Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

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Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

Postby whynotwalk » Thu 20 Dec, 2018 2:32 pm

Hi all - wondering if anyone has descended from Cathedral Plateau to the Mersey via Dean Bluff. I've done it from the southern side to the Never Never (interesting!), but not from the northern side. One old map I have has a route marked, but I take that with a grain of salt.

Just to check you're reading, please DON'T preface your reply with?
I haven't done it, but it looks ...
(or similar). Yes, it does look like there's a defined ridge heading n-w towards Lees Paddocks, and previous experience tells me most of these routes are okay once you're committed. BUT ... we will have full packs and a few less-experienced walkers, so good first-hand advice would be very helpful.

thanks in anticipation

Peter
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Re: Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

Postby stepbystep » Thu 20 Dec, 2018 6:17 pm

I’ve looked at it Peter. There’s an easy looking gully. A bit of scrub but if you’re going down and have scrub gear I reckon it would only take a cpl hours tops
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Re: Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

Postby doogs » Thu 20 Dec, 2018 7:33 pm

Someone did it and wrote a report on here somewhere..
Maybe this.. viewtopic.php?f=3&t=232&p=66638#p66638
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Re: Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

Postby Rabid K9 » Sun 23 Dec, 2018 1:52 am

Evening Peter,

Have done it in reverse a couple of years back as an intro to some Tassie off track for my Italian partner who thought she knew mountains.

Climbed up from near Reg Wadley to the plateau, then cut across to Tent tarn & picked up the pad there. Basically picked a weakness in the escarpment from below & followed stream up. A couple of the usual sandstone cliff bands low down, which involved some grovelling to surmount & plenty of vegetation sampling. Some thick sections was easier to follow the stream. Plenty of those glorified legless lizards. Also stumbled into one of the biggest E. delegatensis I've seen.

Ended up quite a vigorous day out, had to carry companions pack once on the scree, was quite happy to see plateau, but considering had been a few years since off track walking in Tassie, I was a bit soft. Approx 5 hours up, but that included cooling the hydraulics a few times. Longer, scrubbier version of the climb up onto Olympus from the St Clair side.

Would prefer to come up from Grail Falls side next time & descend. Going down would be easier, but still the usual minefield of large logs, thick ferns & subalpine scratch fest in places. Some friends attempted to go up from directly below the Bishop & got a little punished.
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Re: Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

Postby hobes » Tue 25 Dec, 2018 6:43 am

Good morning Peter- In September 2015 we started our descent at an old cairn near the creek between Bishop Creek and Curate Bluff and followed what was a track a long time ago which generally followed the creek. Having lost the track, we ended up veering south from the creek as the vegetation was very thick around the creek. Heading south also helped by-pass the cliffs further down. I recall the going was very slow and tedious with slippery conditions, lots of scrub and logs to climb over/under and a section of huge man ferns to navigate. A descent from Deans Bluff did look like a possible option looking back up from Lees Paddock.

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Re: Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

Postby whynotwalk » Wed 26 Dec, 2018 4:46 pm

Thanks Rabid K9 and Hobes, your reports are much as I would have anticipated. Given that the walk is being lead by someone else, and he is not keen on scrub, I suspect your reports will reinforce his desire to return the way we intend coming (Moses Ck/Grail Falls etc).

Thanks again,

Peter
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Re: Dean Bluff to the Mersey: Any Experience?

Postby Rabid K9 » Fri 28 Dec, 2018 2:19 am

whynotwalk wrote:Thanks Rabid K9 and Hobes, your reports are much as I would have anticipated. Given that the walk is being lead by someone else, and he is not keen on scrub, I suspect your reports will reinforce his desire to return the way we intend coming (Moses Ck/Grail Falls etc).

Thanks again,

Peter


Possibly wise Peter for those that are not connoisseurs of a fine bush thrash. Descending would certainly be easier to pick a reasonable route for at least the more open higher altitude forest, but inevitably one would end up in the 'logstacle' course lower down. We cut across directly toward Lees from the Moses Creek track carpark to the falls on the Mersey, in the dark, plenty of good fernery that way as well. Ironically, I still think all the leaches actually wait in the carpark for walkers departing or arriving back.

Went to do a Tarkine river the next day that involved scrub thrashing to get the put in, nearly just laid down in my dry suit & composted into the forest floor.
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