is a lodge on the High Plains out past Wallaces Hut, owned by Scouts Victoria. Every week during winter a different group goes out there for a week of skiing and adventure. Normally everything goes very smoothly and everone has a great time without incident. Unfortunately the Venturer group that week didn't have it quite so easy. A 15 year old girl was having some respiratory problems.

The rescue party of police, paramedic and ski patroller joined an experienced SES navigator and Myra as driver . The weather was atrocious, with blizzard conditions and large snow drifts, but Myra got them there safely. The patient and was assessed and then loaded into the Husky, along with a Venturer leader, for the return trip.

Back in Falls Creek accommodation had to be found for the pair - on the weekend in the middle of Victorian School holidays. A late cancellation meant that AAC could help here too.

Rover Chalet on the Bogong High Plains
Myra and Andrew are both very involved in Scouting and Guiding and know Rover Chalet well. Myra is a Ranger Guide leader in Monbulk and also provides lots of support to Andrew in his role as a Venturer leader. When she got to Rover Chalet she found that she knew some of the leaders and participants. It was great to be able to help them.

The next day the rest of the Venturer group set out to cross-country ski back to Falls Creek at the end of their stay. Conditions were still very poor, some of the Venturers were getting cold and tired and the leaders decided to seek shelter and assistance when they reached Langfords Gap. Once again a rescue team was put together, but Myra wasn't required this time. This rescue did get a fair bit of media attention, but it was really about leaders being prudent rather than Venturers being in immediate danger.

Have you tried Instagram yet?

The shot from Ian of the lodge was shared by Instagram. All he had to do was take the shot on his phone, then tag it in Instagram with #aacfalls. Then by the magic of "the interwebs" it shows up in the sidebar of our blog.

If you are staying at Falls, or having fun with club members, or anywhere in the snow - why not share your pictures with us?

Snow in School holidays

After a lean first week of the Vic/NSW holidays, the snow gods smiled on us and sent some beautiful dry snow to blanket the resort.

Fiona loved the christmassy look of the trees in this shot

All the lifts opened except International and Lakeside and there was great skiing to be had on the sunny days that followed. Some were even heard to complain that it wasn't fair that it was sunny every day and they weren't getting a rest day for their poor legs to recover.
Unfortunately, what the snow gods give, the rain gods take away and the week ended with the start of a very wet spell that washed away most of what had fallen.

27 June 2013

Lockers - Are you a member without one?

The club recently purchased some new lockers to meet demand from members who have previously requested one, and from new members.

The committee would like to gauge the demand for more lockers, with a view to providing more in future. If you are a member and do not have a locker but would like one, please contact Justin, the lodge supervisor

Please note
  • in no circumstances will a member be allocated more than 1 locker
  • in no circumstances will non-members be allocated a locker
  • there is an annual charge for lockers (currently suspended for those who purchased lockers originally)

25 June 2013

AAC leads the way

... in the Hot Donut challenge.

Maggie's Snacks has challenged customers to eat a whole jam doughnut without licking their lips.

Fraser and Josie have risen to the challenge and put AAC on the board

If doughnuts are your thing, you can also find freshly made cinnamon doughnuts and iced doughnuts at a new stand above the ticket office at Slalom Plaza. The cinnamon doughnuts were very popular with one group at the lodge.

June fun

Hughie has not been kind to us (yet) but the snowmakers having been busting a gut whenever conditions allow.

Mousetrap, Wombats and Main Street are open. It's not ideal, but everyone is having a lot of fun.

We did get a couple of cm of snow on Monday morning (24th) and the kids were quick to get out and enjoy it


Astra is doing some Mexican theme nights and a group from the lodge headed off for a great night out with cocktails and live music.
Myra & Andrew at Astra

AAC Falls Creek is on Instagram

To make it easier to share photos, we have set up a profile on Instagram. If you use Instagram, please share your photos of the lodge and Falls Creek with #aacfalls.

If you don't know how to use Instagram, just ask a passing 12 year old - it worked for me.

You can still send pictures to me at comms.aacfc(at)gmail.com for the blog and associated album.

10 June 2013

And we're off...

There may not have been much snow, but there were still plenty of members and guests at the lodge to mark the start of the season. The lift company had kids activities at Cloud 9, the shops had bargains and there was walking or hired bikes for the energetic. Myra and assistants turned on some fabulous scones and cupcakes too.

