Long Spur, High Country.

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Victoria specific bushwalking discussion. Please avoid publishing details of access to sensitive areas with no tracks.

Long Spur, High Country.

Postby ianslater » Sun 11 Mar, 2018 11:30 am

Hi Guys and Gals, my last couple of forays into the High Country have taken me up T Spur to Bogong summit. I've now got an inclination to turn right and have a look at Long Spur. I'm happy just to wander down and camp, maybe at Kangaroo Ck Tk or Big River Saddle, then return same way. Is it an easy tk? are there dodgy side tracks to be aware of ? the return ascent looks pretty comfy on the map, am i kidding myself? Cheers to all and happy hiking from Ian.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby bigkev » Sun 11 Mar, 2018 2:56 pm

Hi Ian,

I've been up and down Long Spur a few times over the years, the last time on my AAWT walk last spring.

There are no real navigational issues on Long Spur, I guess you 'could' go wrong and head down Mulhauser Spur but you'd pretty unlucky!

The upper reaches of Long Spur make for very nice walking but the lower sections can be a bit of a slog, unless you want to carry water for camp you'll probably have to go all the way down to Big River Saddle to camp, picking water up at one of the gullies approaching the saddle. Can I suggest keeping on going and climbing up to Mt Wills Hut, the views from up there at sunrise and sunset are very sweet and the hut is very comfortable - it has a tank although I'd probably carry water up from Big River Road just to be safe at this time of the year.

Here's a link to my AAWT post that featured Long Spur if you want to check out what things look like on the ground https://goinferalonedayatatime.blogspot ... lpine.html

Cheers
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby Xplora » Mon 12 Mar, 2018 6:02 am

It probably should be known as the Long Dry spur. The little spings near Big River Log road were running in January but may be dry by now but the tank at Mt. Wills is usually at capacity but it is not a big tank. Having a second car dropped at the Tallangatta ski hut or at the Omeo Hwy at Sunnyside would be helpful. The return trip to Watchbed creek would be about an hour. Kev is spot on. If you get lost on the Long Spur then you probably should not be there. There are a couple of places where the track has varied due to fallen timber but it joins up again all you have to do is follow the ridge line. Mulhauser spur is marked and you will find the second of 3 picnic tables also there. The single track only lasts half a k past that and then it turns into a 4wd vehicle track. The best of the walking and views are done by then although some good views will still be had from time to time. Walking east it is a series of rolling knolls for the first part but you are generally going down. Some of the track is a bit overgrown and your shoulders will brush against the bushes in places but once on the vehicle track all that is gone. The return trip is of course generally up and you will gain about 400m vertical which seems pretty good but it is up and down again. We took a friend in who is a good walker but slow and from the start of the single track to Cleve Cole was about 4 hours. It is certainly worth the walk with good views to Main Range. There are a number of good flat areas to camp along the way if you have enough water. An alternate would be to drop the big pack at the T spur junction and walk for an hour or so which should see you get to the first picnic table at a place we have named Berts Knoll.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby ianslater » Mon 12 Mar, 2018 2:50 pm

Thankyou bigkev and explora 4 responding. It certainly all sounds do-able, advice on water noted explora. I might just have to put some thought into where i want to start this hike if i decide to go on to Mt Wills, it basically adds a day to my original itinerary, but yes, i can see it's so close and yes it's possible i may not be back this way. Loved your ''blog'' bigkev.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Mon 12 Mar, 2018 10:03 pm

I have just returned from walking (& camping) along Long spur. We left the car at the Mulhauser spur track trail head.We went up Mulhauser spur walking track and along the Long Spur towards Mt. Bogong .Sections have been recently cleared and other bits are overgrown with thick scrub and fallen logs that will require a chainsaw to clear the path.
We camped for 2 nights away from the crowds at CC hut at the T spur/ Long spur junction. We did a day trip from there out to Mt. Bogong Summit west and back via Howman's falls. The weather was ideal . It was brilliant. Long spur has excellent scenery and NO people.
If you go up Mulhauser track in your 4x 4 / High clearance AWD car then take a fully fueled chainsaw, crow bar, safety attire , wedges and a tomahawk. We had to cut a log that was blocking the 4x 4 track up the Mulhauser track. The chainsaw bar became caught which meant we lost an hour trying to get it out!.
Thankfully the matter was resolved. Fallen sticks can and do become lodged under the car and you MUST remove them as you go or they will damage your vehicle.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby ianslater » Wed 14 Mar, 2018 10:05 am

