8-9 September 2012 W85, X85 and Sentry Box

View N to Mt Gudgenby from granite slabs E of SH1727

Maps: Yaouk and Shannons Flat 1:25000

Getting There

This walk was organised and led by me as a CBC walk:

Saturday-Sunday 8-9 September - Border Markers W85 and X85 on the S side of Sentry Box and various wanderings - L/M-R,ptX. A 'tag-along' walk with the Navigation Refresher weekend to Sentry Box. We will operate mostly independently, but will camp with them to help consume their port and chocolate cake. Saturday - walk the Settlers Track and the ACT border to visit border markers W85 and X85, on the south-east spur of Sentry Box, then to Lutons Crutching Shed. Sunday - climb Sentry Box with the Navigation Refresher trip and return via Bulls Flat fire trail. Around 42km and 1050m climb. Maps: Yaouk and Shannons Flat. Leader: John Evans - john@johnevans.id.au, 0417 436 877. Transport: ~$18 per person.

Further Information

This walk will be advertised as a CBC Short-notice walk, after the Navigation Refresher weekend has been booked out. In no way must it compete with that event. If your navigation isn't crash-hot, do Rob and Jenny's trip.

The plan would be to travel independently, perhaps walking in the border to W85 and X85 on the Saturday and joining the Navigation Refresher party in the evening at Lutons Crutching Shed to consume port and chocolate cake. Do Sentry Box with them on Sunday morning and walk out.

For 8 Sep 12, civil sunrise is 5.48am, sunrise is 6.13am, sunset is 5.49pm and civil sunset is 6.15pm.
For 9 Sep 12, civil sunrise is 5.46am, sunrise is 6.12am, sunset is 5.50pm and civil sunset is 6.15pm.

Day 1 - Settlers Track car park (near Brayshaws) to Westermans via Settlers Track; up the hill to join the New Grassy Creek Fire trail; along the New Grassy Creek Fire Trail by the border, short fire trail to the Scabby Range Nature Reserve, up the old fire trail to near L86, off-track to L86 then up the border to Y85 at 1515m, a further 200m distance up the border to find X85, W85 and go to V85, return to S of Z85, walk off-track down the spur to the SE of SH1423 to join the Grassy Creek Fire Trail, along it and Sams Creek Fire Trail to Lutons Crutching Shed. 21km including 5km off track. 350m climb.

Day 2 - Lutons Crutching Shed to Sentry Box and return, Sams Creek Fire Trail, Bulls Flat Fire Trail, along Waterholes Fire Trail to Waterhole Hut and then out the Settlers Track. 21km including 10km off track (but not with overnight bag). 700m climb.

Walk - Photographs

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Walk - Track Maps

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Track overview

Track 1

Track 2

Track 3

Track 4

Track 5

Walk - Videos

Walk - Google Earth

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Walk - Track Notes

4 of us drove to near the S border of the ACT, parking at the beginning of the Settlers Track at Brayshaws.

Walking by 8.15am. A windy day, partly cloudy but sunny. Down to Westermans where we had a poke around, the up via the graves to join the new Grassy Creek FT. Up to the border and a short detour to see the NSW portion survey reference tree. Along the fire trail and, where it rejoined the border, a look at some remnant drop log fencing. Past the rail gate and along to the 112 Mile blaze. Sadly, the big tree stump has fallen over. At least the blaze is under and this might protect it a bit longer. Morning tea.

Continued along the Grassy Creek FT and, near to where old joins new, a new exit gate into NSW for the Bicentennial National Trail. Continued along to where the Grassy Creek FT takes a large bend to the NE. We struck off NW to the border. The C87 blaze tree stands tall and healthy. Into the Scabby Range Nature Reserve, along past the can hanging on a tree and, at the faint track junction, turned right onto the old fire trail that generally parallels the border to near L86.

Very pleasant walking through open, unburnt forest on this spur which rises to Sentry Box Mountain. We gained the border and visited Z85 and Y85 (which I'd seen on 15 Mar 11). Very windy and a bit more overcast. We had lunch near Y85 and Stewart made a snowman whilst I lost and found my sunglasses.

