By Brad Virgona
We started our journey to Mount Beauty first thing Monday morning and enjoyed a few stops along the way, including a delicious lunch in Benella. Upon arrival, we unpacked and explored the accommodation and surrounding to get ready to settle in for the evening.
On Tuesday we explored the Mount Beauty Pondage, which was an enjoyable walk along a mostly paved trail that was around 3kms long. We enjoyed our time in nature, surrounded by all kinds of wildlife, including the endangered black cockatoo. We could hear the river running with a wild current that was moving quickly thanks to the recent rain.
Our art project for the week was to create Origami Columbus Cubes and leaf painting and paint the water feeding station to be left as a gift for Ian who let us stay at his amazing house. Also, one of the participants made an origami black cockatoo bird. We wrote poems on the cubes and drew and painted them so that they would be interesting and attractive.
We collected outdoor leaves and painted them gold, silver, bronze, yellow, blue, and red and also wrote on them. Once all the artwork was complete, we as a group put together a mobile hanging unit which looked amazing. The unit had the Columbus Cubes hanging from it as well as the painted leaves and the black cockatoo.
On Wednesday we went on the tree fern walk which was a 2km return trip. The track followed the mountain creek and was a bit challenging in areas as it had rocks and steep edges on the track, but l was happy that we took the challenge and succeeded. In the afternoon we enjoyed some time at the Mount Beauty town, exploring the local shops and searching for a bargain at the op shops before grabbing a coffee or a cool drink at a cafe.
On Thursday we went to Bogong Village and did the Lake Guy walk which was about 3kms return. It was reasonably easy to walk with a few steps along the way. We spotted more wildlife here, while the trickle of the lakes made a beautiful sound and the water rock display kept us entertained. It was a calm and pleasant environment that had lots of fresh mountain air for us all to breathe in. We completed the walk with a famous Out Doors bucket lunch in the picnic area surrounding Lake Guy.
Friday, we spent the day travelling back to Out Doors Inc. and stopped in Benalla for a bakery lunch and to fill up with petrol. It was an amazing trip that kept us entertained with a fantastic mix of bushwalks, art projects, and other activities. l look forward to many more trips like this in the future.