Cootapatamba Hut was built by the SMA as a hydrographer's hut during the planning for the Snowy Scheme. As a founding member of Kosciuszko Huts Association (KHA) Rex Cox became the caretaker and over the years he was assisted by many SASC members. Eventually SASC became the official caretaker, and the XC and Bushwalking group began organising 2-yearly painting and maintenance trips.
The hut sits below Lake Cootapatamba in the shadow of Mt Kosciuszko and it is exposed to the full force of the Snowy winter. If you have walked from Thredbo to Kosciuszko, then you will have seen the little red hut sitting in the snow grass next to the Swampy Plain River just below the lake.
In early 2019 NPWS inspected the hut and decided that it should be rebuilt. However, since the hut is heritage listed the design had to comply with strict heritage guidelines.
In the winter of 2019 the new frame was constructed at the NPWS Jindabyne depot and exterior cladding boards were cut and painted.
During Feb and Mar 2019, the old hut was moved off its base and the new frame concreted into position using steel supports. Over the next several weeks the new hut was built as a replica of the old hut. The original project plan was interrupted first by bushfires (NPWS staff were called away from the hut project to assist) and then by gale force winds which grounded the helicopter being used to ferry workers and materials.
To assist in the rebuild NPWS asked the SASC caretakers to provide two volunteers each week. The volunteers would be required to hold a White Card, travel to the site via helicopter and camp there for the working week. We originally had 6 volunteers ready to assist but due to weather delays only two members managed to make the trip - Ian Griffith and Jonathon D'Arcy.
By early April the hut was completed and is now a fantastic replica of the original even including its infamous power point.
A great result thanks to the hard work of NPWS, KHA and our SASC volunteers.
Along with our photos from 2019, there is some good history in the first two photos from 1990 and 2007.