Continuing on, we visited X85 and W85, thankfully easily recognised and well formed markers, as they were my major objective for the trip. Further up to V85, which has a nice view. The sky had cleared, so took a video.

Here at 1530m and 1pm was our turnaround point for today, so we did. Left the border near X85 and found a line round the thick teetree we'd forced up through. Got on the well-formed spur running down through SH1423. Again, very pleasant walking down through open, unburnt forest with the occasional granite knoll to hit the Grassy Creek FT at 3pm.

Next came a stroll NE-ish along the Grassy Creek FT. We called in at the Baby Crawford plaque and, opposite, to the Lone Pine Homestead site. Further along we passed the remnant fork fencing out in Sheep Station Creek, cut the last corner a bit and onto the bridge over Sheep Station Creek, along Sams Creek FT to Lutons Crutching Shed. As we neared, we could see a tent or two. On arrival at 4.10pm and after 23.3km for the day, we found Rob and Jenny, Chris, David and Anne lounging about. Tents up, nice to be able to get good, clean water from the tank at the Shed.

A convivial time. Soup, honey soy chicken with added couscous, a chocolate pudding and a coffee bag for me. The wind kept blowing and showers threatened. The sky cleared quickly after dark, but the wind didn't drop until around 3.30am.

I first camped here with Rob and Jenny as a student on their Navigation Course on 3-4 Jul 04. I learnt about chocolate cake and port, so for this trip I encouraged participants to bring some. Stewart brought a fine tokay, but I was extremely embarrassed when Jenny offered to all 9 of us chocolate brownies and port. I didn't even have to fetch mine and had to cart it home. Very, very nice and brought back great memories. I piked and went to bed around 7.15pm and listened to music till around 9.30pm. A relatively warm night.

The wind died in the early morning and the day dawned bright and clear. Very pleased with the Tarptent Moment in these conditions - not a drop of condensation (and light on the back as well). Up before 6.30am for an old man's walk, then back to bed for breakfast. We were ready to leave by 7.30am.

Our party tagged along at the back whilst members of Rob and Jenny's party took turns in navigating us up to the spur through SH1557 to a cairn, positioned around 165m E of SH1727. The trip up from Lutons was 4.5km, rising 550m and taking 2hrs 50mins. A mixture of open forest, some tight tee-tree and, at the top, lovely granite slabs. Anyone know why the cairn is there, as it's not on the SH? Huge views, particularly N to Mt Gudgenby - watch the video clip. We also wandered a few metres S, which gave us views to the KNP snow-covered ranges. Mt Jagungal was crouching all white. We could see the knoll that we'd climbed to the back of yesterday. Return was 4.6km in 2hrs 30mins. Congrats to the 'students', they did a fantastic job (who wouldn't, under the watchful eye and with the helpful suggestions from master navigators!).

Packed up, lunched and our party got under way at 2.10pm. I wanted to go home via the Bulls Flat Creek FT and Waterholes FT. These are not marked on the current edition Yaouk 1:25000 topographic map, so handy to have a track of them.

From the junction of Sams Creek FT and Bulls Flat FT to the junction of Bulls Flat FT and Waterholes FT is 2.1km. We did this in 23mins. I found it pleasant to stretch my legs after the slower Sentry Box trip through the bush. Passed the old stockyards.

From the junction of Bulls Flat FT and Waterholes FT to the Waterhole Stockyards is 2.5km, which took 30mins.

We had a look at the Stockyards, then to Waterhole Hut for a drink break whilst spectacles were repaired. I had a poke about for Frank Dywers Hut site. The KHA location is down in Grassy Creek. Couldn't find anything.

Back to the car via the Settlers Track.

We squeaked in saying hello to Val. He closed the shop just after 5.30pm whilst we were finishing our drinks on his front verandah.

A very pleasant weekend, filling in a 2 border marker gap for me and reliving and forming great memories.

Thanks Stewart J, David K and Stephen M for your walking company. And huge thanks to Rob and Jenny H's party for taking us to Sentry Box.

Distance: 43.6km Climb: 1100m. Time: 2 days
Grading: L/M-R,ptX; H(13)

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This page last updated 1Sep22