There are places in Victoria that have wowed us on so many occasions, and the Rubicon and Cathedral Range 4WD tracks are another perfect example of this. We were trying to dodge the long weekend traffic in March, and after two nights on a Caravan Overnight Farmstay, decided to head off on the Monday public holiday to find a spot further into the Victorian High Country.
We figured rather than take the bitumen, we’d go the scenic route, and started on Rubicon Road. From here, you go past Kendalls Campground and The Boys Campground, before continuing along Royston Road. The scenery from hereon is nothing short of amazing, and we really enjoyed it, with a big trestle bridge, old power station and plenty of beautiful trees about.
From there, turn onto Rubicon River Road, and things start to get cooler, and very scenic. Take the turn onto Tom Burns Road, where you go over the Rubicon River Crossing (that is concrete). The descent down to the crossing was wet, slippery and fairly steep when we did it in early March, and I’d imagine it doesn’t ever get much better than this.
With our camper trailer behind, we were going down in first gear low range, as slow as we could to avoid any momentum and sliding. Tom Burns Road turns into Tom Burns Link Road, and then you can turn down Quartz Creek Road. From here, you get onto Blue Range Road, then Gravel Pit Road, and then Bulls Lane.
From Bulls Lane, hang a right onto Cathedral Lane, before turning left down Little River Road, which goes past Neds Campground and Cooks Mill Campground. When we arrived at Cooks mill campground it was still packed, and after tentatively pulling into a vacant site we watched the campground empty out almost entirely for the rest of the day, with everyone going home to be ready for work the next day.
The track continues from here, going down Cerberus Road.
How hard is the track?
Having wanted to check out Cooks Mill Campground, we decided to tow our Reconn R2 Hybrid Camper along for the ride, and there were a few moments where I wished it wasn’t behind us. Towing up Royston road required low range as I watched the automatic transmission temperatures climb, peaking at around 106 degrees, on a fairly cold day.
From the turn off to Rubicon River Road, the ground starts to get soggy, and this road is seasonally closed, for good reason. We checked out the old power station, and there was a fair bit of mud from then on, particularly under the bridge and around the Rubicon River Crossing.
We found a few holes and sections that needed clearance, but for the most part it was easy enough, even with our Reconn R2 behind us.
The real surprise though, was Cathedral lane, which I knew was going to be more challenging from the moment I turned on, with decent sized ruts and holes. With just the 4WD it would have been easy enough (still the most challenging part of this 4WD track), but trying to get the camper to follow in a suitable line proved to be quite entertaining.
It did well, although we did scrape the bottom near the door fairly hard when it slid into a hole. Fortunately no damage, but you wouldn’t be doing this part of the 4WD track with a stock 4WD and no experience.
We’d probably grade this a medium difficulty track, with lots of great scenery, particularly around Rubicon River, and thoroughly enjoyed our day out.