Luce just turned eight, and although her legs are yet to sprout in any way functional for long distances, she was keen for her first solo trip to the mountains with daddy.
We headed up Friday arvo and got to DP in reasonable time after shopping for supplies in Bright. Luce set and lit the fire, then cooked her first entree of cheese on toast, followed by the passing down of my time honoured and cherished family recipe of spag bol.
We played some chess, watched a movie, and had a dance party.
Next morning we woke early and went down to the upper Victoria to try and catch a fish. Unfortunately Daddy was far too noisy, clumsy and unprepared, and the trout just laughed at him.
We went back to DP to pack, then headed off down the road to road to Omeo for a baby-cino for daddy and double espresso for Luce. The autumn colours were splendid, and we continued on to Angler's Reach where they were even splendider.
Although the back route up to the High Plains is one of my all time favorite scenic Victorian routes, Luce was feeling every corner. Fortunately sleep came before any kind of duco destruction.
When Luce awoke, it was in time for lunch besides daddy's most favorite tree in the known universe. I don't know how to measure the age of snow gums, but this one is almost certainly more than a thousand years old. It is probably older than the dinosaurs. Anyway, we had a noodle slurping competition next to it.
Then we climbed Mt Cope. It was the first mountain amongst many in the future that we will climb together. From the summit we could see Mt Hotham, Mt Feathertop, Mt Bogan, Mt Kosciusko, and the water tower at Dinner Plain. There were dinosaur footprints on the summit.
We visited several huts. Lucie would have preferred to sleep in the wood room of Wallace's over Cope Hut. But at Cope Hut we saw other people. These were the only other unplanned other people we would see all weekend.
The we parked our car near Fall's Crack, hauled our packs, and headed off on our awesome adventure. It was about five kilometres to Johnson's Hut...
And got there in the end.
We met some friends there: Hans and Alex, and their kids Sophie and Greta who were wearing size eight and four.
Lucie performed a bit of planking and several random acts of arson.
For dinner we ate yesterday's spag bol leftovers which tasted even better the second time around.
After an interesting night's sleep, we headed off the next morning across the Bogan High Plains. Although we didn't come across any bogans, or another humans to speak of, we found plenty of interesting critters.
We climbed Mt Nelse, Mt Nelse North, and then kept going, all the way to Timm's.
Luce was a bit disappointed that Tim wasn't home, and after another noodle slurping competition, she had a spontaneous little nap. Daddy left her napping and ran out the rest of the Timm's ridge-line to scope some of the incredible burly lines he'd like to ski this winter. He soon got scared though and came back to wake up Luce for the long haul back to the car.
On the way home, we got treated to an alpine light spectacular. Storms were rolling in and building as we passed Nelse, and the autumn colours of the High Country were at their most vibrant. Even more so after some photoshopping.
Just before getting back to the car, right at the 21km mark for the day, Luce found a friend. It was her half-marathon butterfly. She carried it for another final kilometre before she, the butterfly and her backpack bid farewell to each other.
Once driving, she was soon fast asleep and missed the evening light on the Bogong massif.
Maybe fortuitously because which (unbeknownst to her) is our next summit.