The new RFID gates are working on Falls Creek Express, and ready to go on Eagle and Summit. The new credit card style snow passes are also encouraging the lift company to innovate with some new deals. Once you have the card, you can buy tickets online. there are discounts for buying ahead of time, and there's even a 5 day anytime ticket.

If you know anyone who has been wanting to try skiing, or boarding, there is a fabulous 1234ever deal available for genuine first timers. Take 4 days of beginner day packages ($471) before the end of July and get a season pass thrown in, and other discounts. It's a limited offer that runs out on 28 June. See http://www.skifalls.com.au/1234EverPass for details.

The lodge is heavily booked until late August, with a few vacancies still. The last week in August and all of September still have plenty of opportunities.

07 June 2013

Improved Mobile Service

Telstra celebrated the start of  the snow season by turning on the new 4G service the day before Queens Birthday Weekend.

Hopefully this will mean much better mobile service, especially for those people using Telstra's mobile broadband

01 June 2013

They came, they plunged, they thawed out

The Brighton Icebergers came en masse for the 1st June ice plunge. The weather was pretty atrocious but that didn't stop them doing what they do best.

They enjoyed it so much, some went back for another plunge the next morning when the weather was less bleak

27 May 2013

It's almost time....

The cold wet weather rolled into the mountains on the 12th of May and it snowed intermittently for about a week, putting down some nice pre-season cover and temporarily closing the road across the high plains. Some keen locals have been out for a xc ski. There is still cover on the higher slopes and I hear that snow-making is expected to start this week.

Thanks to James for the photo
The hand-held ticket scanners of last season are being replaced with RFID scanning gates on the main access lifts. This should make the scanning more reliable and less bother.

My resort entry pass arrived in the mail this morning and the Hero Pass is paid for. Roll on Queens Birthday Weekend

Annual General Meeting - Committee Changes

The AGM was held on Tuesday 21st May. Thanks to all those who attended.

Noel Poon, as expected, has not stood for re-election to the committee. He has his hands pretty full now as chairman of AAC National. Thanks to Noel for many years of service on the committee, including as chairman.

David Stogdale's contribution, particularly as treasurer during the redevelopment and lease renewal,  was also acknowledged. David stepped down in late 2012 and was replaced by Michal Szkilnik.

Welcome to Bronwyn Sigmund who has joined the committee.

In accordance with club rules, the allocation of committee roles will take place at the next committee meeting, scheduled for June 4.

Ice Plunge

This year the 1st June falls on a weekend, and the lodge will be full of hardy souls taking the Ice Plunge.

This annual Falls Creek event celebrates the first day of winter. There are prizes, brekkie and a fun time to had by all those brave enough to take a dip in Rocky Valley dam.

Good luck to Jane and all her fellow icebergers. Hope to see some photos of the fun.

Working Bee 2013

Once again Falls Creek turned on some lovely sunny weather for the working bee. The weekend was very productive and a lot of fun. It was also great to see some new and prospective members join in. The working bee is a great opportunity to get to know people better in the club.
  • The entry area is now lighter, brighter and full of shelves to store gear on changeover days
  • The lockers that were in the entry area have been re-located. See Where's my locker? for further details.

  • The railings on the east side of the building were painted

  • The ladders for top bunks are all wearing beautifully crafted wooden caps to protect delicate feet

  • The waxing bench has a lovely new top
  • The human chain was put to work moving  a huge load of wood from the top road into the wood store
  • The wood cupboard has been repaired
  • Kitchen cupboards and contents have been cleaned and sorted
  • The store rooms are full of supplies for the winter
  • Mattresses have all been turned
  • Many minor maintenance and cleaning job
Thanks to everyone for all the hard work, and to Andrew & Myra for great food all weekend
Zac exhausted after a hard day's work

Where's my locker?

To make way for better storage of gear on changeover days, the downstairs lockers have been moved. Great care was taken in the move and you will find everything still nicely stacked in your locker.

Lockers 29-36 are now between Rooms 13 & 14

Lockers 69-76 and 76-90 are now in the storeroom off the lobby, near Room 15.

There are also some new lockers near the manager's flat.

In future, it is intended to renumber the lockers into a more logical sequence around the lodge.

