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There are some good driving roads that you can do in a day trip from Melbourne, but to get out and see some of the REALLY good roads, it's just too far to drive in a day and still enjoy the trip. So, we do longer trips!

Here's what we've done so far and we'll be planning more soon!


Our first Mad Mountain Marathon was in late Nov, 2018. Planned to go for 3 days through the highlands and Victorian Alps. However, the weather was against us. Though clear for the first day, as we arrived in Mitta Mitta for our first overnight stop, it came to our attention that there had been 32cm of snow at Falls Creek in the last 36 hours, so we headed off the next morning towards Bogong High Plains Rd feeling a little apprehensive. Luckily, weather still clear, it had mostly melted by the time we got there. A a few slushy bits slowed us down, but nothing to worry about... until later that afternoon. Stopping to fill up at Bright, some of the group took a little detour up Mt Buffalo while the rest kept going up towards Hotham. From the moment we left Harrietville to the very top of the mountain it bucketed down so hard there were little rivulets on every corner and standing pools of water on every straight. Still, the next morning we awoke at Hotham to find glorious sunshine and great weather for a trip down the other side of the mountains. But after lunch in Bruthen, the heavens opened again and the cars got another wash as we headed back towards Melbourne for the end of this awesome (even if very wet) trip.


The next trip for the Mountain Marathon Maniacs was a little more ambitious. In Autumn of 2019, this time we would be venturing into NSW to visit Mt Kosciuszkoand staying in Jindabyne for 3 nights. The trip started off well with our trip along the Buchan-Orbost Rd being a standout (no wonder the Snowy River Rally is so popular!). Heading through Orbost to Delegate was met with a few frowns as the road turns to gravel for a few kilometers past Goongerah, but we made it to the border and turning off just after Bombala, found ourselves on The Snowy River Way. A fantastically scenic and flowing drive all the way up to Jindabyne.

Day 2 was much less of a driving day and more of a walking day. We drove to Thredbo and took the chairlift up the ski slopes and then did the walk up to the top of Mt Kosciuszko, the highest elevation point in Australia! It was quite a tiring walk and very cold, but a great experience and unbeatable views!

Day 3 was the big one. Via Alpine Way to Cabramurra then Tumbarumba and back the same way was the plan, but as we left Khancoban, the road up the hill was closed do to planned burning! We had to quickly find an alternate route, so headed straight to Tumbarumba (which also turned out to be a decent road) and then up the hill from there, stopping at some cool waterfalls on the way. Getting to Cabramurra to instantly find the other end of the closed road, we stopped off at Three Mile Dam to hear the echoes of Nick's exhaust pops across the water before heading back. While the Alpine Way was a little damp and misty in spots on the way over, and the road to Cabramurra was dry, as we headed back past Khancoban, we discovered that this trip was to be just as cursed by rain as the lat one. From there to Thredbo was the heaviest rain many of us had ever witnessed. For a while it was fun to splash through the puddles and see how well the tyres held on, but soon the torrential downpour forced us to a literal walking pace as the rain was so heavy, visibility was reduced to about 4-5 car lengths. Eventually we made it back to Jindabyne and collapsed. 8 hours of windy alpine roads are much more exhausting than 8 hours of highway driving!

Day 4 next morning, packing up, still quite tired from the last day's adventures, we set off home back the way we had come. We were too tired to have quite as much fun on the way back, opting to skip the Buchan detour in favour of getting home sooner, but stopped for coffee at Heyfield and had a chill afternoon on the highway from there.


Way too much to go over here, so here's the abridged version.

Day 0: Took an overnight Spirit of Tasmania and had the roughest crossing many of the staff had ever experienced. Some of us were VERY sick. Trip's off to a great start!

Day 1: Devonport > Sheffield > Mt Roland (awesome lookout) > Mole creek (cool caves and a platypus) > Launceston (Cataract Gorge)

Day 2: Launceston > Targa (The Sideling) > Derby > Pyengana > Binalong Bay (Bay of Fires) > Chain of Lagoons (Elephant Pass) > St Marys > Rossarden > Launceston

Day 3: Launceston > Mole Creek > Mt Roland > Moina > Cradle Mt (Cradle Mt walk with wombats and echidnas!)

