28 December 2010 The Settlers Track + extras

Maps: Shannons Flat and Yaouk 1:25000

Getting There

This walk was organised and led by me as an irregular CBC Tuesday walk:

Tuesday 28 December - The Settlers Track + Extras - M/E-M. Walk the wonderful Settlers Track in the southern ACT. Extensions to the border to see 100 year old survey blazes and nearly 2km of drop log fencing. Around13km and 150m climb. Maps: Shannons Flat and Yaouk. Leader: John Evans - jevans@pcug.org.au, (h) 6288 7235. Transport: ~$20 per person. Further details at http://jevans.pcug.org.au.

A great crew of 16 met in Kambah and we picked up 2 more in Tuggeranong. We drove via Tharwa and the Boboyan Road to just short of the ACT's southern border and parked at the beginning of The Settlers Track at Brayshaws Hut. Around 60km from Tuggeranong.

Further Information

We'll see:

1. Ground-truth Brayshaws Hut (KHA 264) - AHC Registered Site No. 101060. This residence was built during 1903, possibly by Edward Brayshaw and is one of only two slab and shingle dwellings remaining in Namadgi. The building has been conserved to its 1930s appearance. A shearing shed had been ...
2. Brayshaws shearing shed site (The shearing shed site is just beyond the nearest clump of boulders)
3. Grassy Creek sheep yards (KHA 285) - Concrete dip with yards. Built by Frank Oldfield and others about 1947. Forked fence yard in good condition with remnant forked and wire fences nearby.
4. Waterhole Hut (KHA 261) - Dwyer's was constructed between 1872 & 1904. The hut collapsed and the chimney stones were used for Waterhole Hut. Attempts to positively identify Dwyer's have been unsuccessful. Waterhole Hut was erected in 1939, extended in 1940s. The chimney and th ...
5. Waterhole stockyards (KHA 330) - Waterhole hut yard (refer 257). Built from bush timber, the yards are constructed of logs dropped between paired posts or into ‘Y’-forked posts; some of the rails are held in place with wire. A large boulder and a fallen tree have been incorporated into the yards’ perimeter. There are two ...
6. 112 Mile survey blaze
7. several border markers
8. drop log fencing
9. NSW portion survey reference tree
10. Westerman graves (KHA 880) - 2 graves, in an enclosure marked by Hawthorn trees, roses & periwinkle. Elizabeth Shiels (nee Westerman) died of tubercolosis in 1922, aged 46. Due to severe floods in area it was impossible to get her remains away to a cemetery, so a coffin was fashioned from ceiling boards from one of the main rooms and she was buried here. Second grave is that of an un-named baby daughter of Thomas and Mary Jane Westerman. Refer Westermans Homestead 260.
11. Westerman Homestead (KHA 262) - AHC Registered Site No. 101059. The present homestead is said (oral) to be the third built on this site, the first dating at least to the 1880s. The present weatherboard building dates from around 1916. Large pines and other exotics are present. A she ...
12. Westermans sheep dip (KHA 712) - Sheepdip of concreted rubble built by Thomas Westerman & Bruce Jeffreys sometime between 1916-45, associated with Westermans Homestead
13. Mixed exotics (Westerman) (KHA 713) - Westermans Homestead garden plantings & landscape elements. Includes two windbreak lines of willows (5) and pines (3), 2 poplars, an elderberry and privet in area East of Homestead. Minor species include Broom, Ivy, Iris, Periwinkle and Nettle. Hawthorn marks grave sites (refer 1205). Progression of rural fences evident including, 'fork & rail', post & rail, post & wire, and star-picket & wire.

There are some brochures of the track here (ACT Government) and here (Koscuiszko Huts Association).


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

Here's a link to Matt's photos on Facebook, if you have a FB account.



A picture-perfect day. We sorted ourselves out and wandered over to Brayshaws Hut and poked about. The great track markers took us gently up the open lead to the W and sidled us around the S slopes of Pheasant Hill. The grass was certainly longer than last time. Plenty of conversation in the large party. Most satisfying to have my kids and their partners along.

We wandered down to have a look around the Grassy Creek yards and dip, then back up to the track and across to Waterhole Hut, where we propped in the shade for morning tea.

Everyone was good to go on, so we visited the Waterhole stockyards, then retraced to the hut and followed the marked track down to where it crosses a feeder to Grassy Creek. Here we left The Settlers Track/Grassy Creek fire trail and struck off to the SW, up across grasslands and light timber to meet the new Grassy Creek fire trail just shy of the border.

Turning right, we followed the fire trail to the wonderful 112 Mile marker. 12.15pm, too early for lunch and always good to walk more than half the trip before it, we headed back SE along the fire trail . It bends back S to meet the border and we stopped again in the shade at the rail gate. Here, we toasted good walking for 2011 and Caitlin and Matt (who are recently engaged) in soda water and mineral water from red and blue (plastic, unfortunately) stemware.

Border marker P42 was nearby, so we looked at that - not a good example with which to initiate newcomers into the delights of border marker hunting.

A further 1.9km SE along the New Grassy Creek fire trail we popped over the gate into NSW to examine the NSW portion survey reference tree (see here for info about it). Observant Alison spotted a small, well camouflaged dragon on the track. Following the fire trail SE then NE took us down the drainage line towards Westermans. We passed the magnificent old huge banksia tree and its offspring.

The Westerman graves were in full bloom, lilies and briar roses as I've never seen them before. Down at the homestead we set up in chosen sun or shade and ate lunch. I had a bit of a poke around, looking for KHA 714 Stockbridge. The current location is up on a rise above Grassy Creek - the narrowest part of the creek nearby would be the obvious location, but no joy except for a couple of fence posts heading into the creek. I also photographed the pines and the poplars.

We hit the road at 2.25pm, across the new post-and-rail bridge and wandered NE back to the cars. I popped back to Brayshaws and took a photo of the shearing shed site.

A wonderful ramble at an easy pace. Many thanks for the company from Alison M, Barrie R, Caitlin E and Matt-o B, David W, Dylan and Alicia E, Elizabeth C, Janet E, Lily T, Mike B, Pam R, Phillip S, Prue D, Rob and Jenny H and Shawn F.

Distance: 14.6km Climb: 250m. Time: 9.50am - 3.00pm (5hrs 10mins), with 1hr 10mins of stops.
Grading: M/E-M; M(8)

KMZ file for Google Earth/Maps: The Settlers Track + extras

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This page last updated 23Aug22