Changeover day storage

One of the working party jobs was to install shelves in the entry area. The old drinks machine is gone and the lockers have been relocated. Instead there are sturdy shelves where you can store your gear when you arrive, or on your last day. The area has also been lightened up with a coat of paint.

This should have the benefits of making it easier to store (and retrieve) your gear, and also improve the appearance of the entry.

Snowplay Park

Hotham introduced a snowplay park last season and this year Falls Creek and Dinner Plain will too. It's being run by AAC member Steve Belli. The Falls Creek snowplay park is in the tennis court area at the top of the gully chair and  is aimed at kids up to 5. (Hotham and Dinner Plain have larger but less central locations that cater for a wider age range.) Features include mini steerable toboggans, toddler's ski sliders, snowcastle molds and other snowstuff for young snow-lovers

Shopping at Falls Creek

The Hub supermarket is no more, but Foodworks is still operating in the QT building (formerly Quay West and St Falls) near Falls Creek Express chairlift.

Foodworks is offering some new ways to shop too that might suit some members. The Mt Beauty has better range and prices than the Falls Creek store.
  1. Do your shopping in person at the Falls Creek Foodworks before 3pm and they will deliver to the lodge between 4pm and 6pm for $5, or free if the order is over $100.
  2. Do your shopping online from the Mt Beauty Foodworks store at Mt Beauty prices and get it delivered to the Falls Creek  store or to the lodge. There are fees for Pick'n'Pack ($10 for the first $200 worth of groceries, then $2.50 per $100), delivery to Falls ($9 per carton) and delivery to the lodge ($5 per carton). On average a carton can hold ~$60 worth of groceries, but obviously this is pretty variable. Details and on-line shop are at foodworkshighcountry.com.au/fallscreekorders

Hotham - change to chains rules

Mt Hotham had a lot of problems last winter with incidents on the Harrietville Road and have revised some safety procedures. One of the outcomes is that they have made a new declaration about chains.

In a  nutshell, everyone travelling from Harrietville to Hotham must carry diamond pattern chains that can be fitted to their vehicle. Ladder chains, spider chains and snow socks are not allowed. Bear this in mind if you are heading to Hotham.

This has caused a lot of angst for people with cars/wheels that can't take diamond chains.

The Falls Creek road is not nearly as hazardous as the Hotham-Harrietville road and a similar ruling may never eventuate. However, you never know. If you are buying a new car, or new rims, it may be wise to consider whether they can accommodate diamond pattern chains.

27 April 2013

Working Bee Reminder

The Working Bee is next weekend, Friday 3rd-Sunday 5th May.

Thanks to all those who have already put their hands up to attend. We could really do with a few more people. If you can spare the time we'd appreciate it if you could join us. It is hard work, but it's very companionable too and you won't want for food and beverages.

For more info see the previous article on this. To book in or to find out more, contact our Lodge Supervisor, Justin Checcucci

AGM 2013 - put it in your diary

The AGM will be held at Royal Brighton Yacht Club at 7:30pm on Tuesday May 21st. This is a great opportunity to hear about progress, contribute to the running of your club and meet with other members.

You can download Nomination and Proxy forms.

The official notice of meeting, forms and annual report will soon be posted to all members

August opportunity

As usual, August has been very popular for bookings but there are still some vacancies.

In particular, mid-week in the last week of August (25th-29th) has good vacancies still.

September Special Offer

September can be a great time to stay at the lodge. More sunshine, longer days, less crowds and usually plenty of snow. It's also a great time to introduce friends and family to our fabulous sport. Now we can offer another reason to enjoy the relaxed September vibe.

On top of the already low off-peak price, this season you can save even more.The 3rd person in a standard room can stay for 1/2 price (applied to the lowest tariff in the room). That's approx $120 for a whole week for an adult member or a guest under 17.

Accommodation Transfer Service (aka Oversnow)

FCRM will be running this service again this year and have announced proposed pricing

They are promising improvements in
  • An improved communications system to the ATS Terminal; 
  • Improvements to the luggage baskets; and 
  • Access to supplementary vehicles (I presume this means extra vehicles at busy time)
They also emphasise that Sunday mornings are a very busy time for departing guests. If you want to get oversnow transport on a Sunday morning it is important to book early in the week. Personally I find it easiest to book the return journey when I buy my tickets on arrival.

