Uncle Roddus Tramping Diary: Tramp No 145
Edwards Hut/Mt Bowers - 20-21st September 2014
With all the warm spring weather we have been having and the veges seeds all planted and sprouting in the Greenhouse, it was time for Uncle Roddus to get back into the mountains. I had tried to go on a trip the previous weekend but I wimped out when I woke up to a miserable morning weather wise.
Our original plan was, if the weather forecast was good, to head up to the club hut on Friday night and then head into Edwards hut early on Saturday with the ultimate goal being to ascend Mt Scott the same day and head back out on Sunday. It had been a mild build up earlier in the week but the mid week long range forecast was for snow all weekend in the park. The mountains had had little snow over the winter but had a fresh dump over Thursday and Friday and more was forecast over Saturday night.
That being said, it was a fine start to the day as eight of us left the cars near Gurneys Shelter and split into two groups, the ones who wanted to keep their feet dry by crossing at the rail bridge, and the rest who had spare shoes and crossed straight away. This scribe was in the first mentioned group but as soon as we got to the other side we had to cross a side stream flowing into the Bealey river and so the rest of them went through the exercise of removing their boots and crossing. I just got wet boots. So we lost about an hour doing all this and we caught the others about half way up the first stretch of The Edwards River. It was a fairly leisurely walk up to the hut taking us almost 6 hours and with a full weekend pack, this scribe, who hadn't been out for quite some time, was feeling it by the time I got to the hut. There was plenty of fresh snow around the hut and it started snowing some more as the afternoon wore on. We had the hut to ourselves and so got the fire going and settled down to dinner and snowman building.
Sunday dawned fine again with the additional snow fall being fairly light. It was decided that if it was fine, we would make an early start and instead of Mt Scott, we would do Mt Bowers. We got away from the hut about 8:30am and headed back down the Edwards for several minutes before starting our ascent up a clear slope all the way to the ridge just below Mt Bowers. It took about 3 hours to climb this slope in deepening snow, with the more fitter members snow plugging the way for us softer folk. Crampons were donned a couple of hundred meters from the top and although it wasn't too frozen, they were needed in patches. Most of the group stopped at the ridge but Tomyu and myself had to do the summit. The trip back down followed pretty much the same route with some partially successful attempts at bumsliding speeding things up. We popped back to the hut for lunch and to pick up the rest of our gear before heading back to the cars.