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Incidents in the mountains

By johnboy 24 December 2012 20

Recent incidents in which people have ventured out into bushland inadequately prepared has prompted ACT Policing to warn the community about the need to plan for contingencies.

In the first incident, a 4WD vehicle became bogged on Saturday (December 22) while driving on tracks in the Brindabella Ranges near the Mount Coree turnoff.

The two men, with two two-year-old children and two 18-month-old infants in their vehicle, had become stuck and did not have the equipment to extricate their 4WD.

One of the men walked some distance to obtain mobile service, then texted their location. The Specialist Response Group’s Search and Rescue team was despatched, but fortunately a passing vehicle had provided a tow before police arrived.

In an unrelated incident, a group of seven unprepared bushwalkers who had left at 5am yesterday (Sunday, December 23) for a walk in the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve were caught out by the sudden change in weather and had not returned by 8.30pm.

The group, which had been lightly clothed and carried only daypacks, texted friends that they were sheltering in the bush overnight. While there were no immediate concerns for the group’s safety, the poor weather overnight prompted ACT Rangers and SRG Search and Rescue to head to the location at first light today (Monday, December 24) to ensure the walkers were safe.

SRG Sergeant Will Collins said these incidents reminded people they should prepare carefully if heading into the bush.

“We would encourage anyone who is heading into a remote area to follow the practice of preparing for a range of weather contingencies and unforseen circumstances, and always tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return,” Sergeant Collins said.

[Courtesy ACT Policing]

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Incidents in the mountains
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wildturkeycanoe 5:41 pm 29 Dec 12

Jivrashia – I could get through that series of minor bumps in any car you gave me. That doesn’t look remotely challenging in ANY sense of the word.
There’s the difference between an experienced and confident driver, and any soft roader who ventures off the tar once in their life.
When the muddy water is up to your knees and the bog at least 20 metres long [old Brindabella Falling Leaf motorcycle rally campsite, half way to Tumut], then you face a little bit of a challenge.
I’ve pulled a Nissan Patrol shorty out of a snow drift on the side of the Brindy road with a Datsun 180B. Effortlessly. That was when I had my P plates – so much for the experienced part, maybe it’s all just confidence…..

goggles13 5:21 pm 29 Dec 12

Jivrashia said :

In the first incident, a 4WD vehicle became bogged on Saturday (December 22) while driving on tracks in the Brindabella Ranges near the Mount Coree turnoff.

The two men, with two two-year-old children and two 18-month-old infants in their vehicle, had become stuck and did not have the equipment to extricate their 4WD.

Was there on Friday afternoon.
On my return from the Mt. Coree sumit I came across a set of huge holes while circumnavigating around the said mountain.

The bog holes where big enough to take in a small car whole, and probably half of a 4wd.
They were THAT EFFING BIG (pic here).

I got out and looked about to see if there was any way to navigate around it but in the end I decided not to risk it, as there was a real danger that the tyres could slip into the hole and roll the vehicle, and went back the way I came.

While leaving the scene I had a thought as to who will be fool-hardy enough to try to cross over it.
Well, there’s my answer.

Looking at the pic I can see at least one line through, if not two. yes I have done a bit of 4wding. its all about knowing where you wheels are.

but back to the original story, the driver should have never ever gone out by himself, even in summer with small kids. very irresponsible.

I have been stuck in the brindies before with older kids and it got cold very quickly. but I did have other vehicles with me so, we got out ok

LSWCHP 1:56 pm 29 Dec 12

Postalgeek said :

I would not use something like a new Subaru to discover the limits of my 4WDing skills in the Brindies. Mistakes start to get really expensive.

This. My mates and I (in V8 Land Cruisers) have recovered a lesser vehicle from the middle of the Eucumbene river after it conked out while attempting to cross. There was water up to the drivers window, and I suspect the engine had consumed some of it. Properly equipped Cruisers and their ilk can go places that other vehicles can’t, and we had no trouble crossing at the same point.

I thought that Jivrashia’s pics looked impressive, but not impossible to cross for an experienced driver in a suitable vehicle.

bigfeet 9:22 am 29 Dec 12

Jivrashia said :

All I can say is, if you can negotiate the seriously bad road west of the trail to the summit to Mt. Coree, I will be more than be happy to pay you for any lessons you can give me with my new SUV .