Type 2012 ($) Proposed
2013 ($)
Adult one-way 19.0 20
Child one-way 12.5 13
Child one-way U5 NA NA
Adult return 33 35
Child return 21.5 23
Child return U5 NA NA
Adult season 155 162
Child season 100 105
Taxi (Husky flat rate) 65 68
Taxi (Argo, per person) 10 10
Excess baggage (per item) 3 3

19 March 2013

Booking Status for 2013 now available

Now that all the initial bookings have been processed, the initial booking status is available.

New Bus Service

Pyles buses, now known as Falls Creek Coach Service have run services to falls Creek since Noah was a lad. North East Coach Lines company, under the name HothamBus, are offering a competing service year, to Falls as well as Hotham. I know nothing about them, but you can find out more at their website .On their facebook page they have a special offer on unlimited travel for the season. I think you have to be logged on to facebook to access it. Check the fine print.

Unlimited travel pass from Melbourne in 2013 with HothamBus or Falls Bus for $399pp.

Expires 31 March 2013 · Available online
Resort entry fee's of $16 per person for Hotham Alpine Resort & $13 for Falls Creek are payable on departure in Melbourne each trip. Only 8 seats per departure are available at this fare type. Upgrades available if sold out. Payment due by credit card after 1st April and before the 30th April 2013, with online voucher needed to be claimed by 31st March 2013. Pass is non refundable after first use.

Video: 3 Peaks Challenge

The 3 Peaks Challenge on the Labour day weekend was a great success. Here's a great little video of the day. This year the route went up Mt Buffalo and returned over Rosewhite Gap instead of the usual route via Hotham and Omeo. The road was closed for the descent from Falls Creek, and also the trip over TawongaGap.

Falls Creek and surrounding areas are becoming a Mecca for cyclists - on road bikes, mountain bikes and recreational bikes. There's plenty of challenge for those who want it and beautiful scenery with respite from the summer heat for the rest of us.

06 March 2013

Sigh of relief as we head into a beautiful Autumn

It looks like last week's rain has done a great job of putting out the fires in the Alpine National Park.

Falls Creek was never in immediate danger but there were a couple of times when winds meant that people had to be prepared for the worst.

Falls Creek and the Bogong High Plains are most definitely open and ready for your Autumn adventure or relaxing retreat. The road from Mt Beauty is open as is the road across the Bogong High Plans to the Omeo Highway. There are still vacancies at the lodge for Easter, and for all other weeks for the rest of the "summer" season.

The resort is always looking for new activities to increase your options on a summer holiday. Bikes and canoes have been available for hire for a while, but now you can hire a Segway and take a 1 hour tour around the trails.

The 3 Peaks Cycling Challenge will run on  the Labour Day weekend. As usual it will start and end at Falls Creek, but this year the 3rd peak will be Buffalo rather than Hotham.

Easter will be a popular time at falls again with lots of activities planned
  • Giant Easter Egg Hunt
  • Big Easter Breakfast
  • Eggstra-ordinary Egg Toss
  • Chairlift Rides
  • Kids Club
  • Easter Bonnet Competition
  • Sunset Tours
  • Hotham Wildwalk Shuttle
  • Ecumenical Easter Service
  • Massive Easter Ski Sales
Why not plan an Autumn break at the lodge and enjoy this beautiful time of year in the mountains?

Hotham was in a much more serious position during the fires. I understand that the fire came to within about 50 metres of Anton. The slopes on the Dargo side of Davenport and Summit burnt, as well as part of Blue Ribbon. While normal access to Hotham from Omeo is open, the Harrietville approach has been closed. As well as  dangerous burnt trees that need to be cleared and posts that need to be replaced, there are 3 landslips on the road to be repaired. The Harrietville road will open temporarily over the Labour Day weekend, but only during daylight hours. Check VicRoads for details if you plan to head up that way.

Website make over

While this blog is great for sharing news and pictures with members and friends, our main website provides a more formal web presence. It serves as a repository for forms and documents, information about the lodge and club and a resource for potential new members.

It's had a major facelift and we've added new some new sections. You can check it out at aacfallscreek.com. The new format should work better on your mobile devices and should also be easier for us to update.

If you find anything that doesn't quite work, or you've got suggestions for making it better, let me know  Jenny Hughes, Communications

Booking status available soon

Bookings for winter 2013 are open and the initial applications are being processed. The booking status will be published very shortly, hopefully about 19th March. You will be able to see it on the Booking Status tab on this page or click here. We aim to update this regularly until opening weekend and then weekly during the season.

