Mt Ligar aka The Crinoline, May 2022

The Crinoline had been on my list for some time but never seemed to quite make it to the top, until the stars aligned on a beautiful weekend in late May 2022. I made the trip out there with three hardy bushwalkers, staying in Heyfield on Friday night to enable us to get an early start on Saturday.

Our chosen route had us starting at Tamboritha Saddle and finishing at Breakfast Creek campsite. Every time I think of that campsite, Midnight Oil’s “Dreamworld” starts playing in my head. This was to be my earworm for the weekend. We left one car at Breakfast Creek campsite… “Your dreamworld is just about to end” …and continued on in one car to Tamboritha Saddle. We set off on our walk just before 10am.

A little bit of forest walking initially and then the views opened up. Most of the walk follows a ridgeline and in the fine weather we were treated to many spectacular views.

On our first day we followed Long Hill track. While the ridgeline did not have long steep ups and downs the path was quite rocky and uneven with a little scrambling here and there.

The track became indistinct to non-existent at times (or did we just lose it?) but we always managed to pick it back up. Staying up on the ridgeline generally kept us on track to our destination, a camp site on Long Hill. We caught glimpses of the Crinoline as we walked but the best views came as we arrived at camp late in the afternoon.

Making use of the remaining sunlight we set off to find water in a nearby creek. It is a rare water source on this walk and is sometimes reported to be dry. With a lot of recent rain we were confident it would be flowing and so it was. It took quite a bush bash to get to it though. After we filled up, we took a different line back to camp and it was much easier going back. With the sun going down, we set up camp and got a fire going. We sat around the camp fire, ate our dinner and talked. It also happened to be the night of the federal election. We listened to updates from the ABC as it gradually became clear that the Morrison Liberal government would not be returned to power.

It was a beautiful place to camp on the ridge overlooking the valleys around us. The weather was cold but calm and I slept very well. I enjoyed lazing in my hammock in the morning watching the sun rise.

And the Crinoline too …

After breakfast we packed up camp and set off to tackle it.

The line to take wasn’t always obvious (to us) and at one point we had to back track and find a better line. It wasn’t too bad though; a little bit of scrambling but nothing too crazy. It looked a lot more dramatic from afar than when I was on it.

I had read some reports that indicated there might be some sketchy bits on our descent but I found it pretty straightforward. As someone who struggles with heights this was a relief.

The rest of the walk was a long steady descent. We joined up with MacMillan’s Track which took us to our finish point at Breakfast Creek camp. This was a great walk and well worth the long trip from Melbourne for an overnighter. We felt very lucky to have had such great weather so close to winter. I would love to come back and do it again sometime.

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