The fact that you call it a ‘SUV’ says a lot.

Postalgeek 9:06 am 29 Dec 12

Jivrashia said :

All I can say is, if you can negotiate the seriously bad road west of the trail to the summit to Mt. Coree, I will be more than be happy to pay you for any lessons you can give me with my new SUV.

Frankly the scene was just of stupidly deep holes and such that I would not have risked being taken into by it. I may have been imaging the risk too much, but frankly the possibility of rolling my vehicle over seemed much much too real.

Please go visit the place of the photo I have taken, and then let me know I was chicken livered.

Over to you.

Not sure what you mean by SUV, but most SUVs are simply not designed for rigorous 4WDing. More than anything they lack clearance with long wheel bases.. Even true 4WDs often need aftermarket accessorising like diff lockers, snorkels, and suspension lifts and larger tires with aggressive tread to contend with eroded fire trails and crossings. A winch is also recommended, whether powered or a Tirfor.
I would not use something like a new Subaru to discover the limits of my 4WDing skills in the Brindies. Mistakes start to get really expensive.

Jivrashia 1:43 am 29 Dec 12

All I can say is, if you can negotiate the seriously bad road west of the trail to the summit to Mt. Coree, I will be more than be happy to pay you for any lessons you can give me with my new SUV.

Frankly the scene was just of stupidly deep holes and such that I would not have risked being taken into by it. I may have been imaging the risk too much, but frankly the possibility of rolling my vehicle over seemed much much too real.

Please go visit the place of the photo I have taken, and then let me know I was chicken livered.

Over to you.

KB1971 7:51 am 27 Dec 12

460cixy said :

Hope your not the sort of person that drives up there in the snow causeing grief for other motorists

Only the summit of Mt Coree gets snow, I have never seen it on any of the lead up tracks such as Pabral, Curries or Two Sticks Roads. Having said that, two sticks does get a bit up at the end near Brinabella Mountain where Brindabella and Mount Franklin Roads meet.

Mt Franklin Rd is usually closed from this point so people cannot drive up the road and “cause grief for other motorists” as there is usually no one else in there.

460cixy 8:05 pm 26 Dec 12

Jivrashia said :

In the first incident, a 4WD vehicle became bogged on Saturday (December 22) while driving on tracks in the Brindabella Ranges near the Mount Coree turnoff.

The two men, with two two-year-old children and two 18-month-old infants in their vehicle, had become stuck and did not have the equipment to extricate their 4WD.

Was there on Friday afternoon.
On my return from the Mt. Coree sumit I came across a set of huge holes while circumnavigating around the said mountain.

The bog holes where big enough to take in a small car whole, and probably half of a 4wd.
They were THAT EFFING BIG (pic here).

I got out and looked about to see if there was any way to navigate around it but in the end I decided not to risk it, as there was a real danger that the tyres could slip into the hole and roll the vehicle, and went back the way I came.

While leaving the scene I had a thought as to who will be fool-hardy enough to try to cross over it.
Well, there’s my answer.

Hope your not the sort of person that drives up there in the snow causeing grief for other motorists

KB1971 3:21 pm 26 Dec 12

Jivrashia said :

Lazy I 11:35 pm 25 Dec 12

bigfeet said :

milkman said :

screaming banshee said :

I’ve driven a sigma through bigger than that
/internettoughguy

I too have a stigma.

I too have a stigmata and can cross muddy bog holes without sinking.

I too have a stigmatism and have trouble seeing large bog holes in the road.

Jivrashia 10:58 pm 25 Dec 12
bigfeet 1:04 am 25 Dec 12

milkman said :

screaming banshee said :

I’ve driven a sigma through bigger than that
/internettoughguy

I too have a stigma.

I too have a stigmata and can cross muddy bog holes without sinking.

KB1971 11:43 pm 24 Dec 12

Jivrashia said :

In the first incident, a 4WD vehicle became bogged on Saturday (December 22) while driving on tracks in the Brindabella Ranges near the Mount Coree turnoff.

The two men, with two two-year-old children and two 18-month-old infants in their vehicle, had become stuck and did not have the equipment to extricate their 4WD.

Was there on Friday afternoon.
On my return from the Mt. Coree sumit I came across a set of huge holes while circumnavigating around the said mountain.

