Sunday 20 March 2022: Mt Gingera from Corin Dam ! – L/E. See how far I can get up Stockyard Spur.
Distance: 20.2km | Climb: 1136m | Time: 7hrs moving plus 30mins of breaks | Grading: L/E; M(11).
It felt like I’d joined the mile high club, but 1136m is only 0.7 miles.
Download the gpx file recorded via AllTrails here (in AllTrails, activate …, Download Route, Select the file format GPX Track, OK).
Another version of the gpx file, recorded on my Garmin Oregon 650 GPSr, is available here. It has quite a few waypoints in it which the AllTrails version doesn’t.
A steady drive up to Corin Dam. A few rabbits, wallabies and roos about. Misty at times.
I was walking by 7.40am and, as everyone knows who has done this trip, straight into the climb.
Stone steps …
… and wooden steps.
I was immediately huffing and puffing and the 30mins of breaks for the day included plenty of quick pauses as I climbed. The day began overcast and misty, but glorious as the sun bit through the gloom.
The Cotter River valley and Corin Dam below remained shrouded.
The long rises and short flats are meant to be represented by the four levels of stone steps at the start of the walk. There seemed to be more today. But at last the sky came down and indicated that the helipad was getting closer.
Arriving at last, I took a screen shot of the AllTrails stats.
My previous best time to here was 55 minutes. Oh how the ravages of health issues and old age slow one down!
The Stockyard Spur track levels off here for a while and it was pleasant walking.
There’s a bit of a down and up between SH1532 and SH1615.
I called into the ‘Stockyard Spur Grandstand’, so named by Graeme Barrow some years ago. It provided great views to the east, particularly to Mt McKeahnie and ‘Dutchies Peak’ (follow the link to Dutchies Peak if you want to know how it was named).
Next port of call was the remnant Brumby Yard site. Not much left, just bits of wire.
It’s downhill from there to meet the Mt Franklin Road (private vehicles can’t drive past the locked gate at the Mt Ginini car park). Then, according to the sign, 1km from here to Pryors Hut. I examined my stats again.
A couple of minutes to consume a hot (cold) cross bun.
I’d already passed (or been passed by) 3 runners and 4 walkers. At the hut were 2 more walkers and a cyclist in from Mt Ginini.
The Scotts Pine aboretum is next to Pryors Hut. The pines were planted in the 1950s by members of the Snowy Mountains Authority Landscape Section.
Just past the old horse paddock, off the road a metre or so, is the ACT border 21 mile marker. That’s 21 miles from Mt Coree.
And a couple of metres further on, the border marker Q57. The left hand arm of the lockspit points up to the next border marker on the northern nose of Mt Gingera.
Walking on from here you can see a number of hessian covers protecting the regenerating sphagnum on Snowy Flats.
It’s around 1km from Pryors Hut to the Snowy Flat Creek culvert (gurgling away today) and the Mt Gingera track turnoff.
Another track that has been fire-proofed with stone steps.
Some lovely colour in the daisies.
There’s a track marker at the big bend.
The track rises another 190vm over the 1.2km to the top. At 1857m, Mt Gingera is the second highest hill in the ACT.
There were another 3 walkers at the top.
Good views south to Bimberi Peak from near the real Mt Gingera.
AllTrails stats at the objective were:
Once again, the OpenStreetMaps used by AllTrails is a little out. If you’re interested in a discussion of where the real Mt Gingera is, have a look here.
I then went the few tens of metres south to the guyed pole, which has shrunk a little over the years.
Lovely views to the NE, including Tidbinbilla Mountain on the Tidbinbilla Range.
Ate a second cold hot cross bun.
All that remained was to return the way I came. I didn’t go north along the Gingera top, as I’ll be back (from the Ginini car park) and do that next Saturday. But it’s not all down hill, as you can see from the elevation gain at Mt Gingera (1004vm) and at the end (1136vm).
The turn off Mt Franklin Rd told me how far to go.
A few hundred metres later, I heard my name called from the bush. The only time my orange fluro t-shirt has proved useful. It was 2 great friends coming back up from the Snowy Flat Creek slab cascades. They had recognised me from 40m away. We walked along together and chatted until the Stockyard Spur Grandstand. They called in there again and I pressed on, just taking a photo of the NW lookout and Mt Ginini.
There were some nice late flowers during the day.
A copperhead snake on the descent to Corin Dam.
Lyrebirds singing in the bush. My legs did not enjoy the descent, but it was better than the ascent.
Corin Dam finally appeared.
Corin Dam was overflowing noisily.
The AllTrails recorded track map is here, where you can pan and zoom. And here’s the track laid out on my old TopoView 2006 map segment.