Thanks paidal, that sounds a bit of an ordeal, glad to here you survived it and got on to enjoy the hike. Not looking at doing Mulhauser this time around, Long Spur looking good. Cheers
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby Lophophaps » Wed 14 Mar, 2018 1:38 pm

PCV, you said
"Sections have been recently cleared and other bits are overgrown with thick scrub and fallen logs that will require a chainsaw to clear the path."
Do you mean Mulhauser Spur or Long Spur? I thought that Steve and/or PV cleared Long Spur all the way to the top at Bosseia Hill.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Wed 14 Mar, 2018 3:46 pm

I refer to Long Spur. Steve has cleared all of the Mulhauser walking track so that it won't need any more attention for a year at least.
Having walked Long spur all the way from Mulhauser track to Maddison Hut ruins etc. and back I can say that Steve has cleared bits of Long spur closer to the track junction where Long Spur and Mulhauser spur walking tracks meet. He has according to his account , cleared Long Spur and the 4 x 4 track from Big River Saddle up to the end of the Long spur 4 x 4 track , where the AAWT foot track starts
heading West / uphill.He is still working at this.
Sections of Long spur still have head high scrub where you cannot see your feet and you have to PUSH through. Other bits have fallen logs and new tracks have been started by walkers to go around these obstacles.

. Steve may yet indeed clear the fallen logs with a chainsaw from Bossiea hill back to the last picnic table he has installed heading west / up hill on Long Spur.
Members of the Bogong club may yet come through during their April working bee and clear the said terrain with a brush cutter and a hedge trimmer to allow trouble free XC ski access.
The Mulhauser track in terms of 4 x 4 access is OK in this dry clear March weather. The approach is slow going and the descent is steep and a large amount of forest debris can easily spear the underside of your vehicle.
The Snowy Log road is overall trouble free and less stressful to drive on but a carrying a chainsaw in your car is not optional when driving up there in them thar hills.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby Lophophaps » Wed 14 Mar, 2018 4:19 pm

Thanks. At least Long Spur is about half cleared, logless. There was an entry in Cleve Cole Hut. In November 2016 a party went from the Bogong High Plains then up and over the west ridges of Bogong. “Lots of dead fall on lower slopes of Quartz Ridge after crossing Big River. Although not a significant obstacle, the repeated over-and-unders are an embuggarance.” This is my new favourite word. I look forward to no embuggarances on Long Spur. The chest-high scrub higher up is unfortunate and makes the track much harder. At least the lack of logs lower down will make this section easier. The AAWT is arguably the best long-distance alpine track in Australia, and it's scrub bashing. Not the Viking wilderness, just neglect due to a lack of PV funding.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Thu 15 Mar, 2018 7:08 pm

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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby Xplora » Fri 16 Mar, 2018 6:18 am

The use of chainsaws, brushcutters and hedge trimmers is not allowed in NP's unless authorised. Most of the troublesome area is State Forest which is controlled by DELWP but there is still a couple short sections of track which you will rub with your shoulders. Overall it is not too bad and certainly not hard to find the track. Track clearing may be required in some areas but my view is that it should not be advertised if someone intends to do it without authority. There are no plans for any members of the Bogong Club to clear scrub on the Long Spur. That would in fact be illegal and could result in a hefty fine. Some years ago someone thought it a good idea to use a chainsaw to cut firewood for Cleve Cole and it was confiscated by PV. The fallen trees on the track do not pose any significant obstruction and when it is possible to make a track around a larger tree then the old track rehabilitates quickly. It is better to do that than cut the tree up leaving two tracks. Volunteer groups have been organised in the past to tackle areas of the AAWT which need work and I would suggest this is the more appropriate way to tackle the problem as it is done under the supervision of the land manager. Someone has used herbicide recntly on a section of the Long Spur killing plants metres off the track. They were not weeds either and it was not necessary. That is the sort of thing that happens when people take things into their own hands.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Fri 16 Mar, 2018 4:00 pm

