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Monday, August 04, 2008

Winter hike in the Olinda Creek Valley

On an overcast and cold day, Sunday August 3, 2008, I did an interesting 4 km circuit in the Melbourne Water Reserve, north of the Silvan Reservoir Park, 35 km east of the Melhourne CBD.

This is a large area - on the west it is adjecent to the Mt Evelyn Forest in the Dandenong Ranges NP, and generally follows the Olinda Creek Valley and the Melbourne Water underground pipeline.

The Silvan Forest forms part of this region.

Various non-public vehicle roads are located in this area, for fire access and water management, and available for walkers.

Extensive fuel reduction burning has occurred recently.

I started my hike at the gate at the junction of Stonyford Rd and Track 18. Track 24 also starts here - this is no longer used by park management vehicles, and is an immensely steep track, almost perpendicular! A brand new unsigned management/walking track has now been constructed about 100 m to the north, running parallel to Track 24. This is also very steep, and appears to be a "new" Track 24.

I went up "new" Track 24, reaching the junction with Track 12, then followed this track along the ridge top, then a long descent meeting Pipeline Track, which is also known as Track 11. I went south along Track 11, past the prohibited-access Melbourne Water facility, and back to my starting point.

There are limited views from Track 12 into the valleys, but obscured by regrowth forest.

This area was heavily logged from the 1850s until the 1960s and much it was destroyed by the fires of 1968.

See the full set of Photos

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