Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

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Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Thu 17 Nov, 2016 5:57 pm

Hi
Has anyone been up Hannel's spur to Mt. Townsend lately?. What is the track like? . Is it easy to find down in Geehi?
How tough is it ?.What about water availability ?
Any first hand information would be appreciated. :-)
Last edited by paidal_chalne_vala on Fri 18 Nov, 2016 1:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hannels' spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby andrewa » Thu 17 Nov, 2016 6:27 pm

Went up about 20yrs ago. Horrible trying to get to the start (blackberries), and the track was poorly marked.

I can't imagine it being any better now!

Nice to camp up in the Wilkinson Valley though, when you get there. And a good sense of achievement - like running a one and only marathon.

A
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Re: Hannels' spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Thu 17 Nov, 2016 7:14 pm

The impression I am getting is that it is something you do ONCE :-0 .
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Re: Hannels' spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby andrewa » Thu 17 Nov, 2016 7:28 pm

Yeah....but it's definitely an achievement to do it once..


Ps leave snow shoes at home.

A
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby MountainMadness » Fri 18 Nov, 2016 9:06 pm

Yeah we did this last year. Sounds like it hasn't change much in 20 years (from andrewa's account).

Poorly marked, very overgrown (had to hack through scrub and vines - hint bring a bush knife, hop over and climb under big fallen down trees), go 'off-track' (if you can call it a track) to find water, and no real views. As someone always up for a challenge I agree its good to do once, as I believe its one of the biggest single descents (if not the biggest) in the country. We actually came from the summit of Kosci - gee jumping in the river at Geehi was a relief (not to mention the fresh water - we would have been moderately dehydrated due to the lack of water on the descent route).

Go for it but expect it not to be easy. Bring plenty of water - it may be cool on Townsend but half way down the spur it gets very hot and humid)
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Fri 18 Nov, 2016 10:23 pm

I am looking into going up the spur and camping en route.I have no plan to go down such a route. If I can manage to rope others into doing the trip then we can leave another car at Thredbo or DHG. . I am looking into obtaining a proper machete for the trip!!. It may not happen until Easter 2018 but research is the first step.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby MountainMadness » Sat 19 Nov, 2016 10:31 am

We walked in from Tooma Rd (via Mt Jagungal, Guthega, Charlottes Pass, Kosci) on our way to the Khancoban area for a pick-up so didn't need to ascend Hannel's. My comments still stand for both a descent and ascent - probably more importantly for the ascent as you exert more energy and don't have a large water supply at the end. In order to meet our pick-up arrangements we descended in one afternoon (leaving Kosci at around midday) so admittedly we were pushing pretty hard.

I do seem to remember a nice grassy patch at Moira's Flat which should be a good camping spot. Above the tree line there are a few other spots but that's about it for easy camping from memory unless you feel like doing some tree/brush clearing (if you can find a flat spot).
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby RVG » Sat 19 Nov, 2016 5:05 pm

Track notes for Hannels Spur – Robert Green

About 2007 I went down Hannels Spur. It was shortly after the 2003 fires, regrowth was occurring and it was obvious that, within the not too distant future, the track would become hard to follow. I meant to write it up for posterity but never did. Clearly those track notes might be useful to a wider audience so the notes below are made from what was recorded in 2007.
The usual caveats apply. The notes were made about 10 years ago. They may include errors and my memory might be faulty, but I have plotted them on the topo maps (Perisher Valley and Youngal) and I would be happy to use them myself. If anyone wants to use them plot them yourself before using them, because the records might have the odd position out of order. As always, use common sense. If something seems wrong it probably is. Caveat emptor.

All the GPS positions were taken using the GDA 94 datum which is the same as the topo maps. Obviously you will need to set the same datum. You probably do that already as it is the one used for the current Australian maps of this area.

We went from Thredbo down Hannels Spur to the Geehi River. Frankly, I would not come up the other way nowadays. The track notes start from beside Wilkinsons Creek
After lunch beside a lovely pool on Wilkinsons Creek we started in the early afternoon and reached Moiras Flat 4 hours later. We were not rushing and, in fact, would have been slower than a normal party because frequent stops were made to record the route. Next morning we left the Flat at 9.15 a.m. and arrived at the bottom about 1 p.m.

There was water along the way in Wilkinsons Creek, at Byatts Camp and again at Moiras Flat. There was a sign near Moiras Flat which points in the direction of the water. By memory it was a short distance, perhaps 50m, from the campsite, which was neither large nor flat nor (on our visit, anyway) particularly attractive.

In hot dry weather fill water bottles at Wilkinsons Creek and carry the extra water. The route is downhill so that would not be too onerous and better than running dry.

