Come snowfall or sunshine, Mount Kosciuszko is a breaktaking destination in the heart of the famous Snowy Mountains.
ABOUT MOUNT KOSCIUSZKO
Located within the mighty Kosciuszko National Park in NSW's Snowy Mountains, Mount Kosciuszko is Australia's highest peak at 2229m. Kosciuszko National Park began life as the National Chase Snowy Mountains in 1906, became the Kosciuszko State Park in 1944, and then received its national park status in 1967.
There are numerous well-preserved stone huts formerly used by drovers, and a history of hold mining is evidenced in the ghost town of Kiandra high on the plains.
THINGS TO DO IN MOUNT KOSCIUSZKO
The ski resorts of Thredbo, Perisher Blue, Charlotte Pass and Selwyn snowfields all lie within the park, and while they are at their busiest during the snow season, they have much to offer during the less-busy summer months as well.
At this time of the year, you can embark on any of the myriad walking tracks within the national park and even climb the great mountain itself.
The walk to the summit is fondly referred to as 'the walk to the top of Australia' and begins at the end of Kosciuszko Road.
Anyone with a good level of fitness can reach the summit. The walk is 18km return and there are decent rest spots en route. You pass through snowgums, heath and herbfields, and are treated to views of the Main Range and the Snowy River.
The delight of reaching the monument on the summit of Kosciuszko will reward your efforts.
There is also a 21.5km circuit combining the Main Range Walk and Summit Walk, crossing the Snowy River and taking in four glacial lakes. This route proves to be slightly more strenous and requires ample time to be complete in daylight hours.
ATTRACTIONS IN MOUNT KOSCIUSZKO
Thredbo itself is a great town to visit in summer. The town is surprisingly lively in the summer months and there are many activities available to keep the traveller entertained.
For thrill-seekers, the Cannonball Run involves taking a mountain bike to the top of the chairlift and making your way down a trail that drops 672m.
But there is plenty more to do in town. There is a 50m swimming pool, tennis courts, Australia's highest golf course, fly fishing, horse riding, white-water rafting and rock climbing. A 700m metal bobsled track winds its way down the mountain, or if you just fancy a good view, the 15 minutes one-way scenic chairlift offers a relaxing yet exhilarating journey.
If you're travelling to the Northern end of Kosciuszko National Park, the Yarrangobilly Caves are a string of limestone caves well worth a visit. They are set in the deep gorges of the Yarrangobilly River and feature stunning decorations and a natural thermal pool at a constant 27°C - so don't forget your bathers.
Swimming is also popular at mighty Lake Jindabyne, a huge body of water that was created by damming the Snowy River as part of the Snowy Mountains scheme.
Waterskiing and sailing are popular here, with all the equipment available for hire, while the lake has a reputation as one of the best place to catch trout in Australia. It was the site of the 1999 fly fishing championships, highlighting the quality you should expect here.
Coolamine Homestead is one of many High Country huts, but is unique in that it comprises three architecturally unique styles of building, constructed at different times during the late 1800s.
The first of those buildings was established by Stewart Mowle, overseer to Terence Murray who was the owner of the land that the Australian Government House now sits on in Canberra, and who first visited these plains in the late 1800s. It was a slab and bark hut, and the site was found with the help of the local Aboriginal people, as the site is located on a local Aboriginal trail along Long Plain.
The original hut was used for grazing, while the log cheese house was built in 1889 followed by the main house in the 1890s, which served as the summer residence for the family of owner Fred Campbell.
The buildings were restored in the 1980s, and can be explored freely by visitors to the park and used for emergency overnight accommodation in bad weather. Interestingly, the walls have been papered with newspaper at various points in the late 1800s and early 1900s, their still-readable text rendering the place somewhat of a colonial time capsule.
GETTING TO MOUNT KOSCIUSZKO
Located between Sydney and Melbourne, Mount Kosciuszko is located in the Snowy Mountains on the border of NSW and Victoria.
Mount Kosciuszko is based a five and a half hour drive south west oSydney and a five hour and 15 minute drive north east of Melbourne.