Cultural Heritage

Resort Management partners with Taungurung Clans traditional owners to actively manage the natural and cultural values of the Mt Buller and Mt Stirling Alpine Resorts.

Taungurung Clans - First people of the rivers and mountains

Resource rich

The highlands region is generally considered a harsh environment with extremely cold winters and mild summers. Despite this climate, the region would have provided an abundance of resources for the Aboriginal people to exploit. This included stone sources for the manufacture of tools, and conditions which provided an abundance of animal and plant life for food and materials.

Aboriginal Enthnohistory

The Resorts lie in the traditional territory of the Daung wurrung (also spelt Taungarung) language group, which spread across much of the central region of Victoria. Ethnographic sources suggest that this group was composed of nine clans, occupying the Broken, Delatite, Goulburn, Coliban and Campaspe watersheds. The lands around Mount Buller and Mount Stirling appear to have been occupied by the Yowung-illam balug clan of the Daung wurrung.

This clan was known to have occupied land near the Howqua River quarry (Youang-illum stone quarry), Mount Battery, Alexandra, the Upper Goulburn River at Mansfield, sources of the Goulburn River and Hunter and Watson’s ‘Wappan’ Run. The clan estates, including historical and archaeological sites, of the Resorts are currently the responsibility of the Camp Jungai Aboriginal Co-operative Limited. However, there are also a number of people who claim to be traditional descendants of the Daung wurrung.

Find out more

To find out more about the Cultural Heritage of the region you can visit the Taungurung Clans website.

The following documents provide interesting information on the life of Aboriginal people in the High Country.

Stirling Summit Tree

The Mt Stirling Summit Tree is an icon of the region. This solitary ancient snowgum (Eucalyptus pauciflora) is the only tree on the 23 hectare Summit, sitting proudly at 1725m, well above the “treeline”. In 2019, it was estimated to be 319 years old.

In the winter, the Stirling Summit Tree can be completely buried in snow. When this happens, the tree is only noticeable as a snowy mound. And yet, each summer the tree emerges to enjoy the summer sun. Due to its great age, and its solitary prominence in the landscape, the Stirling Tree is an attractive feature for bush walkers, cross country skiers, photographers and others who visit Mt Stirling.

Around the perimeter of the summit are many other old snow gums, all of which are stunted, many having died from the harsh climate and bush fires. The Mt Stirling Summit Tree is included in the Register of Significant Trees at regional level with the National Trust of Australia and in 2016, the tree came 2nd in the Victorian Tree of the Year competition.

To find information on how to visit Mt Stirling so you can see the Stirling Summit Tree click here

For more reports and information visit:

Victorian National Parks Association

Heritage Council Victoria

The Mountain Journal