The Snowy Mountains region is a day's drive from either Sydney or Melbourne, and just a couple of hours from Canberra. Locality maps:
Most people look for self-contained accommodation in Jindabyne or Thredbo, or in other more outlying towns. Accommodation providers are listed separately.
What to Bring
While it may be scorching on the coast and it can get very warm in the lower parts of the snowies, the alpine region is often very cold. On a typical Thredbo summer's day it might be 18°C, but with a bit of a wind the temperature can drop to less than 10 degrees on the exposed ridges and feel more like zero. So warm, waterproof clothing is essential. Bring gloves too.
You don't need hiking boots, but your footwear should be both comfortable and sturdy. It's a good idea to wear an extra pair of socks, particularly if you haven't gone on long walks for a while.
Despite the cold the reduced screening effect of the atmosphere at altitude means that UV levels can go way beyond 11, the "extreme" category. Sunscreen and a wide-brimmed hat are vital.
Carry plenty of water and non-salty snacks. Water from mountain streams may look pristine, but it's not worth the risk of contracting nasty diseases such as giardiasis.
March flies can be annoying. As well as buzzing around and making UFO impressions for the camera they bite, especially around your ankles and calves. Apply insect repellent and pack sting relieving cream. Some people use an insect net over their hat, but it's a matter of taste.
A small first-aid kit with small bandages and adhesive pads will cover simple problems like scratches, bites and blisters. Asthma sufferers should carry their medication to mitigate the effects of breathlessness due to sustained exercise and the slightly lower air pressure at 2000m.
Work out a rough schedule before you leave home. Alternate walking days with sightseeing, boating, fishing, or some other activity. Just before you leave, check the weather forecast for the region. When you arrive and while you're there you can monitor the forecasts at visitor centres, especially the Snowy Region Visitor Centre in Jindabyne. Pick the very best weather for the alpine trips, and be prepared to rechedule activities to achieve this.
For a video preview of the Kosciuszko Walk (early season) and other Thredbo activities, check out this Getaway fact sheet: Snowy Mountains summer.
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