19 December 2015

Summer Special Offer

At the AGM, there was discussion about visiting the lodge in summer. For some members, the $300 minimum fee is a deterrent. Ideas were floated about helping members to get together for summer visits so that the minimum fee was not a burden.

The reason for the minimum fee is twofold:

  • even with only one person in the lodge, there is a significant cost for hot water, lighting and sometimes heating
  • a summer manager often needs to be engaged to open and close the lodge (eg turn on hot water; check that dust etc has not built up too much since it was last occupied; replenish coffee, toilet paper etc; check that guests have cleaned up properly; turn off services and lock up)

The committee has decided on a trial of a small number of times in 2016 where no minimum fee will apply. We hope that this will make it easier for members to visit in summer.

The no minimum fee times will be:

  • Thur Jan 7 to  Tue Jan 12: Inaugural AAC Falls cycling weekend
  • Fri 12 Feb to Sun 14 Feb: one of the weekends when mountain bike shuttles will operate
  • Thur 24 Mar to Tue 28 Mar: Easter

As well as avoiding the minimum fee, we hope that there will be more of a sociable buzz in the lodge at these times.

Mountain Biking at Falls Creek

Stage 3 of the mountain bike trails opened in November. This brings the total to 20km of  cross country mountain bike trails (mostly single-track). Even more are planned for next summer. The Bogong High Plains offer longer rides too.

For those who enjoy down more than up, there are a many opportunities.

  • The Blue Dirt company are running shuttles roughly every second weekend over summer. For $50 per day ($90 per weekend) they will transport you and your bike from Slalom car park to the top of the trails. We've timed one of the no-minimum-fee lodge weekends to coincide with this.
  • The summit chair also operates on some peak summer season days and can take bikes. Keep an eye on the fallscreek.com.au website for specific dates

Trail descriptions
Download a mountain bike trail map

AGM Communications by email

Sending out notices and other material to all members by post is an expensive exercise, in labour as well as actual postage costs. For some years we have tried to keep this to just AGM notices and annual subscription notices. The committee has decided that in future, AGM notices and reports will be sent by email. Annual subs notices will continue to be sent by post.

This means that it is even more important to keep your contact details up to date. You can do this online or contact ProAcct jnoye@proacct.com.au or 0398809600. Please make sure that your mobile phone number and your email address are correct.

Vale Marg Sewell

Many members will remember Marg Sewell who was lodge manager for 3 years, from 2006 to 2008.

Marg died recently after a long illness.We understand that she wished to be buried in Tawonga Cemetery in sight of Mt Bogong and the high plains.

AAC Inter Club Race

The 2015 AAC inter club race was held at Hotham

AAC Falls Creek excelled once again

A team 1st
B team 2nd
Masters team 3rd

Congratulations to all our racers.

Next year's race will be held at Thredbo, hosted by Southern Alps Ski Club.

11 December 2015

Inaugural AAC Falls cycling weekend - Updated

Join us for for a special summer weekend of cycling and enjoying Falls Creek.

The mountains are beautiful in summer as well as winter. Many of us have great intentions of getting up to the the lodge to enjoy Falls Creek in "green season", but somehow don't quite get around to it.

Angie and John have suggested that we give some focus to summer fun with a long weekend of mountain bike fun.

Key dates are Friday 8th Jan to Sun 10th Jan, but you might prefer to come up on Thur 7th or stay a little longer.

Range of riding

  • flat for families
  • hilly for high heart rates
  • scenic for social
  • Falls Creek mountain bike tails
  • choose your own adventure
  • ...

Feature rides

Friday afternoon: wide game (easy)
Saturday morning: climb from Mt Beauty to Falls Creek (hard ++) or ride the local trails
Sunday: The Summit, Mt Nelse, Mt McKay (hard++) or ride the local trails or enjoy a picnic

BYO bike or hire in Mt Beauty or on the mountain

Download flyer with full details

01 December 2015

Locker Fees

The annual locker fee has remained at $10 since it was introduced in 2010. The committee has approved a small increase to $12 which will be reflected in the subscription invoices that will be sent out shortly.

The committee endeavours to provide sufficient lockers to meet growing member requirements. Acquiring new lockers has involved significant expense. This small increase in locker fees will go some way to meeting this cost.

10 September 2015

Race Day 2015

Race day was gorgeous, with the Father Fosters race course looking great

Team AAC Falls

Coffee and hot chocolate all around after the race


1. Emma P
2. Mel C
3. Louisa G

1. Ross B
2. Gerard S G
3. Will C

Under 13
1. Ella B
2. Tim C
3. Sophia W

Thanks to Nigel for the results and photos.

24 July 2015

twitter #aacfalls

We have been promoting the Instagram hashtag #aacfalls as a  great way for members and guests to add photos to the blog. Now we've been asked if we can do the same with Twitter.

