3km (1 hour), Grade 3 Walking Track
A short distance from Dinner Plain, this lovely trail is aptly named and follows a gentle trek through Snow Gum forest and blooming wildflower meadows, ultimately rewarding walkers with spectacular, uninhibited views of Mount Hotham, Mount Feathertop, Bogong High Plains and the Cobungra River. Starting from Dinner Plain Hut, follow Fitzy’s Cirque to the sign marking the crossing point to the northern side of the Great Alpine Road and the track leading to the Forest Walks trailhead which serves three walks – Room with a View, Montane Walking Trail and Dead Timber Hill (see separate track notes). The Room with a View walk initially follows a slightly undulating trail then flattens out.
The track heads north along the eastern flanks of Dead Timber Hill. After 0.5km it drops gently down to a grassy plain and veers west to a marker that designates the track loop. Most walkers prefer to keep to the left route as it descends through snow grass and drops through the Snow Gums to a small clearing – here is the ‘room with a view’. Directly ahead in the middle ground is the Cobungra River valley. In the distance the mountain range provides a spectacular backdrop, especially before mid-morning on a clear day when the Mt. Hotham ski field lifts are visible and Mt. Feathertop, Victoria’s second highest peak [1922m], towers over the landscape like an eagle in flight. The panorama of the Bogong High Plains also takes in Mt. Jim and Basalt Temple, unusual table-topped hills of basaltic blocks whose highly magnetic composition cause magnetic anomalies with compasses. The track loop continues north along the contour and back up to the marker on the open plain from where it returns to the Forests Walks trailhead.
Dead trees along this walk date from the 2003 fires from which the landscape is slowly recovering. The regrowth of the Snow Gums is uneven depending on both the intensity of the fire exposure and where they are growing – in rocky terrain regrowth is much slower than in areas where the soils contain higher levels of organic matter.
Look out for
Red Starfish Fungi – Aseroe rubra. One of the Phalloid or Stinkhorn group, this spectacular fungus can usually be smelled before it is seen. Their spores are embedded in a slime which stinks like rotting meat to attract the pollinating flies which disperse the tiny spores with their feet. The first fungus to be described in Australia, in 1792 by the French naturalist, Labillardiere, they are among the dozens of species which can be found in the Dinner Plain area and are particularly prevalent during wetter years.