The Snowy Mountains region is a unique wonderland of rivers, mountains, caves, ski fields, and glacial lakes. The Snowy Mountains are untameable high country dotted with charming townships.
The Snowy Mountains, also known as "The Snowies", are Australia's highest mountain ranges and is the location of Australia mainland's highest mountain, Mount Kosciuszko, reaching 2,228m. They are located in southern New South Wales and are part of the larger Australian Alps and the Great Dividing Range.
The region experiences a large natural snowfall every winter, normally falling during June, July and early August. Part of the mountains known as Main Range contains mainland Australia's five glacial lakes. The Snowy Mountains region comes alive with colour in summer and autumn, and the rivers, streams, forests and lakes mean there's no shortage of fun things to do. The Snowies have 4 snow resorts. Perisher, Thredbo, Charlotte Pass and Selwyn Snow Fields. High country stockmen used the Snowy Mountains for grazing during the summer months. Banjo Paterson's poem 'The Man From Snowy River' recalls this time in the Snowy Mountains.
The range is perhaps best known for the Snowy Mountains Scheme, a project to dam the Snowy River, providing both water for irrigation and hydroelectricity.
The 700,000-hectare Kosciuszko National Park is home to Mt Kosciuszko and a fantastic venue for adventure seekers. There are many bush camping spots at Kosciuszko Mountain Retreat, including many lakes and streams, bushwalks and relaxation.
Four main tribes occupied the base of the Snowy Mountains – the Yaitmathang, the Wolgalu, the Waradgery and the Ngarigo The Ngarigo people are the traditional custodians of the majority of the region. Around 280 collective sites have been identified along the Snowy River valley. The First Nation people lived in the lower valleys of the alpine region during other seasons. The alps became a place for hunting and ceremonies, including the annual feasting on the Bogong moths that migrated to the region around spring.
After the devastation of World War II the Snowy Mountains Scheme provided opportunities for thousands of migrants to start a new life in Australia. Australia was asked by the United Nations to accept 100,000 displaced Europeans. Between 1949 and 1974, more than 65% of the workforce were migrants from over 30 countries. The majority of those became Australian citizens, who would change Australia’s society and culture forever.