The early zebrafish brain contains a simple axon scaffold of longitudinal tracts connected by commissures. Neurons in the nucleus of the posterior commissure (nuc PC) project growth cones along a specific route in this axonal scaffold, raising the possibility that specific axons in the early scaffold guide nuc PC growth cones. We tested this possibility by analyzing the behavior of nuc PC growth cones in embryos in which a portion of the scaffold, normally traversed by nuc PC growth cones, was surgically prevented from forming. Under these conditions nuc PC growth cones extended along both normal and aberrant pathways. This suggests that specific axons do provide guidance cues, since their removal leads to errors. However, these cues are not obligatory, since some growth cones still followed normal pathways.