The Great Alpine Road, its towns and its history should be on the ‘bucket list’ of all visitors to the High Country and are best explored over a number of days. In 1883 the road from Bright to Omeo was upgraded from a packhorse track to a road wide enough for horse drawn coaches. This road serviced the gold fields of the Ovens Valley, Dargo, Omeo, Cobungra and beyond and is now known as The Great Alpine Road. Where the Bright to Omeo road met the road to Dargo, about 10kms from Mt Hotham (known as ‘Baldy’ back then) on the Harrietville side, a Lady, Mother Morrell, established St Bernard’s Hospice in 1863 providing accommodation and food to passing travellers. It was mostly in operation, under different owners, until it burnt down in the 1939 bushfires. Today, it is well worth stopping on the Great Alpine Road, on the bend near the Dargo Rd and wandering across to the Hospice site where a stone cairn sits at a small clearing. You can see the hole in the hillside behind this clearing that was used as a cellar and admire the view, opposite, to Mt Smythe.