Ballows traverse

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

Ballows traverse

Postby CBee » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 9:47 am

I was wondering if any fellow queenslander know how long it would take to complete the route: Burnett ck-Minnages-Junction pk-Monserrat-Cleared ridge. And if there are any reliable water sources along the way aside the obvious ballow and barney creeks. From Junction pk to Monserrat, I'm looking for the quickest way, not necessarily for peaks and views.
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Re: Ballows traverse

Postby Aardvark » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 11:18 am

I went on another leaders' walk over two days with the K2 Extreme club which took in Minnages, Ballow (Junction Pk), Double Pk, Duramlee and then down to Mt.Philp and back to Burnett Ck. We camped on Ballow. There is no easily accessible water on the route.
Another time i was going toward Nothofagus from Ballow and i cut across to Big Lonely past the head of a waterway heading down past the eastern flank of Ballow. Dry at the time but to follow it might eventually find water. It is an inconvenient detour from the Ballow - Double Pk route though and i wouldn't bank on it.
I subsequently completed in one day on quite a few occasions, the Minnages, Duramlee, Mt.Philp route.
The last time i went over Big Lonely was in a day from Cleared Ridge and via Ballow. To return via Yamahra Ck back to Cleared ridge.
Ever on the search for a one ended stick.
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Re: Ballows traverse

Postby Aardvark » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 11:24 am

From Cleared ridge i have gone both directions between Monserrat to Duramlee on day walks. It used to be very regularly plied by clubs some time back. There is a path of least resistance. But there is not a good footpad all the way. You need not go over Focal Peak. I haven't. You can contour from Cedar Pass on the north side. There was a good path once.
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Re: Ballows traverse

Postby CBee » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 11:26 am

Thanks mate. K2 extreme club sounds something daunting :-)
So do you think Burnett creek to cleared ridge in two days, carrying all water, sounds easily achievable?
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Re: Ballows traverse

Postby Aardvark » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 12:19 pm

Most definitely. Even by the longest route. Over Minnages, Ballow, Duramlee, Monserrat and down to Yamahra Ck. You may find water near to Cedar Pass.
A hammock would allow you to camp anywhere. The only clear tent site would obviously be Ballow. It's not impossible to think you could get enough space for a tent on low ground between Double Pk and Duramlee, or near to the top of Duramlee or even after contouring around Focal Pk.
Not long back i went up a road from Burnett Ck direct to Cleared Ridge. The end of the road near to Burnett Ck was not very evident. A short way up it was a well kept and a well used road. That is irrelevant to your plans though.
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Re: Ballows traverse

Postby CBee » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 1:21 pm

Cool thanks. From Ballow, would you take the big lonely route or durramlee route, to exit down to upper portals? I don't necessarily have to go to Montserrat. This is a section that is part of a bigger hike, so I want to allocate two days, without being too epic.
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Re: Ballows traverse

Postby Aardvark » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 5:54 pm

I think it is more interesting to go via Duramlee because you have the great views from atop Double Pk. When you get to the Doubletop cliffline after ascending from the saddle with Ballow, take a route (left) around to the north until you get to the other end of the peak on the east before ascending back to the ridgeline. You can detour back up to summit from there. It's 5 minutes.
That ridge you go over that descends to the WNW is another route i took from Burnett Ck once. There is only one tricky bit on that ridge. A rocky bluff you need to scramble over not far down from the top. It also saves on the need to go over Minnages and Ballow.
I think you'll get some satisfaction navigating your way down to Cedar Pass from Duramlee. Once you're around Focal Pk you'll pick up on a track most of the way to Monserrat.
The route over Big Lonely involved me pushing my way through stands of trees which would be difficult with a bigger pack. Unless the recent fires have made a big difference. I don't recall anything of a track except that you're on a ridgeline. The final descent off Big Lonely was quite steep. I did not get a view of anything.
You say a bigger hike. Are you starting at or near Boonah border gate?
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Re: Ballows traverse

Postby CBee » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 6:36 pm

Maybe I'll start at Cunningham's gap. Travelling along the rim but not necessarily following the border. Still planning in progress but I have a missing link between white swamp and burnett creek. But you sold me the Double peak route, for sure.
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