14 February 2012 Border Markers on the Clear Range from Caloola

Border Marker G31 on the Clear Range - bolt set in concrete by Percy Sheaffe nearly 100 years ago

Map: Michelago 1:25000

Getting There

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

Tuesday 14 February - Border Markers on the Clear Range from Caloola - L/E-M,WptX. Wander in from Caloola with several crossings of the Naas River. Ascend The Forest Trail and hunt border markers on the Clear Range. Around 27km and 700m climb, modified if hot. Map: Michelago. Leader: John Evans - jevans@pcug.org.au, 0417 436 877. Transport: ~$12 per person.

4 of us drove from town to Caloola Farm, where we met the Manager, signed in on the Bushwalkers Board and parked the car in the correct place. Max reckoned we should have hitched it to the hitching rail.

Further Information

Modified if it's hot. Rang John at Caloola and got the OK. Park to left of caravan. Sign on in the bushwalking register on deck of caravan. Ring on land line in caravan if necessary.


You can access all photographs here.


Track maps: thumbnails are active - click for a larger picture
Track overview Track 1 Track 2 Track 3

In summary, found V31, W31 and 88 Mile marker. X31 not found. Found U31, T31, S31, R31, Q31, P31 and O31. N31 and M31 not found. Found L31. 87 Mile marker and K31 not found. Found J31, I31H31, G31, F31 and E31. D31 and C31 not found. Found B31 and A31. So we found 18 border markers and 1 Mile marker. We visited the location of, but could not find 6 border markers and 1 Mile marker.

Away on a cool-ish and overcast day, perfect for walking. Very different to the last time I came this way on 18 Feb 06, when I nearly carked it.

There was some discussion, as we crossed the Naas River for 5th or 6th time, as to how many river crossings I'd said there would be. I will point out to 2 of the party members, who questioned my veracity, the above walk description containing the word 'several'. There were, in fact, 7 crossings before we reached the junction of the Naas Valley Fire Trail and The Forest Trail. 8.7km in 1hr 50mins to here.

Next followed a little climb up zig and zag of The Forest Trail to the crest of the Clear Range. This leg 4.6km in 1hr, climbing 210 vertical metres, so we were able to keep up a decent pace. We deserved our morning tea.

So the fun could now begin. Ian, new to this caper, was anticipating the first marker. We first headed S and picked up V31 (a double, parallel, set of lockspits, one no doubt from an earlier survey), W31 and the 88 Mile marker. We could not find X31.

Border markers S of here we'll pick up on a planned trip from the E side of the Range, so we about turned and headed N along the border. At times, the Clear Range Fire Trail provided assistance. We found U31 and T31, fairly nondescript lockspits and cairns. S31 revealed its galvanised iron pipe. R31 doesn't deserve a comment. Q31 was marked with a star picket. P31 and O31 were well shaped lockspits. No sign of N31 and M31 at their respective locations.

L31 was very obvious - the exposed galvanised iron pipe under a strainer post for the ACT-NSW and Namadgi National Park boundary fence. No sign of the 87 Mile marker and K31.

J31 was marked with a star picket. I31 had the remains of the original wooden peg and was also marked with a picket.

It was just after 12 noon by now, so we sat in the shade on the side of a grassy knoll, with views to the NW, for luncheon. Thoughts turned to how to get home as (and this has never happened before) I was soon to run out of border marker location is my GPS.

Away again, with H31 a lockspit. G31, described in the original field note book by Percy Sheaffe as an 'Iron bolt' was indeed that. Not huge, if that's what you were imagining; set in concrete and exposed at one end of the cairn.

F31 was another double, parallel, set of lockspits. E31 a piled up lockspit. No sign of D31 or C31. B31 had to have a bit of vegetation removed to show it off. A31 was a cairn. The end.

We decided to continue N along the Clear Range Fire Trail through Mt Yarara, then find a convenient drop off point to get us back down to the Naas Valley Fire Trail. Found the old trig on the E side of the NNP border fence. Heading back down to the fire trail, I joked as we passed a block of granite, that we would be passing border markers, not knowing they were there. Looking up to the top of the granite, there was a marvellous example of one above us - it was probably B30 but, of course, we'll have to go back sometime.

A little kink in the Clear Range Fire Trail provided a useful top of a ridge heading down and we descended the 480 vertical metres over 1.9km across the ground in 50mins. Quite relatively open going on the W facing slope. Better going down this way than up (grin).

So back to the car, had another word with the manager just as the showers started. Quite a bit of rain on the way back.

We had a beer on the verandah of Val J's Tharwa General Store.

Thanks Eric G, Ian W and Max S. A successful day.

Distance: 27.6km Climb: 900m. Time: 7.25am - 3.55pm (8hrs 30mins), with 40mins of stops.
Grading: L/E-R,WptX; H(14)

KMZ file for Google Earth/Maps: Border Markers on the Clear Range from Caloola

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This page last updated 29Aug22