The bog holes where big enough to take in a small car whole, and probably half of a 4wd.
They were THAT EFFING BIG (pic here).

I got out and looked about to see if there was any way to navigate around it but in the end I decided not to risk it, as there was a real danger that the tyres could slip into the hole and roll the vehicle, and went back the way I came.

While leaving the scene I had a thought as to who will be fool-hardy enough to try to cross over it.
Well, there’s my answer.

What were you in? A lowered Commodore?

milkman 9:15 pm 24 Dec 12

screaming banshee said :

I’ve driven a sigma through bigger than that
/internettoughguy

I too have a stigma.

screaming banshee 7:03 pm 24 Dec 12

I’ve driven a sigma through bigger than that
/internettoughguy

Jivrashia 6:11 pm 24 Dec 12

In the first incident, a 4WD vehicle became bogged on Saturday (December 22) while driving on tracks in the Brindabella Ranges near the Mount Coree turnoff.

The two men, with two two-year-old children and two 18-month-old infants in their vehicle, had become stuck and did not have the equipment to extricate their 4WD.

Was there on Friday afternoon.
On my return from the Mt. Coree sumit I came across a set of huge holes while circumnavigating around the said mountain.

The bog holes where big enough to take in a small car whole, and probably half of a 4wd.
They were THAT EFFING BIG (pic here).

I got out and looked about to see if there was any way to navigate around it but in the end I decided not to risk it, as there was a real danger that the tyres could slip into the hole and roll the vehicle, and went back the way I came.

While leaving the scene I had a thought as to who will be fool-hardy enough to try to cross over it.
Well, there’s my answer.

Grumpy Old Fart 3:03 pm 24 Dec 12

The Coree bog holes are normally navigable if you get out find your line and know the capabilities of your vehicle and don’t want to get stuck. If how ever your testosterone gets the better of you they will swallow your four wheel drive. I wonder what survival gear they were carrying I bet I could guess.

If you are going into these locations either go equipped or with another vehicle with a recovery set between you. The Brindies may be close but the weather patterns are much more variable than down here in the city and it can be a long walk to get reception if at all.

Postalgeek 3:00 pm 24 Dec 12

In an unrelated incident, a group of seven unprepared bushwalkers who had left at 5am yesterday (Sunday, December 23) for a walk in the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve were caught out by the sudden change in weather and had not returned by 8.30pm. The group, which had been lightly clothed and carried only daypacks, texted friends that they were sheltering in the bush overnight.

Maybe there were seven unprepared bushwalkers, or maybe there were six unprepared bushwalkers and someone who prefers his food to walk itself in. You can never be really sure….

KB1971 2:13 pm 24 Dec 12

I did a pushbike ride from Caloola Farm in June. It was only 60km but the difficult terrain was going to make it slow work.

We left all our details and a description of the route with John at the farm in case we were going to be late.

I also made sure I had lights on my bike, a first aid kit, something to light a fire with and more food than I needed. I advised every body else in the group to do the same. One of the guys had a spot tracker to advise his family where we were and it has an emergency alert similar to an epirb.

Just as well we did, we averaged just under 5km/h and it took us roughly nine ours and we got back in at absolute last light in a freezing winters night. John was on his way to get us in the 4WD. We are all experienced and fit mountain bikers who underestimated the terrain.

BUT we did all the right things and had contingency plans in place but we were nearly caught out.

The Brindies are only a hop skip and a jump from town but they can cause a world of hurt if you get it wrong.

LSWCHP 1:34 pm 24 Dec 12

In the last school holidays I took the kids out to Square Rock, which is a reasonable hike. Everybody was dressed and shod appropriately, and we had packs with food, water, a first aid kit, insect repellent, a space blanket, a topo map and a compass.

On the return journey we ran into a bunch of Asian tourists dressed in street clothes, with dress sandals on their feet and carrying nothing more than their iphones. They looked like the definition of an accident waiting to happen.

As for the OP…I have friends with 4WD vehicles, and I’ve been out in the mountains with them a few times. They always go in pairs or larger groups. They expect difficulties because of the nature of what they’re doing and carry all necessary vehicle rescue gear such as winches and snatch straps, and they’ve all been trained in the use of the gear. Going out to a remote area in a single vehicle with 4 infants in the back is, to be kind, stupid.

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