Working Bee - May 2013

Every May some members head up to the lodge to spend a weekend doing all those little jobs that need to be done before the season. The tasks very from year to year but typically would include
  • moving firewood into the store (this job alone needs 18 people to make the human chain)
  • painting
  • cleaning & organising the kitchen cupboards & contents
  • turning mattresses & mending protectors
  • minor repairs
  • small carpentry jobs
  • checking & replacing light globes
  • weeding and other gardening
Attendance is optional. People with trade skills are particularly welcome, but all willing hands are appreciated.

Most people arrive late on Friday night. Andrew & Myra provide brekkie & lunch on Saturday & Sunday as well as Saturday dinner. It's great to stock up your locker and catch up with people before the season, but it is first and foremost a working weekend.

Friday 3 May - Sunday 5 May

If you can help this year, please contact our Lodge Supervisor Justin Checcucci

Early Bird Passes


If you have not already committed to a Hero Pass for the lifts, you can still get an Early Bird Pass.

Available until 5pm April 30th
  • $1229 for adults
  • $689 for children and full time secondary school students (aged 15-18 yrs)
  • $775 for full time tertiary students
Valid at both Falls Creek and Hotham from Saturday 8 June through until Sunday 29 September 2013.

more info on lift season passes

Resort Entry

Available until 5pm April 30th
  • $270 if bought online - break even in 8 days
  • $247.50 for seniors, if bought online 
Note that there will no longer be free entry for seniors 65+. However they are eligible for a 10% discount, even if they have younger passengers.

more info on resort entry passes

Resort Boundary

You may have heard in the press that the resort boundary is being altered a little.

Essentially, the area from the dam wall to the boat ramp will be formally added to the resort, as will some land around the Howmans Gap snow clearing quarters. An equivalent area on the north slopes of Mt McKay are being added to the national park (from the resort). This is a win/win where the national park gets higher conservation value land and the resort gets disturbed land that will let it provide better summer facilities.

From fallcreek.com.au
The Bill contemplates a number of Resort boundary changes including:

i. the addition of 9.6 hectares of land from the Alpine National Park on the northern foreshore of the Rocky Valley Storage

ii. a small realignment of land in Sun Valley that currently houses Resort infrastructure

iii part of the Howman's Gap Snow Clearing Quarters which is currently on a Government road reserve.

The area set to be included in resort boundaries.
Pic - Charlie Brown
The areas of land being added to the Resort are highly disturbed; the legacy of the Resort's hydro-electric heritage. The Bill also preserves two existing leases over areas associated with the Kiewa Valley hydro-electric scheme.

In return, a larger portion of 11.9 hectares of high conservation value land on the northern slopes of Mt McKay will be returned to the Alpine National Park.

Actions contemplated in the Bill have been supported by the Falls Creek Resort Management Board's recently completed Biodiversity Management Strategy (BMS). The Falls Creek BMS is the first environmental management tool of its kind employed by a Victorian public agency. The BMS comprehensively identifies each ecological vegetation class contained in the Resort. The BMS identified the increased area of land added to the Alpine National Park as well as its significant species of flora and fauna.

"The proposed Bill is the culmination of considerable multi-agency cooperation supported by our cutting edge BMS" said David Herman, CEO of Falls Creek Resort Management. "The proposed land changes allow Falls Creek to pursue its access and equity objectives by delivering an all season’s activity base supported by the beauty of the Rocky Valley Lake. Equally, the land returned to the Alpine National Park is of high conservation value, thereby further protecting key species of flora and fauna for all Victorians".

Weekly photos of Falls Creek and surrounds

Falls Creek photographer Charlie Brown has started up a weekly email newsletter. Every week he sends out 6 photos of Falls Creek, Mt Beauty or surrounding areas. Over the summer some have been action shots featuring mountain bikes, canoes, horse riding etc. Others are just stunning landscape shots. If you are interested in something to brighten up your city week, check out mountainside.net.au . You can subscribe to the email there, or just check out past photos.

Calendar Reminder

Just a reminder that the calendar in the left hand side-bar of this blog has dates of interest for AAC Falls Creek members and friends, eg events, expiry of deals, AGM.