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Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18



The Melbourne Bushies - Fifty years along the track (1940-90)

winter food. Shutters were made to prevent window breakage from snow build-up.

The SEC removed the pipes from the aqueduct in 1972, thus preventing vehicles from gaining access to the aqueduct track from the Wilky road and, of course, vice versa. The Club, on the SEC's directive, had earlier erected a barrier on the lower track - it was either that or a properly constructed track to he built at MBW's expense. The Club was still allowed to use the lower track, if necessary, for work parties. Members still usually brought their own cars down the main road, as the Club had a key to the harrier; however, the road was in very bad condition. The CRB barrier had been removed from Langfords in the late sixties, so if weather turned bad, members only had to worry about getting their cars out to the main Omeo Road.

During John Chennell's time as Lodge Manager (1962), a small pressure-pack gas stove was bought for the lodge. It was quickly realised that this was fairly useless, so a primus gas stove and cylinder were bought. In December 1974 the present gas stove was installed with its larger cylinders.

Painting and cleaning inside were ongoing jobs at Wilky. During Anzac weekend, 1975, tiles were laid in the lounge and kitchen, which helped to keep the floors cleaner. Stove cleaning and adjusting the flue were common tasks. Water problems occasionally occurred, caused by burst and blocked pipes or dam leakages.

Despite the Club ruling that no dogs should be taken to Wilky, they were still being brought in during 1976 and 1977. Winter usage was slowly increasing, with five parties in 1976 and six in 1977.

During Australia Day, 1977 a new fibreglass septic tank was installed that, it was hoped, would eliminate problems with flushing the toilet. A large supply of wood was also collected alpine ash from SEC clearing near Falls Creek, which was much easier to cut and split than snow gum.

Early heavy snow falls in May 1977 caused chaos for a party putting in winter food. They decided not to leave the cars at the barrier on Friday night; it then snowed heavily and much of Saturday was spent by Rod Mattingley towing cars up to the barrier with his Land Cruiser. More snow prevented them from going further. The group eventually walked out to Falls Creek on Monday, as even Rod's Land Cruiser couldn't get through the drifts. Most of the party went home to Melbourne leaving the drivers behind, hoping to organise a snow plough. This did not eventuate, so the drivers also returned to Melbourne. The police next informed them that the road had been cleared up to the parked cars so the drivers were able to return on Thursday morning to pick up their vehicles.