12-13 July 2010 Sams Creek area

Map: Yaouk 1:25000

Getting There

This walk was organised and led by Max S as a 'Tuesday' walk:

Monday-Tuesday 12-13 July - Sams Creek area - M/M. From Yankee Hat carpark thru Gudgenby saddle and along Sam‘s Ck for 2-3 km to find a suitable campsite. In the afternoon and next morning explore peaks and rock outcrops to the west around SH 1721 with daypack. Map – Yaouk. Medium – but likely cold. Anyone interested please advise.

3 of us met and we drove down to the Yankee Hat car park.

Further Details

The aim is to walk up Sam’s Ck to about East of SH 1721, about 11-12 km, set up camp, climb SH 1721, explore area south and return – about 5 km. Tuesday we could climb to somewhere Nth of SH 1721 to explore ridge nth before returning to camp and return. This will depend on weather outlook and the amount of snow already on the ridge.


Access all primary pics here. All thumbnails in the walk report are active - click for a larger picture.


Track overview

Track a Track b Track c Track d Track e Track f

Day 1

A cool morning, but sunny, the day preceding a 'vigorous front'. 3 or 4 dogs sighted as we drove in.

Away at 8.05am and via fire trail and footpad to Gudgenby saddle. 6.9km in 1hr 50mins.

Another 1.1km in 25mins down to over Naas Creek. The footpad is quite indistinct after it leaves the saddle, heading generally down the S side of the gully. Found a spot in the sun for morning tea.

30m or so found us at the double blue tapes - marked also by the large fallen tree across Sams Creek fire trail.

Heading W from Gudgenby saddle towards Sams Creek fire trail Double blue tapes at intersection of footpad from Gudgenby saddle and Sams Creek fire trail

A real test of friendship is whether a walk leader will hunt border markers at every opportunity - this Max allowed as we reached the watershed between Naas Creek and Sams Creek and, of course, the border. Realising that every minute of hunting time was taking away from his objectives, I limited it to 3 - P83, O83 and N83. Nice to know what sort of markers to expect in this area and the area is very pleasant too.

(Two more day-walk border marker hunts in this area present - (1) continue N along the border as far as a day allows, with wimpy return the same way and harder option out via the N Gudgenby saddle and Bogong Creek; (2) S along the border over the 1520m knoll and return via the Maurice Luton fire trail. I think Rob would be interested in the second, so on a Saturday.)

P83 O83 N83

From N83 we headed back to Sam's Creek fire trail (it is relatively well defined from the double blue tapes to the ford) and N along it to the ford over Sams Creek. Flowing well and deep - a handy black sallee bridge a couple of metres N of the ford. Around 50m along the ft was the camp site that Rob suggested, complete with fire place. Arriving at 11.35am, we set up camp, dumped unwanted gear and headed up.

1 Black Sallee bridge across Sams Creek very near the ford Ford of Sams Creek from the W

The direction was generally W and we climbed around 280m over 1.1km in 55mins. Strenuous enough to stop us talking. Excellent views opened up behind us to the W side of Mt Gudgenby and, once we'd broken out onto granite slabs, SW to the snow on the Main Range and Mt Jagungal. Time for lunch, as the ridge continued to climb to the NW towards the unnamed knoll E of SH1721. We'd tromped a few tiny patches of snow and the knoll had a bit more on its SE face.

Mt Gudgenby from 1460m contour heading up W towards SH1721 Knoll E of SH1721 from lunch on day 1 View from lunch on day 1 Mt Gudgenby from lunch on day 1

Refuelled, we pressed on over granite slabs up to the majestic knoll. Views became better. At this point, Max began his visual hunt for his tarn, which Rob had confirmed was S of SH1721. He wandered to the S extremity of the slab, but no joy. I was sated with the morning's unexpected border markers; the tarn hunters pointed here and there.

The Fortress and Mt Gudgenby from the West above Sams Creek Approaching the knoll E of SH1721 Max looks S for his tarn from the knoll E of SH1721
2 The Fortress, Mt Gudgenby and Naas Creek from the knoll E of SH1721 Max and Rob on the knoll E of SH1721

550m to the W, via a dip containing dense regrowth, we reached SH1721. My gaze was drawn to the N, to Kelly and Namadgi et al. This direction showed a small tarn below us, but we again wandered to the S of the top to look for Max's original destination. Perhaps it was there, hidden beneath the concave line of sight. Much burnt timber and regrowth to the S and we'll have to come back to satisfy curiosity. The top of SH1721 was a little more closed in than the previous knoll - this knoll deserves better recognition.

