Great Ocean Odyssey Revisited IV (Wilsons Prom and the Journey Home)

Remember when I said this journey would be in three parts…I lied.

When I was first planning this trip a work colleague had mentioned that I should check out Wilsons Promontory, a massive national park that is in striking distance from Melbourne. A three and a bit hour drive later I was cruising down the single access road into this rugged terrain. It truly felt like the edge of the earth, with Mount Oberon looming in the distance.

This landmark within the park is the highest point for hundreds of kilometers round. The trek to the summit is an easy-ish 30mins to an hour hike. The trail starts relatively flat then suddenly turns into to stairs and steps carved into the mountain itself. If you’re in the area I cannot recommend this hike enough. The views are nothing short of spectacular.

Running on adrenaline from the hike I got the idea of being able to make it back to Sydney in time for pub trivia the next night. Instead of backtracking to Melbourne to get on the highway I thought a shortcut through the Snowy Mountains would be a more worthwhile route. If there’s one lesson I can share from this particular leg of my trip, it’s to not try driving through the Gippsland region of Victoria while on a low tank of fuel after 8.30pm. There were no service stations open until Bairnsdale, only about 240kms away.

With a full tank and a belly full of coffee I continued on my nocturnal journey on the Snowy Mountains highway. The stars just blanketed the sky everywhere I looked. Unfortunately at that time of year fog is also very common and so I wasn’t able to get a decent view for some astro-photography.

I reached Canberra as the sun slowly appeared in the east. Fog was as dense as ever until I reached Lake George. There I witnessed the fog slowly rising from the surface and burning up to reveal a nearby wind farm. From then on it was an uneventful run back to Sydney.

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