The backcountry festival is the product of a lot of volunteer effort and good will. Mt Hotham Resort Management Board, Hotham Lift Company, and a range of businesses, organisations and individuals have offered help and support in various forms. There is a list here of the festival partners.
We hope to be able to give back to some worthy causes while we hold the festival.
First, we want to have a low impact event. Check below for some ideas on minimising your impact during the festival.
We are also promoting some great causes:
1/ the Mountain Pygmy–possum
Our ‘mascot’ (totem animal?) for the festival is the Mountain Pygmy–possum, Burramys parvus, Australia’s only hibernating marsupial. The mountain pygmy possum has been declared by the IUCN Redlist as Critically endangered. In 2000, the population estimates totalled less than 2,000 individuals from the three combined isolated populations that exist across the Australian Alps.
Mt Hotham is home to a fantastic restoration program for the possum, and you will be able to hear about the efforts at Hotham during the speakers program on Saturday September 7.
DJ Eddy has organised for a snow board to be made to raise funds for the Mountain Pygmy–possum restoration work at Hotham via a raffle. You will be able to buy raffle tickets during the speaker’s program on saturday afternoon.
Any left over funds received via festival registrations over the weekend will be shared between Mountain Critter Cause and the Friends of the Earth climate campaign.
Mountain Critter Cause supports a breeding program for the possum that is run by the University of NSW. Climate change is one of the greatest threats to the possum.
Check for details on our fund raising efforts for the possum and other background info on efforts to protect the species.
2/ Action on climate change means healthy winters
Climate change poses an existential threat to deep winter snow and the mountains we love. Friends of the Earth is campaigning in more than 70 countries to reduce the impacts of climate change on people and planet.
Locally campaigns include:
- stopping new offshore oil and gas drilling
- helping Victoria to transition away from its current reliance on coal to produce electricity
- supporting the development of new renewable energy like the Star of the South offshore wind farm, and
- working with climate affected communities to get active on climate issues.
To donate and support their work, please check here.
3/ Protect Our Winters film night
On Sunday night The Bird is hosting an informal session for Protect our Winters (POW), which will include speakers and a film. All funds raised on the evening will go direct to POW.
4/ Heat the Homeless
Bring your (good quality) second hand snow clothing and donate it to the Heat the Homeless initiative. There are collection boxes on the mountain.
5/ Bring gear for the swap meet.
Second hand gear is low impact. You’re welcome to bring any backcountry gear you would like to sell/ trade/ give away to the festival. Skis, boards, packs, tents, clothing, etc etc.
6/ Raffle for the Hotham ski patrol.
As we all know, patrol does an incredible job of keeping skiers and riders on the mountain safe and helping us when we’re in trouble.
Simon Head of Bright-based Everest Sports has organised a raffle of a Weston Splitboard, valued at $1,549 as a fund raiser for patrol.*
Enter online with Everest Sports, or come and see us in the exhibitors area outside The General on Saturday where we will have a teaser of the 2020 Weston range.
Proceeds go to the Mt Hotham Ski Patrol program.
*T&C available on the website.
7/ join the #ClimateStrike
On friday September 20 there will be a world wide climate strike to demand government’s act decisively on climate change.
As part of the preparation for this, there will be a banner making session during the festival.
Sunday 10am -12 noon at The General Store – upstairs.
Come along, grab a coffee, and paint up some signs and images to be used by all Hotham folk keen to show support for the Global Climate Strike on September 20th 2019.
Details about the strike can be found at: http://www.schoolstrike4climate
For more details regarding the action planned at Hotham for Friday September 20th
contact Vanessa Chapple: 0458 617 789 or Matt Barker: 0406 385 229 or come to a meeting to offer hands on support Saturday September 14th at The Genny.
Tips for a low impact event:
- If you have a reusable cup, please bring it for use in cafés over the weekend. Bring a water bottle for re-use. There are water refill stations in the visitors centre/ transit depot and near the ticket counter in Hotham Central.
- Think about catching the bus or car pooling. There are buses direct to the resort. Our ride sharing page allows you to organise and offer lifts easily. Check our transport page for details.
- Sharing a ride or taking the bus means you’re using less fossil fuels – this is a better option than ‘offsetting’ the carbon that is produced from burning the petrol. But if you would like to offset emissions from your car you can select the ‘car’ option here [go to ‘CLICK HERE TO BEGIN’ then ‘CALCULATOR’ then ‘CAR’]. You will need to know or guess the fuel consumption per 100 km, then put in the number of kilometres you will be driving and whether your car runs on petrol or diesel.
- If you’re camping out above snow line, consider using a poo tube to reduce impacts on streams.
- Be aware of what packaging you’re bringing onto the mountain, make sure you practise #LeaveNoTrace ethics if you’re camping out, and seperate out your waste and use the recycling system at Mt Hotham.
- If you’re staying in the Hotham village, check out (and use) the Living Bin containers, which divert food waste from ending up in landfill.