denison range and beyond

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denison range and beyond

Postby craigw » Sun 08 Feb, 2009 1:29 pm

Hi,
Just returned from a failed attempt to get to Lake Curly via lake rhona, denison range, craigs bond. The decent from bonds craig proved our downfall as we took the wrong pad option and ended up in a world of pain, strung up in dense scrub with legs and arms pretty well turned to mince. given the 30 degree day and the effort in scrub bashing, we got pretty desperate with water though luckily happened on a couple of puddles on a small saddle half way down the spur from bonds craig. The puddles were filled with the most turgid muck i've ever had to rely on - anyone attempting this walk should know that things are really dry up there at the moment with no guarantee of water between great dome and squirrel creek. we camped by the puddle, licked our wounds and pressed on the next day and made it to within about a km of North Star before finally giving up on the scrub bashing and retreating back up Bonds Craig to our 'puddle'.

Despite the pain and failure to get to L Curly, the walk was fantastic, really spectacular country with sweeping views across to Frenchmans, POWs, The Spires and beyond. Lake Rhona was in all its splendour, what a place! I'm sure to be trying it again sometime, though next effort will be new years 09/10 at SW Cape. Thanks Tassie for another memorable time, and thanks to all for the info and tips prior to the walk - much appreciated.

Photo's attached.

Cheers
Craig
Attachments
sel_rhona.jpg
view to lake rhona from great dome
sel_old man rhona.jpg
rock formation over lake rhona
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby PeterJ » Sun 08 Feb, 2009 8:44 pm

i have had two most memorable walks to Lake Curly and The Spires region. The first time was 1990 and I rember it was a tiring day from Bonds to Lake Curly, however we had milder temperatures on the second one in 1997 and arrived in better shape. On both trips it got dam hot on the return journey to the Denison range.

My 97 notes for the part from Bonds to Curly may be of interest to you and i have added them below. On both walks we had some fantastic weather between Curly and out time in The Spires. I have just scanned some photos of a Pelion walk (see Bushwalks-Tas post) and now reading your post has given me the impetus to do the same for the spires ones.

Walk along the crest of the Denison Range and commence descent on herb crest above Lake Wugata (just beyond Bonds Craig). A bearing of 290 needs to be followed in order to pick up the pad especially as it takes you through the scrub of the lower slope. It is a bit overgrown and takes a bit of close watching to keep on it in some spots. It crosses a small flattish open area then goes back into scrub before emerging on a buttongrass ridge above the rolling plains. After crossing the first bit of buttongrass a second is reached and in the low part there is a lone tall banksia right beside a rock. A track leads down past this to come out through on a wooded spot above another buttongrass slope above a small creek (387918). Usually has some water and there is a small clear patch which could be used as a camp; Two tents
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby Swifty » Mon 09 Feb, 2009 8:03 pm

HI craigw,

I went over the Denison's to Lake Curly in 1980. We too had a bit of trouble descending the spur down from Bonds Craig, especially near the bottom and ended up in thick banksia and eucalypt scrub. We camped for two nights on Badger Flat beyond the North Star, near a small creek. There was no track down from Bonds Craig at that time. I made a note that if ever I go back (which will be not too far away hopefully) to keep to the right on the way down the spur, the ridge bends to the north west and is clear going. Keeping in a straight line (as you are now aware) the ground steepens and scrub gets worse and worse. The problem is that you can't really see the lower parts of the ridge on the way down. We camped at Lake Malana on the way back - a very pretty place!
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby dplanet » Thu 08 Dec, 2011 6:54 am

Planning to do this walk soon and I am not sure how is the driving condition for 2WD to the start near Richea Creek. Hope Gordon River water won't be high. Thanks for the info of " how to" avoid scrub and look forward to hearing from you guys.
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby stepbystep » Thu 08 Dec, 2011 8:24 am

2WD will be fine to the track head and from all reports the divine tree is still keeping walkers toes dry crossing the Gordon.
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby whynotwalk » Thu 08 Dec, 2011 9:15 am

Yep - agree with Dan. We took a 2WD to Richea Ck in March this year. The road gets narrow and tricky to follow as you get close to the trackhead. But it isn't rough, and would only be impassable if trees have fallen.

And yes, the "divine" log makes the crossing a cinch. HOWEVER ... in talking with "abowen" from the forum about his recent trip in there, he said water was lapping the log, as there had been quite a bit of rain. This is less likely in summer, but watch out if there's been heavy rain.

As a bit of a "Rhona-phile", I've been there quite a few times, and have blogged about it here http://auntyscuttle.blogspot.com/2011/03/returning-to-rhona-1.html ... and in following posts.

cheers

Peter

Crossing2.jpg
Happy walkers crossing the Gordon
Gordon Crossing.jpg
The "divine" log across the Gordon
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby dplanet » Fri 10 Feb, 2012 10:31 pm

whynotwalk wrote:Yep - agree with Dan. We took a 2WD to Richea Ck in March this year. The road gets narrow and tricky to follow as you get close to the trackhead. But it isn't rough, and would only be impassable if trees have fallen.

And yes, the "divine" log makes the crossing a cinch. HOWEVER ... in talking with "abowen" from the forum about his recent trip in there, he said water was lapping the log, as there had been quite a bit of rain. This is less likely in summer, but watch out if there's been heavy rain.

As a bit of a "Rhona-phile", I've been there quite a few times, and have blogged about it here http://auntyscuttle.blogspot.com/2011/03/returning-to-rhona-1.html ... and in following posts.

cheers

Peter

The attachment Crossing2.jpg is no longer available
The attachment Crossing2.jpg is no longer available


Confirmed. Here's the photo of the log crossing taken early January this year.
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GordonX.jpg
This looked very uninviting. In addition to that, the river also flowed extremely fast.

I am not sure if there was the relationship between the stormy type weather I had experienced on KWR few days before and the flood near Gordonvale.

I told of the log to staff at Mt Field Park Office and was told that their staff were stuck at Lake Curly.
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby whynotwalk » Sat 11 Feb, 2012 4:51 pm

Glad you made it dplanet. The log looks a little "hairy"!

I think I know the guys who were stuck at Lake Curly. 4 days stuck in a tent, one of them told me. I'm glad we were at sea level on the SW Cape track at the time. Only showers, with plenty of breaks ... even enough to get sunburnt 8) :oops:

cheers

Peter
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Re: denison range and beyond

Postby NickD » Sat 11 Feb, 2012 8:36 pm

I crossed the Gordon in September 2010 when the log was completely (and well truly) hidden by the river. We used Blue Alpaca Pack Rafts to get across to drop my food barrel into Lake Rhona for my Tassie Traverse.

I took the raft and wedged it in a high fork in a tree approx 40metres from the swollen river bank, laughing as a tied it to a tree JUST IN CASE!! However only approx 30 hours later I had to wade waist deep through the river to that fork in the tree to pick up our raft. The campsite on the Western side of the river was underwater, i had no idea that a log even existed. there was no evidence of it at all.

It was a truly stunning trip in. The beach was smaller than normal and completely blanketed in snow.
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