If you tweet photos or comments with #aacfalls, the most recent ones will now be displayed on the blog.

21 July 2015

AAC Niseko bookings - hurry if you want January

AAC Niseko have written to let us know that January is filling up and you need to move soon to secure a bed
The bookings for Niseko Accommodation have taken off and the Australian Alpine Club Lodge is nearly full for the month of January 2016.
I would like to let AAC Niseko Members and AAC Members know that the beds are available and that bookings need to be made soon otherwise the non AAC members/Public emailing regarding bed availabilities may be able to make a booking.
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.
If you need information about Niseko and how to get there then please visit our website www.nisekoclub.com
If you would like any further information then email nisekoclub@optusnet.com.au.

16 July 2015

Breaking news - The summit is open

Summit chair opened this afternoon, Thursday 16 July.

15 July 2015

A white start, a lean month and now snow

The snow gods put on a lovely opening weekend

... then let it all slip away with no more significant falls in June.

The lift company have done a good job with snowmaking on Wombats, Main Street, Drovers and Mousetrap. Even so, this has been barely enough for the school holiday crowd.

After some horrible queues early in the week, the lift company decided to open the lifts at 7:30am to spread people out as much as possible -  great initiative.

Quite a few AAC people have foregone Andrew's great brekkies to get out and join the"dawn patrol" with freshly groomed snowmaking, no queues and uncrowded slopes.

The lift company also set up a small terrain park on the edge of Nastar to provide another fun option. 

Now finally the blue skies have given way to cold snow-laden clouds and there is a beautiful layer of white throughout the resort again. Best of all, we are being told that this is just the beginning. 

From janesweather.com for Friday 10 July
The snow has begun, and we will have 10 to 15 cm on the ground by later today, as a trough passes through. But this is just the first little bit – there are huge snowfalls still to come.

Heavy snow is likely from Saturday to Monday, as a strong front passes through and a low sits just to our southeast. All resorts will see at least 50 cm from this, and 75 cm is not out of the question.

The next surge arrives on Tuesday, with another low to affect the area for the rest of the week. This set up doesn’t look as favourable as this weekend, but its still 15 to 30 cm on the way. Then there may be a break next weekend if the next high moves in.

So, this all adds up to 75 TO 120 CENTIMETRES OF SNOW, from today to next Friday. Enjoy.

14 July 2015

Prime time vacancy

The first week in August in August is historically one of the best snow weeks. This year Race Weekend falls at the end of that week, so the weekend is all but booked out. However, there are still 2 rooms available for the 5 midweek nights beginning Sunday 2 August.

With good snow forecast at last, this is a great opportunity to grab some prime time at the lodge.

13 July 2015

Peaks Challenge 2016 - get in early

The Peaks Challenge (formerly known as 3 Peaks) is held each year on the March Labour Day weekend. Hundreds of cyclists head off at the crack of dawn to ride the 235km loop from Falls Creek to Tawonga Gap, over Mt Hotham and back up to Falls Creek. It is a hugely popular event and requires all the accommodation the village can provide.

In 2015 the club worked with Falls Creek Central Reservations to enable competitors to become Summer Associates and stay at the lodge for the weekend. It was very successful and we will do the same again. As well as contributing to the development of green season, this event bought a healthy injection of summer revenue to the club.

We expect that all rooms will be booked well before the event. Last year some AAC members were disappointed that they could not get in.

So if you or your friends and family are intending on coming to the lodge for that weekend, BOOK NOW

Special arrangements for Peaks Challenge weekend

  • Bookings are for 3 nights starting Friday 11 March
  • Linen is provided
  • Cost for 3 nights is $264* if you book through the club. Bookings through Central Reservations will attract a higher fee.
  • Bookings for members are open immediately
  • Entries for the actual event openned on 20 July, and accommodation bookings are sure to follow.
  • The games room and TV rooms will not be available - they are reserved for bike storage

* Fee for an existing member is $20 less

12 July 2015

Coffee machine

Just a reminder for coffee-aholics that you need to provide your own pods for the Nespresso machine. It is possible to buy compatible pods at the Falls Creek supermarket, but they are not as good as the Nespresso pods (at least in this coffee-aholic's opinion)

The dripolator and its coffee are still provided for those who prefer that style of coffee.

11 July 2015

Lodge Internet

We've been able to increase the data allocation for members and guests. Previously everyone received an allocation of 2GB. We are happy to be able to increase this to 5GB.

People who are staying for extended periods may ask Myra or Andrew for an additional allocation if necessary.

The restriction on data is to ensure that we can provide an internet service for everyone in the lodge. Attempts to subvert the system will be regarded as breaching lodge rules and may result in loss of internet access or other disciplinary action.