Day 4: Cradle Mt > Wilmot > Upper Castra > Gunns Plains (Preston Falls) > Upper Natone (THAT Targa intersection) > Riana > Penguin (big penguin) > Burnie > Somerset > Oohnah > Hellyer Gorge > Cradle Mt

Day 5: Cradle Mt (Tassie Devils up close) > MacKintosh Dam (mad echoes) > Rosebery > Lake Pieman > Whaleback Lookout > Reece Dam > Zeehan > Strahan (Ocean Beach sunset)

Day 6: Strahan > Queenstown (Lyell Hwy hillclimb) > Gormanston (Iron Blow lookout) > Nelson Falls > Donaghys Hill > Franklin River > Lake St Clair (planned burning) > Derwent Bridge

Day 7: Derwent Bridge > Tarraleah > Ouse > Mt Field (rained out) > Hobart

Day 8: Hobart > Taroona > Tinderbox > Woodbridge > Cygnet (Pagan Cider) > Woodstock > Pelverata > Lower Longley > Kunanyi/Mt Wellington (incredible views) > Hobart

Day 9: Hobart > Richmond > Buckland > Swansea > Coles Bay (Freycinet & Wineglass Bay lookout) > Bicheno

Day 10: Bicheno > Lake Leake > Poatina (what a hillclimb) > Miena (Great Lake) > Breona > Golden Valley > Mole Creek > Sheffield > Devonport

Final haul: Huge regrets trying to save some money and not get cabins on the way home, not worth it, just cough up for a cabin!


The restrictions of covid and the post-pandemic world delayed this trip for years, but we finally got around to it and holy cow it was fun!

Heading off early Friday morning, basically this trip would be the reverse of MMM1, but it got off to a shaky start when one member mistook the day and was a long way behind. Luckily though, due to another member's car deciding it would rather part ways with the not holding the sway-bar end link on, we had long enough delays for the other one to catch up!

With some Supercheap Auto lug nuts holding the end link in place, we resumed our trip through Gippsland to Bruthen for lunch. Now comes the fun stuff - From Bruthen up into the hills is the Great Alpine Road, one of the best stretches of tarmac the state has to offer with epic scenery too! Working our way up to Swifts Creek, a little detour through Cassilis and a stop at the Kosciusko lookout to check out the spectacular view and on to Mt Hotham for the overnight stop. However, as we climbed, the temperature dropped. The forecast for Saturday was never great, but as we arrived at Danny's Lookout at the top of Mt hotham for a quick look at the view before heading in to the accommodation, there was no view - the clouds had rolled in and the wind howled with a vengeance. With air temp at a less-than-comfortable 1 degree and wind chill making it ""feel like -10"" it was time to settle down to a hot meal (with a quick play in the snow first).

Day 2 we awoke to a significant dusting of snow (about 10-15cm) and very little visibility. After giving the cars plenty of time to warm up, we headed off into the mist. The top of the mountain was slushy with snow and made for treacherous conditions, but we took it slow until the roadside was devoid of the white stuff then we could resume a more enthusiastic pace, heading down the mountain to a proper breakfast in Harrietville. Making our way across Tawonga Gap, we refuelled in Mt Beauty, brimming the tanks for the long stretch before us. Up the mountains again, this time heading to Falls Creek where the only delay was the road reconstruction around the Bogong Village landslide. At the top we were again met with snow and opaque grey vistas, but the snow-dappled greenery and chilly mists of the Bogong high plains made for a brilliantly picturesque landscape for us to zoom through! Heading south again, we tackled the breathtaking Omeo Highway with all its twists and turns, low-gear corners and epic landscaped switching from lush damp forest to huge rocky cliffs and outcrops, then to open rolling farmland as we made our way into Omeo for lunch and a much-needed break from the long stretch to get there! After the break, we turned around and did it again, this time heading down the hill all the way through Glen Wills and on to the awesome Mitta Mitta Pub for a fantastic dinner and a well earned sleep.

Sunday morning we took things a bit slower. After the action packed day yesterday, we headed up to Dartmouth Dam for a look at the water before heading back down the valley towards the nearest fuel at Yackandandah. Filling up with 42-46 litres each told us that we didn't have much wiggle room left in the tank for detours on that leg! With our fuel worries abated, on we went to Beechworth for a hot lunch but found it to be absolutely bustling! Turns out there was a car show taking up most of the main street through the centre of town! Eventually we managed to find parks, go for a wander to check out some of the machinery on display, then get some food and headed off again, this time heading through the twisty roads of King Valley and Whitlands. Finally we arrived in Mansfield for an afternoon coffee break and the official end of the cruise. Our cars significantly dirtier than they were setting out and all a bit tired after 3 long days driving over a thousand kilometres! But all exhilarated from the journey!

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