b' NewsThe New Thomastown BridgeThomastown is located in the Alpine The bridge over Shaw Creek at the deteriorating bridge was inspectedNational Park, off the Tamboritha Thomastown is a wooden structure by an engineer and deemed to beRoad north of Licola. At an elevation with the seasonal closure gate at the unsafe for vehicle traffic. Over theof 1280 metres above sea level, Tamboritha Road side. The bridge is years the timbers had rotted. Thomastown is a popular, easily sited near a superb section of Shaw The gate was locked, and a signaccessed camping and picnic place. Creek, where there is a shelving rock placed to warn of the closure of theThe southern end of Kelly Lane starts bank on one side and a pool deep bridge. Four wheel drive access toat Thomastown where the track enough for a cooling (very cold) dip Kelly Lane was still available from thecrosses Shaw Creek. The track has on a hot summers day. There is a south by taking Dingo Hill Track atpreviously featured in TrackWatch picnic table and up the hill a long Tamboritha Saddle and then Scrubbyand has two huts, Kelly Hut and drop toilet. In the last quarter of 2019, Hill Track.McMichaels Hut. The historic hutshave been worked on by various fourwheel drive clubs. At its northern endKelly Lane, at 1448 metres, joins theHowitt Road near the scenic areaknown as The Gorge. Close to thenorthern end of the track Shaw Creekis crossed on a concrete bridge.There are seasonal closure gates ateach end of Kelly Lane. The closureof Kelly Lane is unique in that theclosure and opening dates arenegotiated, usually following a trackinspection, with Four Wheel DriveVictoria and Parks Victoria each year.This flexibility is designed to protectthe fragile and ecologically importantShaw Creek environment. The trackusually closes a little earlier andopens later than the normal seasonalclosure dates. TRACKWATCH SEPTEMBER 2020 3'