History & Highlights

We believe that two of the best spots in the King Valley are where the King Valley Challenge starts and finishes. Come join us and see the best of the valley in a day. Stay longer and explore other awesome areas of the King Valley too ....

Lake William Hovell – RACE START AREA

A high country lake supplied by the mighty King River and bordered by national park. This reservoir holds water for domestic and agricultural purposes downstream. The lake is ideal for kayaking and great recovery for the legs after the 15km hilly run leg! There are 4WD tracks around the lake and these are utilised for the run leg. Run Leg Plan A has two creek crossings, if due to flooding we use Run Leg Plan B, you do the first creek crossing and then head up a steep hill, it's awesome!

lake kayaks

Lake William Hovell - race start area

Power's Lookout – RACE FINISH AREA

Harry Power was one of Victoria's most notorious bushrangers, committing over 30 crimes. Few people know that he was the bushranger who taught Ned Kelly! The teenage Ned Kelly partnered Power on several hold-ups, and as his apprentice learnt how to escape the police and survive in the bush.

Harry Power was an excellent bushman and horseman, often eluding capture by disappearing into rugged terrain. He had several well-hidden camps scattered around the wild hill country that was his domain, including one near Powers lookout.

A £500 reward led to Harry's capture at Power's lookout on a dark and stormy night in 1870.

More about Harry

Harry Power (also known as Henry Johnstone) spent 30 of his 72 years in jail. He was born in Ireland in 1819, and was sentenced to seven years for stealing a pair of shoes and transported to Tasmania in 1840, aged 21.

Sometime after his release he ventured to Victoria. In 1855 he was sentenced to eight years for horse theft and wounding a policeman with intent to do grievous bodily harm. Within a year of his release he was again caught for horse stealing and sentenced to seven years on a road-gang.

In 1869, just a few months before his official release, Harry Power escaped! He remained at large for 16 months as a bushranger. On his recapture he was sentenced to 15 years hard labour. He was released in 1885, aged 66 years, having spent most of his adult life in jail.

Prison mates from the King Valley

While in Pentridge, Harry met Ned Kelly's uncles, Thomas and John 'Jack' Lloyd. The brothers were serving five years for cattle stealing. Soon after Harry escaped the road gang he visited the Lloyds who lived in the King Valley. The Lloyds introduced Harry to their brother-in-law, John and James Quinn, criminals in their own right.

The Quinn family homestead, Glenmore Station – the home of Ned Kelly's grandparents – was located in the King Valley below Power's lookout. Harry set up a permanent camp on the rocky outcrop as it had a natural vantage point. He used some of his bushranger's bounty to reward the Quinns for harbouring him.

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Harry Power speaking to a visitor about the view from Power's lookout:

"Yer was never there sir, you say; well I hope you'll go some day. It's there ye'll see the finest sights in the world ay! It's grand to be on the ranges, and to breather beautiful pure air, and to see Mount Feathertop far above ye, and down below, for miles and miles, the beautiful country. There's water all year round, and it's always cool and pleasant. That's the place for a man to live!"

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finish line view

What a view at the finish of the race!

 

powers holdups

Harry Power's holdups - all of the orange dots

 

 

Other things to do and see in the King Valley:

Visit some of the many wineries
(there's lots on the way from Lake William Hovell to Powers lookout for your support crew!)

Visit Lake Cobler

Mt Cobler Walk

Visit Paradise Falls

Other activities you can try in the King Valley:

Horseriding

Fishing

Kayaking

Canoeing

Mountain Biking