Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

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Victoria specific bushwalking discussion. Please avoid publishing details of access to sensitive areas with no tracks.

Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby ScorpioBoyRising » Mon 28 Nov, 2016 4:28 pm

Heading up this weekend to do the Major Mitchell Plateau and wanted to know if there is water up top? Either at first wannon hiker camp or nearby? I know if I ring Parks Vic they will tell me to carry water for 2/3 days. Walking from sheep hill carpark to jimmys, just 1 night. Any recent trip reports?
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby eggs » Mon 28 Nov, 2016 7:28 pm

I would always like to be sure by carrying, but driving through from SA to the Vic Alps last week there were still places on the side of the road with pools of water.
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Tue 29 Nov, 2016 1:22 pm

First Wannon camp site was bone dry in April 2016 . I would n't bet on water being there at all.
Be sure to book a camp site in advance.It is mega popular. You might want a rope for a pack haul up and down the escarpment just before/after the First Wannon camp site.Watch out for leeches, huge ones : -0 at Jimmy Creek.
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby ScorpioBoyRising » Wed 30 Nov, 2016 7:21 pm

Not betting on water being there at all though given the solid rain we have had I am optimistic. Good tip on the rope, heard a few people mention that so might be worth doing but if I am going down maybe I can just drop it :P

Does anything run consistently up there or is it hit and miss on recent rainfall? Rainfall recorded has been far greater this year than same time last. Way more but hopefully someone has done the walk in the past couple of weeks and can report in.
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby Snowzone » Thu 01 Dec, 2016 1:02 pm

I haven't been up in recent weeks but I'd be confident there would still be water at First Wannon currently. It is from a stream that runs through the camp. As for carrying a pack haul rope, I've taken many people up there over the years and never had to use a rope once.
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby JohnR » Thu 01 Dec, 2016 1:11 pm

We were up there over the Melbourne Cup long weekend and the creek through First Wannon was flowing nicely. I would think that it would still have water.

Also, I'm with Snowzone - no need to pack haul. My 12 and 14 yo kids had no trouble scrambling up the rocky bits.

Enjoy.
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UPDATE: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby ScorpioBoyRising » Mon 05 Dec, 2016 2:44 pm

So just got back from doing the Major Mitchell Plateau and what a hike! Tougher than I thought it would be, the heat definitely played a part as it was hot all weekend. And took my girlfriend for only her 2nd overnighter pack and carry too. Her 1st overnighter was winter hiking up over Mt Stirling to Craigs Hut return. So doing it in reverse, tough hikes first to ease her into it ;-) We actually lost the track for a bit on this hike and learnt a few key lessons from it.

For those heading up in future from here on in over the summer...there is no flowing water and just stagnant yellow water up at First Wannon. We boiled water and treated it (first time I have done that in Australia) as you could see the little organisms squirming around in your collection. Our neighbouring party at First Wannon weren't even game enough to drink it. I don't think I would do this hike any later than this personally due to the fact its summer and likely it will continue to get drier. We had only 1 opportunity to get water on the route from Sheep Hills Car Park to Jimmys at First Wannon other than the creek when you first start at the very bottom.
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby Watertank » Fri 05 Apr, 2019 8:54 pm

Has anyone stayed at First Wannon campsite recently? any idea of the likelihood of water there?
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby Tino B » Sun 14 Apr, 2019 1:48 pm

I did the plateau in November 2018 and there was very little water on top, and what was there was very low quality. There has been very little rain since then. I drove up to the gate at Mount William, stashed 4 litres in the bushes and then drove back down to the tourist road car park. I carried 2 litres and hiked up the valley, collected my water and lugged close to 6 litres up to Mt William and then up and down onto the plateau. In the end I could have done with less but was happy to have too much water.
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby bmak » Sun 14 Apr, 2019 8:00 pm

Was up there only a few weeks ago and there is no water to be seen and there has been no real rain since.


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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby vagrom » Sun 14 Apr, 2019 9:44 pm

The M.Mitchell Plateau, a very well visited and striking part of the Grampians, clearly has a water problem.

It's hard to imagine that while ParksVic is presently focused on the great Trail that they couldn't consider setting up a couple of en route tanks along the Plateau as we do along much drier parts of our Heysen Trail in SA.

But most of our work is done by volunteer Friends, with gov. funding assistance. Perhaps an enquiry to the Grampians Friends assoc. could update you on any plans in the area or give you a worthwhile, local connection.
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Re: Major Mitchell Plateau - water availability?

Postby vagrom » Mon 15 Apr, 2019 1:22 pm

Adelaide Bushwalkers used to do bus trips to the Grampians and Flinders in Spring and Autumn, annually but in recent years the Grampians has been cancelled permanently. But they've developed a bit of expertese in tank work - driest state in the driest continent, tho' Hobart's famously the driest city.
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