Which direction in late September

Discussion specifically about the Overland Track should be posted in this subforum, including side trips and the Cradle Mountain day walk area. Alternative access routes and connecting routes belong in the parent forum.

Which direction in late September

Postby Fozzie67 » Wed 24 May, 2017 1:27 pm

Hi All,

So due to school holidays in QLD - me and my crew will be doing the OLT in the last 2 weeks of Sept... We have some hiking experience... but I am now confused on What direction to do the track - North to South or South to North

Parks say always North to South - and as such we were planning to go from the Waldheim Lodges to Waterfall valley on day 1... is this crazy?

Considering the time of year which way should we do it ?
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Re: Which direction in late September

Postby gayet » Wed 24 May, 2017 1:47 pm

Walking N to S and Waterfall Valley on day 1 is pretty much the norm. If you mean the Waldheim cabins/cottages then you only have a bit further to walk than the normal Ronny Crk to Waterfall Valley. It will all depend on when you start. If you get an early start from Waldheim then you will have plenty of time to get to WV and possibly a side trip or 2 along the way.

I believe the worst weather is likely at the north end as are the most exposed bits of the OLT itself. Yes you will be carrying more weight (in food) but you should also be fresher and have a better chance of making up time if the weather is against you at the start.

Please note - I haven't walked the OLT, only various parts of it at various times of year in very differing conditions. My comments are based on that experience
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Re: Which direction in late September

Postby north-north-west » Wed 24 May, 2017 1:55 pm

My attitude is always go S to N if you can - ie, outside the booking season. It's just better that way, and you can spend an extra few days exploring the daywalk area from Waterfall or Scott Kilvert.
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Re: Which direction in late September

Postby Mark F » Wed 24 May, 2017 2:04 pm

Like nnw I have always been in favour of S-N. It provides an easier start to the trip (forest not alpine), most ascents are at a gentler gradient, bad weather from the s-sw is on your back and you finish with what is the the climax of the trip for most people (Cradle Mtn and Barn Bluff).
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Re: Which direction in late September

Postby Strider » Wed 24 May, 2017 2:18 pm

I agree with all of the above EXCEPT that at that time of year walking S-N means you cannot know an accurate weather forecast by the time you arrive at Cradle Mountain. Walking N-S allows you to plan a good weather window around the highest altitude part of the walk which is most likely to be affected by deep snow.

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