My recollection is that the Byatts Camp area would be a better place to camp. Someone might be able to provide that information. It seemed to have better water and there would have been quite a few possible campsites.

The following GPS positions commence near the creek in Wilkinsons Valley. By and large I have used the last 5 numbers of a GPS position. To insert them as waypoints in your GPS put the numerals “6” or “06” in front of your easterly positions and “59” in front of your northerly positions. To give you the idea, I have given the full GPS position in the first entry.

My recollection of the trip is that there are several important points where the route makes a distinct change in direction. Ten years ago there were posts or cairns at those key points. They may or may not still be there but their location was recorded and is referred to in the following text.

Easterly Northerly Comment
0612732 5966317 Wilkinsons Valley
12355 66307
12096 66244
11745 66062
11611 66046 Look or cairns and posts
11410 66074
11190 66040 post
10992 66067 post
10903 66124
10850 66209 cairn
10800 66325 important post marks a change of direction
10817 66471 important post
10843 66860 post then look for cairns
10790 67026
10716 67093 track crosses creek near Byatts Camp area
10658 67326
10641 67391
10628 67508 post
10590 67664 track crosses ridgeline, cairn
10634 67846 at this point the track makes another distinct turn and goes down the ridge to Moiras Flat.
10490 67910 the track down to Moiras Flat had some very scrubby sections. Set a GoTo and follow the GPS positions downhill.
10391 67937
10347 68056
10259 68153
10193 68228
10108 68317
10081 68366 dense
10085 68412
10085 68440 sign to water
10055 68507 Moiras Flat
Again from memory, the track becomes more obvious below Moiras Flat. Carry water.
09910 68751
09725 68768
09590 68826
09390 68872
09190 69030
09088 69428
09105 69625 the ridgeline splits and the track turns down a side ridge at this point which leads directly towards Geehi Flat.
08866 69930
08813 70426
08790 70500 track crosses a small creek. No water in it when we were there.
08532 70491
08337 70450
08114 70453
07550 70545
07445 70838 start of a steep section
07083 70887
06790 70993
06552 71272
06339 71640 Hannels Spur track sign

If you use these notes please add to them by updating the information and add extra comments of your own.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Mon 21 Nov, 2016 2:19 pm

I got reply from the Ranger from the KNP .
"

Hi P_C_V

Many thanks for your enquiry. There has been no recent clearing in the last 2-3 years. The track is a rugged track and good navigation skills are needed. While marked, it certainly has not be flagged within the last 5 years.

Because of the location of the Hannel's Spur Track in the Western Fall Wilderness we are not permitted due to Wilderness legislation to carry out or promote this walk. Without a change to the NSW Wilderness Act we can't alter our approach to this track.

The track is enjoyed by visitors who have good navigation skills and are prepared for a tough walk.

Cheers"

Tim Greville l Ranger - Summit l Alpine Area l Southern Ranges Region l  Park Management  l National Parks & Wildlife Service  l Office of Environment & Heritage  l PO Box 2228, Jindabyne NSW  2627 l Tel 02 6450 5525 l Mob 0428 159 336 l Fax 02 6456 2291 l Email tim.greville@environment.nsw.gov.au 
- Show quoted text -
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby Stew63 » Mon 21 Nov, 2016 7:40 pm

I've been keen to do Hannel's Spur for years - its just family, kids, work always thwart my most basic of planning... This thread has sparked my interest again!
I was under the impression the top few kilometres of Hannel's (below Byatts Camp) had been mostly re-cut as a part of an access route into the Western Fall area for the large search and rescue of Prabhdeep Srawn - but this was way back in 2013.
I guess that would tie in with what the ranger said about no recent clearing in the past 2-3 years.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Tue 22 Nov, 2016 8:05 pm

Whatever happened to that chap?. He was never seen again, not even a trace bar his water bottle which was found somewhere above the treeline.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby kjbeath » Wed 23 Nov, 2016 6:51 am

paidal_chalne_vala wrote:Whatever happened to that chap?. He was never seen again, not even a trace bar his water bottle which was found somewhere above the treeline.


I thought there was some doubt that the water bottle was his.

What happened is only guesswork, but it seems likely that he headed down the Western Fall where he ended up either lost, hypothermic or injured, and extremely difficult to find.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby Stew63 » Wed 23 Nov, 2016 2:53 pm

paidal_chalne_vala wrote:Whatever happened to that chap?. He was never seen again, not even a trace bar his water bottle which was found somewhere above the treeline.


