Mt Torbreck VK3-VN001 SOTA

The access to Mt Torbreck from the DSE information sheet is a walking track from Barnewall Plains picnic area.  This can be accessed from Snobs Creek Rd via Con Gap Rd.  Driving down Con Gap Rd., I arrived at the junction with Barnewall Plains Rd., to find it starts with a rather steep and rutted climb which would need a 4WD to get up.

Junction of Con Gap Rd and Barnewall Plain Rd

Junction of Con Gap Rd and Barnewall Plain Rd

A this stage I was running late, but had no choice other than get the pack out and head up the road, this would add about 2km to the trip.  I had gone about 1km up the road and came across a large tree that had blocked the road, so even if I could have climbed the start of the road this would be a blocker anyway.

Barnewall Plains Rd

Barnewall Plains Rd

According to the map, the junction where the car was parked was on the 1000 m contour line, the summit is 1516 m, so the vertical climb is 516 metre.

After about 2km I arrived at the Barnewall Plains Picnic Area and headed up the path to the summit.  The path is pretty steep, starting out with a grassy trail and getting rockier as the track progressed.  There were quite a few fallen trees and low trees that were not squid pole friendly.

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Squid Pole and EFHW

Squid Pole and EFHW

Once at the summit, the squid pole was erected and the end fed half wave connected.

Propagation was a bit strange with some signals very weak and then later coming up very strongly.  After about 25 minutes of operating, 9 contacts were made.  Two contacts were Summit to Summit, VK3PF on Mt. Big Ben and VK1DA on Mt. Porepunkah.  Unfortunately I missed out on VK3WAM on a summit in the Buller area.  I had the antenna oriented pretty badly, it was running SW-NE, so the nulls would have been towards Melbourne and NSW East Coast.

March flies were annoying and there were moths everywhere.  After a bit of a listen for Wayne, packed up and headed back down the mountain.

According the to the GPS, the total elevation gain on the walk up was 800 metres.  This includes all the “ups” summed together.  The map elevation gain is 510 metres.  Total trip is 7.4km.  The GPS plot of the track over the walking track deviates quite a bit from the map although the road matches quite well.

Access by car to the Barnewall Plains Picnic Ground might be easier from the Eildon-Jamieson Rd in  2WD.

Screenshot from Androzic

Screenshot from Androzic

Have found Androzic a good navigator companion for these trips.  It can use locally saved internet maps such as Open Cycle Map and installed Ozi Explorer format maps.  The SOTA kml files import nicely and the search function makes it easy to find a summit.

Huge summit cairn

Huge summit cairn

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