200km – 3,600m of climbing – 4 climbs – VERY HARD
The “Original Distance” route was changed for the 30th Anniversary and proved a big success. Same climbs as in 1986, but now both 200km starts (“Buffalo Sunrise” and “Alpine Classic”) climb Mount Buffalo first, before proceeding to Falls Creek.
We’ll do our best to keep you safe on the day with food and water on-course, mobile moto marshals, and comprehensive medical and emergency coverage, but you must be well prepared for this ride if you expect to complete it successfully.
This is a very long ride with a huge amount of climbing and you will need to be extremely fit and carry sufficient water and food with you on the day. Remember that conditions in the Victorian Alps can be extreme and very changeable, and that for some of the ride you will be out of mobile phone range.
Even though this ride is held at the height of summer, it is not uncommon for conditions on Mount Buffalo, and at Falls Creek to be freezing, with rain, hail or even snow, when the heat is stifling in the valleys.
Leaving Howitt Park in Bright (300m) in the early morning, you cycle to Porepunkah, on your way to the climb up Mount Buffalo (1330m). The first water point is just prior to Mackeys Lookout corner, approximately halfway up the main climb. The next is the checkpoint at Dingo Dell, after you have crested The Gap, passed Lake Catani and done a bit more climbing!
After food, water and a brief rest you return to Bright via the Alpine Way from the Porepunkah roundabout. There is no interim control in Bright, but water is available at the entrance to Bright at the Information rotunda, so it’s straight through town and on to your next checkpoint at Mount Beauty, after climbing over Tawonga Gap (885m).
After already climbing Mount Buffalo and Tawonga Gap, most riders will probably want to stop for food and water before the long (30km) climb to Falls Creek (1560m) and a well earned rest if required. There will be water available about 3km past Bogong on the way up, after crossing the river near the Fainter Falls car park.
After a stop at the Falls Creek checkpoint, you retrace the route, returning to Bright via Mount Beauty (no control on return) and that (885m) bump of Tawonga Gap. (Be extra careful on the descent, as the Bright side of Tawonga Gap has a very high incidence of cycling accidents!) Push on into Bright where the road flattens out and celebrate with family and friends at the Bonjour Bright Festival in Howitt Park. Congratulations!
Bright (start and finish only – closes 8:30pm)
Mount Beauty (outbound only)
Falls Creek (closes 5:30pm)
There are several additional unsupported points on the route where water is available.