The water bottle in question was actually found on Hannels Spur but towards the bottom. It was subsequently discovered that the dive company (logo on bottle) was a different company to the one Prabhdeep had used in Cairns.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Fri 25 Nov, 2016 9:04 am

Yes, that wilderness area on the western fall is a place where anybody and anything could vanish, esp. a newbie from abroad who did not know much about the Oz bush/Oz Alps.
It is assumed that he perished and his remains were never found.
R.I.P.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby Stew63 » Sat 26 Nov, 2016 9:26 pm

paidal_chalne_vala wrote:Yes, that wilderness area on the western fall is a place where anybody and anything could vanish, esp. a newbie from abroad who did not know much about the Oz bush/Oz Alps.
It is assumed that he perished and his remains were never found.
R.I.P.


I remember a group of about 8 of Prahbdeep's army mates were flown out from Canada for the search - all arriving keen and gungho and all wondering why it's been taking authorities so long and why its so hard to do a simple search.
Well that's until they encountered the super thick, dense Aussie bush regrowth after wildfires in the Western Fall Wilderness - they flew back home with their tails between their legs...
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby Stew63 » Mon 19 Dec, 2016 11:25 am

I was passing by the Geehi area on Fri. so did a little reccon. of the bottom of Hannels Spur in preparation for the full hike in the near future.
I found it easier to walk in along the Parks 4WD service track from the Geehi camping area - not marked on maps but starts at a locked vehicular gate next to the sealed road (~100m NE of bridge) at the Geehi camp area, follow the track across the open grasslands and then ford the Geehi River and continue up across the grasslands following the old poles to the newish sign marking Hannels Spur Track. Found it a little easier than crossing the river at Doctor Forbes Hut. Wouldn't recommend parking the car opposite Dr. Forbes hut as that track/foliage is narrow and will scratch up the sides of the car.
Last edited by Stew63 on Tue 20 Dec, 2016 11:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Tue 20 Dec, 2016 10:44 pm

Thanks for the tips. Keep us posted. This bush walk is on my major list of major must do treks.
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Re: Hannels' spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby Stew63 » Wed 21 Dec, 2016 5:21 pm

andrewa wrote:Went up about 20yrs ago. Horrible trying to get to the start (blackberries), and the track was poorly marked.
I can't imagine it being any better now!


Was in the area on Fri. didn't see any blackberries at all anywhere apart from a few along the river bank near Dr Forbes Hut and kilometres further down stream along the riverbanks.
Kudos to NSWParks - they must have done a great job eradicating them over the years. :)
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby Tyreless » Wed 04 Jan, 2017 6:08 pm

I did the ascent last Saturday. Not for the faint hearted. 9 hours from Geehi Flats to Byatts Camp with a 30 minute lunch stop.

The "track" is very overgrown in places. Fallen trees add to the challenge. A few times I was surprised by some pink tape in places where I was sure I was bush-bashing. The track is marked by pink/yellow tape and orange triangles nailed in trees at fairly close intervals but it's mostly not much more than an animal pad.

There is a cleared patch at Moira's Flat to pitch a tent but it's not an attractive camp site. At Moira's Flat there is a sign pointing to water - this is the only place to pick up water until you get close to Byatts Camp. It's also the only place I got tangled up in thorny vines.

Byatts Camp is lovely with plenty of water and spectacular views. I had planned to reach Mt Townsend that day but I was exhausted by the time I got to Byatts Camp.

If you have any specific questions I'll try to answer them.

Cheers,

Geoff
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby north-north-west » Wed 11 Jan, 2017 4:47 pm

Tyreless wrote:I had planned to reach Mt Townsend that day but I was exhausted by the time I got to Byatts Camp.

I still remember how that feels. Oh, my aching knees . . .
"Mit der Dummheit kämpfen Götter selbst vergebens."
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Thu 12 Jan, 2017 6:52 pm

Yes, summer seems to be the best time for the ascent. It makes for long days with light until late and better weather than you get up there in Easter.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby rcaffin » Sat 14 Jan, 2017 8:00 pm

We went up Hannels in late Autumn as part of a long loop.

Started that day from Grey Mare Cafe on Grey Mare Range, went over Pinnacle in rain, down to Geehi Flats for lunch and fine weather, then up Hannels carrying some water. Camped before Moiras in a small saddle - there are a few along the way, then up to Wilkinsons the next morning. That was some years ago when the track was reasonably open. A bit steep in some places near the bottom!

Cheers
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby Stew63 » Sun 05 Feb, 2017 5:30 pm

I ascended Hannels Spur solo yesterday for the first time. A really tough ball breaker that's for sure - I think I left a part of my soul on that spur!
I'll put a trip report in a few days after I recover.
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Re: Hannel's spur walking track , Mt.Kosci. N.P.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Sun 05 Feb, 2017 9:39 pm

Do tell !!!
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