Hi all, I've searched but can't find any current comments about the state of the Paling Spur (brandy creek ft) and the swindlers gap track that may or may not join to the brandy ck ft. I have a vicmap 8342-3-S from 2016 that shows a trail from Dibbins hut SSE initially near Cobrunga river then leaving it to be higher on the southern side passing through swindlers gap. This map shows that track meeting the brandy creek ft a couple of km NE of the brandy creek mine site. I just can't tell if this track has ever really existed.
In case it's not obvious I'm looking at a relaxed overnight hike just prior to the June hotham area restrictions, parking at the brandy creek mine area and walking the paling spur, overnight near young hut, then return via basalt temple, cobungra gap and swindlers gap.
I've been down from the Hotham Road on the Brandy Creek Track a few times, then upstream to the foot of Paling Spur. There's a nice flat clearing here on the same side as the spur. Between the bottom of the Brandy Creek 4WD track and this campsite there's no track, mostly, just a lot of big clumps of grass, a bit scary as there may be things slithery unseen underfoot. I was not looking for the track from Dibbins, and did not see it. When researching this walk a few years ago i read that the track from Dibbins was overgrown.
There's no track up Paling Spur, mostly, although there was a lone marker at the clearing. It's mainly open scrub, not hard. From the shallow saddle west of Youngs Hut go straight down, easy heath. Historical note. It's not Youngs Hut. This was further up the hill, near a yard, and burnt down a while ago. The current hut is more properly called SEC Hut, as it was built by the SEC when the hydro was built.
It has been a couple of years but I have been up and down Paling spur a number of times. There is a track but it gets a little vague in places. The same applies at the top, walking to the SEC hut. There is a track from Dibbins back to The Cobungra Swindlers creek(I think it is Swindlers) but again it is vague in places. Nothing to worry about though. A weekend bushwalk.
Having been in the area a couple of years ago the Brandy Creek track is very obvious and 4wd standard down to the Cobungra River with the track along the Cobungra towards Swindlers Creek being part foot pad easily lost but easy walking anyway following the river.Can't comment on the track up Paling spur from the campsite near the junction as I wasn't looking for it and it wasn't obvious.There is a bit of a footpad along Swindlers Creek to the bottom of Swindlers Spur which is once again easily lost but easy going along the creek.We didn't go up Swindlers Spur either but the track you mentioned is shown on a 1991 map I have and mentioned as overgrown then but looks like an obvious route over to Dibbins.I vaguely remember reading that this was part of a fairly major thoroughfare many years ago from Bright to Omeo but I may be mistaken in my recollections.Really nice campsite area at junction of Swindlers Creek and Cobungra River.
Thank you all for your replies and experiences in the area. I think Mrs Pom & I will have a weekend exploration in the area, maybe before the snow chains\park boundaries issues kick in. I believe brandy creek mine is still in the hotham resort boundary, technically.
I'm still searching for an interesting hike for winter (with or without snow shoes) for a small group, that is not feathertop or stirling\Craig's hut. I love a circular walk but I may have to settle for an out and back. I'd love to do the twins, but can't think where to park once the seasonal road closures have happened.
Hi Mr and Mrs Pom A group of us did complete this walk a number of years ago. Parked at the top of Brandy Creek Fire Trail. Walked down to the river then walked upstream where the two watercourse met and then crossed to the grassed flat area that has already been referred too. The walk up the spur was slowish as it was a warm March long weekend very dry and lots of leave litter. Navigation was ok on the way up although the pad was vague. When reached the top and then made our way to Youngs for the night. Then onto Blairs via Westons for the night and back up Machinery to Mt Loch carpark where we hitched a lift down to where the cars were.
I can post a couple of pics if that would help (once I resize them)
Also winter walk to consider that is a walk in walk out is Mt Torbreck. Does get some good snow at 1500m road access is ok subject to snowline. Flat area at the picnic tables for camping steep walk up to the summit.
Also the walk into the Avro Anson memorial is worthwhile at the lower level.
I will do this Brandy Creek mine track/ Paling Spur/ Basalt Temple route walk next green season. Mt. Torbreck in winter is better suited to microspikes and an ice axe. There are some steep slippery chutes that ice up so going up or down can be using hands and feet with the ice axe or self arrest pole blade being used as a brake. Visibility and freezing temperatures can be interesting once you reach the summit plateau. Car access is depending on whether you have the right sort of car to get up to the seasonal closure gate or not. Take wheel chains and be prepared for very cold weather. The campsite at the saddle below the Mt. Torbreck summit track is a pleasant place for a picnic lunch. Other Snow shoe walks that can be made into white season overnighters could include Windy Corner to Edmondson's hut and back. In via Heathy spur and out via Watchbed Creek. Parking for access to the Twins in ski season is a problem if you don't want to pay, just to park at Mt. St. Benard Hospice site. The Buckland Gap pay station doesn't have much in the way of roadside parking. Hiking Up Road 24 from Howman's gap to The Ruined Castle at Falls Creek and hitchhiking back to the your car down the BHP road could be a day trip on snow shoes . However the weather can be extreme on the Frying pan spur summit area and it is not somewhere to take newbies in winter.