Martins Creek

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Martins Creek

Postby Hughmac » Sun 03 Jun, 2018 9:12 pm

Spent the day today sussing out the old roads/tracks at the top end of Martins Creek. Walked in on the old fire trail just before Wattle Ridge car park then headed down the creek from the cairn where the track turns back up the ridge to Nattai Rd. Found the old road a little further in, which has become a fairly distinct track which someone has marked some time ago with orange marker tape. This eventually hits a tee intersection. If you turn left it peters out at the top of a hill, while if you turn right it takes you over one small ford, around the shoulder of a hill, then over a ford on Martins Creek. It then continues up the hill on the far side of the creek until it hits a 5m cliff line. Strangely the track continues again above the cliff line, before petering out again at another small cliff line. Another oddity is that someone at some point has cleared both of these old roads of small regrowth with a chainsaw, even though it must be decades since either was accessible to vehicles. Had to turn around at this point to head back, but couldn't find evidence of any tracks leading further down the creek.
Was wondering if anyone is aware of any tracks leading further down Martins Creek, and whether the road at this end of Martins Creek were ever connected with the road at the other end? Seems unlikely, but given some of the other old roads around the Highlands nothing would surprise.
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby michael_p » Sun 03 Jun, 2018 10:09 pm

Hugh,

I walked through that area in 2016 and again in 2017. On my second visit I couldn't believe how much the scrub had grown in just one year.

The old logging road that starts on Nattai Rd about 400\500m before the Wattle Ridge car park is what Sloss calls the Disappointment Trail. Once you get to the rock cairn and the trail turns up the hill then it becomes what is known as the Horse Trail and goes back to Nattai Rd about 100m past the NP gate at the Wattle Ridge carpark.
Hughmac wrote:This eventually hits a tee intersection. If you turn left it peters out at the top of a hill.

I am pretty sure I know where you are talking about. If turning left the trail continues up the hill and becomes a wide, easy to follow fire trail that NPWS cleaned up to do the hazard reduction burn. It goes all the way back to Nattai Rd about 1km south of the Troys Creek FT turn off. Makes for a good loop walk in either direction. You may find some info in this thread by Kanangra useful: http://bushwalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=26119.
Hughmac wrote:if you turn right it takes you over one small ford, around the shoulder of a hill, then over a ford on Martins Creek.

Sounds like you missed the turn off down to the waterfall and mini canyon. As you go around the shoulder of the hill look for a small cairn and some flag tape on the left hand side of the track. This takes you down an overgrown track to a nice waterfall and mini canyon. Also, to my knowledge this is the furtherest you can get down Martins Creek by trails. From here it is off-track for several kilometres until you can pick up the old road that came up Martins Creek from the Nattai River.
Hughmac wrote: Another oddity is that someone at some point has cleared both of these old roads of small regrowth with a chainsaw, even though it must be decades since either was accessible to vehicles.

Those trails were cleaned up as part of the hazard reduction burns done a few years back. As the burn-off didn't go any further down the creek the track to the waterfall did not get cleaned out. I was lucky on my first trip down there to have someone with me who had done the walk before and showed me the waterfall turn off. Without this help I would have walked straight past it.

Sounds like you had a good walk.

Cheers,
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby Hughmac » Mon 04 Jun, 2018 7:04 pm

Cheers Michael. I think I saw the turnoff you mention, but it looked thoroughly overgrown and I didn't have time to investigate it. If I'm correct that would place the waterfall and canyon downstream of the ford?
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby michael_p » Mon 04 Jun, 2018 9:28 pm

Yes, the waterfall is about 5-600m downstream of the ford.

My understanding is that the track to the waterfall is actually the very end of the original logging road that ran down Martins Creek from Nattai Rd. Why someone put the ford in and that bit of track up the hill after the ford is a mystery to me.

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Re: Martins Creek

Postby Hughmac » Tue 05 Jun, 2018 6:54 pm

Thanks mate, will have to go back and check it out.
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby michael_p » Tue 12 Jun, 2018 11:48 am

Hugh,

I finally got around to sorting out some photos that may help.

You may want to wait until there has been some decent rain. The first photo is from 2016 a month or two after quite significant rain in that area. The second photo is from 2017 and you can clearly see a big difference in the water level.
martincreekwaterfall2016.JPG

martincreekwaterfall2017.JPG

Waterfall turn off photo. Note, the small cairn on the left and a piece of flag tape on either side of the track head. If you have a GPSr this waypoint may help. Waterfall turn off approx location: -34.263233,150.412083
martincreekwaterfall-trunoff.JPG

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Re: Martins Creek

Postby kanangra » Tue 12 Jun, 2018 5:09 pm

Gee now I'm confused. I saw no water at all where I crossed??????

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Re: Martins Creek

Postby michael_p » Tue 12 Jun, 2018 6:50 pm

kanangra wrote:Gee now I'm confused. I saw no water at all where I crossed??????

On my 2017 trip I was actually surprised to see any water flowing over the waterfall as the creek above it was bone dry. So I am not surprised that you didn't see any water where you crossed.

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Re: Martins Creek

Postby michael_p » Tue 12 Jun, 2018 7:48 pm

Some photos taken way back up Martins Creek in a spot I called the swamp. First photo is 2016 and second was in 2017. It was a lot different in 2017.
martinscreekswamp2016.jpg

martinscreekswamp2017.jpg

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Re: Martins Creek

Postby Hughmac » Tue 12 Jun, 2018 9:01 pm

Thanks again Michael. That's definitely the turnoff I saw, but it's looking even more overgrown. The whole area is absolutely bone dry at present, but I realised walking through that paperbark forest that it was a dry swamp. Be nice to get some more rain, but I'm not holding my breath.
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby kanangra » Wed 13 Jun, 2018 10:08 am

That bottom shot looks a lot more like how it was when I went through.

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Re: Martins Creek

Postby michael_p » Sun 09 Sep, 2018 10:55 pm

Want to see how much was burnt in 2016: https://www.flickr.com/photos/48646673@N07/25025667714
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby Hughmac » Tue 11 Sep, 2018 8:56 pm

Went back and found your cascade. Nice spot, although no running water at the time. The track that crosses Martin creek further upstream eventually comes out at Long Nose Ridge Rd (not surprisingly). How it crossed some of those ridges beats me though.
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby Allchin09 » Fri 14 Sep, 2018 10:48 pm

michael_p wrote:Want to see how much was burnt in 2016: https://www.flickr.com/photos/48646673@N07/25025667714


Here you go

Nattai_NP_201605.png
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Re: Martins Creek

Postby michael_p » Mon 17 Sep, 2018 9:53 am

Hughmac wrote:Went back and found your cascade. Nice spot, although no running water at the time.

Pity it is so dry at the moment. It is a very nice spot when the water is flowing.

Allchin09 wrote:Here you go.

Thanks Alex. I was surprised at how large this hazard reduction burn was. That view shows it well.

Couple of photos from after the hazard reduction burn in 2016.
1 - Heading north along the Horse Track from Wattle Ridge (track goes over the log and veers to the left).
DSCN0139.JPG

2 - View down Martins Ck valley. Northern end of the Horse Track not long after it starts to drop off the plateau. The heavy rain got the regrowth happening fast.
DSCN0144.JPG


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