Monday, August 10, 2009

Trip Report, Mt. Buller Snowboarding

Snowboarding in Australia. Who knew. Probably not as many as Australia would like.

We went up to Mt. Buller with our neighbor Bryan for the day on Saturday to see what the snow was like here. Besides that, we just wanted to say we had been snowboarding in Australia. There is some cool factor to that.

It's a pretty painless trip to Mt. Buller; just over three hours gets you there from Melbourne. It turned into a fairly warm day. It was 2-3 degrees the whole time we were there, so things were pretty soft and/or melty.

The mountain itself was pretty good sized, and had it all been open, would have probably been ok. However, the bottom of the mountain wasn't really open, due to lack of snow. The Mt. Buller website indicated that some lifts were closed, but upon re-inspection after returning home, the runs at the bottom were listed as "poor" rather than "closed."


So, basically, the top of the mountain was packed, the runs were short, and the queues at the lifts were epic. The snow was average, but there was a fair bit of ice. Without sounding like a total snob, it was a lot more ice than I was used to, what, with a few years of California and Colorado. We all took a few spills on ice that really wiped it out of us. All told, I think we were only on the slopes for about six hours before deciding we were too tired to not get ourselves hurt.

But, it was fun. Despite the expense, it was cool to get outside, see Australian snow, knock the cobwebs off before heading to New Zealand in a few weeks, and possibly most importantly, got to enjoy what was by all accounts a beautiful day. The view from the summit was good. The views from some lifts were probably better, but I'm far too much of a chicken to take my camera out on a lift, lest it not be seen until spring.

Of course, at the rate it was melting, I could get it next week.

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