In August 1936 three young men, Cleve Cole, Mick Hull, and Howard Michell, skied from Mount Hotham across the Bogong High Plains to Mount Bogong located in the north eastern area of Victoria. On reaching the mountain they became trapped for four days on the summit ridge by appalling weather conditions. To escape, they descended, by mischance into the Big River area. For three days they followed the river through very rough country before deciding that Howard, the fittest of the three, should continue alone to find help, leaving Mick to care for Cleve who by then, was barely able to continue.
Three days later a search party, raised after Howard had reached Glen Valley, found Cleve and Mick. Within two days the group arrived at Glen Valley where, tragically, Cleve Cole died later that night.
In memory of Cleve?s life, and in recognition of his pioneering work in the Victorian alpine country it was decided to build a refuge hut on the mountain. The construction of the Cleve Cole Memorial Hut in a sheltered area at the head of Camp Creek, was commenced in February 1937 and completed by autumn of the following year.
Many years later in August 1965, Mick, along with a number of interested and enthusiastic people, formed The Mount Bogong Club. From the outset the purpose of the club has been to foster interest in the mountain and to provide continuous maintenance of the Cleve Cole Hut. Since then the Club has maintained and improved the hut, and built the Michell Refuge on the Eskdale Spur as well as assisting with track and snow pole maintenance.
The Club, from its inception, has consisted of people who are totally committed to the care and maintenance of Mount Bogong, the Cleve Cole Hut and the Michell Refuge. The Club finances the supply and packing of essential maintenance materials from subscriptions, donations and social fund raising activities.