A cache in the Snowy Mountains deserves to be placed at a spectacular site.
This cache will involve an overnight hike (unless you are insanely fit). The total distance is 32 kilometres. There are a number of huts along the way should you decide to stay and the weather turns nasty.
Start at the Guthega Power Station (S36° 20.994 E148° 24.856) and head north. There are two options from this point: choose the main track that starts west and does a few switch backs to reach the top of the ridge, or cross the bridge and head north along Disappointment Ridge. The later is a more gradual climb, without the up and down segments along the earlier option.Both tracks meet again at S36° 18.518 E148° 23.726.
From here it is another two kilometres to Schlink Pass (S36° 17.330 E148° 23.164) which is the highest point along the track – 1810 metres. The weekend that this cache was planted (early February), the Pass was covered in snow and quite cold.
The track continues north and slightly downhill. After passing a quarry to your right, the track heads west. Soon after you will come across a track branching to the north (S36° 15.712 E148° 22.432). This track is part of the Australian Alpine Heritage Walk - look for the post with the logo attached.
Continue north for another four and a half kilometres, following Duck Creek, until you reach Valentine Hut (S36° 13.621 E148° 22.284). This is a great spot to stay overnight. Should you have to stay in the hut, you’ll be greeted by Fatso and its warm conversation. You should also admire the view from the drop toilet. Drop your overnight gear here and head off to the cache. It is another kilometre from the Hut and requires some rock hopping and hole dodging – I wasn’t going to make this easy, was I?
If you still have some energy, travel another 100 metres to see the waterfall in all its glory, along with a view up the Geehi valley (S36° 13.947 E148° 21.930).
Grab a good night of sleep and head back to the Power Station in the morning.
Don’t forget that you’re hiking in high country. Therefore, no matter what time of the year, you should take along warm weather gear and alert friends or family of your route and intended time of arrival. Note: there is NO mobile phone reception during any portion of this walk.
Handicaching rating: H55555