I saw that somebody had used herbicide and killed a swathe of vegetation on Long Spur walking path. It was not the work of the Team Bears , I know that for sure.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby Xplora » Sat 17 Mar, 2018 5:51 am

Track work on the Long Spur was discussed yesterday along with other matters. I simply asked the question if it would be OK for us to do some scrub clearing in sections with a hedge trimmer and approval was given on the spot with the condition we tell them when we are going to do it and report back after. How easy was that. Being registered volunteers with PV we can set up projects in discussion with them and we for some we do not need supervision for them all. While working on an authorised project we are covered for liability. We were given the guidelines concerning how much either side of the track could be cut so now we just have to get out there to do it. Most of the timber currently across the track (from last excursion 3 weeks ago I would say all of the timber) can be done with a bow saw which is much lighter to carry than a chainsaw and does not require any ticket for use in the park. Given the Long Spur is out winter access to Bogong then we will attempt to find time before winter to get this job done but no guarantees.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby Xplora » Sat 17 Mar, 2018 6:05 am

Just as a note, the water supply to Cleve Cole hut taps is now dry.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Sat 17 Mar, 2018 5:35 pm

At Present the Long Spur would be a PITA for XC skiers with skis strapped to heavy packs to push through in winter while the timber is across the track and the shoulder high scrub is blocking sections of the walking route.
Water is flowing well at the T spur/ Long Spur junction.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby Xplora » Sun 18 Mar, 2018 5:52 am

paidal_chalne_vala wrote:At Present the Long Spur would be a PITA for XC skiers with skis strapped to heavy packs to push through in winter while the timber is across the track and the shoulder high scrub is blocking sections of the walking route.
Water is flowing well at the T spur/ Long Spur junction.


Perhaps opinion from someone who has done it. Skis are not always carried on packs. Often they are worn on feet. Sometimes carried in hand. Timber on the ground often covered by snow and you don't even see it. The scrub is not blocking any part of the route but will rub your shoulders in parts. Carrying skis on either side of your pack poses little additional obstruction with objects to the side, mostly you have to watch out for low branches and if there are lots of them revert to carrying in hand method. There are always difficulties encountered when BC skiing and that is why most people go to resorts. The majority of people access Bogong in winter via Eskdale spur and those who go via the Long Spur are more than familiar with the conditions. If these conditions do not suit then it is best you take an easier option. The problems associated with Long Spur access is not confined to the walking/skiing in. Last year we made two trips to Mulhauser track to rescue stranded people and then recover cars. We often clear trees on the roads and they fall regularly during winter. We take two chainsaws and a spare bar for the big one (plus more chains for the saw, chains for the tyres and chains to drag timber if needed).

I had a discussion with a life member of the Bogong Club yesterday and we may organise a PV sanctioned track clearing for the Long Spur on the ANZAC weekend.

The creek at the T spur junction is flowing but not well. Adequate if you are desperate. Better water at Camp Valley.
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Sun 18 Mar, 2018 9:54 am

We had no trouble filling up water containers from the stream when we camped for two nights at the T spur/ Long Spur junction on 10-11-12th/3/18.
I am aware of some of the difficulties of BC XC skiing including vehicles becoming stuck :-0 .
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Re: Long Spur, High Country.

Postby paidal_chalne_vala » Mon 01 Apr, 2024 6:57 pm

I have just returned from Mulhauser spur and Long spur. BTAC cleared all of those tracks in Dec. 2022. I was there for that working bee. I have now returned for the first time since that period. The blackberries are returning on Long spur and Mulhauser spur. Overall the track is still much better since the track clearing working bee was completed in Dec. 2022 but I will e mail PV in Mt Beauty and send them some photos of the fallen logs and blackberries on the track . My friend and I had excellent weather and we also visited West Peak and Howman's Falls . We camped two nights at the T spur- Long Spur junction and one night at Mulhauser Trail head camping area.All the picnic tables in the area are still
intact.
Walkers with whom we met on Long Spur during the busy
2024 Easter weekend said there was water in the Mt. Wills tank.
Should I do a winter trip via that route I would be inclined to leave the car at
the bottom of Mulhauser track where it meets the Snowy Log Road and hike in . Or just come up the Eskdale spur instead.
The Dept. have sent a bulldozer up Mulhauser spur track and the track surface was good and clear
and we did not need to cut any fallen logs with the chainsaw.
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