10 July 2015

Ken Long nominated for life membership of AAC National

Ken Long has been honoured with Life Membership of AAC National. Although the proposal came from Anton, Ken was a founding member of AAC Falls Creek and he and his family have had a long involvement here too.

Congratulations Ken.

The citation, written by Philip Robinson, Chairman of Anton

Proposed Life Membership for
Kenneth Frank Long.
The committee members of Anton Huette endorsed at their meeting on 15/10/13 the proposal to submit this application for Life Membership to The Australian Alpine Club.

Ken's association with AAC began as a founding member of Falls Creek and was part of the committee to construct the lodge in the late sixties. He was later invited to be on the initial committee of Anton to construct a new Lodge at Mt Hotham commencing in 1970 with Lodge opened in 1972.

During his membership at Anton he has held every committee position at some stage, along with the role of Chairman for 10 years. He received from the members on 12/5/1999 Life Membership of Anton Huette. He was further granted a Special Service Award on 17/5/2011 acknowledging his continuous service and dedication of 41 years.

His involvement with AAC as a long term delegate from Anton Huette, during which he served as vice president and other supporting roles.

He holds a unique position of association with all Victorian projects, offering a Booking Service for Falls Ck, Patchacoffle, Dinner Plain, Anton Huette and Old Collegians at various times.

Over the years Ken is acknowledged as one of the most recognised faces of Skiing in Victoria through the contributions made to 2 projects at Falls Creek and Mt Hotham. Along with bookings for members of up to 5 projects, with their requests for ski holidays, as well as AAC reciprocal bookings from all over Australia.

We the members of Anton fully support this proposal for granting of Life Membership to a most worthy member who has contributed extra ordinary years of service, loyalty and dedication to the objectives of The Australian Alpine Club.

09 July 2015

Working Bee 2015

The May working party was a hive of activity, with followup work by tradesmen over the succeeding weeks.

extending the ski lockers

major projects included:

  • all the downlights in the common areas and bathrooms have been replaced with much more efficient LED lights
  • the ski lockers have been extended
  • the linen storeroom has been relined and reorganised, including all the audio/visual and internet cabling and a new Uninterruptible Power Supply to improve internet reliability
  • major reorganisation of under-lodge storage
  • on-going revegetation programme and weed control
stripping out the storeroom
and all the essential regular preparations
  • restock firewood
  • store pantry supplies
  • kitchen clean up
  • checking and mending of linen etc
  • spa preparation
  • ski room cleaning
  • painting and general maintenance

Thanks to everyone who helped and to Myra for looking after us

08 July 2015

AGM May 2015

The AGM was held on 26 May and was quite well-attended. There was much discussion but nothing controversial. The committee remains unchanged.

Preliminary feedback from the survey was discussed and it was decided to the reopen the survey to give members longer to respond.

Myra performed the important duty of drawing the winner of the survey competition. Congratulations to Judy Barone who now has a $150 accommodation voucher.

07 July 2015

Vale Rodney Moss

Rodney Moss died on 14 May. He was instrumental in establishing the original AAC Falls Creek lodge, and later in securing a great site for the new lodge. As well as serving on the AAC FC committee for many years, he was a founder of the race club, a member of the Falls Creek Tourist Area Management Committee (forerunner of FCRM) and chair of the Victorian Snowsports Association.

31 May 2015

We need your input

The major challenge of renovating the lodge and securing a new lease has been met. The committee has turned its attention to considering how to improve the amenities that members want while continuing to be financially secure. Lots of ideas have been thrown around, for improvements and cost containment.

We now need feedback from members on the facilities and services the club provides, especially during the winter months. This feedback will be used to understand which services and features are important to YOU, the member. This will allow the committee to confidently plan the management and operation of the club in the future.

There are no plans to change the operation of the club in any way at present and if any changes were proposed in the future they would be clearly communicated with the membership.

The survey was to close in April, but at the AGM it was decided to reopen it for input during season 2015. Thanks to those have already responded, but if you haven't filled it in yet, please let us know what is important to you.

Click here to take the survey

04 April 2015

Vale Doug Pitt

Douglas (Doug) Pitt died on 7th December 2014. Doug was well known to many at AAC Falls Creek. He was a long-time member of the club along with wife Marj and daughters Jessie and Emma.

He served on the committee as Secretary and was involved in many working parties.

Perhaps Doug will be most remembered in the club for his involvement in club racing. He represented AAC Falls Creek many times in Interclub events, including in Masters races.

Our condolences to Marj, Jessie and Emma.

03 April 2015

New blinds for the lounge

We love those huge windows with their view of the summit and village bowl. The downside is just how much sun they let in on a bright day. The mesh roller blinds have been very effective on the lower windows. Over the summer, similar blinds have been added to the upper widows and have made a big difference.