Mt Kelly, Mt Namadgi over Sams Creek and Max's Tarn from near SH1721 Rock ribs near SH1721 E to knoll and Mt Gudgenby from SH1721 View S from SH1721 searching for Max's original tarn View towards Mt Scabby from SH1721

It being 2.15pm, Max thought we'd best head for home, via the N tarn. We headed 120m down to the NE, walked along the side of a swampy bit and came across a pleasant enough little water hole, dubbed 'Max's tarn' (until we return and find the S one). The knoll we were on, now to the S of the tarn, has quite a little cliff line which is not really indicated on the 1:25000 topo map.

3 'Max's tarn' 'Max's tarn' Knoll above 'Max's tarn'

The final leg for the day took us 2.1km in 1hr 20mins generally E and 240m down to Sams Creek, where we picked up the fire trail and headed S back to the tents, arriving at 4pm.

Some success with my tucker, as I'd purchased a food dehydrator the previous week, test dried some bananas which worked ok, then did a rather nice cooked chicken mince and Cantonese sauce and stir fried veges. With half a packet of 2 minute noodles, it rehydrated well and was an excellently tasty meal. Evening entertainment from a nearby lyrebird.

External and internal warmth kept us up till 7.30pm. A clear, still, starry night with frost already glistening on the tents as we went to bed.

Day 2

The wind came up on the ridges for a couple of hours during the night, but the camp site is very sheltered and there wasn't a flap of a tent. Only downer (in the current season) is that the site doesn't get much sunlight, so is a little damp.

The morning dawned overcast (hence a warm night with a very mild frost), but with the 'vigorous front' forecast, Max prudently chose to not return to the ridge line. Much joy for me, as this meant a little more border marker hunting as we headed back down Sams Creek fire trail onto the Naas Creek flats. Away just after 8am, across the log bridge and pretty much E onto the spur still forming the watershed between Naas and Sams Creeks. Found J83, K83 - a lovely quartz lockspit, and L83. A seniors' moment as I thought we'd covered M83 yesterday, so missed it. (Further research at home revealed that the 49 Mile marker is between J83 and K83 and we didn't see it as I've had trouble calculating the mile marker locations - another reason the return.) Back onto Sams Creek fire trail and S along it till it was time to head off to the right to pick up P83, Q83 - an interesting 2-level lockspit, and Rb83 (with Rb83, Ra83 and R83, Mouat must've had a bad hair day). Sated - for the moment - we headed back to the fire trail and along to the double blue tape.

J83 K83 L83 Q83 Q83 Rb83

We hadn't done too well on the section of Sams Creek fire trail between the double blue tapes and the intersection with the Maurice Luton ft on a previous occasion, but it was easy when you know how (or have Rob H with you). A little help from some pink tapes around 300-500m S of the double blues where the fire trail crosses a wet area, and some white cloth tapes (not necessary as the footpad is distinct) around 400m N of the junction with the Maurice Luton ft. All this I've added to the documentation of Sams Creek fire trail here. Double blue tapes to junction with Maurice Luton fire trail 1.7km in 27mins, with the weather going distinctly grey and the clouds lowering.

From the junction with the Maurice Luton fire trail, we continued down Sams Creek fire trail out onto the Naas Creek flats and down to Lutons Crutching Shed. 4.8km in 55mins - the weather was coming in behind us. Had a poke around the site, the white board inside and drop log fencing in front. A new water tank out back. Back to the womb for me - this was where I did my first overnighter with Rob and Jenny on the July 2004 navigation course.

The last bit of interest is what I'll call the 'junctions area'. It's complicated by the fact that a new Bulls Flat fire trail has been put in since the second edition of the 1:25000 Yaouk map and Sams Creek fire trail has been realigned. I also think the new fire trail signs can be misinterpreted:

6.5 km

means you are on the Sams Creek fire trail and the Maurice Luton fire trail is 6.5km away. Is that how you'd interpret it?

Anyway, the area has previously fooled me a fraction. Have a look at the track map segment for details (ignoring the wiggle to the E of the Junction Sams Creek ft and Bulls Flat ft, as we were looking for something).

4 Looking back NW along Sams Creek fire trail towards Mt Gudgenby Signage in Lutons crutching shed 5 Drop log fencing at Lutons crutching shed 6 Max and Rob walk Sams Creek ft in the junctions area

We hit the junction of Sams Creek fire trail and the Old Boboyan Road at 11.35am. It had started to drizzle. I arrived at the little building at Yankee Hat car park at 1.25pm - that's 9.4km in 1hr 50mins - marvellous how a need can motivate one!

Lunch at the Foresters Hut just up from the car park.

A great walk thanks Max and excellent company with Rob H. Carefully slotted in weather-wise for excellent views from an area last visited 4 years ago.

Distance: 37.8km Climb: 900m. Time: 2 days
Grading: M/M

KMZ file for Google Earth/Maps: Sams Creek area

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This page last updated 20Aug22