02 February 2018: Rees Dart Circuit partly closed
Due to storm damage to the lower Snowy Creek bridge near Dart Hut, trampers are unable to walk the Rees Dart Circuit until further notice. The lower Snowy Creek bridge is closed as it might collapse at any time after the foundations were washed out.
This bridge connects the Dart Track and Dart Hut with Dart camp site, the Rees Track and the Cascade Saddle Route.
Available options are:
In and out of the Dart Track, including staying at Dart Hut.
In and out of the Rees Track or combine the Cascade Saddle Route with the Rees Track and stay at Dart camp site, but NOT at Dart Hut. A tent must be carried. Trampers have to be mindful of the Rees road closure (updates on QLDC website) and the extended walking distance and time this incurs.
The Queenstown DOC visitor centre was still telling us that the track was actually completely closed, but didn't seem to know where that bridge was on the map… Or where Chinamans Bluff was either, as usual they don't seem to be very useful :(
We walked from Chinamans Bluff to Surveyors Flat 3 days ago and the steel bridge on Surveyors Creek has had major damage (bent) from a tree fall. Fording the creek was easy enough as water was only ~3cm deep, but I wouldn't recommend using the bridge although it is probably still strong enough to use it alone if you are stuck there during heavy rain.
Also in case you are wondering, the Rees Road is closed at Oxburn 12 Mile Creek where 300 meters of road have been washed out, this info is buried deep in the bowels of the QLDC facebook feed, quite impractical really. You would have to walk that extra road length to the start of the track.
This post has been edited by the author on 9 February 2018 at 12:14.
Yeah was in the area Kinloch/Glenorchy area last week walking Caples & Greenstone, when the area caught the tail end of cyclone that hit the west coast. Incredible thunderstorms overnight on the Wednesday, I was mightily relieved to drive back from Greenstones carpark before the worst of things the next morning.
As it was a couple of creeks from the carpark to Kinloch though had risen noticeably weren't too bad, what was though was the gravel road from Kinloch to Glenorchy, much of it was a virtual stream, certainly the limit of rental car. Glad I set off early from Greenstone's Hut and was able to the hit road at about 10am, as certainly there was no way I'd got back that day, as the rain continued pretty much all day.
I'd heard on the local news part of the Rees valley road section being washed away, but hadn't seen any news or links on the we since. It's certainly hidden away in that QLDC Facebook site!
As to the Dart track bridge that's damaged, this might be the one?