Working Bee - May 2015

A ski lodge needs some TLC to keep it in good condition and and ready for each new ski season. Professional services are used for major items, but we rely on members to do many of the tasks. The annual working bee in early May is when we do all those little things (and sometimes a few big ones) that need doing before the season.

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. For new members it is a great opportunity to meet old hands. However it is first and foremost a working weekend.

Moving firewood into the store
The tasks very from year to year but typically would include
  • moving firewood into the store (a big job for many hands)
  • painting
  • cleaning & organising the kitchen cupboards & contents
  • turning mattresses & mending protectors
  • minor repairs
  • small carpentry jobs
  • checking & replacing light globes
  • weeding and other gardening

Friday 1 May - Sunday 3 May

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

Peaks Challenge 2015

Formerly known as 3 Peaks, this event has been so successful that it has spawned other Gran Fondo rides at Cradle Mountain and the Gold Coast..

Peaks Challenge Falls Creek is the 235 gruelling kilometre loop from Falls Creek, over Tawonga Gap,Mt Hotham and the Bogong High Plain - in a 13 hour time limit. Held on the Labour Day weekend in March each year this event is huge and needs every bed that the village can provide.

AAC Falls Creek has worked with Falls Creek Central Reservations to enable competitors to become summer associates and stay at the lodge for the long weekend. Garry H spent a busy few days making beds, washing afterwards and generally being a helpful host.

It was perfect weather for the event. By all accounts everyone who stayed loved the lodge and many hope to return next year.

Accommodation for this event books out quickly. If you intend staying at the lodge for the March Labor Day weekend, make sure you get in early. Also be aware that pricing and conditions for this weekend will be different than for other summer dates.

It's great to see more activity at Falls Creek in "green season". Events like this encourage more people to enjoy our mountains even when there is no snow.  More use (and income) for the lodge in summer is good for Falls Creek and good for the club.

Resort Entry Season Permit - Early Bird offer

Resort Entry Season permits are available online until 30 April for $290.

After that the price goes up to $325.

You can apply using a form instead of online, but the price is higher.


6-day anytime lift tickets

The lift company have announced a 6 Day Anytime ticket, valid for Falls and Hotham. This offer is only available online until 27 April.

$499 for adults
$425 for youth 15-18
$249 for kids and seniors (65-70)

If you don't come often enough to justify a season pass, this could be a good flexible option.


Changes at FCRM

New  CEO

Falls Creek Resort Management CEO, David Herman, resigned in December. Mark Hubbard was interim CEO while a full executive appointment process was undertaken. Now FCRM have announced that the new CEO, Stuart Smythe, will start on 4 May.From the FCRM announcement:
Mr Smythe comes to the role with not just a passion for the outdoors, the environment and sustainability, but supplements this with a diverse and global business background. He has a demonstrable track record of establishing, building and growing new entities into outstanding businesses, together with a background transforming and driving organisational change across businesses in Australia, North America, India and Japan. His global senior leadership experience along with the proven formulation and execution of strategic initiatives aligned with a collaborative approach to key stakeholder objectives have underpinned his success in international finance and business development over the last two decades.

Stuart is a long-time visitor to Falls Creek and a regular at Falls Creek Country Club. He is an avid snow sports enthusiast is an investor and owner of assets in the Hakuba region of the Japan Alps, is an active financial backer of snow sport related films and has backed innovative product development initiatives related to the industry.  He takes a keen interest in innovation, the application of technology and disruptive leading edge businesses that are socially impactful and deliver broad based societal benefits.

New board members

Graham Irish has retired from the board.
New appointees are Lisa Logan (Dianna Lodge) and James Stewart (Huski, Astra, Silverski, Woodsmoke )

Falls Creek Masterplan

It's easy to be a bit cynical about these sorts of documents but they serve a purpose.

The Victorian government required all the alpine resorts to prepare new masterplans last year. The masterplan is "an overarching strategic plan outlining the how the village and land in the Resort will be used in the future."

It provides a vision of how the resort would like to evolve. It is not an action plan to actually do all these things.

In a practical sense, it provides a framework for obtaining finance and approvals for various initiatives. Projects that are not identified in the masterplan, or at least consistent with the masterplan, are not as likely to succeed.

You can download a summary of the masterplan or go to masterplan.fallscreek.com.au for the full document, a presentation and other information.

Just remember that very little on the masterplan is actually "planned", let alone funded or scheduled.

Do you know prospective members?

Every year, a number of members decide to sell their debentures. While we are sad to see members leave, a steady injection of new active members is good for the club.

The committee assists retiring members to sell their debentures, including advertising/promotion. However the best marketing tool is word of mouth. If you have friends or family who are snowlovers and would fit in with our club, so please encourage them to consider joining.