As we nudge the nose of the Colorado upwards all we see is sky and my nerves steel me for a drop into nothingness. However, reaching the top of the ridge we’re relieved to see, not just the descending track but the familiar rock face of Mount Buffalo in the distance. We’re way beyond the Tower Lookout, which was our initial destination and have found ourselves in an unexpected network of tracks surrounded by forested hills and granite peaks.
There’s no other car in sight and it feels as though we’re a world away from civilisation, however we’re only about fifteen minutes from the centre of Eurobin in Victoria’s north east. Down below us, in the valleys and tree lined streets, the neighbouring high country towns of Porepunkah and Myrtleford are ablaze with autumn colour. Though the area is famous for its Bright Autumn festival, there’s plenty of action to be found here in all seasons. The Alpine National Park and state forests near Eurobin, where we’re staying, are filled with adventurous tracks that lead to lookouts and launching points in all directions.
We’re here for a family long weekend and to enjoy some reminiscent exploring and our first easy jaunt was Tower Hill lookout. The lookout is signed on the Great Alpine Road, only about two kilometres from the Old Tobacco sheds, west of Bright. It’s a steep though easy gravel track to the Tower however beyond there the track climbs rapidly. It wasn’t long before we were amongst a fork of tracks that seemed to converge in all directions. At one point we climbed so high that we were above the power lines. No wonder it’s called SEC track. We passed another couple of signed tracks, Snake Ridge Road and Hocking Road, and continued our slow climb upwards, enjoying 360-degree views before winding back down to the Great Alpine Road again.
Not far away the Mount Porepunkah circuit provides another scenic and exhilarating drive. The circuit starts from Star Road and heads to Mount Porepunkah Road via Quinns Gap Track, providing some sharp descents and fun inclines. Up the top at Mount Porepunkah you’ll be treated to spectacular views across Mount Buffalo and the Victorian Alps. In winter the track is often snow covered but still accessible and our daughter, who now lives in the area, has often called me from up there with snapshots of their snow-clad adventures.
There’s also a southern approach to the Porepunkah summit, a 6km return drive starting at the junction of One Mile Creek and the Great Alpine Road. There’s a steep walking path that leads up from the main road and on previous visits we’ve passed keen bushwalkers making the trek to the top. Give me a car anytime.