Mt Trio ski tractor snow much fun

Saskia AdystiGreat Southern Herald
Snowy the tractor on the side of Mt Trio.
Camera IconSnowy the tractor on the side of Mt Trio. Credit: Margot Bryne

A snow tractor might seem out of place in WA, but that has not stopped Gnowangerup's John Byrne building one.

The owner of the Mt Trio Bush Camp and Caravan Park has built a Ford Major snow tractor complete with a set of skis from an old tractor he found in his neighbour’s bushland.

Mr Byrne, a member of the Bluff Knoll Ski Club, said the idea stemmed from a heated discussion with ski club members about what to put up on display for the upcoming Horsepower Highway.

The Gnowangerup Horsepower Highway is a new tourist route initiative that encourages all farmers from Broomehill to the Stirling Ranges to get an old tractor out and put it on display in their front paddock for everyone to enjoy.

As treasurer of the only ski club in the State, Mr Bryne thought a snow tractor could be a good way to to acknowledge the rare flurries of snow on Bluff Knoll.

“We get extremely excited every time it snows here so after a round-table discussion we thought why not build a snow tractor?,” Mr Bryne said.

“Ford Majors have actually been known to have skis on the front and were used for logging in thick snow areas of America and Canada.

“So I took a whiteboard marker and drew a little design on the window screen of my tractors to see how it would look.

“We use this old tractor down at Amelup Estate Farm that looks very similar to the Ford Major because of the old steel wheels and decided to take the tractor to town.

“A local engineering guy in Gnowangerup helped me put everything together and even put some skis on it. Next we got someone to paint it all white for us. It all came up a treat.”

The snow tractor, named Snowy, was erected at the base of Mt Trio last Thursday.

“It was a community effort, putting Snowy together, every time I see it there it brings a smile to my face,” he said.

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